Holidays in Malaysia: Melaka
The other city we visited during our holidays in Malaysia was Melaka, known in English as Malacca. Melaka was an important port of trade in South East Asia and a colony of the Portuguese, then the Dutch and later the British. All these influences, together with Malay and Chinese, can still be seen and make Melaka a very interesting town (and a UNESCO World Heritage Site). It is not too big so it doesn’t feel overwhelming, but there are definitely many things to do and see there! According to the Wikipedia its population is almost 900,000, but it has a small town feeling reinforced in part by the lack of high buildings.
But there are also some vestiges from the Portuguese occupation which now are just pretty ruins.
We had lunch in an OldTown café. They have a brand of instant coffee that C. has been addicted to for years. I don’t really like coffee so I had a milk tea.
We walked towards the sea assuming there would be a beach, or a port, or something, but there wasn’t. We couldn’t reach the water but we saw a dinosaur on the way:
The next morning we visited the Baba and Nyonya Heritage Museum, the house of an old Malaysian-Chinese family. There are free guided tours which explain all the house secrets and what each room was for. The inside of the house is truly magnificent and the guide explanations were very entertaining.
And with a picture of the most popular means of transportation for tourists: these ornate tricycles, all different, which you can choose based on your cartoon preferences. They play music during your ride and they seemed to know their audiences well, as when the customers were Chinese they always played Chinese songs. They also have colourful lights which they turn on at night for a very “fun fair on the go” feeling.
Melaka is 150 km away from Kuala Lumpur. It is easily reachable by intercity bus and the trip takes 2 hours if there’s no heavy traffic.