If you're looking for an idyllic heritage town to spend a quiet weekend in, the charming and quaint Malacca is only a few hours drive away from Singapore. Rows of shophouses, Peranakan antiques, winding laneways and plentiful of good food at every corner, this town is your dream road trip destination. There's history, heaps of culture, too much food and many happy photo opportunities to be had.
EAT Pak Putra
Despite all the guide books telling you to eat your weight in assam laksa and chicken rice balls, skip the advice and try out Pak Putra, an open-air, open-at-night-only establishment. For the best naan you'll have, amazing Tandoori chicken, and assorted curries, this is a must-go when you're in town.
DRINK The Daily Fix
Blink and you might miss this buzzy cafe located within a gift store. You'll be surprised to find that this is no sleepy, quiet spot. Still, if you do bag a spot, the coffee is the best in town. Rose lattes, ice mochas and the cold-brewed tea (ask the staff to see what's brewing for the day), it's the erfect complement to your short getaway. The kids will love the selection of fluffy pancakes in gula melaka, chocolate chip and more.
DO The Clay House
Here's a different sort of holiday shopping: it's where you take the time to make your own wares to bring home. Drop by the rustic store and pottery studio where you can sign up for a session to get your hands dirty. From sculpting to glazing, you'll be bringing home your own handmade cups, bowls, lamps, aromatherapy burners and more.
STAY 1825 Gallery Hotel
When in Malacca, stay by the river, just so you won't be too far from all the good food and good spots in town.This colonial-style heritage building is located just outside the main Jonker Street area but still close to everything. Rooms are spacious so if you're rooming with the family, there's enough sleeping space for everyone. Splurge on a room upgrade with river views, a balcony and your own personal whirlpool tub.
If you do just one thing... Besides just eating and cafe-hopping, Malacca is huge on its antique stores as well. From Chinese porcelain stools to crystals and gemstones (think agate face rollers and rose quartz stone massagers), batik and fabric stores to rattan furniture shops, it's a different kind of shopping sans malls here in Malacca.