Penang is renowned as the island of duty-free shopping and during seasonal days, the Shopaholics from around the world gather here to fill their bags with the best things in the markets. Though now Langkawi has somehow taken over this status, but yet Penang has not stopped alluring Shopaholics. Penang Shopping is the most exciting activity for tourists as well as for locals, due to its expensive and branded shops and local and affordable markets. Penang has been able to cater to the needs of people from all classes and all age groups.
You shall find here shopping malls, night markets and street markets as well as antique shops, selling trendy and cultural stuff. You shall be able to buy complete gamut of products in Penang very easily. During the Penang shopping festival in August, which is conducted annually across the nation, Penang becomes of the major shopping hubs, as locals and tourists both head towards this city to take advantage of the amazing offers and discounts.
A Short Guide to Best Penang Shopping
As there are a number of shopping places in Penang, ranging from malls, shops in the street and night markets, then where you should go first and what to buy is the point to ponder upon. Therefore, to assist you in making a wise decision, we have discussed in details about the various places where you can for Penang Shopping and make the most of your time and money. Read on to know about them:
Shopping Malls in Penang
Penang is one of the popular islands of Malaysia and being a significant part of Malaysia, it follows the culture of having lavish shopping malls within. No matter what you want to buy, you shall get each and everything from their malls. The famous malls for shopping in Penang are Gurney Plaza on Gurney Drive, Sunway Carnival mall in Seberang Perai, Queensbay Mall, which is overlooking the beautiful crystal clear water in Bayan Lepas and the 1st Avenue Mall, which is next to KOMTAR in George Town.
All these Penang Shopping Malls have stocked similar collection of well-known brands of clothing, shoes, bags and etc. as well as have same chains of food and beverage stores. However, this does not give rise to contempt, but rather makes it easier for everyone to find everything in one place.
You shall also find boutique malls like the Straits Quay Mall in Tanjung Tokong, which has gained great popularity with its one-off stores, i.e. Sugar where you shall see ready to bake measured ingredients for every cake and beautiful baking paraphernalia. At Bran et Dagauet, you shall come across one-off women’s clothing, which are designed by Penangite, Brandon Tan. At the Fresh Desire, you shall be amazed to see food like cupcakes and pastries in the shape of bathing soaps, which is one of its kind in the entire city.
Read More: Best Shopping Malls in Penang
Markets in Penang
Missing out Penang Shopping at the markets is one of the biggest mistakes one could ever make. The famous Chowrasta Bazaar on Jalan Penang is ideal to buy fresh products as well as second hand stuff, all at very affordable prices. You can also eat out at the hawker food stalls. Thieves’ Market is the most popular markets not only because of its name, but also for having old stuff like ancient watches and manual irons of old times.
The weekly night markets are ideal for Penang Shopping and they are continuously in rotation from one neighborhood to another. You can buy local street food here at very reasonable prices as well as local fruits and the seasonal king of fruits. Furthermore, at few stalls, you shall also find household stuff like pots and pans, plastic buckets and scrubbing brushes.
Batu Ferringhi night market is set up daily and is famous for being the biggest in terms of length and breadth. This market opens at 5:00pm and closes after midnight. This market is ideal for shopping in Penang, especially for tourists to buy sunglasses, knick knacks, clothes, hats and other stuff for playing on the beach like spades and floats etc.
Shopping Street in Penang
Little India is a renowned shopping street in Penang, flooded with vibrant colors and alluring fragrances of flowers, food and spices from India. Once you step in this market, you shall get the feeling as if you are in India and therefore, this street has been named Little India. The vibrant colors here are popping out from the fabric, jewelries, food, statues, flowers and from various other stuff, which is being sold here. A wide variety of beautiful sarees are found here and every store seems to have a better collection than the previous one. So, be ready to find yourself in the state of extreme confusion. Everything from food to clothing is totally Indian, depicting its culture.
Places to Buy Souvenirs and Gifts in Penang
When its time to go back to your home, it is mandatory to shop something for people waiting for you in your respective city or country. It’s a custom followed in every region. Apart from shopping in Penang for yourself, you also need to find out where to get the best souvenirs and gifts. At the Perfect Gift Green Lane you can buy flower bouquets, teddy bears, chocolate boxes, hampers and various items for different events. At China Joes in Georgetown, you shall get a variety of antiques and accessories, followed by eclectic souvenirs, special teas and coffees, books and various other stuff for your home.
At Sentuhan in Tanjung Tokong you shall find all handmade products like natural soaps, paintings, local crafts, clothing, and accessories. Some beautiful packaging is also sold here, so that you can wrap the stuff and present as a gift item. Material Collection at Queensbay Mall is also another perfect place to shop for dresses, tees, scarves, chopsticks for first time user, one-off handbags, modern wooden ornaments, silicon kitchenware, eco-friendly Chinese New Year ang pau packets and also some exclusive stationary stuff. Other places where you can go for Penang Shopping to get souvenirs and gift items are Bon Ton The Shop, 14 Living Story, S&J, Threef and various others.
Money Changers in Penang
The industry of money changers in Penang is well ruled by the Indian Muslim and Chettiar communities. The people of these communities provide the best exchange rates to banks. You shall find many of them, working from the Central Business District of George Town, specifically beside the Pitt Street and Beach Street. Their outlets are also found in the main shopping malls of Penang like at Queensbay Malls, 1st Avenue Mall, Komtar and Gurney Plaza and Queensbay Mall. The famous money changers in Penang are M Mohamed Kassim Forex, International Mega Forex and various others. So, before shopping in Penang, get your currency exchanged.
Bargaining is the key to buy the best stuff at the best price in Penang. When you are at some stalls or independent shops, give your best to haggle for the least possible price. You can lower down the price of any stuff without proper bargaining and knowledge. If you think that the price could have been more bargained then no need to buy from there, look around at other shops.
We hope that this short Penang shopping guide will assist you in making the most of your time and money. Your shopping experience in Penang will be of great value, if you follow this guide. While Shopping is one of the recommended activity in Penang, you might be interested in knowing best things to do in Penang to make most of your trip.