We are rapidly approaching July 5th, the official start of school so decided we should get away for a few days while we still can.  We headed to Melaka (formally called Malacca) which is on the west coast about 150 km from KL,  a port on the Straits of Malacca.

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In the early fifteenth century it was already a famous marketing town on a major trading route for spices and textiles.  Over the years the Malay people were taken over  by the Portuguese, Dutch and the British all of whom have left their mark on the city.  Some of it is a little cheesy, like the fake windmill in the Dutch Square but other aspects are quite amazing.

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We spent most of a day wandering around the ruins of an old fort and St Paul’s church on top of the hill.  It was built around 1600 and there are several graves of people who were buried as early as 1650.

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At the base of the hill is Christ Church which was  built in 1753 to commemorate the 100th year of the Dutch occupation of Melacca. There is still a service held every Sunday in this beautiful church which has a very simple white washed interior with 200 year old,  hand carved pews and heavy timber beams,  each cut from a single tree.

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