I had no idea what to expect when arriving in Georgetown, Penang. I had read a few blog posts and my trusty lonely planet guidebook but hadn’t planned out any activities. Within a few hours, I was in love with the city! With its colorful facades, hip cafes and beautiful architecture, I was simply blown away. One of my favorite parts was the amazing street art in Penang!
Everywhere you turn in Georgetown there are beautiful murals on the buildings. The street art in Penang is an art lover’s dream!
The city of Georgetown partnered with artist, Ernest Zacharevic, to commission several pieces across the city that capture the essence of Georgetown and its people. The art features mainly children going about their daily lives in Penang.
Most of the art is focused in the Old Georgetown Streets. You can wander around this area and find new pieces of street art around every corner. This area is also great for picking up souvenirs and grabbing a bite to eat.
After Zacharevic’s art became a tourist attraction, many other street artists began creating murals in the area. Some streets are filled to the brim with murals and paintings squeezed between shop windows.
My favorite part about Zacharevic’s art is that many pieces are somewhat 3D! One of the most famous murals depicts a painting of a small boy atop a real motorbike.
I also loved that much of the art was interactive like this swing set mural! It was fun to pose for silly photos with the murals.
You can book a walking tour to see all of the street art, but we just did it DYI. Most of the guesthouses in the area have a map with all the famous street art pieces mapped out. You can also find it through a quick Google search if you prefer to navigate on your phone.
- Getting to Penang- You can either fly or take a ferry from the mainland. Flights from Kuala Lumpur are ridiculously cheap on Air Asia if booked a few days in advance. We took the ferry to here from Langkawi and then flew on to Kuala Lumpur.
- Where to stay- We stayed at a basic but charming guesthouse called Star Lodge. It’s centrally located and the staff behind the desk was so helpful in pointing out the best places to visit and the most delicious food to eat. They don’t have online booking, so you need to book a room upon arrival. There are several guesthouses in the area if they are full.
- What to Else See & Do-
- Hike to Monkey Beach in Taman Negara Pulau Pinang. This hike is beautiful, taking you through the jungle and a Cliffside path. It is definitely a moderately difficult hike, but if you aren’t up to it you can reach the beach by boat.
- Wander through Georgetown’s Chinatown and Little India to take in the sights and sounds.
- Try something from all the stalls at Red Garden, an amazingly diverse food hawker stall located not to far from Lebuh Chulia (the main tourist street in Penang).
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