GEORGE TOWN: Penang remains a popular destination for tourists, as evidenced by the large number of visitors taking advantage of the Hari Raya Aidilfitri holidays to enjoy the many attractions the state has to offer.

Checks by Bernama revealed congestion in several areas popularly frequented by tourists occurring since early this morning, and a drastic influx of vehicles, with over 2.4 million vehicles entering the state this holiday period.

Popular tourist hotspots, including the Chew and Tan Jetties deep within the UNESCO World Heritage Site of George Town, Batu Ferringhi in the northern part of Penang island, the highest point of the island, Penang Hill, all reported heavy foot traffic, as visitors explored the multitude of historic sites, including Armenian Street and the Kek Lok Si temple complex.

Visitor Tan Su Lin, 26, from Selangor shared that she was making full use of the weeklong holiday to visit the island with her family, even though they would have to brave the heavy traffic.

ALSO READ: Penang LRT: Mobility, tourism boost, no threat to ferry service

“If you want to fear the jam or the crowds, then you can’t holiday (here). I had to endure being caught in a jam for over an hour just to move five kilometres,” she said when met by Bernama at Chew Jetty here today.

Czechia tourist Marek Alois, 32, meanwhile revealed that he chose Penang as his main destination for Asian countries this year as he was so taken by the island’s beauty and that of the many historic locales and buildings here.

“I love this place but I had no idea that today is some celebration for Malaysians and therefore is too crowded. I’m surprised people here love to spend time outside although during this hot weather,” he added.

One of the more popular destinations this holiday period has turned out to be Penang Hill, which was developed as a hill station by the British after they opened up the island, and its famous funicular railway.

ALSO READ: Malaysians swelter under heatwave warnings

Many visitors are making full use of the free bus shuttle service to access Penang Hill, which runs from 9 am to 9 pm, starting from Station 9 of the Komtar bus stop to the Penang Hill Lower Station.

Crowds have also thronged TOP Penang, the state’s largest indoor theme park, and Karpal Singh Drive since yesterday.

ALSO READ: Shanghai-Penang direct flight to boost Penang’s business, tourism industry