Do you have any plans to visit Indonesia’s neighboring countries? Let’s go to Penang! This Malaysian state known as the Pearl of the Orient indeed has a plethora of charm that is almost impossible to ignore. Some of which you can read here: Penang Facts You Need to Know: From its Popular Travel Destination, to its Best (and Cheapest) Hotels

So, what can we do in Penang?

Believe me, there are 1001 activities to do in Penang, and you will never run out of fun in Penang. If you are looking for unique activities to do there, check out these six recommended activities:

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A. Unique Things to do in Penang

1. Street Art Hunting at Georgetown

Georgetown, the capital of Penang, is not only popular due to its status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  Georgetown is also filled with interesting and iconic murals all around the city.

Believe it or not, mural hunting is among the most favorite things to do in Georgetown. Don’t just feast your eyes with these murals, you’ll find other travelers creating quirky poses in front of the murals! These are some examples of the popular murals:

An iconic street art in Georgetown
An iconic street art in Georgetown, via Azreey/wikimedia commons

Many travelers love to create quirky poses in front of the murals. Here are the examples:

Posing in front of a street art of a child and a bicycle
Posing in front of a street art of a child and a bicycle, via phalinn/flickr/creative commons
Pretending to ride the bike
Pretending to ride the bike, via phalinn/flickr/creative commons

The same thing with this mural that depicts two siblings playing on the swing:

Mural
Mural, via Janko Luin/flickr/creative commons

Some travelers love to pose as if they’re playing with these children!

On the swing
On the swing, via phalinn/flickr/creative commons

There are plenty of other cool murals in Georgetown, ready to be captured with various creative poses on your camera. And, if you are interested in hunting street art in Georgetown, you can find the map and each description here.

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2. Walk around the Cool Temples: They’re Unique and Guaranteed to Awe You!

As a region inhabited by multiple races, Penang has many temples that are influenced by various elements of culture. You will be in awe with the various temples in Penang.

There are temples that depicts the culture of China, India, Myanmar, and even a temple that will give you the creeps because…ah, nevermind. Go ahead and check out our recommendations for several cool temples in Penang!

  • Kek Lok Si Temple, One of the Most Important and the Largest Buddhist Temple in Southeast Asia.

Kek Lok Si Temple (translated as “Temple of Supreme Bliss”) is known as the most important temple, as well as the largest Buddhist temple in Malaysia and Southeast Asia.

This temple doesn’t only look cool during the daylight. At night, you may also visit it to pray or just to take a look around, as its real spiritual charm is truly felt after dawn.

Kek Lok Si Temple
Kek Lok Si Temple, via Arne Müseler/wikimedia commons
  • Snake Temple, A Temple Filled with Snakes!

Okay, maybe the term “filled with snakes” is a bit overrated. However, Snake Temple – just like its name – does harbor a variety of poisonous snakes roaming around freely (they are considered a holy aspect of the temple). If you do not like snakes, think twice before you visit this place!

Snake Temple
Snake Temple, via Khalzuri Yazid/wikimedia commons
  • Kuan Yin Temple, The Oldest Temple in Penang with A Prominent Chinese Architectural Style.

This temple was build in 1728. Isn’t that pretty great?

Kuan Yin Temple
Kuan Yin Temple, via oldandsolo/flickr/creative commons
  • Wat Chaiya Mangalaram, a Thailand-style Buddhist Temple Carrying a Sleeping Buddha Statue.

Wat Chaiya Mangalaram is a Thailand-style temple in Penang. This temple indeed has an architectural style commonly seen in temples in Thailand. However, that’s not the reason why this is a popular temple. Wat Chaiya Mangalaram is known for its 33 meter long Sleeping Buddha statue, which is believed to be one of the largest statues in the world.

The Sleeping Buddha statue at Wat Chaiya Mangalaram
The Sleeping Buddha statue at Wat Chaiya Mangalaram, via plassen/flickr/creative commons
  • Dhammikarama Burmese Temple, The Only Burmese-style Buddhist Temple in Malaysia.

These temple is one of the 15 historical sites proclaimed by the government of Penang. Wouldn’t that make it worth seeing?

Dhammikarama Burmese Temple
Dhammikarama Burmese Temple, via Cephoto, Uwe Aranas/wikimedia commons

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3. Visit the Smallest National Park in the World

Yup, Penang has a national park called the Penang National Park. This park is known as the smallest national park in the world as it is only 9,9 square miles in size.

Even so, Penang National Park is a fun place to visit as they carry a collection of flora and fauna that are rarely seen in other national parks in Malaysia. In this national park, you can enjoy the rainforest as well as the ocean at once. The best part is, there is no entrance fee!

Penang National Park
Penang National Park, via cat_collector/flickr/creative commons

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4. Eat Till You Drop.

Do you know that Penang is known as the Capital of Food? There’s no reason to not treat your palate until you’re stuffed in Penang. For recommendations on what kind of food you should try in Penang, read the article, Penang Facts You Need to Know: From its Popular Travel Destination, to its Best (and Cheapest) Hotels!

Food in Penang
Food in Penang, via m4sh.3d/flickr/creative commons

5. Visit a Variety of Unique and Quirky Museums.

If you think Penang is only about murals, temples and food, then you’re wrong! Penang is filled with cool museums. In fact, some of them have unique and quirky themes!

To help you plan your museum visit agenda in Penang, check out our several unique, quirky, must-visit museum recommendations:

  • 5D Interactive World, For You Who are Done with the 2D, 3D or Even 4D.

This museum has only been opened since last December 2015. Its 5D concept is even more thrilling than the 4D, because you will be invited to go through the 4D experience supplemented with other elements, such as the smoke and wind. Sounds fun, huh?

“Magic” Zone at the 5D Interactive World
“Magic” Zone at the 5D Interactive World, via 5D Interactive World/facebook
  • Upside Down Museum, Guaranteed to Put You in Spiderman’s Shoes

Aren’t you curious what would it feel like to be Spiderman, to crawl freely on the ceiling at of a building? It’s simple, you just need to visit the Upside Down Museum, where all of the displays are set up upside down or on an angle. Maybe that’s what Spiderman see when he’s lurking on his enemies!

Upside Down Museum
Upside Down Museum, via penang-traveltips
  • Toy Museum Heritage Garden, Perfect for Those Who are Young at Heart

Do you like dolls and other collectibles? Let’s go to the Toy Museum Heritage Garden (formerly known as Penang Toy Museum), located at 1370, MK2, Teluk Bahang, 11050, Penang.

In this museum, not only you will see hundreds of thousands of doll and toy collections, you will also be able to enjoy the eco-tourism. This museum is equipped with a large garden filled with many different types of plants.

Toy Museum Heritage Garden
Toy Museum Heritage Garden, via thewackyduo

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6. Walk Around and Get Lost in Georgetown, then Fall in Love with the City

One easy way to enjoy Penang is by getting yourself lost in Georgetown. Find the best spot in Georgetown on foot. You can hunt for unique architectural structures, find unusual places for food, walk in and out of the many districts with their various ambience, or take a tricycle taxi ride around the city. Don’t be surprised if you have gone around Georgetown and you end up falling in love with this city.

A street in Georgetown
A street in Georgetown, via oldandsolo/flickr/creative commons

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Once you’ve explored Penang to the max and do the many, many unique activities there, enhance your unique holiday by staying at the various one-of-a-kind accommodation in Penang. Sshh, no worries, they are budget friendly for many different type of travelers, including backpackers.

B. Unique Budget Accommodation to Try in Penang

Have you read Penang Facts You Need to Know: From its Popular Travel Destination, to its Best (and Cheapest) Hotels? Once you’ve read it, you might think that Penang is filled with ethnic-themed hotels. In fact, as a region known for its uniqueness, Penang has many accommodations with unique themes. These are some unique accommodations you may try without drilling a hole in your pocket, aka the economical ones.

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1. Qube Hotel, A Futuristic Capsule Hotel with Budget-friendly Price.

Qube Hotel Penang
Qube Hotel Penang, via qubepenang

The capsule hotel trend may have been initiated in Japan. However, nowadays you may find capsule hotels anywhere, including in Penang. One of the capsule hotels you may find in Tanjung Bungah, Penang, is Qube Hotel.

The ambience of Qube Hotel
The ambience of Qube Hotel, via qubepenang

Qube Hotel has a quite interesting ambience. For its common rooms, Qube Hotels adopted the industrial style. However, the sleeping capsules are designed with a more futuristic feel.

And, if you need more privacy, or perhaps you are not prepared to sleep in such a unique spot, you may stay in the private rooms. Qube Hotel has many types of private rooms, which are not that much different from other hotel rooms in general. More or less, it’s like this:

Room with a sleeping capsule
Room with a sleeping capsule, via qubepenang
The sleeping capsule
The sleeping capsule, via qubepenang
The sleeping capsule
The sleeping capsule, via qubepenang

Address: 547-S, Wee Hein Tze Road, Tanjung Bungah, Penang 11200 Malaysia
Check in: 15.00, Check out: 12.00
Rate: start from MYR47/night or USD11.4/night (weekdays, low season, 1 adult, dormitory) Check the Latest Price!

Book now from Booking.com
Book now from Agoda.com

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2. The Frame Guesthouse, A Minimalistic Budget Accommodation That is Quite Instagramable.

The Frame Guesthouse
The Frame Guesthouse, via booking

Looking for a budget accommodation in a strategic spot? If Georgetown is your choice of travel destination while you’re in Penang, you might be interested to check out The Frame Guesthouse.

This accommodation is quite strategically located, as it is only about 400 meters away from the Pinang Peranakan Mansion, and less than 1 km away from Fort Cornwallis and Penang Jetty. Their rates? It starts from only around USD7.4!

The interior
The interior, via booking

This hotel is unique for its minimalistic interior. The Frame Guesthouse was built in a building that used to be a frame shop.

The building was then renovated at its crucial parts and kept authentic. Therefore, don’t be surprised if the hotel looks so plain (some parts of the wall and windows are left peeling on purpose) – these are actually some Instagramable unique elements.

The interior
The interior, via The Frame Guesthouse/facebook
The back area of the hotel
The back area of the hotel, via The Frame Guesthouse/facebook

This is what the rooms, which consist of the dormitory and private (double, double ensuite, twin room) style, look like:

Dormitory
Dormitory, via booking
Double room
Double room, via booking

Address: 168, Chulia Street 10200 Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia
Check in: 15.00, Check out: 12.00
Rate: start from MYR33/night or USD8.1/night (weekdays, low season, 1 adult, dormitory) Check the Latest Price!

Book now from Booking.com
Book now from Agoda.com

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3. Looking for a Budget Accommodation in a Strategic Location? You Really Should Check Out Eton Hotel Penang.

Eton Hotel Penang
Eton Hotel Penang, via hotels

Of all cool travel destinations in Penang, Georgetown has always been a favorite among travelers. No wonder, this capital of Penang indeed offers many tourism sites that are too cool to miss. And, if you are interested in looking for an accommodation in Georgetown before you decide to explore Penang, you may consider Eton Hotel Penang.

Reception area
Reception area, Eton Hotel Penang/facebook

Eton Hotel Penang is located at a super convenient spot. From this hotel, you can easily reach many popular travel destinations in Georgetown because they’re very nearby.

For example, this hotel is only 100 meter away from Penang Jewish Cemetery, 200 meter away from Sun Yat Sen Museum, 300 meter away from New World Pard and Chew Thean Yeang Aquarium and not even 1 km away from Kidland Penang dan One East Museum. Isn’t that convenient?

Lounge and reception area
Lounge and reception area, via hotels

This hotel offers several types of room, starting from the Standard Queen, Superior Twin, Superior Queen, Deluxe King, Deluxe Triple and Deluxe Executive. The unique thing about these rooms are their varying wallpapers; therefore, each room feels different.

The room rates actually begin at around MYR130. However, you may get the best deal up to MYR 75 (or approximately USD18.15) if you order it from various online booking site. Here are what the room look like:

The room
The room, via etonhotel
The room
The room, via Eton Hotel Penang/facebook
The room
The room, via Eton Hotel Penang/facebook

Address: 76 Lorong Selamat, 10400 Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia
Check in: 15.00, Check out: 12.00
Rate: start from MYR75/night or USD18.15/night (weekdays, low season, 1 adult) Check the Latest Price!

Book now from Booking.com
Book now from Agoda.com

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4. Time Capsule Hotel, Another Futuristic Capsule Hotel You Can Check Out in Georgetown.

Time Capsule Hotel
Time Capsule Hotel, via Time Capsule Hotel/facebook

Another futuristic capsule hotel you may find in Georgetown is the Time Capsule Hotel. This capsule hotel indeed offers sleeping capsules with fun, futuristic ambience that will make you forget that you are still in a heritage-themed city.

The interior
The interior, via agoda

That’s not the only interesting thing about the Time Capsule Hotel. With its very budget-friendly rates, this hotel offers captivating amenities. Starting from the common lounge, a bar, coffee shop, to the shops, you can find all of them here. Not to mention its Instagramable interior, bringing happiness to both travelers and Instagramers.

The amenities
The amenities, via agoda
The amenities
The amenities, via Time Capsule Hotel/facebook

Inside the sleeping capsule, it’s quite interesting, too! Other than the futuristic sleeping capsules, the sleeping room in this hotel is equipped with a common living room. You may also choose whether you would like to stay overnight or only for a short time (6 hours). Sshh, for a short time stay, the rate begins from only around MYR35!

The room
The room, via agoda
The room
The room, via Time Capsule Hotel/facebook
Sleeping capsule
Sleeping capsule, via Time Capsule Hotel/facebook

Address: 420, Lebuh Chulia, Georgetown Heritage, Penang, Malaysia 10200
Check in: 14.00, Check out: 12.00
Rate: start from MYR55/night or USD13.6/night (weekdays, low season, 1 adult, dormitory) Check the Latest Price!

Book now from Booking.com
Book now from Agoda.com

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5. Even in Penang You Can Try Sleeping in a Container Capsule During Your Stay in the Container Hotel Penang.

Container Penang
Container Penang, via Container Hotel (Georgetown, Malaysia)/facebook

Container Hotel Penang is a hotel managed under the Container Hotel group, which branches can be found in several spots, such as in Kuala Lumpur and Kuala Lumpur International Airport.

However, the Container Hotel Penang has several pluses compared to the other locations, as they do not only offer containers. The Container Hotel Penang successfully combines the heritage-style building and the container concept to create a place to stay with unique ambience.

Living room
Living room, via agoda
Living room
Living room, via agoda

The rooms in Container Hotel Penang are quite cool too. Other than the sleeping capsules, this hotel also offers private rooms with modern minimalistic design. For the sleeping capsule, there are ones designated for female, male, and also double-sized ones that fit two people. The private rooms consist of the White Room (deluxe) and White Suite (suite). They look pretty much like this:

The sleeping capsule
The sleeping capsule, via Container Hotel (Georgetown, Malaysia)/facebook
Single pod
Single pod, via Container Hotel (Georgetown, Malaysia)/facebook
Double pod
Double pod, via Container Hotel (Georgetown, Malaysia)/facebook
White room
White room, via Container Hotel (Georgetown, Malaysia)/facebook
White room
White room, via Container Hotel (Georgetown, Malaysia)/facebook
White suite
White suite, via Container Hotel (Georgetown, Malaysia)/facebook
White suite
White suite, via Container Hotel (Georgetown, Malaysia)/facebook