By: Thomas Teo
Malacca is a place that gathered many culture meet and fused. When visiting Melaka, you will notice the architectural are influenced by Portuguese. Here you can see the oldest European architecture in South East Asia and buildings like Portuguese Square. Furthermore, you can enjoy Portuguese food while enjoy the breeze sitting beside the beach.
Besides of Portuguese influence, there are also Chinese and Malay culture adopted through marriage, which known as Baba and Nyonya. The influences can still be found here, especially Baba Nyonya Heritage Museum, where you can see the unique carving of furniture and house interior. This is why Malacca is known as Malaysia UNESCO heritage city.
Baba Nyonya Heritage Museum
The person who is Straits-born Chinese or Peranakan which adopt Malays culture is known as Baba Nyonya. Baba Nyonya Heritage Museum was founded in year 1896, which illustrates the live and traditional of Baba Nyonya in Malacca. The museum is well designed from inside and outside, where you can find out the history of Baba Nyonya. The museum displays valuable old traditional Baba Nyonya’s costume, wood work art and antique furniture. The heritage in Malacca attracted both local and international tourists especially at St. Paul Hill and St. John Fort.
In Malacca, Jonker Street is one of the best places to visit with the historical and cultural. There are various antique building with well maintained and shop outlets such as food stalls, art and craft stalls, couvenier stalls, and clothing stalls. Jonker Street is also famous for its nightlife and night activities. The accommodation is also located around famous area to ensure that visitors are convenient when travelling around the places. When travelling way up of St. Paul’s Hill, you be amazed by the various museums, which is Architecture Museum Malacca, Islamic Museum of Malacca and the Stamp museum Malacca. On top of hill, there is a historical monument of Malacca – Porte De Santiago, which also known as A Famosa and St. Paul’s Church beside A Famosa. The church was turned into a burial ground. You can also drop by at Malacca Sultanate Palace, the replica of the Malacca Sultan’s palace during the Malacca Sultanate period.
Porta De Santiago (A Famosa)
A Famosa is one of the oldest European architecture in Asia, built in year 1511 by Alfonso de Albuquerque. Porta De Santiago is translates to “The Famous” in Portuguese. The fortress was built to strengthen the gains in Malacca after defeated armies of Malacca Sultanate. The A Famosa we see today was initially made up by long ramparts and four major towers. In 1641, Portuguese was chased out of Malacca by Dutch. They placed their company logo “VOC”, abbreviation of Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie at the gate of A Famosa, If you visit A Famosa today, you can still see the VOC coat of arms on the shield carried by the soldier on the right side of the logo. It was then handed to British in early 19th century. It was saved from demolish under British Governor of Pahang in year 1810 by Sir Stamford Raffles. The remaining part saved from demolish are what we see today.