Revealed as Malaysia’s first urban archaeological park, part of the Sia Boey area in George Town has been rejuvenated and converted into a new public park. Sia Boey was once a busy place for the locals as there was a market, a canal that enabled small boats to come in and with its close proximity to the sea, Sia Boey was also a bustling trading station in the old days.
After the old Sia Boey market was closed and the nearby shops were relocated elsewhere, the area was abandoned for a time until the start of the Sia Boey Rejuvenation Project – headed by the Penang Development Corporation and George Town World Heritage Incorporated. The project is aimed at revitalizing the entire Sia Boey area, with the urban park being the first phase that is completed.
Sungai Ara Linear Park (or also called Taman Jajar Sungai Ara) is a lesser known park but is popular within the local area communities. Situated within the housing area of Sungai Ara, the park has some outdoor exercising facilities, walking/jogging paths, a small stage with a river that flows through the park. The park is also surrounded by a number of raintrees which provide ample shades for those who are utilizing the park.
Upon entering Botanic Gardens, the sight of these Cannonball Trees greets the visitors. The trees are scientifically named Couroupita guianensis, and they are also known commonly as the ‘Cannonball Tree’ due to the shape and appearance of the fruits.