Cycle around Melaka town
Rent a bike at your hostel or a bike rental spot and cycle around Melaka town. It’s a much quicker way to get around than public transport.
As you cycle through the streets of Melaka you will see some of the traditional shophouses and buildings that still exist. Keep your eyes on the road and avoid getting hit especially by the colorful rickshaws that tourists frequently take. It is best to cycle during the early mornings and late afternoons to avoid the heat.
Café-hopping in Melaka
The café scene in Melaka has become quite popular. Enjoy the mouth-watering food and desserts while taking photos of Instagram-worthy café interiors. Recommended cafes include the popular Daily Fix Café (known for their pandan and gula Melaka (palm sugar) pancake), Kaya Kaya Café (try the all-day breakfast, pancakes, and pasta), Geographer Café (serving delicious Malaysian food), and Backlane Coffee (enjoy the delicious sweet treats that go well with your coffee).
Savor the local delicacies of Melaka
When in Melaka, eating the local delicacies is a must. Start your lunch with the Chicken Rice Ball (rice ball served with steamed or roasted chicken). Slurp some Nyonya laksa (a bowl of noodles with a spicy punch to it) as your lunch. Try out some Peranakan kuih-muihs (sweet treats) to go along with your coffee or tea at tea time.
Enjoy the classic Peranakan cuisine (eg. chicken wrapped in pandan leaves, steam fish with classic Nyonya sauce, stir fry vegetables mixed with belacan (spicy shrimp paste)) and end your meal with cendol (shaved ice served with green rice flour jelly, coconut milk, and gula Melaka). Still hungry for supper? Have a late night meal of satay celup (skewered meat, seafood, and vegetables) dipped in a hot boiling pot of satay gravy.
Visit Melaka’s cultural heritage
Step back in time to understand Melaka’s past by visiting historical buildings. The ruin of a Portugese fortress, A Famosa, welcomes you before you climb up St. Paul’s Hill to see St Paul’s Church (built in 1521) and an amazing view of the coast. Head down to the Red Square (Dutch Square) to see the maroon coloured structures designed during Dutch colonial times including Christ Church.
Visit the Maritime Museum to find out about the coastal town from colonial times until independence. Experience Peranakan culture at Baba Nyonya Heritage Museum and visit Cheng Hoon Teng temple, one of the oldest temples practicing Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism.
Take pictures of Melaka’s street art
Murals are displayed across Melaka, telling the story of the unique cultural and heritage of the town. You will find them as you walk along the streets and back alleys of Melaka town. Two of the most iconic murals to visit are the series of pictures displayed along the Melaka river (especially the colourful mosaics near Kiehl’s store) and the Orangutan at The Orangutan House. More of the murals can be found in between Jonker Street and Jalan Kampung Hulu, and a couple of restaurants and hostels in Melaka.
Ride on the Melaka River Cruise
Hop on the Melaka River Cruise to view the historical town along the Melaka River. You can see the wonderful murals on heritage buildings along the way. It takes about 40 minutes to view the whole town. You will have plenty of photo opportunities as the informative local guide will stop at picture worthy locations along the way. The tour is particularly enjoyable at night.
The ticket counter opens daily from 9am to 11.30pm. Tickets for children 12 and below cost RM5. The ticket price for local adults is RM10 while ticket for foreigners costs RM15 each.
Chill out by the beach
Away from the town, there are some beautiful hidden beaches where you can relax. Enjoy the luscious greens and tranquil seas at Pantai Puteri and Tanjung Bidara. Visit the white beaches with coconut trees and seashells at Tanjung Kling. Adrenaline junkies can kite surf across the sands or just take great photos at Padang Pasir Klebang. The beaches are around 17 – 20km (which takes about 40 minutes to an hour by car) from Melaka town. Don’t forget to try the popular coconut shakes at the beaches.