Penang Botanical Gardens
The Penang Botanic Gardens, also known as the “Waterfall Gardens” because of the cascading waterfalls nearby, is a public park situated on Jalan Air Terjun (Waterfall Road) in George Town on Penang Island, Malaysia. The original gardens were established in 1884 from an old quarry site by the British as a nursery for tropical plants. Charles Curtis, was the first superintendent.
A spectacular waterfall plunges to the earth from about a hundred meters up, unfortunately this is now restricted to the public and permission must be obtained to view this wonderful sight.
The writer visited the waterfalls around 1990 with a group of students in a photography class for photo outing. The waterfalls are one of most spectacular and beautiful waterfalls in Malaysia.
The gardens occupy a 29 ha. site in a valley described as “an amphitheatre of hills” covered with lush tropical rain-forests. Its lush greenery and tranquil setting makes it a favorite park and a popular tourist destination. It is Penang’s unique natural heritage, being the only garden of its kind in Malaysia. As well as being a repository of flora and fauna, unique to the country and to the region, it serves as a “green lung” for metropolitan Penang.As such, the garden is a popular recreational spot; some of the recreational activities include jogging, walking, jungle trekking and aerobics.
The Gardens evoke a sense of tranquility and are a favorite spot for joggers and picnickers.
There are also collections of rare plant species housed in the Fern House, Palm Collection, Aroid Walkway, Orchidarium, Perdana Conservatory, Cactus House, Bromeliad and Begonia House, Herb Garden, Fern Rockery, Sun Rockery, and the Formal Garden.
The garden fauna include long-tailed macaques, dusky leaf monkeys, black giant squirrels as well as many insects and butterflies.
The gardens visiting hours are from 5 AM till 8 PM daily, admission is free and bus number 10 and U102 are shuttling to park.
How to deal with the wild monkeys?
1) Do not feed the monkeys.
2) Do not eat as you walk – monkeys love food and are likely to snatch it from you.
3) If you come across some on the path you are walking on, do not fear. Be calm, wait for someone else to come by before proceeding or turn around slowly and walk away. Do not look at them in the eye or intimidate them in any way.
GPS Coordinates: N5.4369378, E100.2906723 Show on map