Our first stop in Malaysia was a small heritage city called Melaka. It is only a five-hour-drive from Singapore. The old part of the city is under UNESCO heritage protection and the whole part is within the walking distance. The first impression is positive. The food is much cheaper than in Singapore and it is delicious. Melaka is a very popular city to visit, so you can understand that it is flooded with tourists. Anyway, where there are sights there is a crowd too. At some places, a large crowd can spoil your photoshoot. Buses deliver tourists as early as 8 am. “INSTAtourists” is my nick-name for tourists who are in groups and are always sticking together, making selfies every five meters. And this phenomenon can be observed every day from dusk till dawn.
There isn’t much to do in this city, to be honest. A short walk through the historic city center, taking some photos, and a lot of eating. We found some amazing bites here, and the best coconut ice cream we have had so far. Later, we found out that there is also apparently the best coconut shake in Melaka. We tested it out and the rumors were true. It’s the best shake here around, if not in whole Malaysia. You will not see many tourists there since it’s a little bit further from the city center. Near to it, there are also sand dunes, which aren’t a picture perfect, but they are nice enough to see. My camera was in the bag all the time. The sea view and sandboarding were a reason we enjoyed the trip.
Melaka itself has a rich culture due to the colonial marches and strong Chinese influence. However, the old buildings are in a desperate need of repairing and restoration actions. Consequently, you will pay an extra tourist tax for maintenance of those rundown buildings. However, I really doubt that any of this money reaches that address. Yes, you can see a bunch of construction sites for new hotels and accommodations, but they are private. In the meantime, the old heritage buildings are in a bad condition. I wonder who will come here if there is no heritage left. Some buildings are already collapsing and people there just don’t care. So, do not hesitate and take a visit to this historic place when there is still something to see.
This city has also one big annoying thing – rickshaws with bright LED lights and loud music. These rickshaws are badly decorated, mostly with some cartoon characters and their drivers are top class grouches. You will see them everywhere. They ride like crazy and compete whose sound system is louder. At first, I thought this is an attraction for kids, but, boy, was I wrong. Everyone is hiring them for driving around. And when I see an old white goat (this is how I call a stupid western tourist) sitting on this cart and taking a selfie, it makes me want to cry. Faith in humanity lost by 5% each time I see that garish rickshaw full. However, at least that biker gang has some income and life goes on. If you look carefully, you will be able to see some old rickshaws. Without LED lights, but you can still see there was a lot of kitsch and colorful additions. So, this business is old and maybe one day they will be also under UNESCO protection.