Penang Hill, or Bukit Bendera as the locals fondly call it, is located on the island of Penang. Situated about 800 meters above sea level, Penang Hill boasts cool, unpolluted air and unparalleled views of the seas surrounding Penang island. Accessible by a furnicular railway, Penang Hill is definitely an attraction that should be on the travel itinerary of every tourist.
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My college organized a class trip to climb Penang Hill a few months back, and being a Penangite, I felt that this is something I must do. A total of 35 people came to climb and first, we went through alot of steps. It was very tiring, and as soon as I finished climbing all the steps, there was a little 'station' where you can sit and rest. You can also drink some tea or water. At first I thought we were already close to reaching it, then I found out I still had to climb about another 4.5km using the main road. I was so shocked I nearly fainted.
So as I dragged myself to climb further, there were several stations that were placed just in case you fill too tired and need a rest. Also, as you are climbing, you can see the wonderful hills from afar, which is a good location to take some photos. Finally when we climbed to the top, we were all so exhausted, and just feel like sleeping on the floor. But we felt such a huge sense of achievement. At the top of Penang Hill, it is very windy, and also pretty cold. There is a place to eat, and also there is an owl museum. You can also see an overview of Penang from there, although when we went there, it was cloudy. Overall, an amazing experience for me.
I organized a hiking trip with my friends to hike up Penang Hill and take the cable car ride on the way down. The hike was surprisingly easy to climb despite the steepness of the hill due to easily climb-able tar roads and railings to hang on to for grip. Personally this took the fun out of hiking away because what fun is there in hiking when you don't have a risk of slip and falling?
There were many "tea stations" on the way up to the peak where rows of mugs were left on the table and a big kettle full of Chinese tea sat nearby on a bench. Some of the younger hikers gulped down the tea and we push on. Once we reached the peak, we felt a huge sense of achievement and the reward was a breath-taking view of Penang Island, or that's what I thought would be. Instead,the morning we went was a bit foggier than usual so the usual view was blocked, but that didn't dampen our mood. We had hiked to the top of Penang Hill and we just wanted to enjoy the moment.
It used to be very crowded especially during holidays and weekend. I was there once during school holiday, it was extremely crowded and the queue is rather long. So, after i purchase the train ticket, I waited for my turn to ride uphill.
I was like "awesome", when i reach the hill top, the superb view of Penang island, Penang Bridge and the cool refreshing air. I spend around 40 minutes up there to snap some photo and enjoy the view. Besides, there is a souvenir shop selling gifts which attracts a lot of visitors to purchase some souvenir.
I had a simply marvelous time up on Penang Hill. Firstly, the railway queue isn't that long, I queued for less than 5 minutes and the ride up was very fast, albeit too fast for my liking. I would've loved the older railway, but too bad it isn't in operation right now.
The ride up takes less than 5 minutes, and I had a great blast of cool air to welcome me to the top of Penang Hill! Although packed with tourists, it is still possible to walk around freely or even rent a buggy to get around the summit. It's really amazing how beautiful the scenery is, with the Andaman Sea in the distance and the entirety of Penang laid out before you like a mosiac!
I never get a chance to go up to the top of Penang Hill even though I was at the ticket booth for a few times. Long queue, railway upgrade and etc stopped me to go up. I managed to go up to the hill after the train upgrade. It was chilling up there, with great view of Penang Island. Since we are keener to understand the locals that stay there, we spend most of our time walking around alleys and snaps great photo of the local life. There is a resort up at top of Penang Hill but it was pricey to stay there, so we decided to come down before night.