Faces of
Malaysia
Pulau Kapas

Pulau Kapas is a small island located only about 6km off Marang in the east coast state of Terengganu (about 1h north of Kuala Terengganu). It has quite and relaxed atmosphere because it is bypassed by the majority of the backpacker circuit looking for a more remote place like the Perhentian Islands. Pulau Kapas only get fairly busy on the weekends when locals come to island. There are a few good snorkeling spots around the island. All accommodations and beach are on the west coast facing the mainland. The west coast is the weather side has no sand beach, only rocks - it can be reached after a short walk through the jungle. Pulau Kapas shuts down during the monsoon season between November and February.

Langkawi

Langkawi is an archipelago of 99 islands in the Andaman Sea, some 30 km off the mainland coast of northwestern Malaysia. The islands are a part of Malaysia’s Kedah state, but are adjacent to the Thai border. By far the largest of the islands is the eponymous Pulau Langkawi with a population of about 45,000. The island is a declared duty-free zone.

The peak season is from December to March when moonson at the eastcoast shuts down most of the Islands there (Perhentian etc.). This makes Langkawi a good island alternative during that time period. Generally though, Langkawi can be visited all year around.

Melaka, Malaysia

A Famosa

address: Jalan Parameswara, Bandar Hilir, 78000 Melaka, Malaysia
melaka-a-famosa2.jpg, The remains of a fortress that was built by the Portuguese in the 16th Century. Also known as Porta De Santiago.
canon in front of the remaining Gate
The remains of a fortress that was built by the Portuguese in the 16th Century. Also known as Porta De Santiago.

A Famosa street view
street view of Porta De Santiago (A Famosa) (Google Streetview, 2015)
 

The fortress was built in 1511 because Commander Albuquerque of the Portuguese fleet believed that Melaka would become an important port linking Portugal and the spice trade from China. At this time other Portuguese were establishing outposts in Macau (China) and Goa (India).

A Famosa Melaka
The last remaining gate of the A Famosa fort
(photo from Wikipedia: Chongkian)


Now there is only one gate left. The fort changed hands in 1641 when the Dutch beat the Portuguese. The dutch renovated the gate in 1670 which the logo “anno 1670” inscribed on the gate’s arch. The fortress changed hands again in the early 19th century when the Dutch handed it over to the British to prevent it from falling into the hands of Napoleon’s expansionist France. The English then distroyed the fortress in 1806, only because of the Intervention of Sir Stamford Raffles (the founder of Singapore) a small part could be saved.

built: 1511 by Portuguese Empire

controlled by: 
Portugal (1511 - 1641)
Netherlands (1641 - 1795)
Britain (1795 - 1807)

demolished: 1807 (except for the still remaining gate)

The government announced in 2007 that A Famosa will be rebuilt.
>> A Famosa rebuilt

Links:

Wikipedia: A Famosa




Related Places

Jalan Kota / Coronation Park

A street full of museums and the adjacent Coronation Park with a displayed first airplane of the Malaysian airforce

Dutch Square (Red Square)

The Dutch Square, also called Red Squared because all the surrounding building painted red, next to the Melaka river is a good starting point for visiting the old part of the town.

St. Paul’s Church

The ruin of St.Paul′s Church is located on top of St.Paul′s Hill and was one of five churches in the fortress complex A Famosa on the hill that was built by the Portuguese in 1521.

Hotels in Melaka

Oriental Riverside Residence

Guesthouse located in old Chinatown with the back facing the Melaka River

Roof Top Guest House and Hostel Melaka

Hostel / Guesthouse in the heritage zone of Melaka with a roof-top area

Attractions

Harmony Street, Melaka

Jalan Tokong Besi in Chinatown is also called Harmony Street because Temples and Mosques of the three main religions of Malaysia are located peacefully in the same small street.

Chinatown Melaka, Melaka

Melaka`s chinatown within the historical city has a very peaceful atmosphere with its narrow streets, especially so at night.

Attractions

Chow Kit, Kuala Lumpur

The area features a large Indonesian community, and more recently, a small African community. It has a daily wet market known as Bazaar Baru Chow Kit which is arguably the largest wet market in Kuala Lumpur. Chow Kit is also known for its red-light district as well as for its nightly gathering of transwomen.

Po Ling Temple, Kuala Lumpur

Chinese Mahayana Buddhist Temple with a monastery at the back, located very close to KLCC / Petronas Twin Twoers along Jalan Ampang