Go now:Chinese New Year in Penang
By Lim Chee Wah
Call me biased but there probably isn’t a more atmospheric place in Malaysia to spend your Chinese New Year than Penang. The Esplanade Fort Cornwallis will raise the red lanterns and put on a huge two-day celebration filled with artistic variety shows, which include percussions, contemporary dance, lion dance and folk songs with a modern twist. There will also be a handicraft and curios bazaar along with a concert featuring celebrity artistes from Taiwan, Hong Kong and China. It’s free entrance to all public areas but the concert ticket will admit you into the cash prize zone where RM100,000 is up for grabs.
A little trivia: the practice of throwing mandarin oranges into the sea actually came from Penang. And it is here at the Esplanade that suitors would go looking for their brides to be. Through the years, the practice was romanticized and hence Chap Goh Meh is now known affectionately as the Chinese Valentine’s Day. And that’s why we recommend Penang for the coming festivities.
For The Love of Penang Fort Cornwallis, Georgetown, Penang (03 7727 0093/www.fortheloveofpenang.com). Concert and cash prize zone RM88 (two day pass)/RM48(one day pass). Feb 27 – 28, from 5pm.