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10 FREE THINGS TO DO IN KUALA LUMPUR MALAYSIA

Kuala Lumpur panorama

Kuala Lumpur panorama

10 FREE THINGS TO DO IN KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia’s capital, is a colorful modern international city filled with sky-scrapers, huge inner-city shopping malls, vibrant Chinatown and Indian districts, museums, parks, nightlife, and a variety of architecture.

The Malay, Chinese, Indian and ex-pat residents along with visitors from all over the world fill KL with a genuinely multi-racial flare. Delicious inexpensive foods abound in markets, food courts and streets throughout the city, even in the tall glitzy shopping malls.

The city also proudly boasts the world’s tallest twin towers- the glistening silver Petronas Twin Towers. There’s lots to keep visitors busy in this bustling capital.

Happily budget travelers can still find cheap accommodation, meals and activities. Even better, here are 10 great FREE urban adventures:

LashWorldtour - Tonsai - Thailand

Hanging out with some of local pals

1. Get hosted by locals

Couch Surfing

Many cheap guest houses are available in KL’s Chinatown and Bukit Bintang areas offering dorm beds and rooms for ~20-30RM ( $8-10 US) However, compared to budget accommodation in rural Malaysia and neighboring SE Asia countries, the value for money is quite low. Most rooms are tiny ‘closets’ with flimsy partitioned walls, no windows, and little more than a bed squeezed in. Guest houses are noisy, fairly dirty and packed with travelers.

They are great places to meet other budget travelers, socialize, and even party if you enjoy this type of low-down grubby backpackers’ scene. But if your tastes require a bit more cleanliness, privacy or quiet you’ll quickly be wishing for an alternative. Very conveniently, now there is: couch surfing.

If you’re not yet familiar with couch surfing, go check it out!  It’s a world-wide organization of travelers and hosts who offer free accommodation in their homes to travelers. Couch surfing is a great way for travelers to hook up with locals and see the area from the local’s perspective. In turn, hosts are rewarded by meeting travelers from around the world, hearing about their adventures, and showing off their country. Everyone makes new friends and helps each other out.

Kuala Lumpur currently has over 1000 hosts. Many have already hosted dozens of international travelers. Even better, most  KL Malaysians speak excellent English, making a hosted visit really easy. With so many eager hosts, you should never have to pay to sleep in KL again, if you so choose.

Petronas Twin Towers - Kuala Lumpur

Petronas Twin Towers – Kuala Lumpur

2. Visit the world’s tallest twin towers: Petronas Towers

Petronas Twin Towers

Petronas Towers, the tallest twin towers in the world at 452M, are K.L.s most famous landmark. Besides their soaring height the towers are also a really incredible architectural design treat. They look like shiny sterling silver spears pushing up into the sky. Illuminated at night they’re even more awe-inspiring.

The architecture, with its multi-faceted starlike design and multi-tiered structure is truly remarkable. The engineering feats required to construct the towers are even more astounding.

So when visiting K.L. make sure you stop by and take a good look at the beautiful towers. You can learn more about their design, engineering wonders, construction and design statistics at the base of the towers- Concourse level- in the observation deck ticket office.

Until recently a visit up to the 41st floor observation deck was free. Quite unfortunately, they’ve begun charging. The good news is that tickets cost only 3- 10MR ($1-3 US)

If you’d like to go, you must arrive very early in the morning to wait in line, be issued one of a limited number of tickets and assigned a visiting time later that day. Tickets are often sold out by 8.30 am, so arrive between 7-7.30 am. Note that your stay in the observation deck only lasts about 10 minutes. But you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views over the city and up-close views of the silver tower architecture.

For free you can still admire the towers from outside, at all angles, and visit the informative display in the ticket office. You can also get a free panoramic ‘virtual tour from the observation deck’ on the website.

Photo exhibition at Galeri Petronas

Photo exhibition at Galeri Petronas

3. Gaze at art work  in a world class gallery

Galeri Petronas

While you’re at the twin towers, visit Galeri Petronas, a free art gallery open to the public showcasing mainly Malaysian artists’ work in ever-changing exhibitions. Petronas set up the gallery to promote the development and preservation of art in Malaysia and to encourage the Malaysian public’s appreciation of visual arts.

Located on the 3rd floor of KLCC, the gallery is open Tues- Sun 10am – 8pm, closed on Mondays. Personally, I stop by Galeri Petronas every time I visit KL to marvel at the latest exhibition. The gallery also has a store and an arts resource center with art books, journals and audio-visual material.

Suria KLCC - Kuala Lumpur

Suria KLCC Shopping Mall at the base of Petronas Towers

4. Engage in some international people watching

Suria KLCC

KLCC shopping mall and the KLCC Park just outside are the very best places in K.L. to engage in some seriously international multi-ethnic multi-lifestyle people watching.

You’ll observe people from all walks of life and from countries all over the world. You’ll see everyone from top business execs in designer suits to fashionable Malaysian ladies in brightly patterned floor-length silk ensembles to young Malaysian teens and western international-school students to families to traveling backpackers.

During the past few years many visitors from various Middle Eastern countries have been shopping at KLCC, walking through the mall in all sorts of intriguing traditional Muslim clothing, adding an even broader spectrum of ethnicity to KL’s vast melting pot of people.

Muslim women in KL

Muslim women in KL

If you’ve been backpacking around SE Asia visiting islands, beaches, jungles and small towns then arriving at KLCC can be quite a shocker! Suddenly you’ll find yourself splat in the midst of ‘civilized society.’

Hundreds of people are dressed to the hilt  in designer suits, dresses and traditional Malaysian clothing, with hair freshly cut and styled, dazzling gold watches, snazzy ties and polished shoes. It’s almost like being transported to a city in Europe or America BUT nearly everyone is Malaysian, Chinese, or Indian. That itself can be a bit of a shocker too. Get a grip and enjoy the change of pace.

To avoid feeling like a bum when visiting KLCC, you might want to snaz up your attire for the day. However, casual backpacker style is just as acceptable, too, so don’t sweat it. You will want to avoid bikini tops, scruffy micro-mini- shorts and attire suited only to far-flung beaches though.


5. Meet Malaysian artists and watch them make batik, carvings & paintings

K.L. Craft Complex

The little-known K.L. Craft Complex on Conley Rd is a hidden gem just around the corner from Petronas Twin Towers and bustling Bukit Bintang. The main building, a beautiful traditional Malay wooden structure, houses a modest museum, retail shops and a restaurant. Out back, the artists’ workshops consist of cute wood bungalows set around a lush tropical garden.

Each workshop is filled to the brim with beautiful arts and handicrafts: batik, clothing, wood carvings, paintings. You’ll find the artists there working away, waiting to show visitors their craft. They’re eager to chat, make new friends and talk about K.L. and Malaysia. Not only will you get to learn the fascinating processes of various crafts, you get to interact with locals artists.

British colonial Moorish style Building at Merdeka Sqare - Kuala Lumpur - Malaysia

British colonial Moorish style Building at Merdeka Sqare

6. Take a historical walking tour of colonial British buildings

Merdeka Squarejust 5 minutes’ walk from Chinatown and Pasar Seni, is lined with magnificent stone buildings from the British colonial era pf the late 1800s. These buildings creatively combine colonial and Moorish architectural elements including graceful arched doorways, columned hallways, layered red and white stones, a clock tower and miniarets to produce some very unique architecture.

These beautiful buildings line the square itself, which is simply a big rectangular grassy field originally used for cricket. Nowadays the square is the venue for national ceremonies and events.

Just one block behind the buildings, the lovely mosque Masjid Jamek is nestled under palm trees, tucked behind Masjid Jamed overhead rail station. Wander around to gaze at these beautiful buildings.

Petaling Street - Chinatown - Kuala Lumpur -Malaysia

entrance to Petaling Street – Chinatown – Kuala Lumpur

7. Sip imported Chinese teas in traditional tea shops in Chinatown

In all honesty, KL’s Chinatown has become a massive crowd-packed heaving shopping thoroughfare, packed with incessant touts pushing the latest in counterfeit dvds, watches, sunglasses, brand-name clothes and handbags. Fresh fruits, Malaysian sweets and food courts are also dotted around the hectic streets.

Centered on Jalan Petaling, there’s nothing really Chinese about KL’s ‘Chinatown’ except maybe the trendy Chinese Malaysian youth hawking the latest wares. you’ve been warned.

Sip Chinese tea in Chinatown


However, on the streets bordering this crazed thoroughfare you’ll find a few shops selling traditional Chinese imports. Tea shops are among the most authentic.

Step into a Chinese tea shop where you’ll find traditional Chinese furniture, tea utensils, paintings and decor. Browse the astounding variety of imported teas and you’ll soon be invited to sample some!

The staff will sit at the tea table, prepare a tiny cup of tea and offer it to you. The whole process is really intriguing and you’ll get to sample delicious tea direct from China. No obligation to buy, of course.

Lake Garden Park, KL

8. Surround yourself in nature at KL’s huge tropical Lake Garden Park

Taman Tasik Perdana, just 10 minutes’ walk from Chinatown and Merdeka Square is a beautiful, sprawling landscaped city park set around a placid lake. In SE Asia, this is personally my 2nd favorite city park, in close competition with Bangkok’s Lumpini Park.

Whenever I’m in KL I cycle there nearly every morning, pedaling around the lake then up over a big hill then past the outdoor bird park, observatory, National Mosque and Islamic Museum in a big loop, repeat.

This park is full of giant tropical trees, fragrant flowering bushes, waterfalls, landscaped gardens, a small deer park and several other ‘attractions.’ There’s a massive children’s playground, exercise equipment. walking paths, benches and even an inexpensive outdoor food market for lunch-goers.

The outdoor bird park and museums charge rather high entry fees, but walking, sitting, cycling and enjoying the tropical paradise are all free. Spend an hour, a morning, a whole day there to unwind.

(*note- This park is always crowded on weekends. If you prefer solitude and quiet, visit the park on weekdays)

Pasar Seni - Kuala Lumpur - Central Market

Pasar Seni aka ‘Central Market’

9. Check out Pasar Seni, KL’s original Central Market

Also located beside Chinatown, Pasar Seni is a historical art deco style blue building housing a huge variety of Malaysian clothing, arts, handicrafts, souvenirs, restaurants and a food court. Gone upscale in recent years, most of the merchandise is fairly expensive but window shopping is free. Gaze at the beautiful traditional arts and clothing of Malaysia in this ‘refrigerated’ a/c market. Bring long sleeves.

Chinese temple in Chinatown

Chinese temple in Chinatown

10. Join temple-goers at Chinese and Indian Temples or Malaysian Mosques

Dotted around the edges of Chinatown are several colorful Chinese and Indian temples. Visitors are very much welcomed to enter, look around, take pictures and observe locals at prayer.

Bright red and gold Chinese Buddhist temples are generally filled with the smoke and aroma of Chinese incense. Temple-goers buy bundles of incense, pray then plunk their bundles into huge brass vessels.

Indian Hindu temples, on the other hand, display hundreds of vibrant images of various Hindu gods in colorful tiered carved roofs. Inside are several small shrine rooms where devotees beg favors of their favorite gods.

Masjid Jamek - KL

historic Masjid Jamek

Finally, just two blocks from Pasar Seni the lovely mosque Masjid Jamek sits nestled under palm trees, tucked behind Masjid Jamed overhead rail station. Visitors can enter at appropriate times, women and men at different hours, as long as they’re properly attired in long sleeves and pants/skirts.

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I hope these interesting free diversions enhance your visit to Kuala Lumpur. They include many of my favorite activities in K.L.

For even more ideas on free activities in Kuala Lumpur, read the next post in this series here

cheers, Lash

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You might also like the following posts on LashWorldTour:

Guide to Scuba Diving in Malaysia
Penang Series of Posts
Langkawi Series of Posts

And from my 10 Free Things to do in Series: 

Singapore
Bangkok
Penang
Malacca

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100 Free Things to do in Asia - eBook - LashWorldTour

100 Free Things to do in Asia

If you found this post useful, you’ll love my FREE eBook:

100 Free Things to do in Asia. It describes 10 free activities in 10 different Asian cities and destinations.

Check out my eBook here

 

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12 comments

5 pings

  1. gabi says:

    love this article lash. love it to death. using it as my bible for next week. thank you.

    1. Lash WorldTour says:

      Hey GAbi,

      Great to see you here!

      Oh, wonderful – I’m so glad it will be helpful. In that case, I hope you caught pt 2 with 10 more free things to do? And my post on 5 Secret Eating spots in KL? Enjoy the city! Where you going next? i’m going to Langkawi on MOnday for 1 week.. any chance you’ll come up?

      cheers, Lash

  2. ding says:

    What?! Seriously? Who suggested this? Gosh! There is nothing to do in KL.

    1. Lash WorldTour says:

      Hey ding,

      thanks for stopping by and for commenting…

      Sorry for being dense, but I really don’t get your comments! Is that serious sarcasm? Or do you really find KL boring?

      fill me in ! cheers, Lash

  3. dileepa says:

    hi lash,
    Ihave few questions

    1.Are Budget airline passengers/ Tiger airways entitle for free singappore city tour

    2. can we go to botanical gardens and other free thig after chekin?dileepa

    1. Lash WorldTour says:

      Hi Dileepa,

      Thanks for stopping by.

      1. Yes, as far as I know, all passengers from all airlines that arrive at Changi and have an ongoing flight and have a long enough lay-over are entitled to the free tours. When you join the tour, they will take you into hte city and return you to the airport. YOu cannot leave the tour and go off on your own.

      2. I’m not sure I understand your question, but if you’re asking whether in transit passengers can go roam around Singapore on their own, I’m not really sure. Normally in most countries in transit passengers cannot enter the country without a visa. But Singapore gives a visa upon entry. So potentially, if you qualify for the visa on entry, you could leave the airport by going through immigration and customs, enter Singapore and go sightseeing on your own, and then return later for your flight. But you’d have to go through immigration and customs again (ie. leave the country). I don’t’ really know what the rules are for this at Changi. You’ll have to ask Singapore Immigration or the Changi Airport Information or your airline or your travel agent.

      HOpe that helps. cheers, Lash

  4. Helen says:

    Hi Lash, I have a 12hour stopover in KL in September 13. Are there free tours of KL that can be picked up from the airport.

    1. Lash WorldTour says:

      hI Helen,

      I dont’ know of any free tours of KL, either from the airport or otherwise. In addition, the airport is 1 hour by bus or 30 minutes by fairly expensive express train into the city.

      As a matter of fact, I’m not familiar with any of KL Airport’s facilities. You could Google the KL airport and see what they have on offer. :))

      Otherwise, perhaps you could catch the bus or train into KL and visit Petronas Towers and area with that much time, of course depending on what hours of hte day you’re flights arrive/depart.

  5. Ammar Roslizar says:

    Hi Lash!

    I’m Ammar, from Malaysia. I really love the way you write this post. Cuz, it’s all about free things! :D

    For your information, I’m also a host for a studio apartment guesthouse which is very very near to KLCC (5 minute walking only). You even can see KLCC from the window of this guesthouse. You may want to check it out.

    Cheers.

    1. Lash WorldTour says:

      Hi Ammar,

      Glad you enjoyed the post. Maybe you’ll even find some free things in KL you didn’t know about?

      Thanks for stopping by, commenting and letting me know about your guesthouse in KL. I’ll check it out. :)

      cheers, Lash

  6. Vim says:

    Hi lash,

    Id like to ask if you can suggest us an itinerary where we can just walk from one place to another but still not missing anything important for our trip in KL this October?

    Thanks,
    Vim

    1. Lash WorldTour says:

      Hi Vim,

      So you’re heading to wonderful KL eh? Great, I love that city. Hope you do too.

      Sure, I can help you plan an itinerary for KL. But it’s pretty hard to explain without us consulting a map, so I recommend you pull up Google Maps for KL and then see from that a route to walk between Chinatown and Petronas Towers. That should take in most of the interesting sites.

      If you’d like more extensive itinerary planning, I do offer travel consulting services. You can book me as a travel adviser on Plansify.com (Lash) or else email me to set up a travel consultation. I can then give you my rates and set up a time on skype or else consult via email.

      thanks for stopping by.

      Best regards, Lash

  1. TRAVEL TIPS: OVERLAND TRAVEL FROM KUALA LUMPUR TO SINGAPORE - LashWorldTour says:

    [...] for things to do in KL or Singapore?  Here’s a bunch of free things to do in each city: 10 Free Things to do in Kuala Lumpur, pt 110 More Free Things to do in Kuala Lumpur (pt 2)10 Free Things to do in Singapore, pt 110 More Free [...]

  2. 10 Free Things to do in Malacca - Malaysia - LashWorldTour » LashWorldTour says:

    [...] LashWorldTourTravel Blog offering Cultural Insights, Travel Tips, and Tales of Adventure from 14+ years of world travelsHOMEABOUTAbout LashWorldTourAbout LashContactWhat’s in a name?LashWorldTour Travel MapLash’s Travel Fast FactsMissionsWorld Travels Overview: 1991-2011PressDisclaimerCOUNTRIESASIABALI- INDONESIABalinese CultureDiving in BaliBicycling in BaliAmedSanurBali MiscBANGLADESHBRUNEICAMBODIASHANGHAI- CHINAHONG KONGINDONESIABaliJavaLombokJAPANLAOSMALAYSIAKuala LumpurPenangLangkawiBorneoDiving in MalaysiaMalaysia MiscMYANMARNEPALPHILIPPINESSINGAPORESRI LANKATHAILANDVIETNAMAUSTRALIAEUROPEENGLANDSPAINS AMERICABRAZILUSAAdventuresBicycle TravelCycling in Bali SeriesHikingMotorbike TravelScuba DivingSky DivingSurvivor TV CrewTravel DisastersWWOOFCruisesTravel TalesCulturePhoto GalleriesTravel Tips10 Free Things to do in… SeriesAccommodation TipsFlight TipsLuxury Travel TipsMoney TipsSafety TipsWhy Living Overseas is Better SeriesMisc Travel TipsBeyond GuidebooksTravel ResourcesTRAVEL INTERVIEWSBook ReviewsHotel – Tour – Museum ReviewsLINKSTravel StoreFREE eBookTravel Books StoreLash’s Guidebooks to Bali wp_flash_img_show will display here (config: default)« Travel Tale: How I Missed My Trip to the Dominican Republic 10 Free Things to do in Malacca – Malaysia 2013/02/22 by Lash WorldTourfamous colonial Dutch buildings in Malaka – Malaysia10 Free Things to do in Malacca – MalaysiaMelaca is a famous historical port town on the west coast of Malaysia, located about 2 hours southwest of Kuala Lumpur. For several centuries from the mid 1400s, Malaca was one of the most important ports on the old Asian trading route. It attracted traders, merchants and workers from Java, Sumatra, India, Arabia, Persia, China, Thailand and European countries. Not surprisingly, the town soon was filled with shops, temples, homes and the cultures representing the various countries trading there.Today Malaca still features many of the original Chinese shop-houses, temples, mosques, churches, forts and other historic buildings. It also has nearly 40 museums and is packed full of guest houses and hotels. As a result, Malaca is one of Malaysia’s most interesting and popular destinations, both for foreign travelers and Malaysians. Its proximity to KL also makes it very easy to visit.Although Malaca is not especially expensive, it’s still great to have a handful of free activities to enjoy. For budget travelers, the cost of accommodation and food in Malaca could easily chew up the entire budget. In that case, free activities are more along the lines of essential.Following are 10 fun, intriguing things to do in Malaca that will easily keep visitors busy for several days.Malaca historic district street decorated for Chinese New Year1. Wander Malaca’s historic district streetsMalaca is primarily famous for its charming historic district where several narrow roads are lined with dozens of restored original Chinese shop-houses. Nowadays many of the shop-houses have been converted into guest houses, boutiques, cafes, tea shops, restaurants and art galleries. Others are still used as local peoples’ private homes. Various temples are also scattered around the area.Simply wander around and enjoy the beautiful architecture and daily life of this lovely historic port town.charming Malaca River 2. Stroll along the riverOne extra charm of historic Malaca is the lovely Malaca River that meanders its way through the heart of the historic district. Walkways line both sides of the river for several km, making it a relaxing place to stroll.Along the riverside you’ll come across potted plants and gardens, benches, several public toilets, a few eating spots, a section of brightly painted cafes and bars (open in evenings). Small river boats carry visitors up and down the river. Make a short leisurely stroll or walk for a couple of hour.Malaysian Architecture Museum3. Learn about Malaysian architectureMalaca has an astounding 40 museums packed into its small historic district. They cover every topic from art to culture to history to politics as well as a bunch of quirky topics. Most museums charge modest admission fees ( 2-5 RM / $ 0.65-1.50 US). Even better, a few museums are free.The Malaysian Architecture Museum is a free museum that presents the history of architecture in Malaysia as well as the many different architectural styles, building techniques and materials.If you’re a fan of architecture, you’re going to love this museum.St Paul’s Hill4. Climb Malaca’s historic St. Paul’s Hill (Bukit St Paul)Right smack in the middle of the European colonial section of historic Malaca stands a small hill. Many Dutch, Portuguese and British buildings line the base of the hill. On top are the remains of St Paul’s Church.At the base of the hill, near the beautiful Malaysian Proclamation of Independence Memorial Hall, is famous ‘A Fmosa’,a stone entryway and a few cannons, the remains of a Dutch fort. From there you can walk up stairs to the hilltop. Besides St Paul’s church, the hill offers commanding views over historic Malaca and the surprisingly close seaside.Several local artists and musicians hang out on the hill, hoping to sell their paintings or catch donations for their music from passing tourists. Last time I visited, a colony of friendly young cats were hanging out on the hilltop as well.You can also access the hill by stairs beside the Architecture Museum.colorful boutique in Malaca 5. Browse art galleries and boutiquesAs I mentioned earlier, many of Malaca’s restored shop-houses now house art galleries and boutiques. Spend an hour or an afternoon checking out local artists’ work and browsing small boutiques. They sell antiques, jewelry, home interiors, knick-knacks, clothing, accessories and Malaysian handicrafts.Chinese Temple – Malaca6. Go temple hoppingAs a major port on the old Asian trading route, Malaca attracted people from all over the world who settled and set up business. Those communities built their own temples, mosques and churches, many of which still stand today.Malaca maps show all the major ones, so simply use your map to conduct your own temple hopping tour. You’ll find elaborately carved and gilded Chinese temples, highly ornate Indian Hindu temples, more austere white-washed Mosques and several types of churches from the Dutch, Portuguese and British residents.cat preparing to get a good petting7.  Pet Malaca’s catsUnlike most places around Asia, Malaca’s cats are not afraid of people. In fact, they really love a good pat by any passing strangers. They’ll let you pet and scratch them to your heart’s content.If you love cats, Malaca offers plenty of opportunities for you to enjoy these wonderful furry friends.Fort Malaca ruins 8. Check out the original Fort MalacaMalaca’s most famous forts were built by the Portuguese and Dutch. But before those Europe invaders came along, Malaca’s Sultan had a fort built of handsome red-brown stone beside the Malaca River. It was later destroyed by the Portuguese.Fort Malaca’s ruins still sit beside the river near the main bridge connecting the residential district and the Colonial buildings area. A large placard explains the fort’s history in brief.view of the Straights of Malaca from St Paul Hill9. Stroll along the seaside Although you can’t tell at all from the center of Malaca’s historic district (except from the top of St Paul’s Hill), the neighborhood is only a stone’s throw away from the sea. A 20-30 minute walk along either side of the Malaca River will take you there.The seaside is much nicer on the Lorong Hang Jebat / residential side of the river. Walk along Lorong Hang Jebat past luxurious Casa del Rio Hotel and simply continue following the roads out to the sea. Soon after the hotel, you’ll have to make a sharp left turn towards a high bridge.Once you reach the seaside, you’ll find a long walkway backed by spacious green fields. It’s not the most gorgeous stretch of coastline in Malaysia, but you will be surrounded by nature, looking out over the Straights of Malaca.The whole area is completely exposed to the sky (no shade), so on sunny days be prepared for sun.You can also reach the sea on the other side of the river by walking past the Maritime Museum (the one housed in a ship). But the seaside is not very attractive over there.Jonker Walk night market 10. Visit famous Jonker Walk night marketJonker Walk night market is one of Malaca’s most famous attractions, especially among Malaysians who come down from Kuala Lumpur and other nearby towns to enjoy the bustling street stalls and festive atmosphere. Stalls sell everything from food, snacks and drinks to clothing, accessories and toys.Jonker Walk night market is open every Fri, Sat and Sunday evenings from about 6 pm – midnight. It’s centered on Jalan Hang Jebat and spills onto several side streets.It’s a very noisy and crowded affair. If you enjoy that sort of thing, you’ll love it. But if you abhor crowds, you might want to give it a miss.Speaking of crowds, Malaca is very different on weekends and during the week. Weekends tend to be crowded, noisy and bustling. Weekdays, Malaca is calm, quiet and peaceful.——————————————————————————————————————————–You might also like:10 Free Things to do in Penang Malaysia10 Free Things to do in Kuala Lumpur———————————————————————————————————————————  /* /* 4 comments Talon says: 2013/02/22 at 9:51 pm (UTC 8 ) ReplyTimely since we’re going to Malaysia in a couple of weeks! Lash WorldTour says: 2013/02/23 at 1:44 pm (UTC 8 ) ReplyNice!I certainly hope we can arrange a time & place to meet up! I’ll be heading north from Malaysia & you’ll be heading south from Thailand… right en route to each other. :)cheers, Lash ciki says: 2013/02/23 at 9:45 am (UTC 8 ) ReplyGreat post babe! Love the vivid pics too! :) btw, Malacca is spelt with a double c. Either that or Melaka, in the local spelling. Cheers! Lash WorldTour says: 2013/02/23 at 1:41 pm (UTC 8 ) ReplyTHanks Mei!Yeah, I did notice those other 2 spellings of Malaca… but somehow I thought this spelling was used to. Guess I just wasn’t paying enough attention. :) I’ll change it now. THanks.cheers, LashLeave a Reply Cancel replyYour email address will not be published.Name:Email:Website:Message:You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong> [...]

  3. 10 Free Things to do in Malacca - Malaysia - LashWorldTour » LashWorldTour says:

    [...] LashWorldTourTravel Blog offering Cultural Insights, Travel Tips, and Tales of Adventure from 14+ years of world travelsHOMEABOUTAbout LashWorldTourAbout LashContactWhat’s in a name?LashWorldTour Travel MapLash’s Travel Fast FactsMissionsWorld Travels Overview: 1991-2011PressDisclaimerCOUNTRIESASIABALI- INDONESIABalinese CultureDiving in BaliBicycling in BaliAmedSanurBali MiscBANGLADESHBRUNEICAMBODIASHANGHAI- CHINAHONG KONGINDONESIABaliJavaLombokJAPANLAOSMALAYSIAKuala LumpurPenangLangkawiBorneoDiving in MalaysiaMalaysia MiscMYANMARNEPALPHILIPPINESSINGAPORESRI LANKATHAILANDVIETNAMAUSTRALIAEUROPEENGLANDSPAINS AMERICABRAZILUSAAdventuresBicycle TravelCycling in Bali SeriesHikingMotorbike TravelScuba DivingSky DivingSurvivor TV CrewTravel DisastersWWOOFCruisesTravel TalesCulturePhoto GalleriesTravel Tips10 Free Things to do in… SeriesAccommodation TipsFlight TipsLuxury Travel TipsMoney TipsSafety TipsWhy Living Overseas is Better SeriesMisc Travel TipsBeyond GuidebooksTravel ResourcesTRAVEL INTERVIEWSBook ReviewsHotel – Tour – Museum ReviewsLINKSTravel StoreFREE eBookTravel Books StoreLash’s Guidebooks to Bali wp_flash_img_show will display here (config: default)« Travel Tale: How I Missed My Trip to the Dominican Republic 10 Free Things to do in Malacca – Malaysia 2013/02/22 by Lash WorldTourfamous colonial Dutch buildings in Malaka – Malaysia10 Free Things to do in Malacca – MalaysiaMelacca is a famous historical port town on the west coast of Malaysia, located about 2 hours southwest of Kuala Lumpur. For several centuries from the mid 1400s, Malacca was one of the most important ports on the old Asian trading route. It attracted traders, merchants and workers from Java, Sumatra, India, Arabia, Persia, China, Thailand and European countries. Not surprisingly, the town soon was filled with shops, temples, homes and the cultures representing the various countries trading there.Today Malacca still features many of the original Chinese shop-houses, temples, mosques, churches, forts and other historic buildings. It also has nearly 40 museums and is packed full of guest houses and hotels. As a result, Malacca is one of Malaysia’s most interesting and popular destinations, both for foreign travelers and Malaysians. Its proximity to KL also makes it very easy to visit.Although Malacca is not especially expensive, it’s still great to have a handful of free activities to enjoy. For budget travelers, the cost of accommodation and food in Malaca could easily chew up the entire budget. In that case, free activities are more along the lines of essential.Following are 10 fun, intriguing things to do in Malacca that will easily keep visitors busy for several days.Malaca historic district street decorated for Chinese New Year1. Wander Malaca’s historic district streetsMalaca is primarily famous for its charming historic district where several narrow roads are lined with dozens of restored original Chinese shop-houses. Nowadays many of the shop-houses have been converted into guest houses, boutiques, cafes, tea shops, restaurants and art galleries. Others are still used as local peoples’ private homes. Various temples are also scattered around the area.Simply wander around and enjoy the beautiful architecture and daily life of this lovely historic port town.charming Malaca River 2. Stroll along the riverOne extra charm of historic Malaca is the lovely Malaca River that meanders its way through the heart of the historic district. Walkways line both sides of the river for several km, making it a relaxing place to stroll.Along the riverside you’ll come across potted plants and gardens, benches, several public toilets, a few eating spots, a section of brightly painted cafes and bars (open in evenings). Small river boats carry visitors up and down the river. Make a short leisurely stroll or walk for a couple of hour.Malaysian Architecture Museum3. Learn about Malaysian architectureMalaca has an astounding 40 museums packed into its small historic district. They cover every topic from art to culture to history to politics as well as a bunch of quirky topics. Most museums charge modest admission fees ( 2-5 RM / $ 0.65-1.50 US). Even better, a few museums are free.The Malaysian Architecture Museum is a free museum that presents the history of architecture in Malaysia as well as the many different architectural styles, building techniques and materials.If you’re a fan of architecture, you’re going to love this museum.St Paul’s Hill4. Climb Malaca’s historic St. Paul’s Hill (Bukit St Paul)Right smack in the middle of the European colonial section of historic Malaca stands a small hill. Many Dutch, Portuguese and British buildings line the base of the hill. On top are the remains of St Paul’s Church.At the base of the hill, near the beautiful Malaysian Proclamation of Independence Memorial Hall, is famous ‘A Fmosa’,a stone entryway and a few cannons, the remains of a Dutch fort. From there you can walk up stairs to the hilltop. Besides St Paul’s church, the hill offers commanding views over historic Malaca and the surprisingly close seaside.Several local artists and musicians hang out on the hill, hoping to sell their paintings or catch donations for their music from passing tourists. Last time I visited, a colony of friendly young cats were hanging out on the hilltop as well.You can also access the hill by stairs beside the Architecture Museum.colorful boutique in Malaca 5. Browse art galleries and boutiquesAs I mentioned earlier, many of Malaca’s restored shop-houses now house art galleries and boutiques. Spend an hour or an afternoon checking out local artists’ work and browsing small boutiques. They sell antiques, jewelry, home interiors, knick-knacks, clothing, accessories and Malaysian handicrafts.Chinese Temple – Malaca6. Go temple hoppingAs a major port on the old Asian trading route, Malaca attracted people from all over the world who settled and set up business. Those communities built their own temples, mosques and churches, many of which still stand today.Malaca maps show all the major ones, so simply use your map to conduct your own temple hopping tour. You’ll find elaborately carved and gilded Chinese temples, highly ornate Indian Hindu temples, more austere white-washed Mosques and several types of churches from the Dutch, Portuguese and British residents.cat preparing to get a good petting7.  Pet Malaca’s catsUnlike most places around Asia, Malaca’s cats are not afraid of people. In fact, they really love a good pat by any passing strangers. They’ll let you pet and scratch them to your heart’s content.If you love cats, Malaca offers plenty of opportunities for you to enjoy these wonderful furry friends.Fort Malaca ruins 8. Check out the original Fort MalacaMalaca’s most famous forts were built by the Portuguese and Dutch. But before those Europe invaders came along, Malaca’s Sultan had a fort built of handsome red-brown stone beside the Malaca River. It was later destroyed by the Portuguese.Fort Malaca’s ruins still sit beside the river near the main bridge connecting the residential district and the Colonial buildings area. A large placard explains the fort’s history in brief.view of the Straights of Malaca from St Paul Hill9. Stroll along the seaside Although you can’t tell at all from the center of Malaca’s historic district (except from the top of St Paul’s Hill), the neighborhood is only a stone’s throw away from the sea. A 20-30 minute walk along either side of the Malaca River will take you there.The seaside is much nicer on the Lorong Hang Jebat / residential side of the river. Walk along Lorong Hang Jebat past luxurious Casa del Rio Hotel and simply continue following the roads out to the sea. Soon after the hotel, you’ll have to make a sharp left turn towards a high bridge.Once you reach the seaside, you’ll find a long walkway backed by spacious green fields. It’s not the most gorgeous stretch of coastline in Malaysia, but you will be surrounded by nature, looking out over the Straights of Malaca.The whole area is completely exposed to the sky (no shade), so on sunny days be prepared for sun.You can also reach the sea on the other side of the river by walking past the Maritime Museum (the one housed in a ship). But the seaside is not very attractive over there.Jonker Walk night market 10. Visit famous Jonker Walk night marketJonker Walk night market is one of Malaca’s most famous attractions, especially among Malaysians who come down from Kuala Lumpur and other nearby towns to enjoy the bustling street stalls and festive atmosphere. Stalls sell everything from food, snacks and drinks to clothing, accessories and toys.Jonker Walk night market is open every Fri, Sat and Sunday evenings from about 6 pm – midnight. It’s centered on Jalan Hang Jebat and spills onto several side streets.It’s a very noisy and crowded affair. If you enjoy that sort of thing, you’ll love it. But if you abhor crowds, you might want to give it a miss.Speaking of crowds, Malaca is very different on weekends and during the week. Weekends tend to be crowded, noisy and bustling. Weekdays, Malaca is calm, quiet and peaceful.——————————————————————————————————————————–You might also like:10 Free Things to do in Penang Malaysia10 Free Things to do in Kuala Lumpur———————————————————————————————————————————  /* /* 4 comments Talon says: 2013/02/22 at 9:51 pm (UTC 8 ) ReplyTimely since we’re going to Malaysia in a couple of weeks! Lash WorldTour says: 2013/02/23 at 1:44 pm (UTC 8 ) ReplyNice!I certainly hope we can arrange a time & place to meet up! I’ll be heading north from Malaysia & you’ll be heading south from Thailand… right en route to each other. :)cheers, Lash ciki says: 2013/02/23 at 9:45 am (UTC 8 ) ReplyGreat post babe! Love the vivid pics too! :) btw, Malacca is spelt with a double c. Either that or Melaka, in the local spelling. Cheers! Lash WorldTour says: 2013/02/23 at 1:41 pm (UTC 8 ) ReplyTHanks Mei!Yeah, I did notice those other 2 spellings of Malaca… but somehow I thought this spelling was used to. Guess I just wasn’t paying enough attention. :) I’ll change it now. THanks.cheers, LashLeave a Reply Cancel replyYour email address will not be published.Name:Email:Website:Message:You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong> [...]

  4. 10 Free Things to do in Malacca - Malaysia - LashWorldTour » LashWorldTour says:

    [...] LashWorldTourTravel Blog offering Cultural Insights, Travel Tips, and Tales of Adventure from 14+ years of world travelsHOMEABOUTAbout LashWorldTourAbout LashContactWhat’s in a name?LashWorldTour Travel MapLash’s Travel Fast FactsMissionsWorld Travels Overview: 1991-2011PressDisclaimerCOUNTRIESASIABALI- INDONESIABalinese CultureDiving in BaliBicycling in BaliAmedSanurBali MiscBANGLADESHBRUNEICAMBODIASHANGHAI- CHINAHONG KONGINDONESIABaliJavaLombokJAPANLAOSMALAYSIAKuala LumpurPenangLangkawiBorneoDiving in MalaysiaMalaysia MiscMYANMARNEPALPHILIPPINESSINGAPORESRI LANKATHAILANDVIETNAMAUSTRALIAEUROPEENGLANDSPAINS AMERICABRAZILUSAAdventuresBicycle TravelCycling in Bali SeriesHikingMotorbike TravelScuba DivingSky DivingSurvivor TV CrewTravel DisastersWWOOFCruisesTravel TalesCulturePhoto GalleriesTravel Tips10 Free Things to do in… SeriesAccommodation TipsFlight TipsLuxury Travel TipsMoney TipsSafety TipsWhy Living Overseas is Better SeriesMisc Travel TipsBeyond GuidebooksTravel ResourcesTRAVEL INTERVIEWSBook ReviewsHotel – Tour – Museum ReviewsLINKSTravel StoreFREE eBookTravel Books StoreLash’s Guidebooks to Bali wp_flash_img_show will display here (config: default)« Travel Tale: How I Missed My Trip to the Dominican Republic 10 Free Things to do in Malacca – Malaysia 2013/02/22 by Lash WorldTourfamous colonial Dutch buildings in Malaka – Malaysia10 Free Things to do in Malacca – MalaysiaMelacca is a famous historical port town on the west coast of Malaysia, located about 2 hours southwest of Kuala Lumpur. For several centuries from the mid 1400s, Malacca was one of the most important ports on the old Asian trading route. It attracted traders, merchants and workers from Java, Sumatra, India, Arabia, Persia, China, Thailand and European countries. Not surprisingly, the town soon was filled with shops, temples, homes and the cultures representing the various countries trading there.Today Malacca still features many of the original Chinese shop-houses, temples, mosques, churches, forts and other historic buildings. It also has nearly 40 museums and is packed full of guest houses and hotels. As a result, Malacca is one of Malaysia’s most interesting and popular destinations, both for foreign travelers and Malaysians. Its proximity to KL also makes it very easy to visit.Although Malacca is not especially expensive, it’s still great to have a handful of free activities to enjoy. For budget travelers, the cost of accommodation and food in Malaca could easily chew up the entire budget. In that case, free activities are more along the lines of essential.Following are 10 fun, intriguing things to do in Malacca that will easily keep visitors busy for several days.Malaca historic district street decorated for Chinese New Year1. Wander Malacca’s historic district streetsMalacca is primarily famous for its charming historic district where several narrow roads are lined with dozens of restored original Chinese shop-houses. Nowadays many of the shop-houses have been converted into guest houses, boutiques, cafes, tea shops, restaurants and art galleries. Others are still used as local peoples’ private homes. Various temples are also scattered around the area.Simply wander around and enjoy the beautiful architecture and daily life of this lovely historic port town.charming Malaca River 2. Stroll along the riverOne extra charm of historic Malacca is the lovely Malacca River that meanders its way through the heart of the historic district. Walkways line both sides of the river for several km, making it a relaxing place to stroll.Along the riverside you’ll come across potted plants and gardens, benches, several public toilets, a few eating spots, a section of brightly painted cafes and bars (open in evenings). Small river boats carry visitors up and down the river. Make a short leisurely stroll or walk for a couple of hour.Malaysian Architecture Museum3. Learn about Malaysian architectureMalacca has an astounding 40 museums packed into its small historic district. They cover every topic from art to culture to history to politics as well as a bunch of quirky topics. Most museums charge modest admission fees ( 2-5 RM / $ 0.65-1.50 US). Even better, a few museums are free.The Malaysian Architecture Museum is a free museum that presents the history of architecture in Malaysia as well as the many different architectural styles, building techniques and materials.If you’re a fan of architecture, you’re going to love this museum.St Paul’s Hill4. Climb Malacca’s historic St. Paul’s Hill (Bukit St Paul)Right smack in the middle of the European colonial section of historic Malacca stands a small hill. Many Dutch, Portuguese and British buildings line the base of the hill. On top are the remains of St Paul’s Church.At the base of the hill, near the beautiful Malaysian Proclamation of Independence Memorial Hall, is famous ‘A Fmosa’,a stone entryway and a few cannons, the remains of a Dutch fort. From there you can walk up stairs to the hilltop. Besides St Paul’s church, the hill offers commanding views over historic Malacca and the surprisingly close seaside.Several local artists and musicians hang out on the hill, hoping to sell their paintings or catch donations for their music from passing tourists. Last time I visited, a colony of friendly young cats were hanging out on the hilltop as well.You can also access the hill by stairs beside the Architecture Museum.colorful boutique in Malaca 5. Browse art galleries and boutiquesAs I mentioned earlier, many of Malacca’s restored shop-houses now house art galleries and boutiques. Spend an hour or an afternoon checking out local artists’ work and browsing small boutiques. They sell antiques, jewelry, home interiors, knick-knacks, clothing, accessories and Malaysian handicrafts.Chinese Temple – Malaca6. Go temple hoppingAs a major port on the old Asian trading route, Malacca attracted people from all over the world who settled and set up business. Those communities built their own temples, mosques and churches, many of which still stand today.Malacca maps show all the major ones, so simply use your map to conduct your own temple hopping tour. You’ll find elaborately carved and gilded Chinese temples, highly ornate Indian Hindu temples, more austere white-washed Mosques and several types of churches from the Dutch, Portuguese and British residents.cat preparing to get a good petting7.  Pet Malacca’s catsUnlike most places around Asia, Malacca’s cats are not afraid of people. In fact, they really love a good pat by any passing strangers. They’ll let you pet and scratch them to your heart’s content.If you love cats, Malacca offers plenty of opportunities for you to enjoy these wonderful furry friends.Fort Malaca ruins 8. Check out the original Fort MalaccaMalacca’s most famous forts were built by the Portuguese and Dutch. But before those Europe invaders came along, Malacca’s Sultan had a fort built of handsome red-brown stone beside the Malacca River. It was later destroyed by the Portuguese.Fort Malacca’s ruins still sit beside the river near the main bridge connecting the residential district and the Colonial buildings area. A large placard explains the fort’s history in brief.view of the Straights of Malaca from St Paul Hill9. Stroll along the seaside Although you can’t tell at all from the center of Malacca’s historic district (except from the top of St Paul’s Hill), the neighborhood is only a stone’s throw away from the sea. A 20-30 minute walk along either side of the Malacca River will take you there.The seaside is much nicer on the Lorong Hang Jebat / residential side of the river. Walk along Lorong Hang Jebat past luxurious Casa del Rio Hotel and simply continue following the roads out to the sea. Soon after the hotel, you’ll have to make a sharp left turn towards a high bridge.Once you reach the seaside, you’ll find a long walkway backed by spacious green fields. It’s not the most gorgeous stretch of coastline in Malaysia, but you will be surrounded by nature, looking out over the Straights of Malacca.The whole area is completely exposed to the sky (no shade), so on sunny days be prepared for sun.You can also reach the sea on the other side of the river by walking past the Maritime Museum (the one housed in a ship). But the seaside is not very attractive over there.Jonker Walk night market 10. Visit famous Jonker Walk night marketJonker Walk night market is one of Malacca’s most famous attractions, especially among Malaysians who come down from Kuala Lumpur and other nearby towns to enjoy the bustling street stalls and festive atmosphere. Stalls sell everything from food, snacks and drinks to clothing, accessories and toys.Jonker Walk night market is open every Fri, Sat and Sunday evenings from about 6 pm – midnight. It’s centered on Jalan Hang Jebat and spills onto several side streets.It’s a very noisy and crowded affair. If you enjoy that sort of thing, you’ll love it. But if you abhor crowds, you might want to give it a miss.Speaking of crowds, Malacca is very different on weekends and during the week. Weekends tend to be crowded, noisy and bustling. Weekdays, Malacca is calm, quiet and peaceful.——————————————————————————————————————————–You might also like:10 Free Things to do in Penang Malaysia10 Free Things to do in Kuala Lumpur———————————————————————————————————————————  /* /* 4 comments Talon says: 2013/02/22 at 9:51 pm (UTC 8 ) ReplyTimely since we’re going to Malaysia in a couple of weeks! Lash WorldTour says: 2013/02/23 at 1:44 pm (UTC 8 ) ReplyNice!I certainly hope we can arrange a time & place to meet up! I’ll be heading north from Malaysia & you’ll be heading south from Thailand… right en route to each other. :)cheers, Lash ciki says: 2013/02/23 at 9:45 am (UTC 8 ) ReplyGreat post babe! Love the vivid pics too! :) btw, Malacca is spelt with a double c. Either that or Melaka, in the local spelling. Cheers! Lash WorldTour says: 2013/02/23 at 1:41 pm (UTC 8 ) ReplyTHanks Mei!Yeah, I did notice those other 2 spellings of Malaca… but somehow I thought this spelling was used to. Guess I just wasn’t paying enough attention. :) I’ll change it now. THanks.cheers, LashLeave a Reply Cancel replyYour email address will not be published.Name:Email:Website:Message:You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong> [...]

  5. 10 FREE THINGS TO DO IN PENANG- MALAYSIA » LashWorldTour says:

    [...] KL – pt 1 and pt 2 [...]

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