Pinang Peranakan Mansion
The Pinang Peranakan Mansion in George Town, Malaysia, is a museum dedicated to Penang's Peranakan heritage. The museum itself is housed within a distinctive green-hued mansion at Church Street, George Town, which once served as the residence and office of a 19th century Chinese tycoon, Chung Keng Quee; the mansion contains thousands of Peranakan artifacts and collectibles, as well as showcasing Peranakan interior design and customs, such as the typical grand long dining table. Due to its unique architecture and interior design that reflect the lifestyles of the Peranakans in Penang, the mansion has been featured in television series and reality TV shows, such as The Little Nyonya, The Amazing Race and The Amazing Race Asia; the mansion itself was named Hai Kee Chan, which means the'Sea Remembrance Hall' in Penang Hokkien, by Chung Keng Quee, the Kapitan China of Perak and one of the richest men in Penang in the late 19th century. He commissioned the construction of the mansion in the 1890s, having bought the piece of land in 1893.
The site was used by the Ghee Hin, a Chinese secret society, a rival of Chung's Hai San. Both societies had clashed in the 1867 Penang Riots, which led to the decline of the Ghee Hin; the Straits Eclectic-style mansion painted white, incorporated both European and Chinese designs. A five foot way was indented along the building's side facade, while the interior contains a number of wide courtyards similar to the Chinese townhouses of the era. Chung acquired European interior furnishings for his new mansion, such as Scottish cast iron works and Stoke-on-Trent ceramic floor tiles; these European features were incorporated with Chinese elements, such as the carved wooden panels and screen for the walls. In addition, a temple honouring Chung himself was built next to the mansion. A life-sized statue of Chung still stands inside the temple, adorned with portraits of Chung and his family members. Chung Keng Quee died in 1901 and the mansion was passed down to his descendants. However, the mansion became derelict.
It was acquired by a property developer in the 1990s, who repainted it green and, with over 1,000 Peranakan antiques, turned it into a museum dedicated to Penang's Peranakan culture. The Little Nyonya The Amazing Race 16 The Amazing Race Asia 4 The Iron Lady The Journey: A Voyage Crazy Rich Asians Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion Pinang Peranakan Mansion
Arulmigu Balathandayuthapani Temple, Penang
The Balathandayuthapani Temple the Arulmigu Balathandayuthapani Kovil, better known as the Waterfall Hill Temple or "Thaneer Malai" by locals, is a temple complex located in George Town, Penang. The main deity of this temple is Murugan. Visitors need to climb 513 stairs to reach the temple, it is the focal point of the Hindu festival of Thaipusam in Malaysia, after the Batu Caves. The hilltop temple, with its seven-storey 21.6m-tall gopuram, has been touted as the largest Lord Murugan temple outside India. The grand consecration ceremony of the newly completed Arulmigu Balathandayuthapani temple was held on 29 June 2012. Built at a cost of 10 million ringgit, this temple is said to be the largest Murugan temple outside India; the timeline of the temple: 1800 - The shrine located at the base of the great Waterfall within the current Penang Botanic Gardens became the focal point of Thaipusam Festival 1856 - The earliest known view of the temple at the base of the waterfall through a painting done by Captain Charles Henry Cazalet, thus proving the existence of the temple by then.
1892 - The Waterfall Reservoir was constructed 1905 - The formation of the Mohammedan and Hindu Endowments Board 1913 - To prevent contamination of the water supply at the Waterfall Temple, plans are on the way to remove the Waterfall Temple. Reported out on 13 November 1913 1914 - A new piece of land having an area of 10 acres, 2 rods, 28 poles known as Lot 5 Mukim XVI was purchased by the “Mohammedan and Hindu Endowments Board” at a cost of 7,500 Straits Dollars for the purpose of the erection of a new Hindu temple. Reported out on 9 May 1914 1915 - Thaipusam was celebrated at the Hilltop Temple instead of the Waterfall temple for the first time in February 1915. Reported out on 7 June 1915 1985 - The Old Hilltop Temple was rebuilt and the Maha Kumbhabishegam conducted on 28 January 1985 2006 - Work begins on the New Hilltop Temple at a new site 30 meters above the old site 2012 - The New Hilltop Temple Maha Kumbabhishegam was conducted on 29 June 2012; the Thaipusam festival of 2013 was for the first time held in the New Hilltop Temple A RM3mil golden chariot hit the streets on the eve of Thaipusam on 8 February 2017.
The 1.6-tonne golden chariot measuring 4.3m-high and 4m-wide will feature two golden horses in the front with several statues adorning the kalasam. The chariot bearing Lord Muruga’s vel will move on rubberised wheels pulled by devotees; the inner frame of the chariot was shipped to Penang where it was assembled. The golden chariot’s journey will be from the Arulmigu Sri Maha Mariamman Temple in Queen Street to the Arulmigu Sri Ganesha Temple in Jalan Kebun Bunga; the chariot would be placed at the Sri Ganesha Temple for two days, on Thaipusam eve and on Thaipusam day. An 18-day pooja session will be conducted for The 0.9m-tall golden vel at Queen Street Maha Mariamman Temple. This depicts the story goes that the vel was created by Lord Shiva’s consort Parasakthi, Lord Murugan’s mother. Parasakthi appeared in 18 forms before merging into a single indestructible vel, handed to Lord Murugan during the Poosa natchathiram on Pournami Day in the month of Thai. After receiving a blessing from the Lord’s mother, the vel will be sent back to Lord Murugan on the golden chariot on Thaipusam eve.
The golden chariot completed its first trial run for Thaipusam in on 2 February 2017 about two hours through George Town in the presence of a large throng of devotees seeing it for the first time. The chariot went 3 km along Jalan Kebun Bunga, Lorong Air Terjun, Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman, Jalan Macalister, Jalan Residensi and Jalan Utama before returning to the temple; the main temple inside the complex. Devotee need to climb 512 steps to reach the temple; the temple is 70,000sq ft grounds large and build on the cost of RM10 million Another temple on the hill. Located beside the main temple Another temple in the of the Arulmigu Balathandayuthapani Temple complex, dedicated to lord Ganesha; the temple located on the first temple to visit before climbing up to the main temple. Arulmigu Sree Ganeshar was constructed in 1951 by the Hindu Mahajana Sangam A small shine dedicated to Naga Naathar or King Cobra. 8.23m-tall statue of Lord Shiva at the foot of the hill. See Also: Hindu Mahajana Sangam Hindi Mahajana Sangam or known as Gandhiji Ashram among locals, is a community hall at the foot of the Balathandayuthapani Temple.
The hall was built by the early Indian settles who were the waterfront workers in late 1920s and was known as Madaalayam or Kootakadai Madam. The Sangam intends to preserve the Dewan Mahatma Gandhi building as a heritage building as in our view this is the only building that exist today, based on the South Indian Architecture left in the whole of Malaysia. Darshan hours are from 6:45 am to 9:00 pm; the temple reopens at 4:30 pm and closes at 9:15 pm. The temple priests perform the puja daily, as well as during festivals Abishegam or Thirumanjanam is the anointment of the idol with oils, sandalwood paste, milk and the like and bathing it with water in an act of ritual purification; the most prominent abishegams are conducted at the ceremonies to mark the hours of the day. These are four in number: the Kaala Santhi, early in the morning, the Ucchikālam, in the afternoon, the Sāyaratchai, in the evening and the Ardha Jāmam, at night prior to the temple being closed for the day; each ritual comprises four steps: abishegam, naivethanam (food offering
Penang is a Malaysian state located on the northwest coast of Peninsular Malaysia, by the Malacca Strait. It has two parts: Penang Island, where the capital city, George Town, is located, Seberang Perai on the Malay Peninsula; the second smallest Malaysian state by land mass, Penang is bordered by Kedah to the north and the east, Perak to the south. Penang is home to Southeast Asia's Longest bridge connecting the island to mainland. Penang's population stood at nearly 1.767 million as of 2018, while its population density rose to 1,684/km2. It has among the nation's highest population densities and is one of the country's most urbanised states. George Town, Malaysia's second largest city, is home to a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Penang's modern history began upon the establishment of George Town by Francis Light. Penang formed part of the Straits Settlements in 1826, which became a British crown colony in 1867. Direct British rule was only interrupted during World War II, when Japan occupied Penang.
Penang was merged with the Federation of Malaya, which gained independence from the British in 1957. Following the decline of its entrepôt trade towards the 1970s, Penang's economy was reoriented towards hi-tech manufacturing. Known as the Silicon Valley of the East for its industries, Penang is one of Malaysia's most vital economic powerhouses. Penang has the highest Gross Domestic Product per capita among all Malaysian states and is considered a high-income economy. In addition, Penang recorded the nation's second highest Human Development Index, after Kuala Lumpur. Correspondingly, the state has a well-educated population, with a youth literacy rate of 99.5% as of 2014. Its heterogeneous population is diverse in ethnicity, culture and religion. Aside from the three main races, the Chinese and Indians, Penang is home to significant Eurasian and expatriate communities. A resident of Penang is colloquially known as a Penang Lâng; the name, comes from the modern Malay name Pulau Pinang, which means The Island of the Areca Nut Palm.
The State of Penang is referred to as the Pearl of the Orient and Pulau Pinang Pulau Mutiara. Penang Island was known by native seafarers as Pulau Ka-Satu, meaning The First Island, because it was the largest island encountered on the trading sea-route between Lingga and Kedah; the Siamese the overlord of Kedah, referred to the island as Koh Maak. In the 15th century, Penang Island was referred to as Bīnláng Yù in the navigational drawings used by Admiral Zheng He of Ming China. Emanuel Godinho de Eredia, a 16th-century Portuguese historian referred to the island as Pulo Pinaom in the Description of Malacca. Human remains, dating back to about 5,000 to 6,000 years ago, have been uncovered in Seberang Perai, along with seashells and hunting tools; these artifacts indicate that the earliest inhabitants of Penang were nomadic Melanesians during the Neolithic era. The Cherok Tok Kun megalith in Bukit Mertajam, uncovered in 1845, contains Pali inscriptions, indicating that the Hindu-Buddhist Bujang Valley civilisation based in what is now Kedah had established control over parts of Seberang Perai by the 6th century.
The entirety of what is now Penang would become part of the Sultanate of Kedah up to the late 18th century. However, the modern history of Penang only began in the late 18th century. In the 1770s, Francis Light was instructed by the British East India Company to form trade relations in the Malay Peninsula. Light subsequently landed in Kedah, by a Siamese vassal state. Aware that the Sultanate was under external and internal threats, he promised British military protection to the Sultan of Kedah, Sultan Muhammad Jiwa Zainal Adilin II, it was only in 1786 when the British East India Company ordered Light to obtain the island from Kedah. Light negotiated with the new Sultan of Kedah, Sultan Abdullah Mukarram Shah, regarding the cession of the island to the British East India Company in exchange for British military aid. After an agreement between Light and the Sultan was ratified and his entourage sailed on to Penang Island, where they arrived on 17 July 1786. Light took formal possession of the island on 11 August "in the name of His Britannic Majesty, King George III and the Honourable East India Company".
Penang Island was renamed the Prince of Wales Island after the heir to the British throne, while the new settlement of George Town was established in honour of King George III. Unbeknownst to Sultan Abdullah, Light had been acting without the authority or the consent of his superiors in India; when Light reneged on his promise of military protection, the Kedah Sultan launched an attempt to recapture the Prince of Wales Island in 1791. In 1800, Lieutenant-Governor Sir George Leith secured a strip of hinterland across the Penang Strait and named it Province Wellesley. Province Wellesley was gradually expanded up to its present-day boundaries in 1874. In exchange for the acquisition, the annual payment to the Sultan of Kedah was increased to 10,000 Spanish dollars per annum. To this day, the Malaysian federal government still pays Kedah, on behalf of Penang, RM 10,000 annually as a symbolic gesture. Light founded George Town as a free port to entice traders away from nearby Dutch trading posts. Spices were harvested on the island, turning it into a regional centre fo
Church of the Assumption (Penang)
The Church of the Assumption was founded in 1786, when Captain Francis Light first came to Penang, Malaysia. It is located in George Town, within the heritage core zone of the city; the church is the third oldest Catholic church in Malaysia. This church was the seat of the bishop of Penang from 1955 to 2003 and it is a World Heritage Church. In 1786, Captain Francis Light named it Prince of Wales Island, he set up the Fort Cornwallis. In conjunction with their landing in Penang which coincides with the feast of the Assumption of The Blessed Mary on 15 August that year, he and his companions built a church and named it Church of the Assumption, it was the first Roman Catholic church in the northern region of Malaysia, as well as the first church built after the British landed in Penang. They went on to control Malaya on; as the population of Penang Island continues to increase, there was a need for a bigger church. In 1860, the present crucifix shaped church, was constructed, it opened. It consists of a huge altar.
The pipe organ, by Morton & Moody of Oakham, was installed in 1916 and the choir gallery was extended. In December 1941, when the Japanese conquered Penang, the church was closed except for a few masses, it was said that during one day, when the bells of the church were tolled, a Japanese soldier went into the church to cut off the ropes, saying that the bells were noisy. Life went back to normal when the Japanese surrendered in August 1945. In 1954, in conjunction with the Marian Year, the statue of Our Lady of Fatima was carried on a long procession through the streets of George Town, it was replaced with a shrine built in front of the church. The need for a diocese was raised up after the Japanese occupation. After much discussion on 25 February 1955, the Penang Diocese was established together with the Archdiocese of Kuala Lumpur. At the same time, Bishop Francis Chan and Bishop Dominic Vendargon were elected as bishops of Penang and Kuala Lumpur respectively, they were both ordained at this church.
This church, together with St. John's Cathedral in Kuala Lumpur were given the cathedral status. At that period of time, Cathedral of the Assumption served as the main church of the northern region of Malaysia. A lot of diocesan activities were held there, it was in the mid-1970s, when the cathedral and three other churches in George Town suffered a major setback. The Catholic population there started to dwindle until only about 1,500 Catholics were left in the city. Since the number of the priests were shrinking, in 1988 Bishop Antony Selvanayagam decided to merge the four parishes into one parish, named City Parish. In the 1990s, main functions of the diocese were moved to other churches; that was the time when the Bishop of Penang had a meeting with the priests to discuss about moving the cathedral to some other places. In 2001, Bishop Antony Selvanayagam announced that in January 2003, the status of the cathedral will be moved to the Cathedral of The Holy Spirit in Green Lane, Penang; this parish emerged as the new cathedral because it has a high number of parishioners and was a active parish in the diocese.
On 20 January 2003, the cathedral status and bishop's seat were moved to the new Cathedral of The Holy Spirit, thus lowering the status of the cathedral to Church of The Assumption. In 2008, when George Town and Malacca Town became UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the church was named as world heritage church; the church building has historical significance. In 2011, the church marked a year-long celebration of its 225th anniversary and fund-raising for the restoration of the pipe organ and church building. At the same time, the Assumption Formation Centre was opened to cater for visitors and spiritual formations and church activities. In 2013, the church restored its organ after receiving generous donations. A concert was held in June 2014, various choirs were invited to sing and celebrate the restoration of "The Old Lady" organ. In August 2016, the church was closed for 16 months to undergo a RM 2.5 million restoration project which included landscaping, repainting of the building, reconstruction of the sanctuary and installation of air conditioning units.
The church was brought back to her former glory of 1928. The Church of the Assumption was rededicated on New Year's Day in January 2018; the Penang Roman Catholic Diocese Museum was opened within the same grounds which features the history of the Catholic Church in Penang Island. The Church of the Assumption has been under the City Parish since 1988. Today the Parish Priest is Msgr Aloysius Tan, he is assisted by Fr Maiccal Sinnappan, it is the oldest church in Penang. It has a 1914 Morton & Moody pipe organ and is one of seven pipe organs still in use in Malaysia today; the organ is played for Saturday sunset masses and during festivities like Easter and Christmas. The church has a choir, accompanying the organ, singing in both Latin and English; every year, on 15 August, the feast day of this church, the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary is celebrated. Saturday Mass Novena: 6:00pm English Sunset Mass: 6:30pm English Sunday Mass 10:00am English City Parish Roman Catholic Diocese of Penang Holy Spirit Cathedral, Penang Assumption Church Website City Parish Official Website Penang Diocese Official Website
Sri Mahamariamman Temple, Penang
Built in 1833, the Arulmigu Sri Mahamariamman Temple in George Town is the oldest Hindu temple in Penang and features sculptures of gods and goddesses over its main entrance and facade. It is located at George Town, it is known as Mariamman Temple or Queen Street Indian Temple. Throughout the years, the Sri Mahamariamman temple has been known by several names: Sri Muthu Mariamman Temple, Sri Arulmigu Mahamariamman Temple, Sri Mariamman Temple. All these names refer to the same temple; the temple is open daily from 6.30 am - 4.30 pm - 9.00 pm. It became a place of worship as early as 1801 and became a temple in 1833, it has stood at the same place for more than 200 years. The temple is in central Georgetown on Lebuh Queen and the back entrance is on Jalan Masjid Kapitan Keling, in between Lebuh Pasar and Lebuh Chulia. Located in Penang's Little India, in the capital city of Georgetown, the Sri Maha Mariamman temple reflects the city's rich cultural heritage. Visitation to this temple is limited to evening.
Temple opens starts from morning 6 am till evening from 5 pm till 9 pm. The temples closes after the prayers are performed at 9 pm respectively. Daily there will be mornings 7.30 am and evening 6.30 pm. Prayers are conducted by the temple priests in these times and visitors may observe these prayer sessions taking place. If you wish to enter the Sri Mahamariamman temple, it would be polite to ask permission from any of the priests and please remember to remove your shoes before entering the temple grounds. Darshan hours are from 6 am to 9 pm. Temple is reopened at 4.30 pm and closed at 9.15 pm. The temple priests perform the puja on a daily basis. Abishegam or Thirumanjanam is anointment of the idol with oils, sandalwood paste, milk and the like and bathing it with water in an act of ritual purification; the most prominent abishegams are conducted at the ceremonies to mark the hours of the day. These are four in number - the Kaala Santhi, early in the morning, the Ucchikālam, in the afternoon, the Sāyaratchai, in the evening and the Ardha Jāmam, at night prior to the temple being closed for the day.
Each ritual comprises four steps: abishegam, alangaram and deepa aradanai all the deities. After the abishegam, it is the practice to dress the idols of the deities, in an act called alangaram, in one of several guises; the worship is held with religious instructions in the Vedas and Thirumurai read by priests. These hours are marked by the tolling of the bell of the temple amidst music with nadaswaram and thavil. Devotees are ale to perform archanai by the priest thereafter. Abishegam Kaala Santhi Abishegam Utchikkalam Pooja Abishegam Sāyaratchai Abishegam Ardha Jāmam Please note that on festivals and special occasions and Poojas start earlier than the scheduled time The tropical island of Penang lies in the Indian Ocean, just off the north-west coast of Peninsular Malaysia. Penang's rapid growth as a trading hub in the early 19th century in commodities such as nutmegs and pepper, attracted traders from Europe, Arabia, India as well as China; each established communities, adopted lifestyles similar to their homeland.
It was during that time that the Tamil Indians arrived in the island's bustling harbour, established their own ‘Little India’ community in the city. The early Indian settlers, who came to this island to toil and trade, established an abode for mother, so that her presence could be felt as their guardian deity and guide in their times of trials and tribulations. Dating back as early as 1801, the Sri Mahamariamman Temple is recognised as an elaborate and spiritual place of worship. Like most Indian temples in Penang, the Penang Sri Mahamariamman began as a simple shrine. Not much is known of the persons who founded it; the land was granted in 1801 by the British to Betty Lingam Chetty, the Kapitan of the Tamils and South Indians. This is confirmed by another grant written in 1831. But, as to how the temple came to be built on this land or who founded it, there is no information. Caption James Low confirms the existence of a temple in Georgetown in 1835; that the Mariamman temple was founded in 1833 is first mentioned in a notice of'Kumbabishegam' held one hundred years in 1933.
But except for the date, not much else has been said about its founding in that document. Built as a shrine, it was that the Indian community found a need for a proper temple ground for worshipping, to accommodate the ever-increasing Indian community presence on the island; this was done to ensure that the Indian community, which includes the merchants and sepoys, are settled in one particular area, for ease of managing the group. The majority of the people who lived around the temple were waterfront workers who were the backbone of the Penang port; these Indian stevedores were organised in groups called kootam - a member of a kootam is a kootakadai, heading each kootam is a thandal. Together, the Indian community numbered about 2000 workers and they inhabited the area bounded by Lebuh Queen, Lebuh King, Lebuh Penang, Lebuh Pasar and Lebuh Gereja, an area collectively known as Ellammuchanthi in Tamil, or Simpang Lelong in Malay; the Sri Mahamariamman shrine was enlarged into a temple in 1833.
Since this was when it became a pro
Penang Hill is a hill resort comprising a group of peaks on Penang Island, Malaysia. It is located within 9 km west of the center of George Town. Penang Hill is known by the Malay name Bukit Bendera, which refers to Flagstaff Hill, the most developed peak. Penang Hill covers a number of hills, with the highest point at Western Hill, 833 m above sea level; the hill stands out prominently from the lowlands as a forested area. It was used as a retreat during the British colonial period, is now a popular tourist destination in Penang; the top of the hill is accessible via the Penang Hill Railway from its base station at Hill Railway Station Road. To date, this funicular railway system is the only one of its kind in Malaysia, transporting over a million visitors to the peak of Penang Hill as of 2014. Captain Francis Light, founder of the colony in Penang, first plotted a horse track from the Penang Botanic Gardens waterfall up to the top of the hill in 1788, he cleared an area in order to grow strawberry, it therefore became known as Strawberry Hill.
Its official name however was Flagstaff Hill, still reflected in its name in Malay, Bukit Bendera. The name was a reference to the flagstaff outside "Bel Retiro", the residence of the Governor of Penang built by Francis Light c. 1789. The area is, however known as Penang Hill which is, in fact, a collective term covering a number of hills, the other names such as Flagstaff Hill, Strawberry Hill are still used for specific peaks in the area; the hill became a cool retreat for the British colonists from the heat of the lowlands and threat of malaria, many bungalows were built on the summit of Penang Hill for government servants and army. A Convalescent Bungalow was built in 1803. One of the earliest buildings was built by David Brown on Strawberry Hill, given to Brown by Francis Light; the house however burnt down and it was rebuilt in the 19th century, it is used as a restaurant. The post office was first opened in 1894, a hotel, the Crag Hotel, was established in 1895; the first police station was built in 1929, the building is still standing here on the same site.
In the early days the only way to the top of hill was to travel on foot or horseback, or be carried on a dooly. The first attempt at a mountain railway on Penang Hill began in 1897 but it proved unsuccessful; the Straits government organised a new project to construct the Penang Hill Funicular Railway at a cost of 1.5 million Straits dollars. The railway was first opened to the public on 21 October 1923 and opened on 1 January 1924; the funicular railway led to a sharp increase in residential development as it became a location for the building of holiday villas and bungalows by Europeans and wealthy local Chinese towkays alike. It led to its development into a major tourist destination in Penang, it received well over a million visitors a year by 2012. A major revamp at Penang Hill was initiated in 2010; the railway was overhauled, allowing for faster access to the hill, facilities for visitors and viewing decks were constructed. Penang Hill is a hilly granitic mass; the hill system is higher towards the northern part with its highest point at Western Hill, at an elevation of 833 m above sea level.
Other than Western Hill, there are a number of peaks in the region, such as Bukit Laksamana, Tiger Hill, Flagstaff Hill, Haliburton's Hill and Government Hill. Flagstaff Hill is 735 m above sea level. A number of small rivers and streams originate from the region. Sungai Pinang is the largest of the rivers, it starts from a number of tributaries in the area; because Penang Hill has a cooler environment, it has been a popular holiday retreat. A number of bungalows were built around Flagstaff Hill; the northern part of the Hills are not well developed. Government Hill, Bukit Timah and others are designated water catchment areas and no development is permitted; some recreational potential exists at the upper reaches of the river where the water is clean. In a number of cases, sudden changes in ground level have resulted in a series of small waterfalls and rapids, where bathing and picnicking are popular; the lower terrain of the Hills is used for agricultural and residential purposes. The most convenient way up to Penang Hill is by means of the Penang Hill Railway, a funicular railway from Air Itam to the top of Flagstaff Hill.
The 2,007 m journey used to take about half an hour and the train may stop at intermediate stations upon request. However, upgrades to the system now allows non-stop rides to the top in five to ten minutes. For Malaysians, the fare for a return ticket is RM10 per adult and RM4 per child aged between three and 12. For foreign tourists, the return fare would be RM30 for adults and RM15 for children aged seven to 12. Senior citizens and students will enjoy cheaper fares at RM4 per person; the ride continues to remain free of charge for disabled persons holding the OKU card. Penang Hill residents, licensed traders and hawkers and workers can purchase a monthly season pass at RM24; the blue, air-conditioned Swiss-made coaches, capable of ferrying up to 100 passengers at one go, run from 6:30am to 11pm daily. The ticketing counter will be closed at 10:30 pm daily. Alternatively, there is a 5.1 km tarred road known popularly as the "jeep track". It is open only to the vehicles of hill residents; the "jeep track" is used by off-road motorcycle enthusiast
Victoria was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until her death. On 1 May 1876, she adopted the additional title of Empress of India. Victoria was the daughter of Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of King George III. Both the Duke and the King died in 1820, Victoria was raised under close supervision by her mother, Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, she inherited the throne at the age of 18, after her father's three elder brothers had all died, leaving no surviving legitimate children. The United Kingdom was an established constitutional monarchy, in which the sovereign held little direct political power. Victoria attempted to influence government policy and ministerial appointments. Victoria married her first cousin Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in 1840, their nine children married into royal and noble families across the continent, tying them together and earning her the sobriquet "the grandmother of Europe". After Albert's death in 1861, Victoria avoided public appearances.
As a result of her seclusion, republicanism temporarily gained strength, but in the latter half of her reign, her popularity recovered. Her Golden and Diamond Jubilees were times of public celebration, her reign of 63 years and seven months was longer than that of any of her predecessors and is known as the Victorian era. It was a period of industrial, political and military change within the United Kingdom, was marked by a great expansion of the British Empire, she was the last British monarch of the House of Hanover. Her son and successor, Edward VII, initiated the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, the line of his father. Victoria's father was Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of the reigning King of the United Kingdom, George III; until 1817, Edward's niece, Princess Charlotte of Wales, was the only legitimate grandchild of George III. Her death in 1817 precipitated a succession crisis that brought pressure on the Duke of Kent and his unmarried brothers to marry and have children.
In 1818 he married Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, a widowed German princess with two children—Carl and Feodora —by her first marriage to the Prince of Leiningen. Her brother Leopold was Princess Charlotte's widower; the Duke and Duchess of Kent's only child, was born at 4.15 a.m. on 24 May 1819 at Kensington Palace in London. Victoria was christened by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Charles Manners-Sutton, on 24 June 1819 in the Cupola Room at Kensington Palace, she was baptised Alexandrina after one of her godparents, Emperor Alexander I of Russia, Victoria, after her mother. Additional names proposed by her parents—Georgina and Augusta—were dropped on the instructions of Kent's eldest brother, the Prince Regent. At birth, Victoria was fifth in the line of succession after the four eldest sons of George III: George, the Prince Regent; the Prince Regent had no surviving children, the Duke of York had no children. The Duke of Clarence and the Duke of Kent married on the same day in 1818, but both of Clarence's legitimate daughters died as infants.
The first of these was Princess Charlotte, born and died on 27 March 1819, two months before Victoria was born. Victoria's father died in January 1820. A week her grandfather died and was succeeded by his eldest son as George IV. Victoria was third in line to the throne after York and Clarence. Clarence's second daughter was Princess Elizabeth of Clarence who lived for twelve weeks from 10 December 1820 to 4 March 1821 and, while Elizabeth lived, Victoria was fourth in line; the Duke of York died in 1827. When George IV died in 1830, he was succeeded by his next surviving brother, Clarence, as William IV, Victoria became heir presumptive; the Regency Act 1830 made special provision for Victoria's mother to act as regent in case William died while Victoria was still a minor. King William distrusted the Duchess's capacity to be regent, in 1836 he declared in her presence that he wanted to live until Victoria's 18th birthday, so that a regency could be avoided. Victoria described her childhood as "rather melancholy".
Her mother was protective, Victoria was raised isolated from other children under the so-called "Kensington System", an elaborate set of rules and protocols devised by the Duchess and her ambitious and domineering comptroller, Sir John Conroy, rumoured to be the Duchess's lover. The system prevented the princess from meeting people whom her mother and Conroy deemed undesirable, was designed to render her weak and dependent upon them; the Duchess avoided the court because she was scandalised by the presence of King William's illegitimate children. Victoria shared a bedroom with her mother every night, studied with private tutors to a regular timetable, spent her play-hours with her dolls and her King Charles Spaniel, Dash, her lessons included French, German and Latin, but she spoke only English at home. In 1830, the Duchess of Kent and Conroy took Victoria across the centre of England to visit the Malvern Hills, stopping at towns and great country houses along the way. Similar journeys to oth