Cat Beach Sanctuary, Penang Island

There isn’t a cat lover who’s never heard of Japan’s glorious cat island. It is, after all, a dream come true to be surrounded by friendly kitties – it’s essentially why we can’t get enough of cat cafes in Singapore. Well, you don’t have to fly all the way to Japan to experience some feline love. Just a 1.5-hour flight away is Penang Island, where Cat Beach Sanctuary is located.

The non-profit sanctuary has got everything you need for some good ol’ cat therapy: sun, sand, sea, and over 300 cats you can pet, cuddle, and play with.

What to know about Cat Beach Sanctuary

Cat Beach Sanctuary Penang cats
Image credit: @catbeachsanctuary via Instagram

Cat Beach Sanctuary is more than just a beach with cats. The sanctuary was set up by the Cat Lovers International Society and is now home to over 300 rescued kitties. They do what cats do best: laze around the beach and the sanctuary’s quarters, mingle with visitors, and ooze good vibes.

Cat Beach Sanctuary Penang visitors with cats
Image credit: @catbeachsanctuary via Instagram

Entry is completely free, and visitors are welcome to make donations to help support the care of the kitties. 300 mouths is a lot to feed, so feel free to bring bags of cat food, treats, and cleaning supplies with you. Else, cash donations as easy as RM10 (~S$2.85) are more than welcome. Visitors can also choose to volunteer at the sanctuary, be it cleaning, admin, cat care, or anything under the sun to help out.

Penang cat beach
Image credit: Cat Beach Sanctuary

If you’re just here to spend time with the felines, that’s perfectly fine, too. You can partake in an array of family-friendly activities including making toys for cats, learning how to clean cats, and arts and crafts sessions. There’s even a kitten sanctuary where you can book a guided tour to learn more about how to care for kittens.

Kitten being given a bath
Ever wanted to learn how to bathe a cat? Here’s the best place to learn.
Image credit: Cat Beach Sanctuary

The sanctuary also often hosts beach cleanups where visitors are more than welcome to join. And before you head off, visit their onsite charity store where you can purchase cat toys, books, and artwork.

Beach cleanup at Taluk Bahang
Community events such as beach cleanups are a pretty common occurrence here.
Image credit: @catbeachsanctuary via Instagram

While you’re here, remember to snap lots of photos and tag the sanctuary on their Instagram and Facebook pages. Every bit of exposure helps them rake in more support for their cat rescue and care efforts. After all, these cats are always looking for forever homes, and guests can even adopt the cats at Cat Beach Sanctuary.

How to get to Cat Beach Sanctuary

Cat Beach Sanctuary is located in Teluk Bahang, a less touristy area of Penang Island. The sanctuary is about a 40-minute drive from George Town, and a breezy 10-minute drive from Batu Ferringhi. The location can be easily found on Google Maps, so don’t worry about getting lost when finding your way here.

Cat Beach Sanctuary cats lazing on pillows
Image credit: Cat Beach Sanctuary

The beach is open to the public throughout the day, but the sanctuary’s recommended visiting hours are from 12pm till the sun sets, preferably on the weekends. You can choose to walk in, but those planning to visit in groups are encouraged to make a reservation so that you can get the most out of your visit.

Fun fact: Teluk Bahang serves as the gateway to Penang National Park, which is one of the most Instagrammable things to do in Penang. So, if you’re planning a day of hiking through the park and discovering the gorgeous Penang Monkey Beach, the sanctuary makes a great pitstop en route.

Spend a day surrounded by rescued kitties at Cat Beach Sanctuary

Cat Beach Penang
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Cat Beach Penang


Tell any cat lover there’s a beach with 300 resident kitties waiting to be loved, and they’ll instantly book a flight over. Thankfully, the sanctuary isn’t that far away from Singapore. It’s just a short flight to Penang where we’re more than happy to spend a weekend gorging on delicious local food and pampering ourselves at some luxury hotels.

If flying isn’t for you, then consider taking a slow and steady KTMB journey to Penang. Or, if you have time and a bigger budget, splash out on the luxurious Eastern & Oriental Express train to Penang.

Find out more about Cat Beach Sanctuary 


Address: 778, Jalan Teluk Awak, Teluk Bahang, 11050 Tanjung Bungah, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening hours: 9am-8pm
Contact: +6 017 575 3419 |

Cover image adapted from: Cat Beach Sanctuary

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