I would like some advice on neighborhoods on Penang.

I am a younger retired male (early 50s) and am going to be arriving in Georgetown in a few days looking to stay somewhere on Penang for a few months or a few years. I would greatly appreciate any advice anybody has as to the best neighborhoods or even condo complexes I should be looking at. I know that there are a lot of ads on this site, and many of them look promising, but since I don't know anything about these neighborhoods, I was hoping to weed them down a bit so I can focus on the more promising ones. I have read a few travel guide articles, but they are all a bit vague. My budget is to look for good value. So I don't see myself rattling around alone in a multi-bedroom house, but alone in a small apartment or sharing a large house each have their attractions.

My #1 requirement is that I want to be near a swimming pool. Swimming is the form of exercise I like best, and I really want to restart my regime of swimming several kilometers a day. So I would like to look at ether apartments or flat shares in house/apartment/condo complexes that have a good sized swimming pool, or ones near a public pool (say 15 minutes walking or on a bus).

Beyond that, I hope for a nice friendly neighborhood, good bus routes, a nice park or similar green space, flat mates who speak English, something to do - I am not much for the club or pub scenes, but I enjoy friendly games. Are there any communities/clubs/organizations I ought to check before picking someplace?

So anyway, in a few days I am going to start responding to rental ads, and any postings I get that say "don't rent in this neighborhood because...." or "you really should look at this apartment complex because..." would be very helpful. Any advice on finding a good place would be priceless. Any advice would be greatly appreciated,  Thanks!

The south of Penang Island is cheaper than George Town and the north (Tanjung Bungah and Batu Ferringhi). But to be honest there are not many expats in that area. You will need to get transport as the public systems are not very developed. In Bayan Lapas there is a business park and there are quite a few expats who are employed there. Most apartments and condos over RM2500 per month will have a pool - below that they will be walk ups with no facilities.  The problem with the south is there is not much expat activity, so you may find yourself a bit isolated. There are lots of flat shares on  or check out  For me Penang is a family place and is really rather quiet. You may find it difficult to develop social contacts although there are various expat clubs which have dine and drink events.

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