FRIDAY – MAY 3, 2013
Thank God that I made it as planned on my itinerary (https://perjalananbunda.wordpress.com/2013/04/15/malacca-shah-alam-kuala-lumpur/).
Alif and I walked out from my office at 12:30 PM, then we took 1:00 PM DAMRI Bus from Thamrin City (fare = 2 x Rp.30,000). Glad that it was only 50 minutes to airport then we didn’t miss the flight (ETD 2:50 PM). I had boarding pass from web check in at Air Asia website and only bring cabin baggage then not much formalities other than immigration and airport tax payment (2 x Rp.150,000 = Rp.300,000) before entered the boarding gate. I still had time to do noon pray (Shalat Zuhr-Asr) while waiting before went onboard.
The plane took 40 minutes for taxi before fly, so it arrived at LCCT on 6:10 PM (20 minutes late from ETA 5:50 PM).
The first thing to do after got out from immigration gate was getting Malaysian SIM card for my mobile phone. Seems like Maxis was best option because they offered “tourist edition”. I bought it for RM 25 which was enough for call/text message and internet browsing (must use Google maps for navigation) until the end of 3-days trip in Malaysia.
For travelers who need temporary place to store their luggage, it’s available near arrival gate, website: http://www.baggagesolutions.com.my
We ate dinner at McD (open 24 hours) while waiting for our bus. It was two cheese burgers (@RM 7.90), plus Ribena (RM 4.20) and Passion McFizz (RM 4.65).
I did evening pray (Shalat Maghrib-Isha) in the pray room. Unlike in Indonesian airports where people can stay overnight, it opened only between 5:00 AM – 7:00 AM and between 12:00 PM – 11:00 PM.
I bought tickets for Transnasional Bus departed from LCCT at 9:00 PM, fare = RM 21.90 (adult) + RM 16.50 (child). On the bus, I met David and Jenny (fellows member of CouchSurfing.org from Medan) who wanted to get along with my itinerary.
The trip should be only 2 hours (130 km), but it didn’t leave the airport area for until 9:30 PM (30 minutes late than scheduled) and later the driver dropped a passenger far inside A Famosa housing estate (certainly not included in the official route), then we arrived at main bus station (Melaka Sentral) on 11:35 PM.
The driver just stopped at Melaka Sentral and didn’t want to drop us to final destination as mentioned on tickets (Mahkota Medical Center) because “tak banyak orangnya” (means “not much passenger”…while there were for of us!). Well, at least he paid a taxi for us. Actually that was good deal because we could tell the taxi driver to drop us in front of the hostel on Jalan PM2, instead of Mahkota Medical Center (which was 400 m from our hostel).
It was 12:40 AM already when I finished all of check in formalities and payment. For private room at Backpacker’s Freak Hostel (http://www.hostelbookers.com/hostels/malaysia/malacca/71019/map/), fare = RM 54.00/night (including RM 2.00 for govt’s heritage tax). I also paid RM 10.00 for the bicycle rent.
SATURDAY – MAY 4, 2013
This website provided comprehensive guide to explore Malacca: http://www.malaccaguide.com/. So much places to visit but then I only went to some major tourism spots due to our limited time of stay. Here is my route:
At 7:00 AM, Alif and I left our hostel by bicycle to the island. It took 20 minutes, when we arrived at Masjid Selat Melaka then it was sunrise time but too bad the sky was cloudy and few minutes later it started raining.
It was a beautiful mosque. Looked like floating because of the structure.
The mosque had a great view to Melaka Strait. Far far away on the horizon would be my beloved homeland, Sumatra Island of Indonesia.
After one hour there, we traveled back to hostel for breakfast, then David, Jenny, Alif and I checked out from the hostel. Sean (the manager) was kind enough to let us left the luggage and take it later before leave Malacca.
Our first exploration was Maritime Museum, only few minutes walk from the hostel. Entrance ticket = RM 6.00 (adult) + RM 1.00 (child).
Refer to http://malacca.attractionsinmalaysia.com/Maritime-Museum.php: The Maritime Museum or the Flora de Lamar is a replica (34 meters in height and 8 meters in width) of the Portuguese ship which sank in the coast of Malacca while on its way to Portugal. Its main focus is the maritime history of Malacca and the golden ages of Malacca’s Sultanate as the Emporium of the East. There are paintings which displays how the Straits of Malacca was a strategic location for traders from both the east and the west stop by at Malacca and conduct their businesses while waiting for the monsoon winds to change direction. The museum has myriads of exhibits of articles such as porcelain, silk, textile and spices used by the seamen of the yesteryears and even come sunken treasures hauled from Diana, another shipwreck. Other than exhibits on the history of the Malaccan Maritime, the museum also showcases the different eras that Malacca has gone through starting from the Malacca Sultanate era to the Portuguese era, Dutch era and ending with the British era. For ship fanatics, there are also a collection of different ship models that are on display at the museum.
After 40 minutes in the museum, we walked to Muara Jetty. Because boat for Melaka River Cruise (http://www.malaysia-traveller.com/melaka-river-cruise.html) only departed once an hour, then we spent 20 minutes to visit Custom Museum nearby (free of charge). It has displays of seized goods by customs offices over the years e.g. below vest that was used to smuggle gold bars, and shoes with extra hole in the sole to hide narcotics.
The tickets for Melaka River Cruise was RM 15.00 (adult) + RM 7.00 (child). It was great 45 minutes boat ride passing following Kampung Morten, Pirate Park, Kampung Jawa, etc (http://www.malaysia-traveller.com/melaka-river-cruise.html).
The captain even stopped few times to show us “water lizard” (“biawak” in local language) which lived in the river. He said that it was good to be cooked as “special medicine for men”, must be for “bed business” purpose, hehehe…
After the boat ride, we shopped at Hard Rock Shop (to add some t-shirt and pins to my collection).
There were lots of trishaw in the city center, uniquely colorful with plastic flowers and songs were being played loudly during the ride (mostly Indonesian songs :D).
Later we entered Jonker Street, officially marked as Jalan Hang Jebat.
Visitors should not miss “5 THINGS TO EAT ON JONKER STREET, MALACCA” (http://maryaroundtheworld.blogspot.com/2010/11/5-things-to-eat-on-jonker-street.html) but all I could enjoyed was only few dishes of halal food at Kampung Mango Juice, No. 32 Jalan Hang Jebat, which doesn’t serve chicken/meat/pork (their menu only contained vegetable/egg/seafood).
Alif and I ate Cai Pau (@RM 1.00), Tiju Kau (RM 1.50), Durian Spring Roll (RM 5.00 for 3 pieces), Durian Yummy Ice Cream (@RM 4.00), with Honey Dew Milk Tea (RM 5.00) and Roasted Milk Tea (RM 5.00).
Referred to recommended route for DIY walking tour at http://www.gpsmycity.com/tours/tour-of-melakas-historic-district-4312.html later we walked around to visit The Clock Tower, Stadthuys, Christ Church, People’s Museum, and ruins of A Famosa Fort within next 100 minutes (1:00 PM – 2:40 PM).
The last stop in Malacca was Menara Taming Sari (http://menaratamingsari.com/our-attraction/), tickets = RM 20.00 (adult) + RM 10.00 (child). From a height of 80 m, it was great to see panoramic view of the World’s Heritage City and the surrounding island. Only 7 minutes, though. I wish that it was longer.
Back to hostel and got our luggage out, we took a taxi to bring us from hostel to Melaka Sentral Bus Station (RM 20.00). We ended our Malacca city exploration and leaving by Transnasional Bus, fare = RM 15.40 (adult) + RM 11.60 (child), departed at 4:30 PM, to Shah Alam.