Penang

Penang

The island of Penang lies just off the northwest coast of Peninsular Malaysia. Charming Georgetown is Penang’s main settlement, a thriving hub where Malay, Chinese, Thai, Indian and European cultures merge, as does the architecture which, in the space of a few miles, takes in a British colonial-style cricket pitch and a rumble of Chinese stilt houses. Worth visiting are Khoo Kongsi, an old Chinese clan house, Fort Cornwallis, a British 18th-century fortress, Penang Museum and Art Gallery. The first-class laksas and unique Penang cuisine are reason for visiting alone. Outside Georgetown, one of the most unusual attractions is the Snake Temple, which swarms with poisonous snakes, but their venomous threat is countered by heavily drugging them with incense. Wat Chayamangkalaram Temple contains an enormous gold-plated reclining Buddha which, at 33 meters long, is believed to be the third largest in the world.

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Penang