Penang, Malaysia



Penang offers plenty of cheap yet delicious food and famed for its culinary originality and diversity, a veritable "food paradise" for the adventurous. Foods found throughout Malaysia that have its origins in Penang include Char Koay Teow (stir fried noodle), Penang Laksa (rice noodle in fish soup) and Nasi Kandar (rice in a variety of curries), which are very popular here. Beyond the restaurants and local coffee shops, Penang is an island of countless food stalls offering a variety of Malay, Chinese and Indian dishes as well as a few specializing in simple Western dishes.

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Restaurant in Little India, Penang

Restaurant in Little India

Many local and foreign visitors find eating out in Penang to be relatively cheap. Eating a simple meal with coffee or tea at local eatery (e.g. Chinese coffee shop or Indian Muslim eatery) should cost you about MYR3 for breakfast and MYR8 for lunch and another MYR8 dinner. Up the scale at a nicer restaurant but not tourist class, expect to pay around MY8 for breakfast and MYR15 for lunch as well as dinner. A value meal at McDonalds or KFC would cost you around MYR10. Eating out at mid-priced (tourist class) establishment would cost you around MYR12 for breakfast and MYR25 for lunch and dinner.

Street food at Padang Brown, Penang

Street food at Padang Brown

The best way to find the best places for good local foods is to ask the locals. Don't be surprised that some stalls that are set up beside a busy road or coffee shops located in some inconspicuous back alley are considered to serve very good food by the locals. The rule of thumb is to be adventurous with your tongue and to look at the condition of the stall and its surroundings. Generally, if a stall is being patronized by many locals, the food will be good to eat. For the less adventurous, there are the fast food outlets especially McDonalds and KFC as well as a few local eateries and hotels serving Western dishes. 

Street food hawker, Penang

Street food hawker in Batu Ferringhi

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