Mele Kaliki Malacca

Trip Start Jan 06, 2010
Trip End Apr 20, 2013

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Where I stayed
Discovery Cafe & Guest House Melaka
Read my review - 4/5 stars

Flag of Malaysia  , Melaka State,
Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Melacca, or as some people spell it Melaka, is the only other UNESCO heritage town in Malaysia and since we loved Georgetown so much we knew we had to see another Malaysian town/city before we moved further south. The Melacca Straight has so much history and I have always wanted to see it and imagine what it used to be like. It's kinda like Georgetown but much smaller and without all the art and I think there is less to see in general here but it's very charming especially at night. We got here Saturday morning which was CNY and spent the evening walking in Chinatown until it got so crowded we headed to the Muslim side of town and went on the space needle ride. I don't know what I was thinking when I had the idea to take the ride, that is many stories high, to look down on the lit up town and not so distant fireworks, when I have an intense fear of heights. While I gazed at the lights I tried not to notice how very far up we were, Chris smiled and teased me about how he was going to jump through the glass to his demise to freak me out even further. It worked, but in the end I made it though and Chris got some good shots looking down on the city. The following day we walked over to see the jetty and found at the end of the doc there was a KTV, which is where you can rent out a room with big couches and sing karaoke in privacy and order drinks and food. We came back later that evening, split a couple of bottles of wine and sang bad karaoke together while we watched the sunset over the Melacca Straight though the window. It was awesome. Later we met up with a Malay traveler about our age who was staying in the same crappy hostel as us and we talked for hours. We asked her all sorts of questions about Malaysia and we had a great time getting to know each other until 4 am when we had to finally go to sleep in our storage closet turned hostel room. 
Melacca has a river running though it and it's really beautiful at night, especially with all of the red Chinese lanterns strung over the streets and constant fireworks for CNY. Our crappy Sayang Sayang #2 hostel is really close to everything including a better hostel/guest house called Discovery Cafe that we stayed at our last night. We ended almost every evening at the Discovery Cafe since they have a fun live band out on the patio every night. Like Georgetown, Mellacca doesn't have a great deal if western travelers and we have enjoyed talking to the locals. Next we are off to Singapore then Indonesia bound to see the islands of Java and Bali.-Sarah

Malacca for those who don't know is perhaps the most historical city in the world of commerce. It was the trade capital of the world at one time and getting Europeans here during the Portuguese maritime empire days was as successful as the early stages of the Russian space program. Eventually they made it along with the Dutch and some Spanish but the British decided that they wanted to keep it for a while. The evidence is here displaying some of the oldest colonial buildings. Like Georgetown their is a similar historical center surrounded by different churches, temples and mosques. Malacca is smaller and even more accessible by foot. In fact the only time you my need a taxi is to get to the bus station. When arriving we had to take a local bus that just left it up to us to know when to get off. With a good map or GPS its quite easy to get oriented but it can be a trick to find your hotel unless its really obvious. Our hostel Sayang Sayang 2 is a terrible hostel. The front desk is operated only 4 or five hours a day so if you show up after five without the ability to use a phone than you are stuck outside or in the lobby all night. We do not have a economically feasible international calling package because AT&T really likes money. There is no email contact either. We got to this hostel after searching the city for an hour (rarely do taxis know anything about the city they serve). Then we waited another two hours before someone showed up at the crack ten to check us in. The room is a public storage shed that was converted into some micro loft. There are two lights, but one was burnt out and was not fixed for three days. This cubical dungeon made it very easy to wake up early because the cockroaches will crawl on your face and wake you. The staff is non existent and don't speak English at all. There is only one person, the manager, that is slightly helpful. Though we love Malacca there is no way we were going to stay an extra night in this hostel. 

We have been hanging out in the cafe next door. They have a great menu, live music every night and behold....a room available with a window. Seriously, half the accommodations on this trip so far have had no window. The Discovery Cafe is a swinging place and I would recommend it. Sarah mentioned the karaoke and I must say that I had a big reality check when I realized I was not as good as I thought I was. Some songs went fine but I now know what I am not aloud to sing and am very happy that I was able to discover this before attempting to sing in front a crowd. 

It's Chinese New Year right now in the city and the streets are filled in the evening with hawkers and shop owners among masses of celebrators. It's festive like the holiday season of the West. I had to try all of the food: Taiwan burger (omelet stuffed with stuff and shaped like a sandwich), dim sum food balls made out of something, grilled bamboo flavored with something edible inside it, and a dorian pancake (dorian is a spiky fruit that smells like a wet dog or a used cat box). I actually had no complaint about these street morsels as far as flavor. When in Malacca right? Speaking of cat boxes there are many kittens running around the river. I will often turn around to see Sarah cradling one of these personable strays. It's pretty funny. In conclusion Malacca is just another place that makes Malaysia worth seeing as long as you can figure out how to flush a broken toilet (quite common). It's historical offerings are so important especially for Westerners to know and understand. Visiting these places gives me more inspiration to know more about the world and how the modern world got here. Next we are heading to Singapore which is a unique city that used to be part of Malaysia but separated. What's that about? We'll see in the next blog.  Chris

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My Review Of The Place I Stayed

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