Heading to Kota Bharu from Penang?
Great choice! This is a very different and beautiful part of Malaysia which is not as far away as it may seems.
It may seem complicated to travel from Penang to Kota Bharu but with direct buses and flights, it’s very straightforward.
Below, I describe exactly how to go from Penang to Kota Bharu whether you are looking for a flight from Penang to Kota Bharu, taking a Penang to Kota Bharu bus or looking to travel Penang to Kota Bharu by car.
Table of Contents
Map: Penang to Kota Bharu
The distance from Penang to Kota Bharu is 342 kilometres and it takes about 5 hours to drive. You can see the quickest route on the map below.
Summary: The Best Way To Travel From Penang To Kota Bharu
Option 1: Penang to Kota Bharu Flight
An easy way to get between these two cities is to fly. Direct flights are possible with both Firefly and Malaysia Airlines and only take an hour. Flights start at about RM200.
On arrival in Kota Bharu, you are about 20 minutes from the city centre or a RM40 taxi drive.
Option 2: Penang to Kota Bharu Bus
It’s easy to take a bus from Penang to Kota Bharu. Multiple bus lines run these a few times a day and they take about 7 hours and cost around RM40.
The return journey on a Kota Bharu to Penang bus also takes a similar time and leaves a few times a day.
Option 3: Penang to Kota Bharu By Car
If you have your own car or have hired one, it’s easy to drive between these two cities. It takes about five hours which means it’s nearly as quick as flying once you take into account getting to airports and checking in.
You can also hire a taxi, but unless you have a family, it’s going to be cheaper and easier to fly.
Option 4: Penang to Kota Bharu Train?
There is no railway connection that is at all direct between Penang and Kota Bharu.
Technically, you could take a train from Butterworth to Gemas where you can change trains to get one to Wakaf Bharu for Kota Bharu. However, this is going to take substantially longer than a bus or flight between Penang and Kota Bharu which is what I recommend.
Getting between Penang and Kota Bharu is straightforward and easy meaning if you are thinking about travelling to this other part of Malaysia, do it! You won’t regret it.
Sharon is an Australian who has fallen in love with Malaysia! She explores Malaysia multiple times a year, often with her kids, and has previously lived in Penang.