Bukit Cendana: A Hike Through History


Enthralling pieces of Penang’s colonial past are revealed on a trek up one of its quaint hills.

Bukit Cendana is a popular hiking area – its peak rises just above 520m from sea level, and there are at least a dozen different ways of getting up there.

The simplest route is through the iconic Moongate, a historic gateway just 500m before the entrance to the Penang Botanic Gardens. Being a moderately long hike, I prepared enough water to drink, some snacks and my camera.

It was a Saturday morning, and the trail from Moongate up to the Station 5 rest stop was abuzz with activity, both human and non-human: while hikers stomped their way up and down the trail, a troop of dusky leaf monkeys (Trachypithecus obscurus) were busy foraging in the trees above.

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