The Melaka River cuts across the Melaka town, linking to the Straits of Melaka. It separates the Dutch Square, A’Famosa and St Paul’s Hill, from Heeren Street and Jonker Street. It is also where the 1998 Sean Connery movie Entrapment was filmed partially here.
From being a meeting point between the East and West in the 16th Century, the Melaka River is now a tourism destination with local and foreign tourists congregating to soak in the wondrous heritage sights of the diverse architecture found along the banks of the Melaka River.
Afterall, there are just so many old churches, mosques, bridges, clan houses, warehouses, temples and villages around for fans of historical sites and heritage buildings like yours truly here to admire
The Melaka River used to be quite muddy, murky and smelly but the water is now quite clear, with a tinge of emerald green, thanks to the Melaka River Development and the new water treatment plant inspired by the San Antonio River in Texas, USA..
Now you can enjoy a comfortable cruise along the much more cleaner river and see clean embankments on both sides stretch for several kilometres.
A cruise along the Melaka River can get you a feel of the multi-cultural and historical fabric of the country. Passengers will be cruising in one of the 26 fibre-glass boats that are named after historic figures such as Hang Tuah, Hang Jebat, Munshi Abdullah and Tun Perak.
There are two types of cruises. One offers recorded commentaries and the other has a tour guide on board. We got to go with a tour guide who told us where to look and a little background on the buildings, places or such…
A typical cruise begins from the Muara Jetty, next to Quayside Heritage Centre, close to the Maritime Museum easily recognisable by the replica of the Portuguese ship Flor De la Mar. From there you can enjoy the cruise that will take you upstream to the Taman Rempah jetty where the boat turns around and brings you back to the starting point.
Our cruise on the other hand began from the Taman Rempah jetty and did a U-turn at the Muara Jetty and we stopped and got out somewhere near the Dutch Square to head for our dinner date at the Hard Rock Café Melaka….
The Melaka River Cruise takes about 45 minutes and is about 9 km in distance from Taman Rempah, Pangkalan Rama jetty to the Quayside Heritage Centre.
The boats are available daily at every thirty minute interval between the following times: 9.30am to 5pm and 6pm to 12 midnight.
Even the newer buildings have been painted with colourful murals depicting different aspects of Malacca’s rich history and culture.
You will cruise and be able to see the following landmarks:
Kampung Morten – A traditional Malay village and living museum. You can visit some of the houses, notably Villa Sentosa, which are open to the public…
Pirate Park – A little theme park that comes with a ferris wheel, swinging pirate ship, flying fox, rock climbing wall and trampoline….
Ghost Bridge of Melaka – This is supposedly a spooky bridge with a grisly history because Japanese soldiers during WWII is said to have dangled the decapitated heads of people they have killed there…
Kampung Jawa – A small residential and commercial area where descendants of the original Javanese settlers still maintain some of their traditions.
Hard Rock Café – a must visit place for all music lover, and people who consider themselves ‘cool’ heheh… I know of many people who loves to collect something from Hard Rock Café all over… be it the t shirts, shot glasses, fridge magnets, pins, lanyards or so…..
Address – Jalan Laksamana, 75000 Melaka / Taman Rempah, Jalan Tun Mutahir, 75000 Melaka
This trip is part of the SettlementStory in collaboration with The Settlement Hotel and Gaya Travel Magazine