Botanical Gardens, the green lung of Penang. An outdoor recreational venue to come for morning and evening walk, exercise, enjoyed the greens, big trees. Have a walk around the garden or take a buggy ride for RM2 per person, see what Botanical Garden have to offer.. so relaxing and yet so boring.
Picture 2 : Botanical Garden was more fun during the 1970s, more monkeys of course, and there was a Zoo with 2 Orangutans, deers and many more animals, hmmm...I can't remember now.
In the picture - me, gerard, hock lai (he in penang bridge pictures), Mei Fong, Lee, Bee and smallest one Fong. All family and cousins and thanks to my uncle (who always takes us for visiting)
In the Botanical Garden, you can find a lot of Monkeys especially Macaques. Dusky Leaf Monkeys they are more shy monkeys who prefered to stay on the tree tops and eating fruits. The Macaques monkeys are the Kings of the Garden, running freely, hanging around on the trees, Well, they are monkeys so they monkey around, like me. Oh yes, do not offer them any food, they might get nasty when come to food. I got stiffed when every monkeys come and pull my bag looking for more food (served me right, I bought some bananas for the monkeys).
During school long holidays in Malaysia, one in early June and November, I will take my family to visit the Penang Floral Festival. Colourful flowers like Orchid, Dairies, hmmm...and many more flower plants to look, buy and take pictures.. Well, I not interested in flowers, so I leave my sisters here and I go inside the Botanical Garden to see Monkeys..
The festival held from 10am to 7pm and entrance is free.
The Penang Botanic Gardens, more popularly known as "Waterfall Gardens", was established by the British way back in 1884 from an old granite quarry site. It lies in a deep valley, at the foot of 366 feet jungle clad hills, bound by evergreen tropical rainforests, divided by a cascading stream that meanders through a sprawling 29 hectares of prime and undulating grounds.
The Penang Botanic Gardens is Penang's unique asset, being the only gardens of its kind in Malaysia. Various floras unknown to many are found in these gardens. Besides being a botanic centre, the garden is a popular recreational spot.
Early in the morning, many people come to the Gardens to jog, exercise and enjoy clean fresh air. As the day goes by, hundred of visitors come to sit at the lawn, by the stream or underneath the shade of trees.
Come morning … from dawn to dusk a lot of people from all walks of life, individuals or in groups, old or young converge at the gardens to perform their daily exercises such as brisk walking, jogging, running, trekking, aerobic dance and performances like 'Tai Chi Kuan' or 'Qigong'.
The Botanic Gardens has been the main focal point for these groups to perform their daily exercises and to breathe in cool and refreshing air. Not only that, the presence of lush greenery provide a good source of oxygen to help refresh the physical and mental well being of an individual.
During special occasions, the atmosphere in the gardens will turn pomp and splendour when droves of people of all ages, both male and female will participate merrily in the annual 'Merdeka Run', the Governor's birthday occasion and other related sports event. Added to this gaiety, school sports event will transform the image of the Botanic Gardens into a hive of special carnival activities temporarily.
The stream that runs through the Botanical Gardens is perfect for a little dip and children do often come here just to do that. If you are not equiped for a full dip, why not just take off your socks and shoes, and dip your toes in. It is a lovely way to cool yourself off and give yourself a break.
Due to the mature trees and bamboo groves providing much needed shade, on weekends, you will find local families sitting on the grass for a little rest or having a picnic.
Indeed, within the 29 acres of these lovely gardens, you will certainly find a way yo enjoy yourself.
There are a number of unique species of trees in the Penang Botanical Gardens. During the early days when this gardens functioned as part of the then Gardens and Forests Department for the Straits Settlements (i.e. the states of Malacca, Singapore & Penang), it was used in the cultivation of commercial plants such as spices, pepper, nutmegs, and cloves. The diligent curator of these gardens, a Britisher named Mr Charles Curtis, a tireless and diligent gardener obtained and planted seedlings from around the world - including the cannon-ball tree which was from Guyana, in Africa.
The official Penang Botanic Gardens website describes it thus:
A beautiful fast growing tree which reaches 25m in height. The leaves have a life span of approximately 6 months after which they are shed rapidly so that the crown is usually bare for a day or two.
A remarkable flowering tree bearing large pinkish red, fragrant waxy flowers borne on tree trunk on long woody twigs. Later, followed by large reddish brown globular fruits, which attain the size of human head** and contain a mass of sour smelling pulp, take 8-9 months to ripen.
Flowering continues for many weeks. Ideally suited in large gardens and parks.
The cannon balls that I saw here and also in Bali were the size of large oranges or grapefruits, but certainlty not that of a human head!
The crew of Harper's Bazar visited the Botanical Garden for a fashion-shoot try-out, with its offering peace and tranquility amidst lush green surroundings, tropical plants, the vibrant colours of Penang's flore and, a lot of butterflies. Well, the ladies weren't that fond of some huge butterflies and, agreed some of these beauties looked like creeps when alighted on your shoulder and head, we decided to shoot at the hotel. The garden revealed even more beautiful spots, in fashion-language ... though we could not "see" the creatures housing the tree-area (snakes ... ?). See next pics of a beautifull >>>
Created in 1884, the gardens is spread over 30ha of forested hills and lush green tropical trees and plants. The garden has a wide collection of both local and tropical trees, flowery plants and ferns. There are also dozens of plant houses and nurseries, waterfalls as well as lily ponds scattered throughout the park. A popular sight here would be the mischievous monkeys which can be found dangling from the branches of the trees overhead or roaming freely in groups on the ground.
The garden is a favourite spot for jogging, picnics & also wedding shoots. On weekdays, common scenes are groups in Tai Chi, Xi Gong, Line Dancing.. Weekend scenes - mixture of ages, students on school trips, family outings..
Lots of good memories here for me since young.. taking part in art competition at the garden, dating days (lots of lovebirds during the evenings), picnics. about 10 years ago, the garden even keeps a pair of black honey bear.
Opening Hours : 5am to 8pm daily
Admission : Free
The gardens cover 30 hectares. They are also known as the "Waterfall Gardens" due to water cascading through them from Penang Hill. While I was there they seemed to be a very popular place for locals to relax in. My highlight was coming into close contact with some of the many monkeys that live there.
The Botanical Gardens is a great place for a walk or run and of course also to see some of the Malaysian Flora. And of course, you also see the monkeys, which would cover the Fauna.
The Garden is more than 100 years old and spans over 30 hectares.
5am to 8pm
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