Georgetown World UNESCO Heritage Area
After leaving Penang Hill, I took the same bus (#204) back to downtown area where I next headed to the world UNESCO heritage site (chinatown area). It took longer to come back because the bus goes different route, alternatively you can take #204 and take #201 at roundabout at the road called Jalan Air Hitam. Both bus will take to downtown anyway. I told the bus driver I wanted to go to Chinatown, and he let me know exactly when to get off.
The guide books and many travel sites suggested that one should hire rickshaw to ride around Chinatown area, but I decided to walk instead of hiring the rickshaw, why? It is a small neighborhood, and I loved to stop by at different shops to look around in more details. A must see thing would be Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion, one of the most prominent heritage buildings in Georgetown and now becomes a national treasure. In order to see it inside, you have to pay! Daily guided heritage tours of the house was RM12/person.
You can find a lot of hostel and guesthouse in this neighborhood as well. The buildings in the Chinatown/UNESCO area were all build about 100 years ago, and one can see their unique architectures and warned-out colors walking through them. They were so well preserved, and will provide you a good feeling of what life here must have been like a century ago.
Gurney Drive Hawker Stall
After china town, I walked back to the hotel to check in and rested a bit before heading out for the next exploration. Gurney Drive, this is where they call “food paradise”! I walked back to Komtar bus station, caught bus # 101 Northbound, and got off in front of Gurney Drive plaza. There were no sign of food stalls where I got off the bus; only a nice plaza/shopping mall. I asked a local for direction and founded out that you have to walk toward the beach. There were so many hotels and nice restaurants along the beach. I finally got to the spot where hundreds of food stalls were lined up. It was the biggest food stalls I have ever been to.
There were so many food stalls to choose from, and I was so overwhelmed and didn’t know where to start. I wanted to eat everything! The dishes were mostly small, so I got to sample many stalls. There were Thai, Chinese, Malaysian, and Muslim food available, but pretty much everything just blended together. I had the best Satay I had ever eaten here. I really lost count how many dishes I ate, as I made so many trips back and forth.
I was a bloated panda by the end of the night. I ended up spending RM30, the most expensive meal of my stay in Malaysia. One can definitely find cheaper food stall around Penang, but the variety of Gurney Drive Hawker Stall is unmatched and seeing it/being there is an experience of itself. Gurney drive lived up to its glory as the Food Paradise; it did not disappoint. I wish I had 2 more nights here. I grabbed a taxi (RM12) back to the hotel after dinner and got ready for bed. Another day yet to come.