Penang is definitely my favourite place in Malaysia. I love the fusion of cultures and of course, its mouth-watering food. Penang also has an amazing nature. You can relax by the beach at Batu Ferringhi or befriend gorgeous butterflies at its Butterfly Park. Not far from those two attractions, also lays Penang National Park. I found that there are many activities you can do inside the national park, including trekking. And I love trekking!
Walking through unspoilt forest, breathing fresh, unpolluted air is my type of heaven. Only an hour away from the bustling city, I could just do this in Penang! Timothy and I dedicated one day for trekking at Penang National Park. Before going inside, all visitors had to report at the front desk where the staff asked which trekking trail we want to take. They also informed us about each of its duration. Then we had to sign their visitor’s book, including our hour of entry. I was really pleased by the control given by the staff.
The path was easy at first, and after a couple of kilometres we went past some wooden bridges and also small beaches. It was so easy for me to loose myself in one spot for a long time. I did a lot of little stops to admire the sea, and to take pictures of the forest surrounding me. I found it very tranquil, it’s not often I could be in a piece of haven like this.
As we went deeper inside, the trek became a little harder, with muddy ground and a lot of tree branches, where I had to skip over them. Sometimes, I could see the sea and some fishermen’s houses floating up and down following the gentle waves, and other time I felt like I was right in the middle of a rainforest. At one point, we stumbled upon a huge lizard between the bushes. Being totally afraid of reptiles, I wanted to run, but the photographer in me wanted to capture the lizard. Obviously I failed to capture from shaking, and immediately ran further away from the lizard. Even when I was scared, I was also slightly happy that I had the chance to see some wildlife, it was obvious that they are taking care of this place.
The rest of the trek was filled mostly with the sounds of crickets and chirping of birds. After around 2 hours (we were so slow!), we finally made it to Monkey Beach, where, of course, we were greeted by lots of monkeys!
After eating our sandwich and relaxing by the beach, our only options to go back was to trek back or to rent a boat. As we were discussing, a man came up to us and asked if we wanted to join his boat with some other passengers. We paid 10RM per person, which I thought was cheap. The boat trip was a lot of fun too!
Penang National Park is definitely an option for those who want to get away from the city for a while to enjoy a breath of fresh air. I definitely had a lot of fun!
How DEW travelled there
From Komtar, you can take the Bus 101 (Rapid Penang) and stop at its last station (after the Butterfly Park). You can always ask the bus driver to tell you where to stop. It takes around 1 hour to get there.
From Monkey beach, you can take the boat. The boat comes and goes and the cost is shared between several people, usually they will ask you to join (unless you want to trek back).
The entrance to the national park is absolutely free!