The city of Melaka has been known as a popular city of attractions and tourist destinations, mostly because of the many interesting landmarks and popular spots. Also known as Malacca City or city of Malaka, this place has the unique combination of the past and the modern future. If you are into the history so much, this would be a perfect place to explore although you can also find other interesting features and places.
Melaka is the place where you can learn the various different cultures. There are Western cultural traces (from England, Spain, and Portugal) as well as the Eastern traces (from Japan and China). Not to mention that the pleasant climate will make you want to stay longer! So, where should you start?
Tourist Destinations in Melaka
There are some places that are great for family exploration. But in the event that you are travelling alone, no need to worry because there are tons of spots to visit.
1. Wonderland Theme Park
Malaysia is pretty hot and sunny, so if you want to cool off, this theme park will be a great place to visit with your kids. You can take part in the thrill rides as well as water slides – some of them are high in speed so it is super fun and exciting! There are 16 attractions, such as Big Wave pool, Anaconda Twist, Adventure Island, and Lazy Cum Crazy River. Moreover, this place is pretty close to the centre of the city, which makes it easy to access. But if you are thinking about spending a day there, this park also has a big hotel for the accommodation. The ticket is RM33.20 for adults and RM26.05 for kids. But on weekends, it would be RM37.90 for adults and RM32 for kids. For non-Malaysian visitors, you will have to pay for RM45 for adults and RM 37.90 for kids.
2. Melaka River
The river is like the partition dividing Melaka into different parts. When you join the river cruise, you can see the beautiful view from the boat. This cruise takes 45 minutes to complete, allowing you to see old warehouses, churches, villages, and historical buildings. However, taking the cruise at different times of the day will give you a different experience too. When you take it on the broad daylight, you can enjoy old buildings and if you take one before the sunset, you will gaze at the beautiful colors. When you take one at night, you can enjoy the breeze and the lights.
3. The Shore Sky Tower
This tower is offering 360 degrees of bird’s eye view of the city. The tower has 43 stories, allowing you to enjoy the view up to 50 kilometers away. The tower isn’t far from the World Heritage UNESCO district. Another unique feature of this tower is the glass ledge. But this is for those who don’t have any heights phobia. The price is RM25 for adults and RM18 for kids.
4. Upside Down House
This is basically a replica of a Malaysian home but with its own twist. Everything is placed upside down, which offers something different and unique. If your exploration is always ‘normal’, you may want to visit this place and experience something different for a change. The house looks normal, divided into 5 different areas: the kitchen, kids’ room, living room, bathroom, and the master bedroom. But if you can manage the right angle of photography, you can come up with something different and definitely memorable. The price if RM15 for adults and RM10 for kids. But if you are a non-Malaysian visitor, you will have to pay RM20 for adults and RM16 for kids.
5. Jonker Street
Every city has its own Chinatown and Melaka is no different. Be sure that you will enjoy tons of excitement and fun when you explore Jonker Street. Not only you will find interesting places to do your shopping, but you can also learn about the city’s history and culture. Hard Rock Cafe is located close to Melaka River, which makes it quite ideal for having fun and enjoying your free time. There is also Jonker Street Library where you can find tons of Buddhist literature. You can come to Jonker Gallery to buy souvenirs (the inexpensive ones, of course) and Joe’s Design, where you can find beautiful, artistic, and unique handmade items. If you are looking for a place selling beauty products, feel free to come to Natural Wellbeing.
Religious Tourist Destinations
Melaka is the city of many cultures and religious beliefs. That’s you can find different religious buildings in this city.
1. St. Paul’s Church
If you are into culture and history, this is a place that you shouldn’t miss. The church was established in 1521 and it has been a part of the Melaka Museum Complex. It has St. Francis Xavier marble statue having only one arm. There was a story to it and a lot of people believe in the mystical aspect of the story. But it is one element that makes it interesting. If you want to go there, you need to use the car or the taxi. Using public transportation will be quite difficult. Entering the church is completely free.
2. Cheng Hoon Teng Temple
This is one popular landmark that is located in Jonker Street, established in 1646. This is one Chinese Temple that is the oldest Buddhist temple in Malaysia. This temple was designed to be a worship place for Kuan Yin or the Goddess of Mercy. You can find her huge status in gold, red, and black right in the middle of the prayer hall. You won’t have to pay anything for entering the place – it is free.
3. Straits Mosque
This mosque is built on the stilts overlooking the sea. The construction is modern with the combination of Middle Eastern and Malaysian signature styles. The main dome is inspired by the Middle Eastern style while the turrets are from Malaysia’s mosque. The construction is very unique, similar to a floating construction on the sea. A lot of photographers like to come to this place because of the beautiful and natural view. If you are a non-Muslim, you can still come inside to marvel the contemporary design.
4. Sri Pogyatha Vonyagar Moorthi Temple
This is the oldest temple (for Hindu) in Malaysia, designed and established in 1781. It was dedicated for Vonyagar or Lord Ganesha, consisting of intricate and elaborate decor. If you want to, you can witness the worship (puja) in the evening. It will give a new insight into the worship and the temple in overall.
History and Cultural Destinations
Melaka is rich in its cultural and historical elements. After all, with so many cultures blended together, you should be able to find unique spots in this city.
1. Baba Nyonya Heritage Museum
You can find a unique and beautiful cultural blend here. It depicts the life of Peranakan by the end of the turn of the 19th century. If you see the design, it has the influence of Eastern tradition as well as European architecture. If you want to learn about the past history of Melaka, this would be the ideal place to start. Not to mention that this place is run professionally with its interesting program and impressive guide. Be wary, though, that cameras are not allowed inside the museum. Admission fee is RM16 for adults and RM11 for kids in between the age of 5 and 12 of years.
3. Melaka Christ Church
This is a Dutch church, built when they occupied the country. The building was made from a red brick with a big white cross on it. It is located close to Chinatown centre, right on Church Street. If you want to continue your historical or cultural exploration, there are 2 museums close to the church. Isn’t it great when you can visit 3 places within a day? If you want to, you can also take part in the services. They have two languages, Chinese and English.
4. Maritime and Naval Museum
What’s called as the Maritime Museum is basically a big Portuguese ship. Yes, it is the real one and it sank close to Melaka. You can learn about the naval and sea history in this place. If you are interested, you can see different kinds of ship model collections being displayed in this museum. This museum has its own unique atmosphere. Once you got in the museum, there is a sense of ancient ship and old times, along with the sea travel atmosphere.
The museum is located close to Stadthuy so you can explore the other museums or local shops on foot. You can reach the museum by cab or car. The ticket is RM5 for adults and RM3 for kids. For non-Malaysian visitors, you have to pay RM10 for adults and RM6 for kids.
5. Dutch Square
If you want to experience the Dutch colonial era atmosphere, you should go to this spot. There are many remnants of the occupation era. It is believed that Dutch Square is the oldest Dutch construction existing in the East, no wonder if its included in the most popular landmark lists in Melaka. The red building has this classic look, complete with an elegant fountain right on the centre. Tourists have their best to take the best angles for the photos. Not far from this square, you can find the art gallery, Youth Museum, and the Christ Church. If you want to, you can hire the trishaw to look around the spot. Another cool thing about this spot is that it isn’t far away from Jonker Street so you can freely roam about the places easily.
Who would go on a trip without going shopping? There are some possible places in Melaka although the actual list is limitless.
1. A’Famosa Freeport Outlet Village
This shopping village has an open-air style, inspired by the Dutch colonial construction. It is located at Alor Gajah and you can find international brands with very friendly prices there. This is an ideal place for both adults and kids. Adults can enjoy their shopping time while kids can enjoy the games – such as strollers, tricycles, and carousel rides. The most popular brands include Versace, Playboy, Clarks, Elle, Forever 21, and Hush Puppies. They like to offer discounts from 30% to around 70%. If you are tired of shopping, you can rest and eat. There are a lot of food stalls there.
2. Dataran Pahlawan Megamall
If you are looking for a modern shopping centre that offers everything – shopping outlets, food courts, entertainment features, souvenir spots, etc – then you should head to this megamall. This building has 9 floors and it is pretty wide so you will definitely have an enjoyable and satisfying shopping moment. You can find almost everything there, especially if you are into international brands. When you are tired, simply take a break and enjoy the foods – no need to worry, there are plenty of food stalls and restaurants there. The place is easy to reach because you can easily drive there. The parking spot is also plenty with quite an affordable rate – RM2 for an hour of parking.
Because Melaka is quite popular, the transportation system is quite good. There are several options available for travellers. If you take the bus, there are many bus operators running their business from Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Seremban, and Johor Baru to the Sentral Bus Terminal of Melaka. You can easily get off there or board from there. If you want to travel by air, you can go to Melaka Internal Airport. Not to mention that Melaka is quite close to Kuala Lumpur and Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
Land transportation is also reliable and easy. The North-South Expressway provides access to the city. Most travellers also like the idea that they can rent a car. If you go by train, the closest station is located at Pulau Sebang on Johor Bahru-Line. Take a train and get off there, and then continue your trip with Tai Lye bust to reach the city. Hiring a taxi or a car is also possible. What if you use the waterways? No need to worry because ferry services are operating all day long.
If you want to explore around the city, the metered taxis can be a good option. Town buses are very accommodative and inexpensive. It is also possible to use the bike sharing system or rent a bike if you prefer that way. Because of the easy transportation, no wonder if most travellers like to go to this city.