Best tours of the island
With so many things to do, see and taste, Penang is an easy place to explore on your own. But if you have limited time or want a local’s perspective or detailed historical and cultural information, take a guided tour. By Sammi Lim and Cara Scarpa
FOR FOODIES: Food tours by Simply Enak
While it’s no secret that Penang is famous for its food, how do the uninitiated uncover its food secrets? After all, no two kopitiams are made equal, and tourist traps abound. Leave it to the professionals at Simply Enak to introduce you to the best of the island’s iconic eats. While the company has been up and running for five years, its founders have been foodies all their lives.
‘I’ve liked food all my life but learned to appreciate it more when I helped my grandma in the kitchen when I was six’, said Mark Ng, co-founder of Simply Enak. ‘But you have to love more than food to do what we do; you have to love the place you grew up in, what our country has to offer and most importantly, to share and to serve others.’
Mark and his fellow tour guides are sanctioned by Tourism Malaysia, and are knowledgeable about cooking to boot. Simply Enak attracts chefs and tourists alike, and the thing they all have in common is their interest in a dish’s components and the magic behind its making.
Simply Enak conducts two tours in Penang per day: ‘Penang Harmony Food Trail’ in the morning and ‘Eat Drink Georgetown’ in the evening. While both tours run for four hours and the price covers three meals including snacks in between, each takes you through a different route, dropping by different vendors.
Additionally, each tour has its own unique selling point. Mark might wrap up one of his morning tours with a visit to a private Peranakan antique collection, but take you to a local bar for a nightcap on the evening tour.
(+6017 287 8929/www. simplyenak.com). Bookings require minimum two pax at RM250 per person. Itineraries may be customised to accommodate halal, vegetarian or special diets. Rates are scalable for large groups.