There are two entry points. One is from Port Swettenham Pier in downtown Georgetown on the island. The other one is in Butterworth Pier on the mainland.
While I could not really ascertain the history behind the one-of-its-kind ferry service, it has long been an iconic figure to historic Penang. The images of the betel nut orange ferry have been featured in many travelogues and brochures the world over.
Visitors have two options when using this ferry service. If you are driving, just park your car on the 1st floor of the ferry, switch off your engine and enjoy the breezy journey. Tourists walking on foot can get to the 2nd floor with plenty of open air deck to view the scenery - be it the bustling port of Penang, the 13.5-kilometre long Penang Bridge or ever changing scenery of downtown Georgetown.
Only recently that the ferries have been painted into various colors, apart from its ubiquitous betel nut orange, to breath a new life into this popular ferry service. Also the ferries use various nicknames of the many islands in Malaysia such as Pulau Redang, Pulau Duyong or Pulau Pangkor to differentiate between each other.
Normally visitors will enter the island of Penang from Seberang Perai through the Penang Bridge and return by the ferry. I think this is a good arrangement to enjoy the two most iconic mode of transportation in and out of the island.
A must try.