At one of the Dutch streets
This reminds me of my late grampa's house - bicycles and everything!
Jonker street - where you'll be just as ripped off as the next white dude.
My friend checking out old photographs on sale.
The waterfront at night.
This in an old traditional house in Merlimau, Melaka. It's about 200 years old, and the tiles and wood are still the original ones. Talk about amazeballs architecture.
Now doesn't she look like a true blue Malay chick?
Two of my girlfriends are getting married, and another just turned a quarter of a century – this called for a quick weekend trip to anywhere! ‘Anywhere’ turned to be Melaka, or Malacca as the white dudes would call it. A beautiful tourist city, with old Dutch buildings made with red bricks, waterfront cafes and the ancient local Chinese buildings.
One of us made hotel bookings online, and upon our arrival we noticed that it was right next to an old graveyard with gravestones spotting the grass right to the side of the road. She said that none of the reviews said anything about a graveyard (no surprises there) and everybody had that same look in their eyes as we were all reminded of chilling stories on haunted hotels and murderous hotel receptionists. But the hotel turned out to be quite spectacular! The interior designs were beautiful, and the showers had fancy taps that let’s just face it, we’ll never use all of them.
The city center is a whole different world altogether. I would divide it into three different areas – the Portuguese cluster, where one would find most souvenir shops, old churches, total rip off for local things. Then there’s the Nyonya community cluster, where you’ll find old chinese buildings, chinese cafes and most massage parlors. We tried walking into one, but it looked like a whore house that we decided to not lie there and catch herpes as we are being rubbed. Other massage parlors looked decent and clean, and very much cheaper than the ones in Kuala Lumpur. The third section is the Melaka river, where boat cruises speed back and forth and small interesting cafes are open along the river. This area is especially beautiful at night. The yellow lights, sparkling river and the Italian style cafes made me feel like I am at a slightly ghetto-er part of Venice.
The great thing about travelling with your girlfriends is that you are excused to pig out without having to look dainty while doing it or powder your nose right after, which is something you would only want to do when there are guys around. We tried everything from local Malay restaurants selling the most awesome asam pedas to a dutch café that served tender beef stew in a large bun and melt-in-you-mouth flourless brownies, to trying out a laksa at an artistic café that claimed to be ‘one of the top 50 places with the best laksa in the country’, fried durian rolls and cendol from street vedors and finally, a local nyonya restaurant with one of the best fried fish I’ve ever had.
The tip is: Wear a maxi dress. It makes you look pregnant instead of bloated from pigging out, which if you ask me, is a better choice. At least people won’t point at you.
Asam Pedas Selera Kampung - Right opposite the Tamingsari Tower.
This place apparently is one of the top 50's best laksa outlets in the country. Right in the middle of Jonker walk.
The laksa. Really, really good. Really.
See? Top 50!!
The Dutch Harbour cafe - by the river. A small cafe with about 20 seats only. Great food.
Oh no. I miss this beef stew.