COVID 19 in Penang: What You Need To Know
COVID 19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) has been described as a global pandemic by the World Health Organisation, which means that it has spread across six continents. We are all aware of it, discussing it non-stop and the media is packed with news and information. There’s also a lot of misinformation and we must understand that our first line of defence in a situation like this is having the correct knowledge. Follow official guidelines, remain calm, practise social distancing and good hygiene, stay home and be aware of what the symptoms are. If we all ‘obey the rules’ collectively for once, this situation will ease with time. For now catch up on all those things you wanted to but never had the time for, binge on those series, overindulge your children, spring clean, keep fit, water your plants, argue with your teens, experiment in the kitchen, work – whatever gets you and the rest of us through this. What is coronavirus? Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus. It was first identified in Wuhan, China and as of April 27th, there are 3,002,887 cases across 209 countries / areas / territories with 207,080 confirmed deaths and recovered 882,482. Common symptoms include fever, dry cough, fatigue, aches and pains. Other symptoms include shortness of breath, sore throat. For more information: Ministry of Health Malaysia World Health Organisation (WHO) How will COVID-19 affect your daily life in Penang? From now till 31
What to expect: George Town Festival 2018
The highly-anticipated month-long festival celebrating arts, culture and heritage is back for the ninth time. This year, George Town Festival (GTF) will be held from August 4 to September 2 with over 100 events to attend including world-class performances, exhibitions and more from international and local artists. Here’s what you can expect at this year’s edition. For the full list of programmes, head to georgetownfestival.com.
Penang International Food Festival 2018
After the success of last year’s event, the Penang International Food Festival (PIFF) – Apr 14-29 – is back with a host of activities, demonstrations and, most importantly, the kind of food that has placed Penang firmly on the gastronomical map. As we all know, the influence of all the different cultures – colonial, Chinese, Indian, Arabic, Malay – was the foundation of Penang’s architecture and cuisine. From famed hawker fare to the new wave of contemporary cooking, the festival highlights them all. Cool venues abound and while you’re chowing down, enjoy cooking demos, street art, international buskers performing and fireworks at night. Here are a few events you can expect from PIFF 2018. Taste of Penang (TOP)All the best food from the island’s cafés and restaurants in one area, so you can literally try everything at once! Be entertained by live performances and get tips from the various cooking demonstrations. Date: Apr 21 & 22, 5-11pm Venue: Jalan Kelawai Photo: Penang International Food Festival/Facebook RM2 Mini Food FestivalWhat’s not to like about paying RM2 per dish? Food will be served in smaller portions, so you can have a taste of as many dishes as you like without feeling the pinch or falling into a food coma. This is a good excuse to venture out to the mainland and check out the funky street art at the Butterworth Art Walk. Date: Apr 23 & 24, 5-11pm Venue: Butterworth Art Walk, Lorong Bagan Luar Food Truck Invasion (FTI) Everyone loves a good food truck, so head
Thaipusam in Penang
Thaipusam is one of the most exceptional festivals in the world, and the best place to experience it in all its vibrant, unconventional glory is in Penang. This year Thaipusam will be celebrated on January 31, so if you’re in Penang at this time, don’t miss the opportunity to experience this unique Hindu celebration. Why is it celebrated? Thaipusam is considered one of the most important festivals amongst Hindus in Malaysia and Singapore. Locally, Kuala Lumpur and Penang see the biggest festivities, and it’s considered one of the most extreme examples of religious zeal in the world. The word Thaipusam comes from the word ‘thai’ meaning tenth and ‘pusam’ meaning ‘when the moon is at its brightest’. Usually celebrated in the month of January or February, this is a day of penance and prayers, and is dedicated to Lord Murugan, the god of power and virtue. According to legend, the festival celebrates the feats of Lord Murugan (also known as Lord Subramaniam) and it was on Thaipusam when he appeared before his believers on a peacock after triumphing over the evil asuras (demons) who were attacking the devas (celestial beings). He appeared on his chariot, carrying a gold spear and wearing amazing jewels. This is why today’s celebrations focus on Lord Murugan’s statue as it’s decorated, placed in a chariot and taken on a procession through town to a temple. It’s also believed that he answers prayers and dispenses favours, which is why his followers make vows in gratitude and practise
New Year's Eve and New Year meals in Penang
For buffets, set meal promotions and countdown parties, this list will get you sorted to end the year in style and start 2018 on the right note.
Christmas meals and food promotions in Penang
For decadent Christmas desserts, turkey and impressive buffets, check out our list of Christmas meals and promotions in Penang.
Best heritage hotels in Penang
Pre-war buildings, century-old shophouses and more – there certainly isn’t any shortage of charming accommodation in George Town. Go back in time and plan your next stay at one of these heritage hideouts.
Upcoming festivals in Penang
It may be a bit bleak right now in Penang with last week’s flooding, but here’s something to look forward to at the end of the month. Within the span of ten days starting from November 24, Penang will be playing host to five festivals (from dragon boat races to jazz music) which will be happening all around the island. Here’s what you can look forward to.
Guide to George Town
Penang is a bit of an anomaly. It’s in the tropics but cannot boast of clear seas and powdery sand. Connected to the mainland by two iconic bridges and a rickety ferry service, the difference is apparent as soon as you step foot on the island. It’s by no means idyllic and its history dictates that what visitors see, taste and hear now is the result of centuries of colonisation, immigration and inter-racial connections. Food Curry mee. Photo: Douglas David For Malaysians, Penang is synonymous with food – from roadside stalls and market treats to unique cuisine highlighting the centuries of cultural fusion. Considered the unofficial foodie capital of Malaysia due to the proliferation and variety of hawker food, the best places have withstood the test of time. Everyone has their favourite spot and many a (friendly) argument has been started about where the best char kuey teow stall is or whether the Nyonya cuisine in that restaurant really is that good or is it just for ‘tourists’. Our advice is, when in Penang try everything! Breakfast in Penang requires a hearty appetite and the ability to sniff out good hawker food. The Pulau Tikus Market is a bit of an institution for Penangites; it’s where our mothers and grandmothers bought their groceries and where chickens used to be slaughtered á la minute. It’s less wet now and the chickens are already dead, but the surrounding food stalls are still churning out the same cholesterol inducing goodness they always have. Chee cheong fun
The best art galleries in Penang
Penang, a hub for homegrown artists, may run over with street art, but you’d be surprised by its lack of bona fide art galleries. The following establishments receive top marks in our books for some or all of the following: 1) inspired collection curated by art experts and enthusiasts; 2) unconventional though easily navigable venue; 3) strong community involvement such as hosting artist residencies or organising local events.
Top 20 iconic hawker dishes
Historically and geographically, Penang is perfectly positioned to be one of the top places for street food in Asia. As one of the great entrepots of the region, the combination of the spice trade, colonialism and the myriad of cultures which settled here through the ages has given rise to a unique cuisine which is becoming renowned the world over. The number one priority for many visitors is to eat their way through the island and this list will give you a head start. Here are 20 classic hawker dishes in Penang – what they are and where you can get them.
Things to do this Merdeka weekend
If you don’t already have plans for the long weekend ahead, here's a list of activities to check out, including creative markets, traditional Chinese performances and the last few George Town Festival events.