Malacca Travel Blog› entry 5 of 93 › view all entries
Malacca is a great example of a city whose past far outshines its present state. Once positioned at the center of the Asian maritime trade network, the city drew admirers from all over the world. Some came for trade, while others came to conquer. Today, few people come here at all, despite the Malaysian government's attempts to boost the region as a tourist destination. It's too bad that Malacca is passed up as it does have enough to offer the curious tourist. At less than a 2 hour drive from Kuala Lumpur, Malacca is easily accessible and could even be made as a day trip (as I've done several times). The evidence of the Portuguese, Dutch, and British occupation is abundant, with Malacca's famous "pink church" leading the way.
Edit (21 April 2011):
Over the last few years, Melaka has really started to pull itself together. I suppose the entire city being named a UNESCO World Heritage City has something to do with it. Even the Jonkers Street area is a smoke-free zone. How about that for change. The museums are a bit more organized, but the St. Paul's Church on top of the hill is still a pain in the a$$ to climb. But it is worth it for views of the city and Strait of Malacca. The "Eye on Malaysia" ferris/observation wheel was relocated to Melaka from KL. There is also a revolving observation platform not too far from the historic district. There is also an outdoor market across the street from it. The area next to it, however, has been renovated into a series (yes, many) of malls. A small monorail was installed but is no longer operational (I heard it broke down a few hours after it officially opened and they never reopened it after that). Take it for what it is...Melaka is on the move.