Known as the pearl of the orient, Penang Island is situated on the northwest side of Malaysia. The island features an attractive combination of beaches, spice plantations, street art and cultural diversity. Apart from being famous as the food capital of Malaysia, it serves as a great holiday destination for travelers.
If you're feeling wanderlust for Penang Island, be sure you're prepared for your trip. Purchase
travel medical insurance or
and read this guide to learn all about what to see and do.
Things to Do for Travelers in Penang Island
Prepare to indulge your tastebuds on this exotic tropical island. Buddhist temples, spice gardens, forts and beaches are some of the major attractions to be found here.
Batu Ferringhi Beach
One of the most popular spots on the island of Penang, Batu Ferringhi is an ideal retreat for those seeking privacy. Most of this beach is private, so it is recommended to stay in one of the resorts to enjoy the luxurious serenity of this white sand beach. You can also access a number of watersports in this area.
Tropical Spice Garden
Situated on the hillside near Batu Ferringhi, this award-winning spice garden offers culinary classes to interested visitors. Spices, tropical vegetation and medicinal plants grow in abundance in this lush plantation. A must-visit for nature lovers, it also has a great restaurant to satiate your hunger.
The largest standing structure in Georgetown, Fort Cornwallis has surprisingly never been used to engage in combat during its entire history. Built by the British East India Company in the 18th century, this bastion is designed around the shape of a star.
Keh Lok Si Temple
The largest Buddhist temple in Malaysia has a picture-perfect view with its neatly manicured gardens, monasteries, pagodas and a liberation pond. The 100-foot bronze statue of the Goddess of Mercy is awe-inspiring, to say the least. The temple has been divided into three zones and is a cornerstone of the Malaysian Chinese community.
This region of the island offers two main attractions - the Penang National Park and the Teluk Bahang beach. Visitors come here for hiking in the park on well-marked trails that lead to the jungles and bays around. If you are interested in getting away for the hustle and bustle of the town center, the beach is a good option to explore. Some say it is the hidden gem of Penang, and perhaps the most beautiful beach on the island.
Perhaps one of the most eccentric spots on the island, Snake Temple houses pit vipers and other slithery creatures as its permanent residents. Originally named the temple of the Azure Cloud, the Snake Temple was built in the mid-19th century. Legend has it that when snakes found their way here, the monks allowed them to stay. Now they can be seen lounging against walls or coiled around a candle, peacefully oblivious to passing visitors.
Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi
Constructed in 1835 for the Khoo clan, Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi is a part of the five big clan houses (Kongsi) that form the crux of the Hokkien community in Penang. It is an impressive architectural structure worth the visit if only to admire the grandeur of the structure.
Travel Risks for International Travelers in Penang Island
Although Penang Island is a relatively safe place to visit, opportunistic crimes can occur. It is best to be cautious of a few things while on your vacation here.
You will find wild monkeys all over the island. It is best to avoid bothering them, as they can act aggressively if harassed. They are also prone to snatching food, so it is best to be cautious around them.
Unfortunately, pickpockets are around. Keep your belongings close to you at all times. Locals usually wear their bags across the chest to avoid such issues.
Mosquitoes and other tropical insects can create a nuisance for the average traveler. It is advisable to carry mosquito repellent and apply it regularly.
Penang Island is a tropical coastal region. Severe rainstorms may disrupt services. Follow the advice of local authorities and check with your tour operator to gauge the situation.
Penang Island Travel Medical Insurance for International Travelers – FAQs
It's impossible to predict everything that could happen on an international vacation. While we all hope for a safe, memorable trip, there are risks to consider. Illnesses and injuries can happen anywhere, and they're all that much more likely when you're enjoying unfamiliar activities and trying different foods. To make sure you're financially protected in case of an unexpected medical issue, get travel medical insurance.
Do I need travel medical insurance for Penang Island?
It is not mandatory to get travel medical insurance on Penang Island. However, quality healthcare comes at a steep price in Malaysia. To protect yourself from dealing with large out-of-pocket medical costs while still receiving quality service, travel medical insurance is essential.
Why buy travel medical insurance for Penang Island?
Most people would never consider going without health insurance at home. Why would you choose to go without it on vacation? Your domestic health insurance most likely will not provide adequate coverage on Penang Island, so you'll want financial protection if you get hurt or sick.
Penang Island is a tropical location that can be quite warm and rainy. It's also home to a lot of exciting outdoor activities and exotic cuisine. Between weather you aren't used to, activities that are new to you and food you've never tried, the risk of becoming sick or injured can increase. Without insurance, you could end up blowing your entire trip budget – or more – on medical care. Don't run the risk of a financial setback. Get travel medical insurance.
Penang Island Trip Cancellation Insurance for International Travelers - FAQs
If you are planning to visit Penang Island, don't forget to get trip cancellation insurance. Natural disasters and unforeseen circumstances can cause delays, cancellations and setbacks in your itinerary. Trip cancellation insurance can provide you with an avenue to recoup your nonrefundable travel expenses when unexpected events derail them.
Why buy trip cancellation insurance for Penang Island?
A number of things might not go to plan when you're vacationing to Penang Island. Sudden mishaps like an illness of family emergency may prevent your departure. The island itself can also be affected by tropical storms which can cancel your flight. Trip cancellation insurance can help safeguard your finances when your trip can't go ahead as planned.
Remember, things like airline tickets and hotel accommodations often have to be booked far in advance to get the best deals, and may not be refundable. To avoid being stuck paying for nonrefundable bookings, get trip cancellation insurance.
What can be covered under trip cancellation insurance for Penang Island?
To avoid paying for nonrefundable reservations due to a canceled trip, you'll want to make sure you get a travel insurance plan with trip cancellation coverage. In addition, you may want to research other coverage options, including:
Understand what is and isn't covered before you travel. Review the wording in your policy so you know you have the right coverage to meet your needs.
Before You Travel to Penang Island - Do This
Penang Island has much to offer to all visitors. It combines the traditional and the modern in an eclectic mixture to give you the best of both worlds. But as with any other travel, you need some amount of caution and preparation to have a memorable holiday.
Pack a rain poncho or umbrella. The island is notorious for its rains throughout the year, so it is best to carry one if you don't wish to get drenched.
Research local weather forecasts before planning your itinerary. Cyclones and tsunamis can occur at any time of the year. Follow local media to stay up-to-date on the weather.
Safeguard yourself from unplanned medical or travel costs with
travel medical insurance or
It will help ensure you have a more relaxing vacation with less worry about money.