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The Biggest Night Market in Penang - Farlim Pasar Malam

Have you been to the biggest “pasar malam” (night market) in Penang?  No, I’m not talking about the one in Batu Ferringi that was setup for tourists.

Have you been to Farlim on Wednesday nights?  Every week, an open field is filled with hundreds of stalls hawking jewelry, toys, clothing, shoes, DVDs…everything the usual night market sells, but multiplied by 10.

And of course FOOD!  A father and son competing with each other to cook Char Koay Kak (fried rice cake or 炒粿角), an older couple baking fresh bread and Malaysian style cinnamon rolls from the back of their van, young entrepreneurs whipping up all the new delicious fads from Japan, Korea, and Taiwan.  The field is packed with Penangites stuffing their faces with snacks, instead of dinner.  The atmosphere is addicting…every long line begs you to queue.  

A thousand people throng the narrow paths and Mark was the only “jakun” (awe struck) foreigner. Will we see you there next time?
Cook-off between father & son team - frying up "Char Koay Kak" (or rice cake) in thick black soy sauce, eggs, bean sprouts, and more. Do you want yours spicy?
 Japanese crepe in Penang - Night Market style!
 Banana & chocolate filled crepe - I know, it's hard to resist this one 
Giant cinnamon rolls - twice the size of the usual ones..
Lok-lok 樂樂 - So here are your favorite meats, seafood, vegetables, and dumplings on a stick. You pick one up, then you dunk the stick into hot boiling soup. Once it's cooked, you dip the stick into your favorite sauce & enjoy. But don't get too excited and forget to wait in line...

There's almost double meaning to the name "Lok-lok" - the sound of the dipping action and happiness in Chinese.
Muar Chee - steamed sticky glutinuous rice balls mixed with grounded, roasted peanuts.

When: around 6.30pm-11pm
Where: In a field off Medan Angsana road in Farlim (see map below)
How to get there: Take Bus 202 or 203. The journey takes about 30 minutes. Ask the bus driver to let you know when he/she reaches the “Bandar Baru Supermarket in Farlim”. The night market is in the field behind the supermarket (but ask anyone on the street and they will point you in the right direction).

The night market moves to Jelutong on Friday nights, and Macallum on Monday nights.

View Farlim Night Market (Pasar Malam) in Penang in a larger map

3 comments:

Ali said...

Hi Mark and Reese,

Do you know if Farlim Market is open regardless of the weather (e.g. still open when it's raining?), as you mention that it is located in a field.

Also, if you are going from Komtar, how do you know where exactly to get off the bus?

Many thanks! :)

Reese said...

Hi Ali,

Good question. We went to the Farlim night market (pasar malam) on a Wednesday when the weather was off-and-on light rain, and it was still open. The path was wet, but it operated as normal. However, we wouldn't recommend going on a very rainy day.

There are actually three main "local" night markets in Penang - Farlim (Wednesday), Jelutong (Friday), and Macallum (Monday). Many of the same stalls move around to all three locations. The Farlim one has mostly Chinese stalls, but Jelutong and Macallum are a bit more diverse.

If you are heading out on a Wednesday to visit Kek Lok Si Temple or Ayer Itam Dam (or Penang Hill when the train re-opens in early 2011), Farlim night market makes for a good stop afterwards. However, it might be best to visit the Jelutong or Macallum night markets if coming from George Town since they are much nearer.

To reach the Farlim night market from Komtar, take Bus 202 or 203. The journey takes about 30 minutes. Ask the bus driver to let you know when he/she reaches the “Bandar Baru Supermarket in Farlim”. The night market is in the field behind the supermarket (but ask anyone on the street and they will point you in the right direction). You can go to Google maps and paste this GPS coordinate into the search box to see the exact location of the market: 5.3899807, 100.282672. You can see the bus routes for Bus 202 here: http://bit.ly/9B3O53 and Bus 203 here: http://bit.ly/b7O68o

To reach the Jelutong night market, you can take Bus 11 from Komtar. The journey takes about 10-15 minutes. Ask the bus driver to let you know when he/she reaches the night market. This one is on the street, so it is easier to find.

Macallum is the nearest to George Town. It is only a 2km walk or a short taxi ride.

Hope this helps. Have fun at whichever night market you visit!

Reese & Mark

Reese said...

Hi Ali,

Good question. We went to the Farlim night market (pasar malam) on a Wednesday when the weather was off-and-on light rain, and it was still open. The path was wet, but it operated as normal. However, we wouldn't recommend going on a very rainy day.

There are actually three main "local" night markets in Penang - Farlim (Wednesday), Jelutong (Friday), and Macallum (Monday). Many of the same stalls move around to all three locations. The Farlim one has mostly Chinese stalls, but Jelutong and Macallum are a bit more diverse.

If you are heading out on a Wednesday to visit Kek Lok Si Temple or Ayer Itam Dam (or Penang Hill when the train re-opens in early 2011), Farlim night market makes for a good stop afterwards. However, it might be best to visit the Jelutong or Macallum night markets if coming from George Town since they are much nearer.

To reach the Farlim night market from Komtar, take Bus 202 or 203. The journey takes about 30 minutes. Ask the bus driver to let you know when he/she reaches the “Bandar Baru Supermarket in Farlim”. The night market is in the field behind the supermarket (but ask anyone on the street and they will point you in the right direction). You can go to Google maps and paste this GPS coordinate into the search box to see the exact location of the market: 5.3899807, 100.282672. You can see the bus routes for Bus 202 here: http://bit.ly/9B3O53 and Bus 203 here: http://bit.ly/b7O68o

To reach the Jelutong night market, you can take Bus 11 from Komtar. The journey takes about 10-15 minutes. Ask the bus driver to let you know when he/she reaches the night market. This one is on the street, so it is easier to find.

Macallum is the nearest to George Town. It is only a 2km walk or a short taxi ride.

Hope this helps. Have fun at whichever night market you visit!

Reese & Mark