The clan jetties in George Town are floating villages built on stilts above the water. The houses were built by Chinese immigrants who came over to Penang to find work as fishermen, and then settled in areas determined by their clans.
These days, the younger generations have mostly moved out of the settlements. The jetties are inhabited by the family elders, who continue to enjoy the slow-paced neighbourhoods, which are apparently crime free.
It's a great place to explore and you really do feel like you've been taken back to a simpler time.
The jetties can be found at Weld Quay, near the Penang ferry terminal. Chew Jetty is the main one, but the others are worth exploring too.
There's lots more information about George Town in my Penang posts.