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CAT stands for Central Area Transit. It is the free shuttle bus that loops around the inner city of George Town, passing many important sights. The CAT Route is ideal for sightseeing the Inner City of George Town, and it's free! The route covers sights within the George Town UNESCO World Heritage Site, including the Central Business District of Beach Street, civic district of Light Street, traditional shopping street of Penang Road and the heritage sights along and off Pitt Street.
View Penang: MPPP Rapid Penang CAT Free Shuttle Bus Service in a larger map
At the next junction, the bus turns left and go up China Street Ghaut. Look to your right. You see old warehouses attached to George Town Dispensary. As the bus reaches the junction with Beach Street, look to your left for the Ban Hin Lee Bank Building, one of the earliest buildings to be designed by a local architect.
The bus turns right and go along Beach Street. This is George Town's Central Business District. There are bank buildings on both sides. They pass in quick succession.
As the bus turns left into Penang Road, look to your right to see Segara Ninda, a Malay heritage house turned budget hotel. Penang Road and adjacent Campbell Street were the main shopping streets of George Town in the 1970's, though today it is a little past its prime. Look out for Central Police Headquarters complex to your right. If you want to taste the best cendol in Penang, get off the bus here, and walk up to Keng Kwee Street.
The bus turns left and go down Prangin Road. Look to your right to see Komtar. The bus now turns right and go along Jalan Ria and enters Komtar. Here the bus makes a stop at the Komtar Bus Terminal. It then emerges on the other side of the mammoth complex at Magazine Road.
The bus turns right at Magazine Circus (which is not a roundabout anymore) and enters Penang Road again. Look to your left for Ong Kongsi, another clan temple.
The bus next turns left to Burmah Road. A short distance it turns right down Transfer Road. At the next traffic light, it turns right again, down Hutton Lane. Hutton Lane is the location for first and original Eden restaurant, which now has outlets all over Malaysia. However, the food at the original Eden is not as good as it used to be.
The bus now turns right into Penang Road again. If the sights seem familiar, it's because you've passed it earlier. Now it turns left into Prangin Road again. Instead of turning right into Jalan Ria one more time, this time it goes straight along Prangin Road. Look out for Prangin Mall, the biggest shopping mall in the Inner City. At the next junction, the bus turns left into Carnarvon Street. There used to be lots of coffin shops and book shops along this street, but the majority has closed down.
The bus turns right to Kampung Kolam. Then it turns left to Pitt Street again. We are entering the Muslim quarters of George Town. Look at the buildings. They look like something out of South India. You might want to get off the bus here, if you wish to explore the heritage sites. Otherwise stay on the bus and see the Kapitan Keling Mosque and the Goddess of Mercy Temple pass by.
The bus turns left down Farquhar Street again, and once more you see the St George's Church and Penang State Museum on your left, and the Penang Supreme Court on your right. As the bus re-enters Light Street, look out for the Logan Memorial and Dewan Sri Penang on your left.
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If you are planning to travel Malaysia and Singapore by bus, you can now purchase your long-distance bus tickets directly from Bus Online Ticket, where you get to check the schedule as well as price of tickets from various bus companies.