29 April 2009

Out and about in Malaysia - Melaka

Here are a few photos from a short trip we've just made to Melaka.

The historic centre of Melaka with its old Dutch buildings.

This is Phyllanthus emblica or Melaka tree after which the city is named. A Sumatran Prince, by the name of Parameswara, is credited with the founding of Melaka around 1400. According to a legend he chose this location when sitting under a Melaka tree and watching a small mouse deer chase his hunting dogs into the water. The Prince was impressed, concluding that a place where the weak can triumph over the strong would be very suitable for a settlement and he named Melaka (or Malacca) after the tree he was sitting under.

These are the fruits of the tree Phyllanthus emblica. They look like gooseberries and are extremely sour (believe me - I tried one)! It is claimed that the highly acid, fresh, raw fruit, is full of Vitamin C and when followed by water, produces a sweet and refreshing aftertaste (I didn't get that far!).

The colourful trishaws are decorated to the hilt with artificial flowers, tinsel, flags and fairy lights, you name it, they've got it!! Taking a trip in one of these is a bit of a squash for two people, but a good way to see the city!

An old ox cart at the museum.

Beautiful carved bird's head on old wooden fishing boat. Click the pic to enlarge - the detail is wonderful.

The Melaka riverside is being developed. A pedestrian walkway has recently been constructed, and it's pleasant to stroll along here and stop for a drink at one of the cafes overlooking the river. We took a boat trip along the river one evening - everywhere is very brightly lit with fairy lights and we passed by some lovely traditional kampung (village) houses - unfortunately I didn't have my camera with me :(

Finally, I leave you with some pics of some wildlife! Sorry, the quality of the Lemur pics is not great, but I couldn't resist posting this cute little fellow!


  1. what a great town! It is looking so clean and neat too. I am surprised. Is it normally this clean? I love your close up of the fake flowers!

  2. Boy Caroline I love the journey.

    I especially love the picture of you and your husband. It is the body language I love best. That could have been me and Wahid sitting there.

    Happy Birthday to your dear girl Friday and I wish you could be there with her.

    Love Renee xoxo

  3. Hey nice Melaka trip there. I hope you both enjoyed touring around Melaka.

  4. Oh, FANTASTIC! Looks like a beautiful and relaxing holiday. I love those colorful trishaws! How fabulous is that! Thanks for the fun cyber-vacation.

  5. WOW! Love this post, Thank you!!!

  6. I especially enjoyed the bird's head on the fishing boat--such artistry!

  7. Amazing photos, that owl...

    I think that lemur might be an aye-aye. Endangered (almost goes without saying), wonderful creatures.

    parasols/umbrellas have always struck me as being up there with bridges as wonders of design...

  8. What a great trip to come along on! The lemur came out fine. He really is adorable! I love how his back feet are also like hands to help him balance.
    Those carts all decked out...wow, a bit over the top huh? I adore the close up of the flowers. Wonderful! And the legend of the tree. Wow. This has been a very full experience!

  9. Wow! What a sweet satisfying trip Caroline.
    I haven't visited Melaka since 1997 and I think it's time for me to travel down south again!
    Thanks for your sharing, you really look so enjoy and contented.

  10. Magnificent photos, what a fun jaunt that must have been!

  11. OOOH I missed this. How come I missed this? What a clean place! I love it. I had goosebumps reading about the prince and the founding of the city. That Malacca tree, we have a local name for it but I can't remember. I love the old Dutch buildings.

  12. Oops, sorry caroline, I don't mean to confuse you. I am trying to elude the vampire slayer renee this morning therfore I have my alias.


  13. Beautiful photos!


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