Sunday, January 8, 2012

Of Melaka Part 4 - Villa Sentosa, Kampung Morten

The highlight of the Melaka trip for me was the visit to Villa Sentosa in Kampung Morten. It was the last destination we went, abruptly decided just before we drove back to KL. Situated next to the river, it was easily seen during our boat cruise, but was a bit tricky to find on land. 

The house, initially a living house was converted by its owner Tuan Haji Hashim bin Dato Demang Hj Abd Ghan into a living museum. When we went to visit, his son, whom I regret to make the effort to know his name, welcomed us into the house and made a little tour. 

I fell in love with the internal courtyard as soon as I entered the house. For a whole year of observing plans of traditional Malay house, the experience of actually stepping inside the space is beyond words. Flashes of memories how the traditional Malays use the internal courtyard to do their house chores such as washing and drying laundries, afternoon talks, socializing with their neighbours just coming inside my head non stop.

I vowed to myself that someday, my future home would like to have this traditional internal courtyard as part of the concept.

Entering the interior, many antiques await us to appreciate. 

Rumah Ibu - Mother of the House
Bride's room


Serambi depan

Most of the stuffs are from personal collection, and personal memorabilia, such as the pictures of Tuan Haji Hashim himself, his wife and the whole siblings. Apparently, the son is still living in the house, and offering free tours during the day for the visitors. Living true to its name, Villa Sentosa is a living museum as one should expect, and not mundane and static like other museum.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Of Melaka Part 3 - Melaka River Cruise

The next day, my husband and I played tourist by getting the River Cruise to enjoy the river scene. Initially I would prefer to walk along the river bed but we didn't have all the time in the world. So much to (re)visit and see, but so little time, and little willpower. The fee is RM10 per adult, for a 45-minute ride. 

If anyone is to ride the boat, I would suggest you be prepared to be splashed by some river water (which at some areas are smelly!) My, we sit at the very front to take some good photos and that was also the bad water-spot.

Other than Kampung Morten, the ride passes along the back of the shophouses, with nice graffiti on the wall. These in one way, has complimented the unique characters each houses has. Too bad, the ride was too fast for some appreciation of details. For this, I'd suggest taking a walk for better view and better camera angle.

Kampung Morten 

Of Melaka Part 2 - Melaka Zoo

Badak sumbu - Rhinoceros

Of many things I learnt from our trip this time, one of them is that my husband loves going to the zoo while I enjoy looking at buildings slash architecture slash culture. I have nothing to say to my defense, in fact I confess that I regret I don't love animals like he does and that I did not let him spend more time in the zoo. I'm such a terrible wife, if only I love and love animal, we would have more things in common. 

But then, because he loves thing that I normally take for granted, I'd get the opportunity to appreciate them more. And to appreciate life. Because animals are God's creatures, while building and cultures are man's creations and exaggerations. Learning God's and man's creation should be an opportunity not to be missed. InsyaAllah.. So I would be happy to go to other zoos in the country with him next time, and especially with our children.

The first place we went as soon as we arrived in Melaka was actually Taman Mini Asean (because I like to see the house miniatures? yes) but the place was closed due to construction so this first-place trophy goes to Melaka Zoo. RM7 per entry for adult during day time and RM10 for night time. 

Because I haven't been to the zoo for so long, which the last time was the Kuala Gandah Elephant Conservation Centre, I was actually quite amazed with the landscape. Despite its location next to the main road, the zoo is canopied by the huge and tall trees, hence the shaded and most importantly, breezy environment. 

Top left clockwise - Zebra; deers, Malayan tiger, bears.

Top left clockwise - Orang Utan; Orang Utan baby; Chimpanzee; Wildbeest



Some bulls I can't get to remember the names

Crocodiles sharing man-made pond. A bit too crowded I think.

Can't help taking this picture. Hornbills should remind me of Sarawak, but what I could remember was Luffy and their adventure to Skypea


Although it's fun looking at the animals, it is actually not fun looking at some of them living in the habitat they are not familiar with. Plus, with the constraint of cages, fences etc limiting their natural activities. And being fed with food from the foodtrays. Truthfully, I feel sorry for them. I would prefer them to be let free in their natural environment. Like the safari in Africa. That one, I would LOVE to go and see. 

Overall, the zoo was awesome. Despite many people coming, it didn't feel crowded. Kids would love this place very much. We might come back later.