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Nature Attraction and Beauty PDF Print E-mail
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Monday, 07 July 2008 14:28


Minutes away from the hustle and bustle of the city is Penang’s natural heritage: her emerald green hills and golden sandy beaches. Leisure activities are varied – tennis to golf, riding to scuba diving. Penang is one place where you can jog, cycle, sunbathe, sail, beachcomb, snorkel and windsurf.

Ayer Itam Dam

One of the most popular and scenic spots for exercise enthusiasts is the Ayer Itam Dam.

Located above the famous Kek Lok Si Temple in the Ayer Itam village on the outskirts of George Town, the Dam is Penang’s answer to the Hoover Dam in USA or the Aswan Dam in Egypt, although at a smaller scale. Click here for full story.

The Aquarium of the Fisheries Research Institute, Batu Maung

Have you ever visited an aquarium? If you have not, now's the time to see and touch our diverse marine wonders at the Fisheries Research Institute aquarium at Batu Maung. What are you waiting for? Click here for full story

Admission: RM5 for adults, RM2 for kids 7 to 12 years and RM1.50 for school groups.
There is no charge for kids below 7 years.
The aquarium is located at the Fisheries Research Institute grounds at Batu Maung.
Tel: 04-626 3925 and Fax: 04-626 2210.

Balik Pulau

The hills of Balik Pulau abound with clove and nutmeg trees which bear fruit in November to January and July. Or savour durian, a seasonal fruit which is the luscious king of fruits.

Bukit Jambul Orchid and Hibiscus Garden, Bukit Jambul

Home to exotic snakes, birds and plants, the two hectare Bukit Jambul Orchid & Hibiscus Garden and Reptile House are located along Persiaran Bukit Jambul, close to the Hotel Equatorial; only a leisurely 5-minute drive away from the Penang International Airport. Click here for full story

Opens: 9:30am to 6:30pm daily (last entry at 5.30pm)
Admission: RM 10.00 adults and RM 5.00 children. A charge of RM1 for camera use.
Snake show: Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays, 11.30am and 3.30pm

Beaches and fishing villages

Most activities are centered around Batu Ferringhi, where most of the popular beach resorts are located. Their facilities include waterskiing, sailing, windsurfing, water scooters, and waterskiing. This prime stretch of beach is always a hive of activity with elite nightspots and restaurants which come to life in the evening.

Further down is the equally lovely Teluk Bahang Beach, which houses an international beach resort and is home to kampungs and a fishing village. If privacy is preferred, head for the secluded beaches of Teluk Duyung, Monkey Beach, Pantai Kerachut and Pantai Mas which are accessible via the trails in the Pantai Acheh Forest Reserve from Teluk Bahang.

The Pasir Panjang Beach at the south-western tip of the island is a secluded stretch of beach and clear waters, at the end of a 25-minute hike over challenging terrain from Betong.

See also Batu Maung, a small fishing village at the south-eastern tip of the island, which owes its fame to the beach-front shrine dedicated to Admiral Cheng Ho, the famous Chinese admiral who featured prominently in the history of the Malacca Sultanate.

The huge footprint in the vicinity is said to be that of the Admiral’s and is worshipped as something sacred. There is a belief that anyone who lights joss sticks and places it in an urn beside the footprint will be bestowed good fortune. The best seafood on the island can also be found here.

Botanical Gardens, Jalan Air Terjun

This 30-hectare sprawling garden of flora and fauna is a favourite recreation spot for locals. Central to the Gardens is a waterfall that start over a hundred metres above, hence its more popular moniker of "Waterfall Gardens". Today, the waterfall is a restricted area and hidden from public view by the green foliage.

While the vibrant hues of Penang’s native fauna is the prominent feature, the star attraction is the large number of macaque monkeys that greet visitors from the entrance right to the heart of the garden. Walkers, joggers, runners, picnickers and lovers frequent this gem of a garden for its spacious and blissful settings.

Every year, the Penang International Floral Festival will be held for about a week at the Botanic Gardens. The entire garden will be transformed into a floral wonderland with thousands and thousands of flowers and blooms, of all sizes and gorgeous colours. Click here for full story.

For more information on Penang Botanic Gardens, visit its official website at

Address: Jalan Kebun Bunga, 10350 Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Tel: 604- 2270 428, 2271 354 (direct line) • Fax: 604- 2286 075
Open from 5.00 am to 8.00 pm every day of the year.
Opens: Daily from 5.00am - 8.00pm • Admission is free.

Bukit Mertajam Recreational Forest

The Bukit Mertajam Recreational Forest lies 457 metres above sea level and covers an area of 37 hectares. Some locals refer to Bukit Mertajam as Bukit Ubat (or medicinal hill) because of the therapeutic qualities attributed to it – people with minor ailments actually claim of feeling relieved after a hike. One of the more popular parks on the mainland, it is usually packed with people during holidays. Facilites include a swimming pool, camping and picnic spots, jungle treks and comfortable accomodation.

Bukit Panchor Recreational Forest

Located 10km from Nibong Tebal or 50km from George Town lies the Bukit Panchor Recreational Forest – an ideal getaway for picnics, camping and jungle trekking. A perfect place for the family.

Butterfly Farm, Teluk Bahang

Located at Teluk Bahang, 20km from George Town, the Butterfly Farm covers an area of 0.8 hectare. Visitors can marvel at the hundreds of species of butterflies and local insects in their natural habitat.

The best time to visit is in the late morning or early afternoon, when the butterflies are most active. Click here for full story

Visiting Hours: Mondays to Fridays from 9:00am to 5:00pm; Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays from 9:00am to 5:30pm
Admission: RM 12.50 (adult), RM 6.25 (child from 5-12 years of age); Free for children below 5 years of age.
Address: No 830 Jalan Teluk Bahang, 11050 Penang
Tel: 604-885 1253 • Fax: 604-885 2011 / 885 1741 • E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

The Esplanade: A microcosm of Penang's colourful legacy

No well-planned and picturesque city is ever complete without a park and George Town is no exception. Parks can range from grand landscapes like Central Park in New York City or Hyde Park in London, to modest affairs like Penang's Esplanade, landing point of Francis Light and home to a historical battle fort. Click here for full story.

Kampung Seronok, Batu Maung

The name "Kampung Seronok" originated from a suggestion by an English engineer, D.W. Grehan who had, on a number of occasions, shared in the joy and merrymaking of the kampung folk, the the days shortly after the Japanese Surrender.

What makes it unique is the fact that it is virtually 'open' to visitors who are free to observe and participate in the various cultural activities, traditional games and rural economic pursuits of the people, showcasing the intrinsic values of traditional village life. Click here for full story

Penang Hill

Penang Hill is actually made up of a series of hills which rise above the island. The peak stands at 821 metres above sea level, which makes it a cool getaway from the tropical heat below.

The hill is accessible via a funicular train which was first opened for use in 1923. The train operates in two sections and passengers change railcars at midpoint. It takes about half an hour to reach the summit and the train service operates at half hour intervals.

Alternatively, the fit and adventurous can hike up the hill from the many hiking trails available – the most popular trails start at access points close to the Botanical Gardens. The hike itself is about 6.7 km or 4.5 miles long, which will take hikers an average of 2 to 4 hours, depending on level of fitness.

Upon reaching the summit, one is rewarded with a panoramic view of Penang island. There are also old bungalows, a hotel, bird park and walking trails which are worth checking out. Click here for full story.

Penang National Park - our little green pocket

The Penang National Park (Taman Negara Pulau Pinang) is one of the few natural forested areas left on the island. It is also currently the world's smallest national park.

The Park is located at the north-western corner of Penang Island, on what resembles the side profile of a face, hence the name Muka Head (muka literally means face). With 1181 hectares of forest and 1381 hectares of wetlands, the Park's ecosystem is a diversity of habitats with hills, sandy and rocky beaches, streams and coastal forests -representing much of the natural habitats of Penang. Click here for full story.

Pulau Jerejak

Pulau Jerejak is only minutes away from Penang city life yet tucked away among the magnificence of a lush tropical rainforest; also known as the "virgin jungle" island as it is one of the few reamining preserves of primary forest in Malaysia. A virtually undisturbed island graced with the rich diversity of 362ha of over 210 species of flora and fauna. Towering tropical trees, lingering lianas and exotic orchids prove to be shelters to some of the most remarkable living creatures, such as the Monitor Lizard and the White-Bellied Sea Eagle.

The island also boasts of an ancient emerald environment, older than the equatorial forests of the Amazon or the Congo, thus producing a marvellous ecosystem that is both inspiring and engaging. Equally intriguing is the island's hisory as a penal colony – a mystical tourch tot he surounding pristine nature.

Click here for full story on Jerejak Resort and Spa.

Pulau Aman

Pulau Aman in Bahasa malaysia means "island of peace" and as its name suggests, it is the gateway to tranquility and serenity. Situated on an island covering and area of 288 acres, it is 2.5 nautical miles from the mainland just off the coast of Seberang Perai's southern district. The nearest town is Bukit Tambun.

An idlyllic fishing village with a population of only three hundred, the majority of people on Pulau Aman ar elderly folks and laughing, carefree children.

Fishing, water sports and jungle trekking are some of the popular activities of hoiday-makers on the island. Places of interest, each with their own fascinationg story to tell, await the exploration of the adventurous.

Teluk Bahang Recreational Forest, Jalan Teluk Bahang

The diehard nature lovers will find delight in the recreational forests of Teluk Bahang, Sungai Tukun and Pantai Kerachut on the island and Bukit Mertajam on the mainland.

There is a bewildering range of flowering plants and numerous species of insects, exotic birds, butterflies, snakes and lizards. Expect to find jungle tracks that lead to the heart of the forest with camping sites along the way. Click here for full story

Tropical Fruit Farm, Jalan Teluk Bahang

Tropical fruit farm is situated at about 900 ft above sea level on the hilly terrain of Teluk Bahang, the orchard covers 25 acres and it was developed back in 1993 to converse the rare and exotic fruit trees and to educate and promote to the locals as well as foreigners on the gift that our land is blessed. Click here for full story

Opens: 9.00am to 6.00pm daily
Address: Batu 18, Jalan Teluk Bahang, Penang
Tel: 04-227 6223 • Fax: 04-229 0179 • Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Tropical Spice Garden, Jalan Teluk Bahang

Tropical Spice Garden provides an enchanting escape for tired souls' it is a garden of discovery for those who miss out on simple pleasures like walking barefoot on dewy grass or stopping to smell the flowers. If you are in need of stress therapy to invigorate your body and mind, this microcosm of diverse ecosystems is the perfect respite! Click here for full story

Lot 595 Mukim 2, Jalan Teluk Bahang 11100 Penang
Tel: 604-881 1797 (Leslie) •

Opens daily from 9.00am to 6.00pm. Last admission at 5.30 pm.
Admission fees to the Spice Gardens:
Family (2 adults and up to 3 children): RM28 (self-guided) or RM45 (tour guided)
Adult RM13 (self guided) or RM20 (tour guided)
Child (aged 4-12): RM5 (self or tour guided); Free for children under 4 years of age

Note: Special rates for Groups & Schools. Visitors can leave and re-enter the Garden on the same day without further payment provided they keep their tickets and advise the Front Office on exiting.

Admission fee to the Visitor Centre: RM1 (Free for children accompanied by parents)
Includes admission to the Spice Museum, Garden Shop, Gift Shop and Spice Café.

Youth Park

Nested under a canopy of mature trees, the Youth Park is Penang's largest recreational area. Today it boasts new outdoor adult exercise machines, children's outdoor pools and play equipmant, lush tropical gardens vibrant with colour, and quiet conversation corners.

Last Updated on Thursday, 26 March 2009 23:09

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