Recently, I shared a couple of recap posts about our time in Melaka. We spent two full days exploring and eating through the city, and today I thought I’d share with you a few more details about the sites you’ll find in Melaka.
This of course, doesn’t include everything there is to do in Melaka, but just what we found time to check out.
1. The Dutch Square:
By far, one of the most popular sites in Melaka (if not the most popular), the Dutch Square is full of history from Dutch, British, and Chinese settlements.
It’s not hard to miss the Dutch Square – all of the buildings are a deep terra-cotta red, and no matter what time of day it is, there are tons of tourists and a few street performers.
While you’re there, take a picture in front of the Queen Victoria Fountain or the LOVE Melaka sign, check out a street performance, or take a ride through the city on one of the trishaws parked right outside of the Christ Church.
These are also hard to miss as they usually blast crazy music to attract customers.
|FREE!||The square is open 24 hours a day.||None!|
This is actually a place we didn’t check out, but after doing a little more research on Melaka, is one that I thought I should mention. At one time, this used to be a town hall and the governor’s residence, but nowadays, it’s home to a few different museums.
If you’re interested in learning more about the history and culture of Melaka, check this place out (and let us know what you thought in the comments below!). If you want to learn more about the museums inside the Stadthuys before you go, I found a lot of great information here!
|5RM covers all of the museums inside the building.||9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. every day.||None that I’m aware of|
3. Christ Church Melaka:
Built in 1753 by the Dutch, Christ Church was originally a Dutch Reform church, but was later changed to an Anglican church. Another one that’s hard to miss, Christ Church stands out with its white steeple and cross against the deep red of the building.
There’s not much to do once you get inside, but you can take some time away from the heat and enjoy the peacefulness and calm in the main sanctuary.
|Free||9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.||None|
4. St. Paul’s Hill & Church Ruins:
There’s a lot of history behind St. Paul’s Hill that’s still evident today. We started at the Dutch Graveyard, and walked up a set of stairs that led us to the ruins of St. Paul’s Church – the oldest building in Malaysia and in Southeast Asia. You can walk inside the church and get a feel for what it was like in the days when the Dutch and Portuguese had settled in Melaka.
Along with the church ruins, there’s a great view of the city below, and you can also get a great aerial view of the A Famosa fort at the bottom of the hill. While you’re there, don’t forget to take a picture with the statue of St. Francis Xavier, and check out the different vendors and artists that hang out on the way back down the steps.
|FREE!||Open 24 hours a day||None!|
The Baba & Nyonya Heritage Museum is a great place to learn about a people group that originated in Melaka. A Chinese man married a Malay woman, and their offspring are now known as the Babas and the Nyonyas.
The building that the museum is in was at one time a lavish home where four generations of Babas and Nyonyas were born and raised. In 1985, it was officially opened to the public as a museum, but those that belong to this family line are still able to use it as a place of worship.
Tours begin at 10 a.m. and end at 5:00 p.m., and after the tour is over, you can walk through the house and gift shop area on your own. Unfortunately, we felt like the tour was rushed and the guide did not speak very good English.
If you don’t visit the Heritage Museum, you’re not missing out on much, but it is a great way to spend a rainy afternoon.
|16 RM||10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.||None! Open daily.|
An unassuming museum in the heart of a Hindu-Peranakan village, the Chetti museum was something we stumbled upon in a random guide book about Melaka.
It’s not as beautiful or grand as the museums we visited in Kuala Lumpur, but something to consider adding to your itinerary if you want to learn more about this mix of Indian and Malay peoples.
Don’t expect to spend hours at this museum – you can walk through the entire building in about 20 – 30 minutes, depending on how long you spend reading the texts and looking at pictures.
If anything, this is a great stop to make while you explore the surrounding village.
|2 RM / person||9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.||Closed on Mondays & Tuesdays|
Located right in the hub of the city, the Sultanate Palace Museum is a replica of the palace built by Sultan Mansur Shah, who ruled from 1456 to 1477.
Now, the palace is a cultural museum, and gives visitors a glimpse of the ancient kingdom in Melaka. Inside, you can find thousands of photographs, weapons, clothing, and other art pieces that showcase what life was like during this time period. We felt like this museum was very similar to the National Museum in Kuala Lumpur, but it was unique in that it focused primarily on life in ancient Melaka.
The museum is close by to many other popular sites in the city, and has a nice garden area, known as the Forbidden Garden. Unfortunately, you have to pay to enter the palace complex, but at a very small price, it’s worth checking out.
|5 RM / person||9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.||Closed on Mondays|
8. The Melaka River Cruise:
On our last night in the city, we got on the River Cruise that showed us a different perspective of Melaka. A boat leaves about every half hour, and takes tourists down the river to see different parts of the city.
Even though we still believe that the best way to experience a new place is on foot, we really enjoyed cruising down the river and taking in the city around us. We saw a lot of beautiful buildings and bridges that we had missed during the day, and the feel of the city kind of changed once the sun went down.
If you have some extra time, definitely check out the river cruise! It only takes about 45 minutes, and is a lot of fun.
Now it’s Your Turn!
So these are the eight sites/things to do in Melaka that we had time for during our two days in the city. If you’ve visited Melaka, and think something should be added to this list, let us know in the comment section below! Also, don’t forget to check out our two vlogs that we made in Melaka. Thanks for reading & happy traveling!