Bored with the hustle and bustle of the city life and craving for a breather? Why not head to Melaka for a quick day trip? Not only famed for being listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site list, Melaka is also known for its historical imortance and diversity in culture, not to mention the delectable spread of Malay, Chinese, Indian, Baba and Nyonya and Portuguese cuisine. If you're making your first trip to Melaka, you may be wondering what to do and what not to while holidaying there. Check out the top do's and don'ts to ensure that your visit to the historical city is worth your time and energy. Top 3 Do’s: 1. Be an arts and culture buff – there are so many museums and historical sites in Melaka, namely the Democratic Government Museum, Traditional Custom Museum, Cultural Museum or Melaka Sultanate Palace, Maritime Museum, just to name a few.
You can learn and appreciate the glory of Melaka from the day it was one of the greatest empires, discover the magnificent legends of Hang Tuah and his friends, not to mention the highlights of the Portuguese invasion. Even if history isn’t your cup of tea, there’ll be much to keep you fascinated. 2. Try the local food – you’ll never go hungry in Melaka, that’s for sure. There are snacks like the Nyonya kuihs to munch on after which you could quench your thirst with soothing cendol, fill your belly with anything from chicken rice balls, hot and spicy devil’s curry, the delightful asam pedas (sour and spicy stew dish) and many others. And for dinner, head on to Umbai for ikan bakar (grilled fish). 3. Do what the locals do – take your cue from the Melakans – go to their favourite hangouts like theJonker Walk for great bargains, eat at little-known restaurants or stalls which serve the best food in town. If you’re a keen and avid photographer, get some ideas from the locals on what to shoot. You may end up with shots which are not run-of-the-mill. Top 3 Don’ts
1. Don't insult or disrespect any tradition or cultural practice – be respectful to the locals irrespective of race or religion. People here come from a diverse set of cultures, and it’s mutual respect that binds the different races.Hence, when visiting churches, mosques, mausoleums like St Peter’s Church, Kampung Keling Mosque, Hang Jebat Mausoleum and Hang Tuah’s Well do cover your heads with scarves (for the ladies), wear appropriate clothing and don’t act rude or use foul language. 2. Don't neglect your safety – safety should always be a top priority irrespective of the place you visit. If it’s your first time in Melaka, don't go out or walk on your own late at night. If you have to, avoid secluded places and don’t carry plenty of cash in your wallet. Don’t trust strangers no matter how kind or nice they are and ask for directions from reliable sources. 3. Don't attract too much attention – if it’s your first time in Melaka, try your best not to act like a tourist or a first-time visitor. You risk attracting unwanted attention from touts offering you products or services you don’t really need with the intention of shortchanging you. In addition, don't put on too much jewellery, don't flash cash around and always be wary of snatch thieves. Observing these do’s and don’ts on your first trip to Melaka is an important step towards ensuring you have a safe and enjoyable holiday in Melaka.