Gurney Drive, Penang

Gurney Drive

Mention Penang and what comes to mind?

For me, it's the iconic Penang Laksa and Char Kway Teow (Penangites spell it as Char Koay Teow). And where better to enjoy Penang hawker fare than Gurney Drive - home to Penang's most popular street food?

Well, just think of it as Penang's equivalent of our very own Newton Circus.

Gurney Drive is about 20 minutes drive away from our hotel and we were there slightly after 5pm so finding a table wasn't much of a problem for us. 

Come any later and you would have trouble getting yourself a seat. Even parking would have been a nightmare as the traffic here only gets worst during peak hours.

Located near the bayfront, one could enjoy the sea breeze while digging in at the open-air hawker centre.

I have heard so much about Gurney Drive that I was hoping we could cut short our Hat Yai trip just so we could get to Penang earlier.

Unfortunately, despite the many reviews I've read online raving how special certain Penang dishes are, we all agree that what we had had that day were at most passable and nothing to shout about.

I think it's a shame that we did not do our homework beforehand to find out which are the recommended stalls to go to.

Could it be that Gurney Drive is over-rated? Or perhaps authentic Penang food can only be found in those secret alleys where only the locals would know of?

As with the case of Newton Circus, Singaporeans knew that it is a tourist trap and most of us would shun there therefore, I wonder is it the same case with Gurney Drive?