In the morning, you’ll be picked up from your Penang hotel by private vehicle. Drive along Batu Ferringghi Road, a famous stretch of shoreline, and enjoy panoramic views of the ocean. Your first stop is a batik factory, where you’ll learn the traditional techniques of producing this exquisite Malay textile using wax and dye to make the patterned designs.
Pass by the lush and green landscape of local fruit and spice plantations, stopping at a fruit stand. Your guide will provide an introduction to the local fruits and spices such as nutmeg and clove as you discover how Penang first achieved fame during the famous era of the spice trade.
Next, head to the Penang War Museum, located atop Bukit Batu Maung on the southeast corner of Penang Island. Opened to the public since 2002, the museum was originally a British military defense fortress built in the 1930s to protect the island from enemy attack. Later it was transformed into a Japanese army base during World War II. You’ll learn more about the museum’s infamous history as you explore the fortress with your guide. Constructed over 20 acres (9 hectares), the site includes underground military tunnels, ammunition bunkers, canon firing bays, sleeping quarters, cook houses and a medical infirmary.
Continue by private car to the famous Snake Temple, originally named the Temple of the Azure Cloud to honor the beauty of Penang's sky. Live pit vipers now coil around the altars in the temple, built in 1850. But don’t worry—although the snakes retain their fangs, their venom has been removed and they are also considered harmless due to the smoke of burning incense.
On the return drive to your hotel, view Penang Bridge, one of the longest bridges in the world, which links Penang Island to the mainland of Malaysia.