If you are planning to travel from the Cameron Highlands to Penang Island (Georgetown), you can take a direct bus / minivan or take a bus to Ipoh first and connect to the ETS trains to Butterworth.
The overland distance from the Cameron Highlands to Georgetown on Penang Island by road is around 250 km.
The easiest and most direct way to get to Penang Island is to take a bus from Tanah Rata to either Butterworth Bus Terminal or Sungai Nibong Bus Terminal.
Coach companies such as C.S Express and Unititi Express offer daily, but infrequent departures to either of Penang's bus terminals.
The duration of the journey by bus is around four and a half hours and tickets cost between 32 RM to 38 RM.
You can also take a direct minivan from the Cameron Highlands to Penang. Tickets for these are usually sold by travel agents / hotels in the Highlands and are more expensive than buses.
Arriving at Butterworth Bus Terminal (Penang Sentral) is for most people the most convenient place to disembark, as you have a couple of minutes walk to the jetty, where you can then take the Butterworth to Penang Ferry over to Georgetown.
Arriving at the jetty in Georgetown, you can then easily walk to most accommodation in this old part of the city within 10 to 15 minutes, take a taxi or take the free RapidPenang bus around the city (or a bus to anywhere else on the island).
Travelling by train from the Cameron Highlands to Butterworth in Penang is not that convenient, unless you plan to break your trip in Ipoh.
First you will have to take a bus from Tanah Rata to Amanjaya Bus Terminal in Ipoh (located 10 km from the old town and train station).
From Amanjaya to Ipoh town centre you will then have to take a local bus to Medan Kidd Bus Station or a taxi.
The railway station in Ipoh is located in the old part of the city (5 minutes walk away from Medan Kidd Bus Station).
The only trains that operate from Ipoh to Butterworth are the fast Electric Train Services (ETS for short).
Cheap KTM Komuter trains do not currently operate from Ipoh, but if you travel to Padang Rengas, Kamunting or Taiping first, you can connect to these cheaper train services.
It is not possible to fly from CH to Penang.
The nearest airport with flights to Penang (PEN) is back in Kuala Lumpur, either from KLIA or Subang Airport.
If you have your own car or a rental, driving to Penang Island is fairly straight forward using Route 59, then Route 185 towards Ipoh, then the North - South Expressway (E1) to Butterworth / either Penang Bridge.
Covering the 250 km distance should take three and a half, to four hours, with some interesting places to stop along the way a spend a night or two if you not in a rush (we would recommend either Ipoh or Taiping)