Top things to do

Top Choice Historic Building in George Town

Blue Mansion

Now one of Penang's most authentic heritage hotels, the magnificent 38-room, 220-window 'Blue Mansion' was built in the 1880s and rescued from ruin in the 1990s. It blends Eastern and Western designs with louvred wi…
Top Choice Historic Building in George Town

Khoo Kongsi

This spectacular clanhouse is one of the most impressive in George Town. Guided tours begin at the stone carvings that dance across the entrance hall and pavilions, many of which symbolise or are meant to attract go…
Top Choice International in George Town

China House

You can't really say you've been to George Town unless you've stepped inside China House. This block-wide amalgamation of shophouses is home to a variety of dining, drinking and shopping options. It all starts splen…
Top Choice Historic Building in George Town

Cheah Kongsi

Looking splendid after a recent major restoration, Cheah Kongsi is home to the oldest Straits Chinese clan association in Penang. The ornate front of the clanhouse can be seen clearly across a grassy lawn from Lebuh…
Top Choice Hawker in George Town

Lg Baru (New Lane) Hawker Stalls

Ask locals where their favourite hawker stalls are, and they’ll generally mention this night-time street extravaganza. Just about everything's available here, but we like the stall serving char koay kak (a wok-fried…
Top Choice Cafe in George Town

Kopi C

Fronting the fabulous China House complex, this cafe/bakery does excellent Western-style coffee, light meals and some of the best cakes and ice creams we’ve encountered in Southeast Asia.
Top Choice Peranakan in George Town


This is your chance to sample superb, subtly flavoured Peranakan-influenced cuisine. The stately dining room, part of the Seven Terraces hotel, is decorated with a gorgeous collection of antiques, set to a soundtrac…
Top Choice Chinese in George Town


There's a reason this place is always packed: it's one of the tastiest, most consistent restaurants in town (and in a place like George Town that's saying a lot). You almost can't go wrong here, but don't miss the f…
Top Choice Arts & Crafts in George Town

Shop Howard

Pick up one of Howard Tan's distinctive photographic prints at this compact gift boutique also selling unique postcards, art, handicrafts and books on local topics, all made by other local artists.
Top Choice Chinese in George Town

Tho Yuen Restaurant

Our favourite place for dim sum. It’s packed with newspaper-reading loners and chattering groups of locals all morning long, but you can usually squeeze in somewhere. Servers speak minimal English but do their best …