since we hadn’t done much “cultural” (as in humanistic discipline) during the whole month, we though that Melaka would be a good place to stop on the way to KL. Indeed it was, Melaka is a small city on the Melaka straight. This strategic position made of the city a major hub for Asia trading companies during many years. Obviously, the city was very important to European countries which successively ruled the city leaving their architectural and cultural marks. The result is a very interesting mix of Portuguese, Dutch and British colonial architecture and cuisine topped with modern day’s Chino-Malay way of living.

The centre of the town, which has been declared UNESCO world heritage site last year, boasts a gorgeous red brick complex, build between a hill and the riverside, which served as governor housing, church and city-hall.

Being the Sunday at the end of the Hari Raya Haj (?), one of the biggest Muslim festivity, the city was dressed up for a big festival with open air performances all around the old centre. After a dodgy performance by a NZ movement researcher we moved across the river, on jalan carpenter, the road where the Chinese have settled their Chinatown.

Jalan Carpenter is a bustling little road with a night market and touristy shops. As we got there the night market was being set up forcing all the people into close proximity and obligation to watch the stands, a mix of tourist gifts, food stalls and magic cleansing products sellers. And then THE highlight of the day, a real, original, straight-to-your-heart open air Chinese karaoke where elder peoples brought their favourite midi bases and sang on a huge stage!

Definitely a nice place Melaka