Things to Do in Georgetown Penang, Malaysia

The capital of the island of Penang, Georgetown is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its beautiful well-preserved colonial architecture, with shop-houses that date back from the 19th century to the 1930s. It is a vibrant town, full of noisy street markets, fragrant food carts, beeping horns and wandering stray dogs. Some say that it feels like Singapore did back in the 60s and 70s.

It definitely worth venturing over on the ferry to Penang to visit this town. Stroll around through the narrow streets, atmospheric temples and beautiful buildings, seeing the many culture influences.

Things to Do in Georgetown Penang - Marvel at the structures around you!
Marvel at the temples around you!

Things to Do in Georgetown Penang

Indulge in the Culinary Offerings

Penang is known as a food paradise and is considered by many to have the best food in all of Malaysia. Whether you are hungry for a huge plate of creamy coconut rice, fried chicken, anchovies and spicy sambal (known as Nasi Lemak), a simmering bowl of Chinese noodle soup or a spicy curry, you will find it all here. Check out the amazing Red Garden food court on Jalan Penang, which has countless food stalls where you can choose from an array of dishes from cultures all over Southeast Asia all under one roof.

Things to do in Georgetown Penang: Having a meal in Georgetown
Having a meal in Georgetown

Soak Up the Atmosphere of Little India

As soon as you step into the Indian quarter of Penang, you will know it. The stores selling brightly coloured saris, the jangling tunes blaring from the speakers, the piles of fragrant spices and vegetables sold outside of the shops. It’s a beautiful part of town to explore.

When we were there we fell in love with the samosas sold by the man with the large cart on the corner. He’s hard to miss, so make sure you try one – they are addictive!

Things to do in Georgetown Penang:
Samosas in Little India

Ride on a Rickshaw

When you arrive in Georgetown you will see a collection of brightly coloured rickshaws decorated with fake flowers, plastic dolls, toy collections and much more. No trip to Penang would be complete without taking a ride on one of these makeshift contraptions. It is a great way to see the streets at a slow pace while listening to the commentary of a charismatic driver.

These are just a few fun things to do in Georgetown Penang, Malaysia.

About Kelly Dunning


A Canadian freelance writer with a love of art, culture, literature and adventure, Kelly loves exploring foreign lands and expressing her experiences through the power of the written word. She and her English boyfriend Lee run, packed full with travel guides, stories and inspiration for those who dream of travel. They have been location independent and travelling the world digital-nomad style for the last three years, with no address, no car and no fixed schedule.

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3 Responses

  1. Port of Call: Exploring Penang, Malaysia | Go 4 Travel Blog

    […] Malaysian state of Penang is located on the northwest coast. The capital, Georgetown, is a hive of activity, with restaurants, shops and more. A UNESCO heritage site, it is a […]

  2. Spice of Southeast Asia: Onboard Voyager of the Seas | Go 4 Travel Blog

    […] We sailed on the 7-night Spice of Southeast Asia cruise. We visited Kuala Lumpur (Port Klang), Penang and Langkawi in Malaysia, and Phuket, Thailand. This itinerary has something for the whole family, […]

  3. Places to Visit in Malaysia: Pick and Mix - Go4Travel Blog

    […] soak up some history and culture, as you eat your way through some of the nation’s best grub. The provincial capital, Georgetown, has some interesting museums, fascinating clan houses and a wide range of beautiful architecture: […]


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