Farquhar Street Walking Tour, George Town

Farquhar Street Walking Tour (Self Guided), George Town

The Farquhar Street is home to a number of interesting historic buildings and other heritage sites. In fact, it has been listed by UNESCO as a world heritage site since 2008. Here you can see the Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion, the St. Xavier school and the Protestant Cemetery, where Francis Light's tomb is located. While you’re here, take this self-guided walking tour to admire the beautiful historical buildings that are known in this part of George Town.
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Farquhar Street Walking Tour Map

Guide Name: Farquhar Street Walking Tour
Guide Location: Malaysia » George Town (See other walking tours in George Town)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 9
Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.4 Km or 1.5 Miles
Author: Maia
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Supreme Court
  • Penang Museum and Art Gallery
  • Cathedral of the Assumption
  • St. Xavier Institution
  • Cheong Fatt Tze - The Blue Mansion
  • Eastern & Oriental Hotel
  • Protestant Cemetery
  • Runnymede
  • Wawasan Open University Campus
Supreme Court

1) Supreme Court

The Penang Supreme Court Building is a Palladian style building that was erected by the city authorities back in 1809. The public engineers were operating under a tight budget, and the judicial building was constructed for just 200,000 dollars. Since then the court has held a very important function for the citizens of Penang as the highest judicial institution in the land.
Penang Museum and Art Gallery

2) Penang Museum and Art Gallery

The Museum of Penang dates from the late 19th-early 20th Century. The building was first occupied by the Penang Free School. During World War II one part of the building was damaged and never repaired. However, the rest of the site was transformed into today’s museum by the state government in 1965. Inside, you can learn lots of interesting facts about the population, history and traditions of Penang, and get the chance to see historical artworks and costumes from the area.

Operation Hours: Saturday - Thursday: 9 am - 5 pm.
Cathedral of the Assumption

3) Cathedral of the Assumption

Situated on Farquar Street, the Cathedral of the Assumption is one of the most famous churches in town. Built in 1860, it was extended in 1928 to accommodate more worshippers. This Catholic cathedral has the hallmarks of a colonial building, with lots of high windows that give it a very elegant appearance.
St. Xavier Institution

4) St. Xavier Institution

St Xavier's is a boy’s school which is considered one of the top day schools in all of Malaysia. The school’s students have won many awards and honors in extra-curricular activities, such as sports, march band competitions and parliamentary debating. The institution was named after Saint Francis Xavier, a pioneering Christian missionary, who co-founded the Jesuits. Opened in 1825, it was first run as an English middle school before being taken over by the De La Salle brothers. Originally located elsewhere, the school has been based at its current building – part of the UNESCO heritage area of George Town – since 1857.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
Cheong Fatt Tze - The Blue Mansion

5) Cheong Fatt Tze - The Blue Mansion (must see)

The "Rockefeller of the East", Cheong Fatt Tze, was a poor youth who fled the Second Opium War in Guandong, China. He found his destiny in Southeast Asia. He prospered as an industrialist, politician and philanthropist. His home in George Town was for himself, his eight wives, and six sons.

Cheog Fatt Tze's dream home mansion at 43 Leith Street in George Town is colored indigo blue. The color was chosen for serenity. The house is commonly called the "Blue Mansion." Construction was started in 1897 and completed in 1904. It has two floors, 38 rooms, five granite courtyards, seven staircases, and 220 Gothic louvered windows.

Cheong liked to work from home. The architectural style is eclectic, combining the Chinese concept of bilateral symmetry with western Gothic elements. Features include Chinese porcelains, Stoke-on-Trent floor tiles, Glasgow cast iron, and Art Nouveau stained glass. The building follows the principals of Chinese Feng Shui.

The mansion was bought from Cheong Fatt Tze's descendants in 1989. It was renovated in 1995 and it now operates as a museum and boutique hotel. Tours in English are offered three times daily. A restaurant named "Indigo" is on the first floor. The mansion has been featured in many films and on CNN, BCC, and the History and Discovery channels.
Eastern & Oriental Hotel

6) Eastern & Oriental Hotel

The Eastern & Oriental Hotel is a colonial-style hotel that was established in 1885 by the Armenian Sarkies Brothers. This sea-front property is known for its luxurious accommodation and restaurants. The hotel was originally just the Eastern hotel, but the brothers had such success with it that they constructed the Oriental Hotel soon after and merged the two together. The Armenian Sarkies Brothers also established the world-famous Raffles Hotel in Singapore. The Eastern & Oriental Hotel suffered a downturn in fortunes after World War II, and was even closed for a time in the 1990s. It reopened under new ownership in 2001.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
Protestant Cemetery

7) Protestant Cemetery

This site is the oldest Christian cemetery on Penang Island, having been founded in 1786 by the British colonial administrators of the era. It is famous for the grave of Francis Light, the son of a nobleman from England. Historians differ on whether nobleman William Negus was Francis Light’s son or his guardian. The cemetery, which has been full for decades, contains a number of other interesting graves for visitors to see.

8) Runnymede

This 1930s building got its name from the field where King John formalized the Magna Carta. It was originally a one-story house, and was even used by the British Navy as a base during World War II. Since then, it has been expanded to three floors, with guestrooms, a giant ballroom, a post office, a library and a billiards hall. It regularly hosts popular dinner dances. Be sure to admire the view of the water and the palm trees when you visit this classic location.
Wawasan Open University Campus

9) Wawasan Open University Campus

This university campus occupies a large tract of land known as Homestead. The main building on the site dates from 1919, and has a beautiful colonial style appearance. Legend has it that Yeap Chor Ee, who funded the building’s construction, supported the project just so he could block the sea view of his rival’s mansion across the road. A golden monument to Yeap Chor Ee is situated at the entrance. The Wawasan Open University is the only private university of its kind in the country.

Walking Tours in George Town, Malaysia

Create Your Own Walk in George Town

Create Your Own Walk in George Town

Creating your own self-guided walk in George Town is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
George Town's Historical Religious Buildings

George Town's Historical Religious Buildings

George Town has much to be proud of when it comes to religious heritage, as the city has a host of wonderful churches, temples, mosques and other religious centers. Each is beautifully decorated and has its own unique story to tell. Check out the most interesting historical religious edifices in the city with this self-guided walking tour.

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 Km or 1.1 Miles
George Town Introduction Walking Tour

George Town Introduction Walking Tour

Some felt in Malaya that the city of George Town should be renamed Tanjung Penaga ("Cape Penaga"). That was the name of the area where George Town now stands. But the Chinese, British, Muslim, Malay and Indian movers and shakers of the town wisely declined. It might be bad for business.

Captain Francis Light, R. N., came to Tanjung Penaga in 1786. He wanted to set up an entrepôt for...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.3 Km or 2.1 Miles