The end of last year……
I can't take it any longer, so stressful, I want to travel…but where to? Malaysian currency is weakening. Last time I was just getting to roam around a bit as I was on duty. So this time I want to go explore all around. Then, I open the calendar to find out that the long holiday is again next Songkran Festival. Oh well, like this is also good so I have motive to work and save money to travel, haha. When I told my best friend about this plan and she commented "How can you go Malaysia alone, it's quite dangerous, did you know that?" Really, is it so? Finally she also joined me. Actually, maybe she also wants to travel? When I got a company, I start to book tickets, read the reviews and change the plan for several times that I can't remember now. Finally, our plan is a 5 days 4 nights trip of Melaka-Ipoh-Kuala Kangsar-KL-Putrajaya. Let's go!
9 April 2016
After getting off from work, I drag my luggage on the taxi to the BTS and get off again at Payathai Station in order to stay at the newly open hostel named Sleep Lab Hostel. We have to spend a night here since I stay at the suburb area and my friend works at other province so we must stay downtown one night as we have early flight tomorrow. The hostel is very easy to find. After getting off from the Exit 2 of Payathai Station, it's right near the main road. The staff is very friendly and the room is beautiful, clean, and spacious. It provides a key card and a locket that can easily keep 28 inches luggage. The only not so good thing is the bathroom which is too narrow and the place to keep stuff is too high so me (I'm quite short) and my friends have to jump a bit. We get a Songkran promotional price, it is 390 THB including breakfast (of which we didn't have, haha).
10 April 2016
We check out from the hostel at 4.15 a.m. and take the taxi to Don Mueang Airport. Once we arrive, we can only exclaim "OMG!!! How come they are so many people?" We then rush to the Air Asia Kiosk to check in and get a luggage tag of which we don't know how to process next as normally we travel with just a backpack and never load any luggage. Oh well, let's just go inside first and ask the staff to help later. When we get in line, we also happen to line up in a long queue. The training staff comes and tells us we were on the Chinese tour group line where they have the entire flight as their own. Then, we have to find our own line and before we can have our luggage loaded, it's already 6 a.m. Next time, I wouldn't have so much things with me again but this time I must do as I must carry chocolate for my nieces and nephews. That we have to board at 6.30 a.m. so we hurriedly run to our gate. Soon, it's a boarding time. We travel with Air Asia. It departs at 7.10 a.m. and arrives KLIA2 at 10.15 a.m. Along the way, I can't resist the mango with sticky rice dish, so I have it. It is 65 THB and I think it's quite yummy.
At 10.15 a.m. we arrive at KLIA2 safe and sound. This new airport is so big. We follow the sign reads arrival hall quite a long time before seeing the Immigration. We line up at the Asian Lane which is not many people. The Immigration here asks nothing. They just look at our face, let us scan the fingers and then it finishes, so fast!! Then, we go collect our luggage. When walking out, I see the Digi so we buy a sim card here. At first we were looking for a 10 MYR sim card but the shop seller said that is only the sim card without any services. When the services is included, we buy it for a packet of 25 MYR with internet 800 MB/7 days (I'm not sure if this is a fair price, if you guys get a cheaper price, please let me know so I can have a better deal on my next visit).
When our sim card is ready, we walk to the L1 to buy the bus ticket to Melaka. We walk pass Vincci and towards the exit where the taxi is parked. And right before the exit, there's escalator on the left. There are a lot of ticket booths when we take this escalator down. The Melaka ticket is on the last booth. The staff asked whether we want to take the 11.30 bus now? I'm not hungry as I already have the Mango with Sticky Rice but my friend didn't eat anything yet. Still, she insists that she's ok. Let's take this bus so we can reach Melaka early. We got the ticket of Star Mart Express for 24.30 MYR. After we get the ticket, the staff told us to run and the bus parks over there. The driver has a fierce face and he told us to keep our luggage underneath the bus. We can choose to sit wherever as the seat is not fixed. The bus is spacious with the plug but we didn't try whether it's usable as we didn't have anything to plug in. Soon, we sleep.
After a bit more than 2 hours, we now arrive at Melaka Central. But we don't know where to take the bus no. 17 in order to get off at Dutch Square. We then ask the fierce face driver and he told us to walk along the McDonald's and walk through it. Even he looks fierce but he's quite kind. After we thank him, we walk as he said. We keep walking to the right and find the bus no. 17 but it doesn't say it also goes to Dutch Square. We got a bit panic now, what to do? We then ask a girl on a green shirt next to us (again, we ask for direction all the time, haha). But she didn't know the Dutch Square. What to do now? So I open the picture and show her and she said it's the same route with her and she can take us there. Wow, Malaysian is so kind and their English is so good. Soon, the bus arrives. She quickly pull us and run towards the bus. We were surprised why we had to run as the bus will stop anyway? OMG, the people are all running for it even before it stops. Luckily we were on the front otherwise we might not be able to take it. Not yet, we can't get on yet. The driver needs to finish his personal things first. We have to wait a while before he finally comes back,. He checks the ticket and let us on the bus. He is so ca;m. That girl is very kind, she continue to help us find a place to put our luggage. I just want to say Malaysian is not that scary, they are all very friendly and do not be afraid of losing way as we can ask for directions all the time, haha. The bus fare is 1.5 MYR and it takes about 15 minutes to Dutch Square. Please do not be afraid that you will get off at the wrong stop as the driver would shout loudly 'Dutch Square'!!
After getting off from the bus, we walk to the opposite side to the Jonker Street in order to find our hotel. We book our hotel via booking.com and choose to stay at Singgah de Jonker. It is a double beds room with public restroom (it is 103 MYR and paid upon staying). There are no people when we walk in but the sign on the table says "Resting at room 1". What is this? So we go and knock on room 1. The staff is a big guy, looking like just wake and ask if we are from Thailand. Then he gives us a room key and tells us our room is upstairs and bathroom is on that side. Also, we pay the room fee now. He said actually we can also ring a bell here. Oh no…..we are so dumb! We didn't notice that, haha. Then he asked when the water festival is and we said it's in 3 days. He started to complain he hasn't saved enough money to visit yet, haha. Oh well, so Malaysian also like to travel for water festival in Thailand? Then, we hurried to put our luggage at room as we are so starving. It's already 15.00 p.m and we haven't had anything yet. The room is quite ok, quite spacious. The air conditioner is cool and clean but the bathroom is a public one.
We walk to the front of the alley to find the famous Rice and Chicken dish called Kedai Kopi Chung Wah. It is located on Jonker Street. We are lucky that we didn't have to line up in queue. Soon, the staff starts speaking Chinese with us and in fact we got it since we arrive here from both the tourists and the local. We might look Chinese but we are not. Only when the owner is out then we can communicate. We get half a chicken, rice balls and ginkgo soup that looks not so yellow like the one in Thailand. It is very delicious. I'm not sure whether it's because we are starving or what but the chicken tastes so yummy. The meat comes in full without being beaten or anything, the sauce is sour and yummy. The meal costs both of us 29.70 MYR (the photo might not be as clear since I was too hungry back then, haha).
Then, we go digest at Dutch Square.
We walk through the Stadthuys and go up the hill to St. Paul Church. Along the way, we found this cat in a difficult posture, haha and she sleeps so well and cares no one.
Here is the St. Paul Church.
The artist is painting his works.
When walking down the hill, on the left side is Melaka Sultanate Palace Museum and Famosa Fortress on the right. We choose to enjoy the cool air conditioner at the museum. The entrance fee is 5 MYR each and it opens until 17.00 p.m. We can take photos inside where they showcase history and costumes of people who have come into contacts with Malekan. We didn't take much photos but more to just chill with the cool weather, haha.
We enjoy the cool air conditioning until the museum is about to close. Then, we walk back to Dutch Square. Along the way, we hear the music singing…let it go……Tricycle here has such a great design of decorating their vehicles with cute cartoons and the most famous one here is Elsa. Then, we go to Tourist Information Centre to ask for direction to Masjid Selat and a Malacca desert that we have read somewhere in pantip. At first the staff didn't know this desert, we explain and show the photo to them before finally finding out that it's near Pantai Klebang (Klebang Beach). They are very kind to let us know 2 ways of how to get there. When asked to rent a bicycle, the staff said there're a lot on Jonker Street in Chinatown. But once we reach there, we couldn't find it. Then, we decided to go to Jonker88 for a delicious Chendol instead. Unluckily, it's also all gone when we get there!!!! The owner then suggest us another Durian menu and we're not sure what's it called. It is Durian flavor iced topped with corn, glass jelly and coconut jelly. The most delicious part is the sugar sauce that they pour on top of it; it is very delicious and refreshing. Each bowl is 5.30 MYR.
While eating, we are talking of going to rent a bicycle to Strait of Malacca and enjoy the sunset at Masjid Selat. After that, we walk out to find bicycle rental shops but we can't find them. There's one shop there but the aunty talks unfriendly to us so we decided not to rent. Then, we go back to hostel to ask the staff of where we can find one. The staff told us to go to the alley where orangutan photo is painted. We find a shop but it's already passed 18.00 p.m. and the shop doesn't allow overnight rent. We feel so fail and thinking we can't make it to Masjid Selat on time. Oh well, let's go tomorrow then. What we can do now is to enjoy the sunset at Strait of Malacca instead. From the Google Map, we have to walk along Malacca River until the end where it goes into the ocean. We then walk along Dutch Square, cross a bridge and turn right to Tourist Information Centre and pass the Maritime Museum and keep walking along the river until the river goes into the ocean. The atmosphere now is so amazing with a cool breeze and soft sun and few people. From here, we walk into the entrance which is a bit forestry. We see a family fishing there, such a chill atmosphere. Finally we see the sea at the Strait of Malacca, the place we have heard from the text book long time ago. A lot of photos are taken here.
A happy family is so cute…
After enjoying enough of the atmosphere and the sunset, we start to walk back to Jonker Street when it gets dark. We go to the walking street which opens every Friday-Sunday. I think the walking street here is similar to the one in Chiang Mai. Durian paste and Kalamae (traditional caramel candy) are there as well as other things. Nothing is special. I get to try Dimsum which is quite delicious. 4 of them cost 3 MYR. The seller is very friendly.
Then, we walk to the end of the street to listen to aunties and uncles singing Chinese song while eating Dimsum. What a Chinese atmosphere, haha. Then we walk back to our hostel to take a rest. We've been walking the entire day, getting quite tired. But then, we are hungry again at around 21.00 p.m. what to do? I remember there's a delicious satay shop called Capitol Satay. Again, we open the Google Map and realize that this shop is not far from our hotel. So we decide to go together. Again, we are very lucky that there's no queue. Satay here comes in sticks and then put in the boiled sauce; it's like jim-jum, haha. The price goes by the color of the stick and I forgot about how much it cost for each color. Soon, the staff comes boil the dipping sauce for us where they put several herbs and come again in many times and we have to wait until it's boiled every time they add something into it. When putting the Satay in, we have to wait until it's well cooked again. For me, it's not that delicious, a bit greasy and the herbs smell real strong. This meal costs 21.50 MYR/2 people. Other people might like it, it's all depending on personal preference, I think.
After food, it's time to take shower and sleep. Today my legs are so sore that I have to apply the muscle relaxing medicine. I really recommend you to take this kind of releasing pain on muscle medicine if you are not regularly exercise to help make your travel easier.
11 April 2016
We wake up with rain. Oh no…..we have to cancel the sunrise photo taking session then. Anyhow, let's continue to sleep a bit, haha. We then wake up around 8 a.m. We wanted to have breakfast but we see no one and nothing is there at the dining area when coming down. So we decide to go out, take photo and eat something along the way. This is the view behind our hotel which is near the river and the St. Francis Church.
We find this Chinese restaurant about to open after walking a while. The photo looks yummy so we decided to eat here. We order the food by pointing to the photos here. I don't know what it's called. It is the noodle with red sauce. This sauce helps make it spicier. The soup and the fish balls are also delicious. Most importantly, the white coffee and Milo are very delicious. It is 7.50 MYR.
Then, we just wander around. We found the paints on the wall near the canal which is quite beautiful with many angle for photography. Street art is quite common here.
When walking here and there we suddenly found a bicycle rental shop. Yesterday we were looking for it so hard but couldn't find. It is a mini mart with many bicycles but the shop opens quite late. Now, it's almost 9 a.m. and the shop just opens. The rental price is 2 MYR per hour or 10 MYR per day. The shop is in the orange orangutan painting alley. It's located at almost at the end of this alley. The shop is called JJ Minimart. We both decide to rent it and leave our passport as a deposit. We wanted to cycle to Masjid Selat. After consulting with Google Map, we now are ready to go!!! But here is a quick warning; you must be a strong courageous rider to do like this as the road is quite wide. We ride on the same road with the car and they drive quite fast. It's lucky that the car is not much that day but still, it gets us nervous several times. If you are coming in groups, taking the taxi is the wisest call. It's both cheaper and safer, trust me!
It's so tiring riding up. Let me stop for photography a bit at the Strait of Malacca.
We now arrive at Masjid Selat. It's so beautiful. It's a pity that we wear shorts so we are not allowed to go inside. Please dress properly when visiting here. This Masjid is built into the sea. It is so beautiful with the white color contrasting with the blue of the sky and the sea. I think the sunset would have been a breathtaking view.
After appreciating the view for a while, it\s time to go back. We must go back to KL to take the ETS train to Ipoh. We then bike back and return our bicycle. Then we check out from our hotel and take the taxi to Melaka Sentral. It's 20 MYR and we try to negotiate the price but the uncle said this is already a standard price. If you guys get a cheaper price, please let me know in case I got fooled by him, haha. Once we arrive, we go buy the ticket. We got the 11 a.m. bus of Delima for 10 MYR each. It's time to say farewell to Melaka. This town is cute and people are kind. It's a pity that we didn't get to go to the desert as planned. I hope we can come back again someday. Our next destination is Ipoh-Kuala Kangsar, see you soon!
P.S. The photos might not be so beautiful because I'm still new to this profession and this is my first trip after buying this camera, haha.