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Things to do in Melaka with Kids: Family Holiday in Malaysia

Ultimate Guide of Things to do in Melaka with Kids

 

Where is Melaka?

Melaka (Malacca), is located in a southern region of the Malaysian Peninsular. When visiting Melaka, there are many must-see experiences.

Melaka is a UNESCO World Heritage city. It has a beautiful mix of architecture given its colonial history.

Traveling to Melaka with Kids

The great thing about Malaysia is it makes traveling with kids relatively easy. Melaka is fairly touristy so going with kids is super easy in Melaka! We lived near Kuala Lumper for two months. We stayed at an Air BnB in Batu Caves. It was not a touristy area. During our trip, Malaysia was our first stop. During this time we went to Melaka, and in short, we loved it!

The best Family activities in Melaka

St. Pauls Church & Hill

Location: Jalan Kota, Bandar Hilir – top of the hill

Cost: Free

Open Hours: Always; during the daytime.

The St. Pauls Church sits high on a hill and offers beautiful views of Melaka. Inside the church, there is a glorious yet eerily feeling. There are numerous headstones, and some have pirate symbols. My kids thought it was cool. It is one of the oldest churches in Malaysia.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP 1:
There are quite a few stairs to get to the top of the hill. If you are travelling with young children, you will need to take it slow.
There was a small vendor at the top selling souvenirs but not drinks. I would suggest you bring a frozen bottle, so it is still cold when you get to the top.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP 2:
You can access St. Pauls Church and hill from a few places.
There is a step route from the A’ Famosa side.  A vendor between A’Fomosa and St. Paul’s church was pretty aggressive with his sales pitch putting toys in my kid’s hands.
So, say “no thanks” as soon as you see him! From the English graveside, the stairs are not as intimidating.

A’Famosa St. Paul’s Hill (A’Famosa)

Location: Jalan Parameswara, Bandar Hilir – bottom of the hill 

Cost: free

Open Hours: Always; best during the daylight hours

A’Famosa is the only remaining part of the  Portuguese-built fortress of Malacca. It was built in 1511 by a Portuguese man named Alfonso D’Alboquerque.
The single remaining section is the small gatehouse area. The entire fort was to be destroyed by the British in 1807. They blew up the majority of the fortress with gunpowder. The remaining section was saved by Captain William Farquha who was in charge of destroying any discernable structures from prior occupying nations. Luckily he decided to keep a few building, including A’Famosa.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP: 
Make sure you check out the old army vehicles and the cannons. The kids loved these attractions.

Illuminated Trishaw Bike Taxi Tour

Location: Dutch Square or The Melaka Tower

Cost: AUD 8-15 (Price will increase with the number of people)

It is very garish and over the top to get on these illuminated and loud bikes. The kids loved it. The men and women who own the trishaws will congregate around the famous red buildings in The Dutch Square or near the Melaka Tower.

The main tour route goes from Christ Church past the Menara Taming Sari (Melaka Tower), around the A’Famosa area, then back again to Christ Church.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP 1:
There is a standard route, but you can negotiate where you want to go. For example, we wanted to ride the Melaka Tower from Dutch Square.
The taxi rider waited for us, and we continued on our way after our ride.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP 2:
The riders will try to overcharge you. The price was outrageous for what it, so be prepared to haggle hard. I kept walking until I got a reasonable price.
We ended up in a bright pink Hello Kitty as the price was fairest. Be warned if you see a “rare” character – they will ask for much more because they are unique.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP 3:
The music played in the rickshaw is LOUD! If you have kids with sensory issues, it would be a Melaka activity to leave off the itinerary.

Dutch Square, Christ Church, Melaka Clock Tower & The Stadthuys

Location: Dutch Square Or Red Square, Jalan Gereja

Cost: Free

Open Hours: Always open

The Dutch Square is also known as the Red Square. It is a picturesque part of Melaka City. It is a group of historical buildings that are all painted bright brick red. The Stadthuys was the administrative centre for the Dutch and housed the governors. It was built in 1660 and is the oldest surviving Dutch building in Asia.

The Christ Church was established there in 1753 and is the oldest Protestant church in the entire country of Malaysia.

There is a beautiful fountain in the centre of Dutch Square erected by the British in 1904. There is also yet another museum in Dutch Square called the Malaysia Youth Museum. The building was built in 1784 and was formerly a school in the 17th and 18th centuries.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP: 
It makes an ideal location for a night-time stroll. You can walk across the bridge from Jonker Street and will find the Dutch Square.
This area is very popular with the Illuminated Trishaw taxis. They will take you anywhere around the city centre of Melaka.

MENARA TAMING SARI | THE MELAKA TOWER

Location: Jalan Merdeka, Bandar Hilir

Cost: $5-10AUD

Open Hours: 10am-11pm

The kids loved the excitement of going so high up in the sky.  You get a complete 360-degree view of Melaka from 80 meters above the ground as the tower slowly spins.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP:
The line to the tower was longer than the ride. You go up in the tower, spin and then come down.
It was a total of 7 minutes. So, avoid the peak times. You can book online, but it is somewhat archaic as it is via “contact us” form.

Flora De La Mar Melaka Maritime Museum

Located: Jalan QuaysideMelaka

Cost: <$5

Open Hours: 9am-6pm

The museum is built as a replica of a Portuguese ship called the Flor de la Mar, a boat that sank off the Strait of Malacca. The replica ship is an impressive 34 metres high, 36 metres long and 8 metres wide. You get to climb aboard the ship and go to each section of the ship. The museum itself is built below deck and extends into the lower ground.

It is a fascinating place to visit and my son enjoyed it immensely. It is highly educational. You will learn about the different periods of colonisation, from the Portuguese occupation (1509-1641) to the 150-year rule of the Dutch rule (1641-1795) to finally British rule in the 1800s.

The historical significance of Melaka is due to its location. It is halfway between India and China. It formed a critical port in the spice trade.

The museum has many artifacts from each of the distinct eras. There is an extensive collection of pottery, sunken treasure, textiles, and spices.

Although young kids would love the boat, the actual museum would be better suited for families with kids that are at least 6-years old.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP 1: 
The ticket price also gives you entry to the Navy Museum. It has some great sea life exhibits.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP 2:
There were limited places close-by to get a drink. It was very humid and extremely hot. There was no A/C within the ship, only the odd fan.
To make it a more pleasant experience, I would visit in the early morning or late afternoon and would recommend bringing a cold drink and a hat.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP 3:
Shoes also must be removed when walking over the top of the boat.
Wearing flip-flops would make life more comfortable, and it got quite hot on our feet, so visiting when it is cooler is a good idea.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP 4:
There are many stairs you need to climb to get aboard the ship. There is a ladder to get to the highest part of the ship.
The museum has even more stairs. A baby carrier may well be handy if you have younger kids.
There is no access for those with limited mobility.

Jonker Street

Location: Jonker Street, Jalan Hang Jebat

Open Hours: The markets are only Friday-Sunday + public holidays, 6-11pm. Shops and restaurants opening hours will vary

Cost: free

The most famous street in Melaka is Jonker Street. It is in the heart of the old town. There are beautiful narrow streets filled with buildings from the colonisation periods of time. The shops are filled with antiques and souvenirs. There is a Jonker Walk Night Market. Markets are always fun to experience in Asia, and this filled the ticket.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP 1:
If you see something you like unless it is rare or uncommon, try to buy it elsewhere.
The prices are excessively high on Jonker Street.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP 2:
You cannot take photos in many of the shops in the area. I got screamed at a couple of times.

Cheng Hoon Teng Temple

Location: 25, Jalan Tokong, Kampung Dua

Cost: free

Simply put it Cheng Hoon Teng Temple is the oldest Chinese temple in Malaysia and beautiful.

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP:
You can enter the temple, but the best part is the entrance. It is vibrant and ornate.
The temple will be locked at night. The best time to go as the crowds are gone, and the temple is beautifully illuminated

 

 

 

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