Try the vivid cultural cocktail in George Town, Malaysia

George Town is located on Penang Island on the northwest coast of Malaysia. The historical part of the town inscribed as a UNESCO Heritage Site for its unique architectural and cultural townscape.

Unique Architecture

Panoramic view over historical part of the Georgetown
Panoramic view over historical part of the Georgetown

The old city of George Town preserved a large amount of historical architecture. Due to the mix of Chinese, Indian, Islamic and British cultures the architecture of Penang acquired the remarkable style without parallel anywhere in Asia.

Facade of the old shophouse building in UNESCO Heritage buffer zone
Facade of the old shophouse building in UNESCO Heritage buffer zone
Facade of the old building in George Town
Facade of the old building in George Town

Cheong Fatt Tze or The Blue Mansion is one of the most noticed buildings in George Town. It was built by Chinese merchant at the end of the 19th century. The mansion is a splendid example of the living house of wealthy Straits Chinese of that time. Nowadays The Blue Mansion hosts the authentic hotel and the museum.

Old rickshaw tricycles near Fatt Tze Mansion also known as Blue Mansion
Old rickshaw tricycles near Fatt Tze Mansion is also known as Blue Mansion
The interior of Fatt Tze Mansion or Blue Mansion
The interior of Fatt Tze Mansion or Blue Mansion

Location: 14 Lebuh Leith, George Town, Malaysia
Website: http://www.thebluemansion.com.my

Street food capital

People dining at the street food stalls on Lebuh Chulia
People dining at the street food stalls on Lebuh Chulia

Besides its marvelous cityscape, George Town is considered as street food paradise by many. The food scene is represented by the blend of Malay, Chinese, Indian, Peranakan and European cuisines. The most popular way to enjoy Penang cuisine is to stick around one of the night street markets that come to life at sunset time on the streets of George Town.

Wok-fried noodles at Kimberly Street Food Night Market
Wok-fried noodles at Kimberly Street Food Night Market
Woman cooks duck meat at Kimberly Street Food Night Market
Woman cooks duck meat at Kimberly Street Food Night Market
Lok-Lok steamboat stall at the Kimberly Street Food Night Market
Lok-Lok steamboat stall at the Kimberly Street Food Night Market

Location: Lebuh Kimberley, Lebuh Chulia, Lorong Baru
What to eat:  Char kway teow, Asam laksa, Curry mee, Hokkien mee, Won ton mee, Nasi kandar, Rojak, Chendol

Penang street art

Mural Kids on bicycle by Ernest Zacharevic
Mural “Kids on bicycle” by Ernest Zacharevic

Talking about George Town it’s impossible not to mention the spectacular paint murals. Once started as a part of the annual George Town Festival, it has become one of the cultural landmarks of the city in the last years.

Mural "Boy on a Bike" by Ernest Zacharevic
Mural “Boy on a Bike” by Ernest Zacharevic
Mural "Children on the Swing" by Louis Gan
Mural “Children on the Swing” by Louis Gan

Location: The artworks are dotted over the city and the new ones appear constantly. To start exploring use one of the tourist maps: like this or like this.

Cultural cocktail

Cycle rickshaw rides down the street in George Town
Cycle rickshaw rides down the street in George Town

The vivid cultural cocktail determines the distinct character of the George Town. Chinese temples, mosques, Indian saris and spices mingle with white-washed colonial buildings and modern architecture located outside the old town. The mixture is totally worth to explore it.

19th century Kapitan Keling Mosque after sunset
19th century Kapitan Keling Mosque after sunset
Chinese Choo Chay Keong Temple adjoined to Yap Kongsi clan house
Chinese Choo Chay Keong Temple adjoined to Yap Kongsi clan house
Burning incense at the Kuan Im Teng Temple
Burning incense at the Kuan Im Teng Temple

How to get there: There is an international airport on Penang located in 16 km from the George Town. Penang island is located in 355 km away from Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia. You also can get to Penang by bus or by train from Kuala Lumpur. Read our detailed instruction here.

Panoramic view over George Town, Penang, Malaysia
Panoramic view over George Town, Penang, Malaysia
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George Town is located on Penang Island on the northwest coast of Malaysia. The historical part of the town inscribed as a UNESCO Heritage Site for its unique architectural and cultural townscape.

Photo credit: © Elena Ermakova, © Evgeny Ermakov. All rights reserved. Contact us here if you are interested in using our photos.