One of our favourite things about Georgetown is how great it is for budget-friendly exploration. This UNESCO World Heritage Site effortlessly blends old-world charm with modern Bohemia and is definitely one of our top places to hit in Penang Island. The fact that there is so much to see without having to burn a hole in your pocket is also a huge plus point.
Here are some recommendations for how you can easily spend your weekend in this quaint town for a little under $150 and to help you save more on your holiday, we suggest hitting up Saleduck to snag even more deals for budget-friendly travel.
Now onto the fun stuff!
No.59, Kimberley Street, Georgetown, Penang
Price: SGD$7 per night for a dorm, SGD$18 per night for a private double room. Extra 10% discount with promo code here.
Georgetown itself is a haven for backpackers and budget travellers which mean that it’s super easy to stumble upon cool hostels, chic boutique hotels and cosy guesthouses. While there are plenty of more high-end options, if you’re fully intent on keeping things humble in terms of expenditure, you’ll still be able to find plenty of places to crash for two nights. Kimberley House is a beautiful little gem housed within a restored colonial building that is a stone’s throw away from a number of popular attractions. Alternatively, you can always scour the internet for numerous affordable lodging options.
Armenian Street, Chulia Street, Campbell Street and more
Price: Practically Free!
Georgetown is best explored by foot which makes it perfect for the budget traveller as this means that you won’t have to spend much on public transport or petrol. You can easily find and download free walking tour maps online that will take you to most of the city’s key attractions such as the Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion, Khoo Kongsi and Kek Lok Si temple.
Many of the colonial-style buildings that inhibit the back roads and alleyways have become the canvas of choice for local and international artists and you’re bound to come across a large collection of interesting murals and installation art. Georgetown also has its fair share of contemporary art galleries and if you happen to be in town during the months of August and September, you’ll be able to bear witness to the city’s yearly arts and literary festival which encompasses film screenings, talks, music and more across different venues in Georgetown.
Cendol, Nasi Kandar, Char Koay Teow, Assam Laksa. Just eat everything!
Price: Anywhere between SGD$1 to SGD$8 per meal
If you’re a foodie, our bets are that you’ll spend the bulk of your expenses on eating because Georgetown is the epitome of food paradise. If you stick primarily to the town’s numerous street stalls and hawker centres, you’ll spend a lot less but you’ll also be able to sample some of Penang’s most iconic dishes. Ones that you shouldn’t miss out on include; the cendol stall outside Joo Hooi Cafe on Macalister Road, Sisters char koay teow in Lam Heng Cafe also on Mcalister Road and of course, Penang curry mee in Hot Bowl on Abu Siti Lane.
You can also do Heritage on a Plate Food Tour to test different dishes around Georgetown. Even though it will be a little bit more expensive, you can always keep it in your budget with checking some extra discounts you can get by using coupons.
The Canteen @ China House
183B, Lebuh Victoria, 10300, Penang
Price: Average SGD$10 for wines and cocktails
Happy Hour: 3 to 7pm
If you’re itching for a nightcap but aren’t looking for an all-out rager, The Canteen at China House is a sweet spot in Georgetown’s nightlife scene. The vibe here is casual, artsy and welcoming. Light snacks and reasonably priced drinks make this bar a great place to kickback and relax with a diverse selection of jazz, R&B and indie by local live bands. Customers can also win themselves a free drink every night by uploading a photo of themselves at the bar and uploading it to their Facebook or Instagram account. Show it to a staff member to enjoy a free beverage when you buy a drink.