Our initial plan on the second day of our Melaka trip was to visit a nearby waterfall for a picnic lunch but after waking up much later than we originally planned, we decided to scrap that plan and walk around Bandar Melaka instead. Our first stop was at a nearby warong under the trees to begin the day with a hearty breakfast of nasi lemak, noodles, spring rolls, Nyonya pie tee (top hats) and drinks. After our leisurely breakfast, we proceeded to Bandar Melaka to work off our meal and see what the city had to offer since for several of us this trip was the first to the city. We parked our cars near the Jonker’s St parking lot where we parked the previous night and proceeded by foot to the nearby Melaka River Esplanade.
Being more acquainted with the river conditions in KL, I have to say that I was fairly impressed with the condition of Melaka River. While it was not exactly a river of pristine clear waters, it didn’t look all that shabby and more importantly it didn’t smell like a sewer dumping place that some of the rivers in KL have sadly become. The walkway that lined the riverbank was also well maintained and quite nice to have our morning walk at which we did that day. Bandar Melaka was also refreshingly quiet that Sunday morning relative to the hustle that our group was used too living in hectic KL. Our walk would soon lead us to the Dutch Square where the Stadthuys building was located. I wished that I had more time there as I would definitely would have like to explore the buildings there as well as visit the Porta de Santiago at the A'Famosa Fortress as well as other historical sites in the area. It’s quite funny that I came all the way there and didn’t come close to a historical site.
(Scenes from the Melaka River Esplanade)
(Dutch Square, Melaka)
All along our route, we could see examples of heritage buildings being restored as well as those that have already been beautifully restored. These were the buildings that have made this area world renowned and recently included as part of the UN World Heritage Site list. We stopped for a bit at one of the Chinese tea houses to get a breather and appreciate the intricate carvings and antique decorations that they owner had brought in from China. We also strolled down a road when a mosque, a Hindu temple and a Buddhist temple stood practically side by side, reflecting not only the cultural diversity of the area but also an earlier day when more of us believed that all else being equal, we are all the same regardless of which religion we subscribe to.
It was on this walkabout when I finally found the Portuguese Egg Tarts that I have been craving for in this trip. I’m somewhat of a fiend when it comes to these delicious delicacy ever since I first had them in Hong Kong. It was strange for me not being able to find anyone selling it at Jonker St the night before but the pastry shop that we stopped on that morning walk more than made up for the wait. I bought a whole box of it to bring back home as well as a few, not exactly pure egg tarts since they have other items like curried chicken added to the flaky pastry, to eat on the go. Duly satisfied that I finally would be able to stop talking about finding egg tarts, the gang proceeded down the street again towards the end of Jonker St to find a place to have lunch.
(Yummy freshly baked egg tarts)
Once we finished our lunch, we walked back to our car and proceeded back to the apartment as it was nearing time when we had to go our separate ways. Before we did, we made a pit stop at a nearby home factory making Nyonya style kuih and savories to get some for our trip home. The small factory churned out a variety of local sweet cakes for local distribution around town and they had a room full of kuih for us to pick from. Having had my fill of food on this trip, I could not even think of eating anything else but these kuih were hard to resist and I ended up buying a few for the road.
(Yummy Nyonya kuih from the home factory)