Penang National Park (Taman Negara Pulau Pinang)

Penang National Park (Taman Negara Pulau Pinang)

Penang National Park (Taman Negara Pulau Pinang)
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  • Foodie480B
    Singapore River, Singapore127 contributions
    Turtle Beach in the Park, a rare untouched beach in Penang
    In a way I am quite reluctant to share about this attraction, Turtle Beach (Pantai Kerachut) in the Penang National Park (or Taman Negara in the Malay language, Bahasa Melayu) as it's probably the only beach left in Penang that is clean and relatively untouched. To get there you could take a boat or hike there, about a 1.5 hour hike, on a well-marked trail though difficult in places. We discovered this place by mistake because the place we wanted to visit was actually Monkey Beach but on that day the trail to reach it was closed due to a landslide. The park opens at 8 am and entrance to the park is free. Bring your own water as Turtle beach is a conservation area so there are no vendors there (thank goodness). If you wear proper walking shoes the walk is pleasant and manageable. You are walking through the forests so it's shady for the most part. When you reach the last 20 minutes of the trail you have the option of taking the shorter but steeper drop to the beach or the gentler path that goes behind the Mecromitic Lake and parallel to the beach. So take the gentler track on the return trip if you are walking back. If you choose to take a boat back to the park entrance, do book the boat before you set off on your track. The boat fare is about 90Rm per boat (not per passenger) per trip. Of course, we walked back. Please bring your trash out with you. No swimming is allowed on the beach. There is a small turtle sanctuary (nothing to shout about). Definitely worth a visit - you will need a whole morning but you can reward yourself with a nice lunch at one of the restaurants near the entrance to the park (you have choice of Malay or Chinese ones that serve western dishes as well)
    Visited March 2020
    Written 10 March 2020
  • Treva Patterson
    Auckland, New Zealand7 contributions
    Monkey Beach Trail and Suspension Bridge “Closed”
    One thing to note is not much opens in Penang before 10:30-11am, including the national park. When we arrived we were told there was a landslide on the track to Monkey Beach and we could not walk there and we had to get a boat, we weren’t sure whether this was true but chose to get the boat anyhow so we could see Monkey Beach and Turtle beach. The boat is 90-100MR per boat, regardless of number of people, so try and team up with some people to make it cheaper. We were also told the suspension bridge was closed, again, didn’t check, so unsure if this is true. We stopped at Monkey beach and walked up to the lighthouse, the lighthouse was not worth the effort but we saw what was maybe a lemur and that was pretty cool, Monkey beach itself is cool with its little shacks and monkeys all around, would recommend. We were Then dropped at turtle beach and then walked back, its a nice walk and in the heat a decent effort with a few up hills. Overall, I wouldn’t go out of my way to do this, we did it as we kind of had an extra day to use up. Cheers!
    Visited January 2020
    Written 10 January 2020
  • Globaltrotter3
    Penang Island, Malaysia3 contributions
    Penang National park0
    We took grab to the main gate, easy and cost effective. Was a typical hot day 33C so took plenty of water I would also advice sunscreen and bug spray due to a number of hungry mosquitoes that live in the woods. Within 10 minutes walk the pave road ends and you are on well worn paths. The road braches ( and is signposted) left to turtle Beach etc and right to monkey beach. We went right, and walked another kilometer before stopping on a lovely beach for pictures and to mop the stinging sweat that was running like a river into my eyes causing almost total blindness. We decided at this point to head back and take the boat, part laziness and part wanting to see more than one beach. The boat was around 170 rinngit, you could get cheaper but I wasn't for sharing. The walk along the jetty was beyond frightening, a good 100 meter's on rotting planks which felt like they were going to snap on every step as they creaked and moved. This was just a warm up for the boat, the captain was a wild eyed individual with a large maniacal grin, which I realized after departure was caused by the G force of the rocket propelled vessel. My spine and backside was tested like a shock absorber as we bounced across the sea like a skimmed stone, and wobbly kneed we arrived at Turtle beach. I was not impressed with turtle Beach, not much to see and the lake at the far end was non existent, possibly because it was the wrong time of year but this wasn't explained when we looked at beautiful pictures from the boat rental company. After an hour the maniacal captain returned and bounced us round to Monkey beach. Now I like Monkeys, they remind me of very naughty children and Monkey beach was full of them. We sat in a shack that served cold beer and coconuts we had one of each and within seconds we had a gang of little mischievous monkey friends. A firm grip was required on the coconut as naughty monkeys would remove it from you possession in the blink of an eye. Afer an hour our captain appeared and it was another high speed bumming back to the pier of death, it is worth noting that parts of his boat fell of during the trip and piecies of metal bounced in the bottom of the boat as we skimmed the sea. Overall a 10 out of 10 experience, beautiful landscape with more excitement than any rollercoaster could provide with the added bonus of monkeys.
    Visited January 2020
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 10 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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JoachimG
XXX227 contributions
Aug 2023
The trail to monky beach -> closed
The canopy walk -> closed
50 RM per Person for what?
A walk in the park?
Monkys could be seen at the jetty.
So we skipped the visit.
Questioned the rangers if that is all true -> they shrugged their shoulds - that´s it
DISSAPOINTING
Written 24 August 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Patrick C
Perth, Australia15 contributions
Jul 2023 • Couples
Nice rainforest park with lovely ocean views. We took the trail from park entry to Monkey Bay. It was supposed to be an easy to moderate difficulty, we actually found it quite difficult. Both of us are regular and fit walkers. The trail is very poorly maintained, many sections washed away, steps and guard rails broken and fallen vegetation partly blocking the path. Would definitely not recommend for children or unfit adults. Even if you are fit I would say the effort is not worth it for what you will see. We took a boat back from Monkey Bay.
Written 1 July 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

May F
Loveland, CO1,739 contributions
Jun 2023 • Family
What a lovely gem to discover. You will have to take a public bus to the village or drive and park there. Hiking is an option to the beaches through the jungles or hire a boat to take you to monkey beach, turtle beach, meromiktik lake, view points. Stop by for a swim at monkey beach and have a coconut drink or enjoy the local food. Watch the turtle hatchery. Great activity.
Written 6 June 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

tropictrav
Pacific Coast Australia, Australia78 contributions
May 2023 • Couples
It's such a shame that the beautiful hike to Monkey beach is so badly maintained. It's actually a health and safety hazard. We experienced a lot of broken and missing planks on the wooden walkways and steps. The steel rails were very badly corroded and one in our party cut themselves on the rails and later needed a tetanus injection. So much garbage and rubbish strewn along the trail.
Monkey Beach itself had a lot of broken and abandoned huts and rubbish strewn everywhere.
The National Parks office charge good money for the entry fee, and therefore I can't understand why they can't maintain the trail properly. It looked sadly neglected.
The waters at Monkey Beach weren't as crystal clear and clean as we were hoping.
It's a nice hike and spot, if not for the poor maintenance and rubbish.
Written 13 May 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Maduesa62
London, UK31 contributions
May 2023 • Couples
We had to pay 50 MR each to enter the park which is supposed to go to the upkeep of the park
We decided to walk to monkey beach to experience the wildlife and jungle
The following points should be considered if you choose to embark on this walk
Wear trainers or hiking boots
You need to be relatively fit to complete the walk
The walk is not maintained, the walkways are damaged, the railings are corroded and wobbly, the rest of route is hazardous you have to climb over large tree roots , rocks , overgrown plants, you walk up and then down, going down can be very slippery
I would not attempt the walk when raining
When we finally reached the beach not a monkey in sight all we saw was debris, plastic bottles and rubbish
This beach is in desperate need of cleaning, the monkeys know better than to visit it
We also decided to try to do the tree top walk but couldn’t as the entrance was overgrown and the canopies were not safe , lots of leaves and twigs on them where clearly nobody had used them for some time, great shame as looked like a fun thing to do
My question is where is the entrance money going?
Written 2 May 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

JetSetter12463233
United Kingdom36 contributions
Feb 2023 • Couples
Almost didn’t go because of the bad reviews, but so glad we did!

Tickets to the park are 50 myr per adult. Make sure you don’t arrive between 1-2pm as they close for break! We arrived at 1pm and only just managed to get tickets!!

We already knew we wanted tk walk the trail to the beach with the turtle sanctuary on and from reading previous reviews knew we needed to book a return boat. We spoke to a lady at one of the stalls outside and booked a boat to collect us from the beach to return back. The cost she gave us was 100 myr to go straight back or 120 myr to call at monkey beach on the way. There was two of us. We decided to call at monkey beach. She advised us that the trail we wanted to do usually took 1.30hr to walk and so suggested booking the boat for 2.30hrs time to give us time on the beach. We booked and set off on our hike!

The path is initially paved and we walked past monkeys and stopped to watch a lizard soak in the water. The path was extremely well signposted and was initially a 20 min uphill hike and then up/down the rest. I don’t do a lot of fitness but it was fine for me. The path is uneven natural trail so trainers are definitely a must. We also wore long socks in case of any leeches (didn’t see any but have walked a few forests with them!).

We arrived at the beach having thoroughly enjoyed our jungle walk and looking out for animals along the way. We visited the turtle sanctuary and it was lovely to see the work being done to help.

There is no drink stalls on the turtle beach. Our boat came and he was very informative on the way back, telling us about the different rocks, animals and forest. We stopped at monkey beach for a drink (stalls are here!) and then jumped back on the boat to go back to the pier.

All in all a great afternoon out and we were so glad we did it.

Note: definitely book your boat before you set off on the walk!
Written 26 February 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Alan T
6 contributions
Feb 2023
Worst so called National Park in over 30 years of travel. Beaches covered in rubbish mainly plastic. Walkways on trek in very poor state of repair, one steep section, not suitable for children. 'Monkey' beach filthy with many collapsed stalls. Quad bike racing up and down. Watch out for your food as aggressive monkeys waiting for you. RM50 for foreign tourists to get in and they are calling it a 'Conservation Fee' what a joke !!! RM10 for Malaysians, Free if you are over 60 but would not bother. George Town botanical gardens free and better option.
Written 20 February 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Helen2814
Cornwall, UK9 contributions
Jan 2023
NEW FEE - 50RM for foreign tourists, conservation tax. Cash only. You have to register on line and need ID, passport or driving licence. There is Wi-Fi to help with registration. Watch out for the boat fees. An extortionate 50 RM one way!
The walk to monkey beach was quite challenging, climbing over trees and navigating slopes.
Whilst the walk is lovely, and the beaches beautiful the volume of rubbish is just awful. Monkey beach is backed by rubbish and collapsed buildings.
I just hope the conservation fee is going to be used to clean up the beaches, restore the walk ways and clean up the beach.
We came to Penang to especially walk in the park over a couple of days but the fee will mean we only visit one day. Quite honestly, if your trip to Penang is to come to the park, don’t bother, don’t make it the basis of your trip,
Written 24 January 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

frasercameron
London, UK115 contributions
Jan 2023 • Couples
Tough but pleasant walk marred by rubbish on the beach. Not suitable for young kids, or walking without good trainers or hiking boots.
Written 9 January 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

aboyle92
Reading, UK7 contributions
Jan 2023
My wife and I chose to visit the National Park to do some hiking and see some of Penang's off the beaten track forests and beaches. If your motives are similar then it is definitely worth a visit! It costs 50 ringgit per person to enter the forest and you can boats direct to each of the beaches (if you want a boat just for the way back then organise this before you start walking, as they don't wait around at the beaches).

We chose to walk to Turtle beach and back, which was about a 2.5 hour journey. The forest is great and there is plenty of wildlife to see. The trails are well marked and sign posted, so getting lost is not an issue. Nevertheless the routes are challenging enough that you feel completely immersed in the forest, which is awesome!

If you are the adventurous type or simply fancy getting out of the hotel for a morning, then I would definitely recommend visiting the National Park. Wear long trousers though as it is a proper forest and there are leaches and loads of ants.
Written 6 January 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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