Penang Hill is the first hill resort in Malaysia. Although it was originally called Flagstaff Hill, the locals have always affectionately referred to it as Bukit Bendera (Flag Hill). It got its name when a flag on Bel Retiro was used as a beacon for signalling to Fort Cornwallis at the north-eastern tip of Penang Island.
The highest point in Penang Hill is about 830 metres above sea level. The temperature on the hilltop is considerably cooler than the coast. During weekdays, the hill is relatively quiet and can serve as a recuperative getaway for those who want to get away from the city heat.