Timothy Tye
China Street


China Street (12 November 2008)


China Street, or Lebuh China, is one of the commercial streets in George Town. It is located within the core zone of the George Town Unesco World Heritage Site. It connects two major roads, Beach Street and Pitt Street, and is intersected by Penang Street, King Street and Queen Street.

Land reclamation toward the end of the 19th century extended China Street, creating China Street Ghaut.

China Street is said to have been established by Koh Lay Huan, the Chinese community leader and pioneer settler who had arrived with Francis Light when the latter landed in Penang in 1786.

Location of sights along China Street on the map

Hotels on China Street

  1. East Indies Mansion (GPS: 5.41706, 100.34066)
  2. Palm Mansion Boutique Suites (GPS: 5.41833, 100.33914)
  3. Ren I Tang (GPS: 5.41737, 100.34012)

Street Art along or near China Street

  1. "Parrot Astrologer" Sculpture (GPS: 5.41782, 100.33985)
  2. "Tok Tok Mee" Sculpture (GPS: 5.41831, 100.33889)

Sights & Buildings of Significance along China Street

Eateries on China Street

  1. Hock Leong Yen Cafe (GPS: 5.41796, 100.33971)
  2. Hock Poh Lye Cafe (GPS: 5.41765, 100.34027)
  3. Kaffa Kafe (GPS: 5.41822, 100.33934)
  4. Kedai Kopi Peace & Joy (GPS: 5.41806, 100.33925)
  5. Rajammah Restaurant (GPS: 5.41771, 100.34008)
  6. Street Art Cafe (GPS: 5.41839, 100.33906)

Businesses along China Street


Old China Street roadsign (12 November 2008)

In Other Words ...

Being the main street to the early Chinese community of George Town, it was known in Hokkien as Tua3 Kay1.

Property Numbering

Starting from Beach Street, properties with odd-number addresses are on the left side of China Street while those with even-number addresses are on the right.

New roadsign for China Street with caption in Tamil (15 September, 2012)


China Street was laid out not long after Light Street and Beach Street, and is therefore one of the oldest streets in Penang. The Koh family featured prominently through the 18th and 19th century history of Penang. Koh Seang Tat, the grandson of Koh Lay Huan, was the one who presented the Municipal Fountain to the government in the late 19th century, on the occasion of the construction of Town Hall.

Until the third quarter of the 19th century, China Street faces the sea. It was the main commercial street for the Chinese. The Hokkien called it Tua Kay, meaning "main street". The Hokkiens and the Cantonese jointly established their earliest place of worship at what was then a mount at the head of China Street. This is the beginning of the Kuan Yin Teng temple, the oldest Chinese temple in Penang.

360° View of China Street on Google Maps Street View



China Street plaque (12 November 2008)

Getting there

From the Weld Quay Ferry & Bus Terminal, cross Pengkalan Weld and then turn right. Walk a short distance until you reach China Street Ghaut. Turn left, walk along China Street Ghaut until Beach Street, and you will see China Street across the road.

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