Malacca, also known as Melaka in Malaysia, is considered as one of the favorite tourist attractions in Malaysia and is considered as a UNESCO Heritage Site because of the influence of the Portuguese and Dutch back in the 16th Century, which, until now, is seen when you explore the City of Malacca.
Upon arriving at Kuala Lumpur Airport from Langkawi, we caught a tourist bus that would take us to Malacca. The bus ride takes around 2 hours. It was a comfortable bus, and we were able to catch up on some sleep.
In this article, I won’t focus on much of history. Instead, I want to share the places where we walked, visited, ate, and took photos, especially when you see the fusion of culture and tradition that is so evident in Malacca.
WayFarer Guest House
With so much accommodation to choose from around Malacca, we decided to choose this place. Aside from being affordable, we wanted a place close to the Malacca River and within walking distance from different tourist attractions around the area.
Our room was very clean and homely, and we slept comfortably. It was also tranquil, and they have complimentary coffee and tea for guests in the lobby.
Things to Do Around Malacca
Christ Church Melaka
Built-in the 18th Century, Christ Church Melaka is the oldest Protestant Church currently being used. Built by the Dutch, it became an iconic structure of Melacca. Although we could not see what’s inside the church, it’s a great place to take photos. Just make sure to visit very early as this can get very hectic with many tourists since this is the drop-off point of tourist buses.
Found right next to Christ Church, you will find another iconic Dutch colonial structure found in the Dutch Square area. The Stadthuys was used as Government offices until the late ’70s. It is now a museum where tourists can learn and discover the rich history of this UNESCO Heritage Site.
Walk Along Melaka River
When you are in Melaka, there is no way you are going to miss this river. What is so interesting about this walk is that you can feel the love of culture and the arts by the wall paintings, graffiti, and even the small cafes where you can have coffee, ciders, meals, and other local delicacies.
Every afternoon, after long walks around town, we made sure to cap off our day in one of the small coffee shops. Sitting at one of the tables outside facing the river and enjoying the conversation. I miss that!
If you are looking for a place to shop, go to Jonker Street. This is probably one of Melaka’s busiest streets, but I am not surprised because there are so many curios shops, cafes, and restaurants around this area. Take a slow walk and enjoy the fusion of the Malay, Dutch and Chinese culture that can be seen from the architectural perspective. This is also a great place to buy souvenirs because they are everywhere. This is a place you should not miss!
if you walk further back at Stadthuys, you will see another ruin called A Famosa. It’s a Portuguese fortress that was built in the 1500s. At present, it is one of the major tourist attractions in Melaka. If you are staying in Melaka, It’s better that you come early to avoid the crowds and get to enjoy the fortress with fewer people around it.
Malacca River Cruise
One of the fun activities you can do at night in Malacca is to do a river cruise. This is a great way to get to see and know more about Malacca. The tour would take around an hour, and rest assured that this is one of the most scenic tours you could do around here. The river cruise runs the whole day and even at night, giving you another excellent experience because of the lights that surround the river and bridges. Stunning!
Masjid Selat Melaka Mosque
Located on a reclaimed area in Palau, Melaka, one structure is becoming a tourist destination because of its design: the Masjid Selat Melaka. They allow tourists to come and see more of the inside of the mosque. Unfortunately, we were wearing shorts at that time, so they didn’t allow us to enter. That doesn’t mean you cannot walk around and get to enjoy this beautiful mosque from the outside.
Istana Kesultanan Melaka Museum
Another tourist attraction you must visit is the Melaka Sultanate Museum, where you can learn more about Melaka’s history as one of the significant trading destinations in the earlier days. It was said that the original place was built without the use of nails, which was impressive. Here you will find how people lived during the pre-colonial times where trading from different regions took place. I also enjoyed the dresses they wore based on their ranks and the other original artifacts found inside the museum.
Malacca Little India
If you love spices, the best place to go to the Little India of Melacca. With Google Walk’s help, we found out that it wasn’t that far from where we were staying, so we decided to visit. Our visit was worth it as we found so many shops selling different spices such as masala, curries, and more. It felt that we had enough spices for a year! We felt really good as it’s difficult to find these types of spices in the Philippines. Now we can enjoy food with the real Indian flavors! Yummy!
Where to Eat around Melaka
As a major tourist destination in Malaysia, you will find many restaurants around the area, especially Jonker Street. I wish we could try them all, but since we are only in Melaka for a limited time, we had to check the internet and see which ones had the best reviews. Here are some of the restaurants we visited and thoroughly enjoyed!
Located along Jonker Street, Geographer is a very famous bar and restaurant where you can grab some beers or cocktails and enjoy the hustle and bustle of Melaka. I like how open it is and its ambiance with a mix of Asian and Western vibe. The food and drink choices are also quite good. This is a great place to hang out after a day’s tour around Melaka.
The Stolen Cup
Also located along Jonker Street, The Stolen Cup is an excellent place to have coffee or snacks. They also serve meals, but we were only there for late-night tea and some Creme Brulee, which was so delicious! Worth trying!
The Daily Fix
For some reason, it isn’t easy to find a restaurant that opens early for breakfast. Thank goodness for Daily Fix, as they open much earlier where we could breakfast. Getting to Daily Fix can be tricky as you will first end up in a souvenir shop, but as you walk further inside, that’s when you will find the restaurant. When we walked in, they were very busy, which is a good sign. The food is also good; we enjoyed our breakfast! It’s a great place to eat before you begin your journey around Melaka!
The Baboon House
This is probably one of our favorite places to eat in Melaka. Aside from the food being so delicious, what we enjoyed was the mysterious feel of the restaurant. The concept is so different from the usual restaurants you would go to. It’s unique, and we couldn’t stop ourselves from looking around and look at every detail in all areas of the restaurant.
The food was superb. We couldn’t complain, and the staff was so friendly despite being super busy; they know how to make conversation. You must also try their home-made beers! Just before we left Melaka, we dropped by at Baboon House as our last meal in Melaka! No regrets!
I was so fortunate to have been able to explore Melaka. And even for a short number of days, we were able to explore a lot and get to know Melaka’s rich cultural history. It’s a fusion of different cultures from the people, architecture, food, and so much more. Melaka is fantastic, and when you are visiting Malaysia, it’s a place you must include in your itinerary! You’ll love it!