My friend and I were looking for a short weekend getaway from Singapore and we eventually chose Malacca 3 days before departing. Definitely one of my most last minute getaway (apart from JB). We were planning to go Batam initially but the situation back then was a little unstable as there were news of rioting and stuff.
Getting There – $30/each
Bus Ride – $30/2 way after redbus.sg‘s discount.
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Original Price – Singapore to Malacca via Starmart Express ($30); Malacca to Singapore via Nam Ho ($22.50).
We had a combined referral discount of $15 plus some DBS 25% promotion and the final price we paid was $30/each for 2-way Singapore & Malacca transfer.
For both ways, it was luxury VIP coach (27 seater) where you can incline your chair all the way back.
Singapore to Malacca (Depart @ Golden Mile Towers,
7:31AM 7:50AM; Arrive @ Equatorial Hotel Hatten Hotel, 10:54AM 1:30PM)
Malacca to Singapore (Depart @ Equatorial Hotel,
3:05PM 3:11PM, Arrive @ People’s Park, 18:30PM 19:36PM)
Strike out = scheduled timing; Orange Bold = our actual timing
It was a Saturday morning and I have no freaking idea how we spent almost 2 hours at the Singapore customs at Tuas. We were like 2.5 hours behind schedule and absolutely starving when we returned. While we were on the bus, we were joking that the amount of time we spend in the bus, we could have taken the plane to Bangkok and checked into our Hotel already.. No idea what was going on that morning but I guess it is recommended to bring some snacks with you. Anyway, the bus did not stop at Equatorial Hotel (as promised in our booking) but it stopped at Hatten Hotel, where we had to walk about 5 minutes.
For the return journey, do note that Equatorial Hotel is the last stop for pick up and I had to be separated from my friend in the bus as the double seats were already taken.
Hotel – $36/each
We stayed at Hotel Equatorial (5-star but somewhat aged Hotel) as the #1 and Newest Choice – Hatten Hotel (4 star) was fully booked. By the way, prices at Hatten is cheaper so do give it a try next time!
Anyway, I totally didn’t expect a 5-star hotel to be charging $72/night for a room on a Saturday night. Either times are bad or.. the malaysia currency is really weak against our SGD.
The experience: Hotel Equatorial was pretty decent and value for money. The location was very convenient – about 5 mins walk to A’Famosa, 12 mins walk to the famous church and 15 mins to Jonker Street! Furthermore, it is also close by to Pahlawan Mega Mall (for air-conditioned shopping) and also Scents & Senses, a very highly reviewed Thai Massage place. It is definitely a lot quieter than if you were to stay in Jonker Street area. Also, we got a high floor and I could even see an undisturbed sunrise from our hotel room’s balcony!
I don’t have a costing for this as we ate too much and I forgot all the prices. Some of the food were nice but many were just average. Either my expectations were too high or perhaps Singapore’s food is already nice enough that there’s nothing speical about Malacca’s food.. I guess I’m quite a picky eater these days so, please take my reviews with a pinch of salt!
Teddie Bear Cafe (TBC)
Address: Level 3, Terminal Pahlawan, 75000 Melaka
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/tbcmelaka
We entered this cafe because of its cutesy concept plus we were damn bloody hungry from the delayed arrival. The ambiance was good and it definitely looks pretty comfortable among so many teddy bears! However, the food was pretty average (kind of expected for theme cafes). If I didn’t recall wrongly, the price was normal (cafe pricing) for the mains but expensive for the drinks. Don’t think I’ll ever return again unless I’m going with a teddy bear fanatic.
Address: 14, Jalan Tokong 75200 Melaka
We visited this cafe cause it seemed pretty hipster in the photos with a vintage volkswagon as their “kitchen”. It is a pretty small shop and it was 90% full when we reached. I guess it could have been a better experience but many items were out of stock (I couldn’t even get any dessert) when we arrive and I had to settle for a regular latte. To add on to my unsatisfactory experience, the coffee was served to me at room temperature. Also, there was a minimum one drink per customer policy.
Disclaimer: It was even more disappointing because I kind of had expectations for the place so everything fell short of my own expectations and perhaps I was pretty picky on my coffee since this place was supposedly one of the better ones. I guess with higher expectations comes greater disappointment.
Night Market @ Jonker Street
Galaxy Drink – The person couldn’t really create the effect and well, it does look pretty ordinary in my photo too.. #takemymoneyaway but #firstandlasttime
This char kway teow was one of the beter ones in the night market.
Low Yong Moh Restaurant
Address: 32, Jalan Tukang Emas, 75200 Melaka, Malaysia
True to its reviews, this shop was really crowded and our decision to wake up early was rewarded with a meal of affordable dim sum. By the time we left at 9am+, there was a queue outside the shop. Sorry for the barely-there photos as I forgot to take the photos before eating! Anyway, do try the salted egg custard bun (which could be out of stock if you arrive late). It was the most delicious dish among everything we ate that day. Some of the dishes were a little too salty to my liking but that being said, it was already one of the better places we had in our Malacca trip.
Wonton Mee @ Heng Huat Coffee Shop
Address: 127, Jalan Hang Jebat, 75200 Melaka, Malaysia
The wonton mee tastes pretty average to me (I might be a little picky as I do have top favourites in Singapore and this was nothing comparable to my favourites). At RM 4.50, I felt it was a little pricey in malaysian standards.
Restoran Nyonya Makko
Address: 123, Jalan Merdeka, Taman Melaka Raya, 75000 Melaka, Malaysia
If I had to rate all the food that I have eaten in Malacca, this meal as the best. It started with the appetizer keropoke (crackers) which was so tasty that I ended up buying 2 bags home. The dishes were flavourful and delicious (to my liking) but I guess I’m in no position to ‘rate’ as I don’t usually eat penerakan food. They have a rating of 3.4 on google and most of the bad reviews came from people who waited a long time (yes there was a queue before we got a seat) and people who claims they know the real penerakan food. Well., take my comments with a pinch of salt too.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2008, Malacca is a city rich with European Colonial history, Peranakan culture and a vibrant history of its trading port.
History buffs should pay a visit to the Stadthuys, Baba & Nyonya Heritage Museum and Cheng Ho Cultural Museum. Christ Church at Dutch Square is an active church with Sunday morning services in English. In the evening, climb up St Paul’s Hill to visit A’Famosa and see the remnants of St Paul’s Church, built almost 500 years ago.
Since it was my third or fourth visit to Malacca, I gave all the touristy places a miss as I’ve already visited a couple of times. Well, here’s the iconic Chirst Church that you will not miss enroute to Jonker Street.
Malacca River Cruise – I didn’t take this cruise but the riverbank somewhat reminds me of clark quay..
Malacca will have random murals or grafitti pieces donning the walls.
While googling for massage places in Malacca, I’m pretty sure that you would have come across the “Scents & Senses” brand which is situated very near to both Equatorial and Hatten Hotel. This massage place, is crazily crowded and good luck on trying to get an appointment via walk-in. We arrived on Saturday afternoon wantin to book an appointment but we were turned away as they were fully booked for the entire day. Thankfully, we could get a 1hr slot at 11am on Sunday, before our return bus at 3pm. My friend on the other hand, who went sometime in December and stayed for 3D2N, could only get a booking on the 3rd day for 2 pax (they were travelling in a group of 3). With people like me praising the massage, I’m sure the bookings will get even more crazy so the tip is to.. MAKE A BOOKING EVEN BEFORE YOUR TRIP.
How do I make a booking? There’s only one way – making a phonecall to their hotline – +606-286 1186 / +6012-682 9633
I’m not sure if you can make any reservation via E-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org but the receptionist highly recommended us to call the next time we visit.
Address: 106, 106A, Jalan Melaka Raya, 75000 Melaka.
Do note that there’s another branch in Malacca but the other outlet is further away and apparently as full as the main branch.
We did the Thai Herbal Healing (RM 89 for 60 mins) and it was so comfortable that I think I dozed off. It was not a painful massage at all and I felt pretty relaxed and comfortable at the end of the session. There were several steps in the massage (like the hot towel) which adds points to the entire experience.
and if you can’t secure a booking but still want a massage, there are many other non-sleazy massage parlours in the area and can you believe it.. there was this ultra huge foot massage place which I’m pretty sure can accommodate like 30+ people.. was full. It was a Saturday night after all and we actually hopped around a few outlets before finding one shop which could offer us a massage – but it had to be a body massage (perhaps the masseurs were not trained in foot massage). It was a hilarious massage as the masseurs rolled out the movements like a ‘machine’ giving sets of 8 counts per acupoint. They disregarded any indication of pain and it was kind of just going through the motion for that entire 1 hour session. Sorry but I can’t remember the price I paid for that massage but it was like a random shop. Well, doing massage in Malaysia is kind of like 66% cheaper as compared to Singapore because of the exchange rate..
It’s not that I didn’t enjoy myself for the trip but everything (execept for the massage and perenrakan food) seemed to fall short of my expectations. Well, Malacca is still a pretty decent place that I might visit in another 5 years time but somehow the disappointments affected the mood and morale of the trip and my friend and I were debating on when we will actually return again. However, please note that we are only having such feelings because it was my 3rd/4th time visiting this town and I guess nothing changes which reduces the appeal factor over time. Nevertheless, it was g good get-out-of-Singapore weekend 🙂
Feel free to let me know your thoughts about Malacca too!
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