Penang Hill

I am a little behind on posts this month.  We were so fortunate to have my parents come over from the States for a nice long visit.  We kept them busy,so there will be quite a few posts coming in the next couple of weeks.

One of the first things that we took Mom and Dad to do was Penang Hill.  This was an activity that we had been meaning to do but just hadn’t gotten to it yet.  It will not be the last time we go.  The views are breath taking and it is generally about 5 degrees cooler than the rest of the island – that in itself makes it worth the trip.  It is the first time since we have been here, I can honestly say I felt a cool breeze.  It was amazing.  Penang Hill actually encompasses a couple of hill tops in the same area, the two main being Strawberry Hill and Flag Staff Hill. Most of the tourist activities are on Strawberry Hill.   Francis Light the British Captain credited with founding the British colony here in Penang.  He originally had a path up the hill cleared to grow strawberries.  Hence the name Strawberry Hill.  It later became a hill retreat for the British to escape the heat of the inland island and the threat of malaria.  Many of the bungalows and large houses that were built by the British were abandoned when they left in the 1960s.  While many are still in a state of disrepair, many have been restored.  The BBC/PBS Show “Indian Summers”  was filmed here in Penang, most of it on Penang Hill, in restored Hill Station houses.

To get up the hill one has to take a train up the hill to the top.  The train has been in operation since 1924.

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Train Station at the bottom of the hill
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Train leaving the station

B LOVED riding the train.  On the way up the hill we were able to get a really nice window seat looking down the hill.

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B looking down the tracks
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Choo Choo Train!!
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A look back down the tracks

Once you get up to the hill there are several observation decks to take pictures, event buildings, a cafe and full service restaurant (which we might just try on our next date night).  There are some pretty amazing views of the whole island, and really nice cool breezes….Did I mention the cool breezes?

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Looking at the bridge over to the mainland
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View of the other hills
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One of the Hill Station Houses that has been turned into an event space
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Observation Deck
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B testing his Mother’s nerve.
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One of the houses on the hill
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One more of the view for good measure

Up another stair case there is another section of Penang hill.  Here you will find a cafe with food hawkers, an Owl museum, a love lock bridge, a play ground, a fire department, a mosque, and a Hindu Temple.

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Looking down at the Hill Top activities including the Love Lock Bridge
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Cafe and Owl Museum
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Love locks on the “bridge”
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Playground
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Mosque (it was closed for renovations at the time of our visit)
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Hindu Temple
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Inside the Temple

There was a cannon that we had to get a picture of B on.

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Do you see the guy that is taking his picture?

A fun time was had by all.  If you come to visit we may wait until you are halfway through your trip to take you up to Penang Hill.  That way you can fully appreciate how nice the breeze is up there.

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Back down on the train!

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