Melaka (or also spelled Malacca) is a beautiful town in Malaysia and is one of the two old Dutch harbors in Malaysia from 1641-1825. It is rich with history and amazing architecture influenced by the Dutch during their occupation.
Whilst the language is Malay, English is widely spoken in the city, making it easy to navigate your way around the fabulous things to do in Malacca.
BEST THINGS TO DO IN MALACCA (MELAKA)
Visit Christ Church Melaka
Christ Church Malacca is an 18th-century Anglican church and is the oldest functioning Protestant church in Malaysia. Construction began in 1741 on the centennial of the Dutch occupation, and it was completed in 1753.
You will notice that the design of Christ Church is reminiscent of Dutch architecture and, strangely, has tombstones written in Portuguese incorporated into the floor inside that were originally in St. Paul’s Church inside the Portuguese fortress.
Enjoy the sights down Malacca River
The Malacca River was a vital trade route in the 15th century, the era of Malacca Sultanate so it bears great significance. It flows through the middle of Malacca and is still a hive of activity to this day.
It is possible to explore the Malacca River by foot, bike, or boat. If you opt for a cruise, you will capture all the historical sights, bridges, village of Kampung Morten in less than an hour! Did you know the Malacca river walk is designed to be similar to the one in San Antonio, Texas?
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Admire Melaka Straits Mosque
Melaka Straits Mosque (Masjid Selat Melaka) is built on stilts above the sea on the artificial Malacca Island. Completed in 2006, the mosque’s grand archways are paneled with colorful stained glass.
The mosque welcomes non-muslims who respect the dress code and customs where you will be able to capture the incredible views of the Strait of Melaka at sunset and sunrise from the perimeter deck. It is well worth a visit and only a short taxi or bicycle ride away!
Be amazed at Cheng Hoon Teng Temple
Cheng Hoon Teng Temple is located near the Hindu temple Sri Pogyatha Vinoyagar in Jonker Street is a UNESCO Heritage site and also goes by the name of the ‘Merciful Cloud Temple’.
Built in 17th Century, this Chinese temple has earned the accolade of being the oldest Buddhist place of worship in Malaysia and is held in high regard to the Chinese community in Malacca.
Cheng Hoon Teng’s architecture reflects the skills of builders and craftsmen from China’s provinces that had migrated to the Malay Peninsular and the building conforms strictly to the principles of feng shui.
A’Famosa was built in 1511 by Alfonso de Albuquerque (who led the Portuguese invasion of the Malacca Sultanate) and is a renowned sightseeing attraction in Malacca. The fort is now a tumbledown gatehouse located near St. Paul’s Church. It is believed to be one of the oldest remaining examples of Portuguese architecture in Southeast Asia.
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Visit Melaka Sultanate Palace Museum
Melaka Sultanate Palace is a wooden replica of Sultan Mansur Shah’s 15th-century palace which was built entirely without nails. It is believed that it was destroyed the year after the sultan ascended the throne when it was struck by lightning. Recreating the palace with the same clever engineering was a painstaking process but worth it.
The Sultanate Place has been used as a gorgeous 3-story museum since 1986, and houses sound 1,350 artifacts, prints, photographs, and drawings detailing the Malaccan Malay Sultanate’s history and cultural heritage. Take some time to stroll around the well-maintained “Forbidden Gardens”, the play area for the princesses during the era of the Melaka Sultanate.
Explore Jonker Walk Night Market
Jonker Street is the Chinatown Street of Malacca and runs straight through the centre of the city. As the sun sets from Friday to Sunday, Jonker Street is closed to traffic and comes alive. The atmosphere is electric as the bars on Jalan Hang Lekir help to create that street party vibe.
If you can coincide with your trip to Malacca with the Jonker Walk Night Market you will discover some of the best shopping in Southeast Asia with a range of souvenirs, antiques, local handicrafts, electronics, and clothing. Work your way around the street food stalls trying the local dishes without parting with much cash.
HOW TO PLAN THE BEST MALACCA TRIP
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