George Town, Malaysia: Travel/Tourist Information Guide
George Town is the multicultural capital of the state of Penang. It covers an area of 121 square kilometers with an estimated population of 750,000. The town was named after King George II as it was one of the three Straits Settlements along with Singapore and Malacca. Francis Light, a British captain and a trader for the British East India Company, was regarded as the founder of the city as he set foot in 1786. It is one of the most interesting and colorful cities in Malaysia. Walking down the streets of George Town is like walking through the paths of history with its ancient British colonial buildings. With its preserved cultural and historical heritage, the city was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The city is filled with heritage buildings like the Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion, the Cheah Kongsi, and the Clan Jetties that is a part of the Penang Heritage Trail. Aside from the cultural and historical attractions that are mostly spotted in the Georgetown Streets, it grows to be a modern city with skyscrapers and shopping malls. With the fusion of the old and new, there is a good number of things to do in George Town. At night, the city lights turn on for a good nightlife experience. Some of the best-known pubs and bars are located within hotels at Jalan Penang. With the attractions and the nightlife, some tourists want to stay in the city for a couple of days. There is a great number of accommodation in the city from a luxurious stay in the prestigious five-star hotels to a simple and comfortable stay in the budget hotels and other forms of accommodation. The hotels are usually hosting some tours and excursions to the outskirts of the city.
If planning to arrive by plane, the Penang Airport is catering domestic flights and some flights outside the border. Air Asia connects the airport to the other Malaysian Airport like Kuala Lumpur, Kota Kinabalu, and Langkawi. There are also flights that connects Penang to Singapore, Hong Kong, Indonesia, and Thailand.
Another way to get in is by boat. From Butterworth, there are ferry boats heading to Penang. Ferries arrive at the Raja Tun Uda terminal on Weld Quay on the east side of the city. There are also boats from Langkawi.