Spices have been cultivated and traded in Malaysian for centuries. This can be traced back to the country's traders, who had contact with traders from other parts of the world, such as India and Sumatra. Malaysia has a rich history of spice cultivation, especially in the northern region of Penang. In fact, it is said that when Captain Francis Light first arrived on Penang Island in 1786, he found spices already growing there!
The Spice Garden was originally established by British colonialists with the intention of cultivating new spices to send back to Europe. Today, it is a popular tourist destination, where you can explore the gardens and learn about the history of spice cultivation in Malaysia.
The Tropical Spice Garden is home to over 500 species of plants, including spices, fruits, and vegetables. You can explore the garden at your leisure, or take one of the guided tours for a more in-depth experience. There's also a restaurant on site where you can sample local cuisine made with ingredients from the garden.
The spice garden is divided into two sections: the outdoor gardens and the greenhouses. The outdoor gardens are laid out in a well-manicured landscape, with winding paths that take you through different sections of the garden. The greenhouses are more like traditional hothouses, with glass ceilings that allow sunlight to bathe the plants inside.
It's a bio-diverse living museum dedicated to the spices and other tropical plants that have shaped our world's history. There are incredible but untold stories hidden in this Eden. And they want to share this treasure with as many people as possible.
Tropical Spice Garden Cooking School:
Discovering Malaysian cuisine is one of the highlights of visiting Pulau Pinang's Tropical Spice Garden. From traditional dishes using spices like nutmeg, coriander, and cardamom, to fusion dishes featuring local flavors, there is something for everyone. Whether you’re a spice enthusiast or a foodie looking for something new to try, the Spice Garden gives you an opportunity to experience the unique flavors of Malaysia’s diverse cuisine.
Take the chance to take part in a cooking class and learn how to prepare traditional meals like Nasi Lemak (coconut-flavored rice with lemongrass), Mee Rebus (a spicy noodle dish with potatoes), and Roti Canai (a fluffy Indian flatbread). You'll also get to explore the different spices and herbs used in Malaysian cooking. You can even pick up some ingredients at the onsite shop so that you can recreate your favorite dishes at home.
Flora Cafe @ Spedahub: Come to space and cafe - it's the perfect place for cyclists, families, and everyone in between. They're located in the Garden, with a view of the Straits of Malacca. We're also just a 10-second walk away from the beach. The cafe is open six days a week, so bring your family and friends along!
Garden Camp: Looking for an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life? Come to the Tropical Spice Garden! They have plenty of beautiful, natural spaces for you to relax and recharge. There are also lots of great activities to do in nature, so everyone can find something to enjoy.
Take a long walk in the rainforest, sit by gentle flowing streams, stargaze at night, barbecue with loved ones, watch a movie outdoors, go on a scavenger hunt, have coffee under the trees, or cycle to a nearby fishing village. Whatever you choose to do, you're sure to find peace and tranquility here. Plus they have a live guided tour so you don't miss out on the adventure.