Tuesday, June 09, 2015

4 Things You Absolutely Must Do In Malacca

I just came back from a short 3D2N trip to Malacca during the recent long weekend. I’m sure I don’t need to go into details of the amount of agony we went through traveling time to and fro – You just need to know that with that amount of traveling time, we could have gone to KL and back. Twice. It only taught us that we should never travel to Malacca during any long weekends in future. But we should go back to Malacca again and again, and there are 4 things you must absolutely do when in Malacca – Immerse, Eat, Snap & Hop!

Must-Do #1: Immerse!

Malacca is a place with rich heritage and culture. Everywhere you turn to, you can spot a piece of vintage or history worth admiring. On this trip, we were a group of 16 people comprising of adults, young adults and kids, so we booked our accommodation from Airbnb instead of hotel rooms because we wanted to live altogether in one nice place. Furthermore, in a place like Malacca, there’s nothing quite like staying at their Peranakan-inspired houses and soaking up their local culture. The house that we booked was a three-storey house including an attic room that had 7 bunk beds in it. The rest of the rooms were spread out on different storeys – Some came with double beds and some with single beds. We had more than enough beds for all 16 of us, with some empty beds leftover and we paid about S$70 per person for two nights’ stay and breakfasts. It was very affordable and certainly value-for-money considering how big and authentically-designed the house was. We also had two live-in hosts who welcomed us when we arrived and were on site to provide any assistance that we needed.



The rooms were simple and clean – And I love the old-fashioned wooden window panes and doors! Reminded me of the Peranakan home that my nanny lived in when I was little.


There was a beautiful open-air courtyard right in the middle of the house, with a well that’s over a hundred years old!


Toilets and bathrooms were common sharing, but there were many of them so it was good for big groups.


The walls in the house had so much character that we couldn’t help but went for a mini photo shoot around the house!


The kitchen was small but well-equipped. We helped ourselves to the instant beverages and it was also there where we had our breakfasts.


Our breakfast for the first morning was roti canai and nasi lemak – Yums!


The back of our accommodation was right at the Malacca River, so we spent quite a bit of time chilling out at the porch area, people-watching.


This is the link to the Airbnb house that we booked, in case you are interested too. :)

Must-Do #2: Eat!

There are many must-eats when you are in Malacca and I’m sure you can rattle off a few of their famous dishes too. It was a pity that we did not do much eating this time round because we had kids with us, and our top priority was often convenience. Some of the famous chicken rice ball shops had long queues, so we skipped those and went for alternatives with available seats instead. Nevertheless, we were happy with our meals!

The first meal we had in Malacca had to be the chicken rice balls of course. A’Farmosa (Located along Jonker Street) served up really aromatic chicken rice balls with tender chicken, and I tried yam rice balls for the first time and LOVED it!


Another must-have in Malacca would be the Chendol. Admittedly, it’s not as good as the one at Penang, but good enough and definitely refreshing in the hot weather there. Again, there are more famous chendol around but we settled for the one opposite the road from the Baptist Church Melaka (Red building and significant landmark in Malacca). It was not bad at all! The next day, we wanted to try the one along Jonker Street but it was sold out! Try to go early and look for the stall with long queues and you’ll know which one I’m referring to.


I felt a little sore that we did not manage to have any Peranakan food this time round, but the next time I come back to Malacca, I’ll be sure to pay a visit to Nancy’s. I heard it’s one of the most authentic around, but expect long queues as usual.

If you would like to have some grilled or BBQ seafood, check out Jonker Street during the weekends. There were many stalls selling that and they were good! Don’t be too uptight about the hygiene though. I didn’t dare to try clams but we had some delicious stingray and sotong. Love it that they were served super spicy with lady’s fingers!


Speaking of which, while we were at Jonker Street, we spotted yummy snacks that were worth trying.

Fresh coconuts – Either go for the bottled fresh juices, or have them deskin the young coconut for you and let you have both the flesh and juice together. Cooling for the hot weather!


Mini Egg Tarts and Bean Paste Biscuits were fresh out of the oven and still hot! Smelled so heavenly.


Malt Candy on Sticks! Childhood snack FTW.


And this! Ding Ding Candy, as we called it since young. Whenever I heard the ‘ding ding’ sound, I knew the vendor uncle was nearby and I would scamper to get a pack! Simple joy from my childhood. :)


On another morning, we found a home-shop selling rice dumplings and we had to buy some to try. Saw some newspaper clippings on their gate, so we concluded they should be famous?


They were indeed not bad!


Must-Do #3: Snap!

Malacca is a piece of heaven for street photographers. There’s so much to capture in this little town and every nook and corner was interesting. One morning, I took a short walk around town and snapped myself happy. Thankful for a cooperative hubby who put up with my nonsense requests for funny and weird poses. Haha!


Stumbled upon a dilapidated house and we got so excited!


Did you know that there were interesting wall murals in Malacca too? They were a lot more colorful than the ones at Penang, and most can be found along the Malacca river.


When you visit the tourist attractions, don’t forget to get creative in your poses too. It only produced great photos, it was great fun too.


Love the photo walk in Malacca! Therapy for my soul.

Must-Do #4: Hop!

And by that, I mean café-hop! It was too short a trip for me to hop around this time round, but I still managed to visit 3 different cafes!

Discovery Café & Guesthouse
No. 3, Jalan Bunga Raya, Malacca City Center, Malacca / Melaka, Malaysia 75100

This is not just a café/coffeeshop with interesting vintage and antique collectibles, it’s also a place where you can book bus tickets. If you need to get a ticket to somewhere urgently, they may be able to help you.


Mahkota Parade Level 1

This is another must-try café in Malacca because of their crepe cakes. We visited the one at Mahkota Parade and thankfully managed to get alfresco seats after a brief wait. The crepe cakes were really good!


Alley No. 5
Longrong Jambatan No. 5, Melaka 75200, Malaysia

My most favorite among the three mentioned in this post. This café was located just across the road from my Airbnb accommodation and a 5-minute walk from Jonker Street. Love the café for its vintage décor. They only serve cheesecakes and crème brulee along with the usual coffee offerings. Cheesecake flavor changes everyday and the day I visited, it was lemon cheesecake. Very refreshing & tangy!


Super photogenic café. =P Would love to visit again when I am back in Malacca.


Seriously, pack your bags and head to Malacca now! =P