Paya Terubong to Balik Pulau, an alternative path (Orange trail)
The start of this hike is at the junction of Nan Shan Eating stalls and 7-Eleven store. Walk up from here by passing the 7 Brothers shrine to the Tua Pek Kong temple. This should take about 45 minutes. Continue on the road just right of the temple up to the 6 way junction.
For this hike, take the 3rd path from the left. The path goes a ginger flower garden. There are 2 minor junctions until you reach the green plastic which seem to block the path. In reality the path goes right in between the plastic, see photo.
Continue by crossing a small bridge and you're back in a ginger flower plantation. There are a few junctions but you can ignore those. After several minutes the path ends. You can go down a few steps to a small bridge. Here it starts to be confusing so take some time to observe the situation.
Once you cross the bridge it seems there are several paths possible into the banana plantation. It IS possible to work your way through the banana and in fact it isn't too difficult.
An alternative is to climb up to the tree with a metal strip which is right in front of you when you cross the bridge. At the tree, turn right and follow the rubber trail and descent on the other side to the "rubbish dump" and the cement trail. (photo below)
In case you come from the other side it's even easier. At the end of the cement trail, follow the dried up river bed up. To your right there is a low stone ridge, you can reach it by passing it to the left and than follow the small path up.
Once up, follow the water pipeslines to the water collection point. Just before that point the trail turns left and goes around it. The next thing is to cross a series of boulders over the little stream and turn right. The path leads up to a banana plantation. Turn left and follow the faint trail to the other side until you see the hut from where you continue into the Nan Shan Hills.
The path leads into a rubber plantation as described here. Once you're in the rubber plantation, take any available path down until you reach a small rubbish dump. Pass the rubbish on the right side and continue descending another few minutes until you see a small cement trail to your left and a hut in front of you while the path swindles down to your right.
You can continue further down. If you do this, once you've passed the 2 farmer huts, turn left and descent further to Jalan Balik Pulau (connecting road Balik Pulau-Air Itam Dam). The track to your right after the 2 farmer huts essentially lead uphill and ends not far from the purple trail route as described here.
Turning left is more interesting. At first the cement trail leads again steep up and back into the hills. Some of the path is new cemented but also at many places the path is completely overgrown. After 10 minutes the cement seems to disappear but returns soon enough albeit heavy overgrown.
Another 5 minutes later you will arrive at a complete new path of cement trail which quickly ends too. Continuing at this level doesn't bring you anywhere but there is a very small trail just left of the path leading up a ridge. This trail seem to go to a blockade of trees. Just before the blockade the trail leaves the ridge and follows the slope to the right in front of you.
Around the corner you will find a junction with a cement path. The path to your left leads to a dead end although you push into the rubber to your right and climb about 2 levels up where you find a good rubber path which leads back to the fallen tree with roots up and the "Last Farm". On the way you will have to pass a blockade of fallen trees but it is easy to climb over it (photo below).
Take the cement path to your right. Immediately on your left hand there's a water reservoir. Continue the path further down. If you follow the main trail, you should reach the second farmer hut in about 5 minutes. Here the cement trail ends and joins a wider road.
There's a large farm on your left hand. You may want to try to pass the farm but the farmers (and their dogs) will send you back. I slipped once through it only to find out the path goes further into the farm land and connects the trail higher up which leads to the ridge.
You can take the small path in front of you which leads up to 2 large water barrels or stay on the wide road. Either way, both come later together at the end of the wide road. The small trail on your left leads up to the water barrels, so take the wide road on the right and continue down.
A few minutes later both these trails come together. The wide road ends here, so take the small path on your right hand to descend further
In 5 to 10 minutes depending how easy you descend, this path joins another path. Left leads up to the hills (and a junction just across a small bridge which leads to the large farm you just passed) and ultimately to the cleared area with the white signboard Relau Permanent Forest Reserve and the Nibbinda Ridge. Climbing up that way should take your 15-20 minutes, maybe more if you climb slow.
Continue right leads back to Jalan Balik Pulau. It should take about 10 minutes or so to come down. Once at the main road, turn left, pass the Nibbinda junction (left) and walk into Balik Pulau.
The hike should take about 3 to 3.5 hours.
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Special Hiking Tours in Penang
Join us on our special hiking tours in Penang. We will bring you around in the jungle of the Botanical Gardens. Our tours include:
Paya Terubong to Balik Pulau
There are several ways to hike from Paya Terubong to Balik Pulau, even with different starting points. Links below all show how to hike in between Paya Terubong and Balik Pulau:
Balik Pulau, Ngoh Han Hill Temple, Cheng Kon Sze and Paya Terubong
This is a challenging hike of 5-6 hours through orchards, farms, secondary rainforest and back via the United Hokkien cemeteries to Paya Terubong. It's a beautiful hike!.
The Nibbinda Loop
An interesting 3 hours hike steep up to the Nibbinda Forest Monastery and further through the Bukit Relau Forest Reserve back to Balik Pulau.
The Anjung Indah Loop
The loop starts and finishes at the top of the pass on the road to Balik Pulau. It's a cool trail with at parts some serious challenges.
Crossing into the Nan Shan Hills
The trail leads through farmland into the forest continuing into the Nan Shan Hills before it turns again into the forest and rubber plantation before joining the main road to Balik Pulau.
Nibbinda Forest Monastery to Paya Terubong via Ridge path
This is a very interesting and very doable trail which leads from the monastery to the water basin and into the hills to the Nan Shan Hills from where you have several options to continue incl. Paya Terubong
Air Itam Dam to Balik Pulau
This is an interesting option. The trail can easily be cycled and hiked. You'll pass beautiful tropical rainforest and cultivated areas with fruit farms, a wonderful day out in the heart of Penang with an option to visit the Ngoh Han Hill Temple with spectacular views to Balik Pulau.
Paya Terubong to Anjung Indah
Anjung Indah is the pass out of Balik Pulau. There's an awesome trail to hike from Paya Terubong using the Old Ridge Path to Anjung Indah.
Relau Pass to Paya Terubong
It starts at the Relau Pass and leads through vegetable and flower gardens to a short steep hike up towards the Nan Shan Hills and from there to Paya Terubong. It's a nice track.
Balik Pulau to Air Putih
A less explored area in the Balik Pulau area leads from the bus station/market via the Catholic Cemetery to Air Putih with some sidetrack excursions possible. This trail can be done on foot or bicycle.
Anjung Indah to Nan Shan Hills and Nibbinda Forest
A cool and very doable hike which starts at Anjung Indah, following the ridge trail to the Nan Shan Hills and back via a second ridge to the Nibbinda Forest and Balik Pulau