At just over 25 square kilometres, Penang National Park is purportedly the smallest national park in the world. Except if you Google “smallest national park in the world” you’ll realise it’s not. Moyenne Island in the Seychelles stakes that claim too, and at 22 acres, the equivalent of 0.09 square kilometres, it’s mathematically a better bet. But hey, who needs superlatives like world ‘s best, worst, biggest or smallest when you have astounding biodiversity, golden beaches and historical attractions that can be visited within a day? Am I right, Penang?
Richard and I were wavering. To Georgetown Festival or not? Inertia placed us on the side of not. But after hearing about Festival Director Joe Sidek’s directorial debut while in Kuching I was swung the other way.
Photos paint pretty pictures but they can give the misleading impression that everything is blue skies and happy smiles. And that just isn’t the case. Take my trip to Penang….
A stylish budget boutique stay in the centre of George Town, in Sinkeh proprietor Chee Sek Thim’s has created a calm oasis out of a heritage building that also happens to support Penang’s growing art scene.
Penang is a gorgeous tropical island, and now with the growing popularity of rooftop bars and other vertiginous attractions, you can go from appreciating the island’s sights at street level to taking it all in from above. Here’s how, in ascending order….
Baba Nyonya or Peranakan Chinese I know. Their rich legacy is well documented – in their homes, their clothes, and their food. Jawi Peranakan I didn’t, which is why on a recent trip to Penang I decided to stay at the Jawi Peranakan Mansion.
Ever since I had taken the funicular train up Penang Hill, I had harboured the ambition to hike my way to the top. On a recent visit, that’s what I did.