Tag Archives: Dutch colonialism

Melaka and its Portuguese past

Journeying one hundred and fifty kilometres south of Kuala Lumpur, we reached Melaka. Unlike KL, Melaka was grimy. I can still picture walking over a bridge that crossed the Melaka River where dilapidated houses drooped over the water’s edge. But the tourist hub was well maintained.

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Same place, a decade later

We arrived in Kuala Lumpur from Medan in Sumatra and spent three days roaming markets and exploring the city. KL had changed since my previous visit before my youngest daughter had been born. Modern buildings extended skywards. Footpaths were easy to navigate. And the city was vibrant. But remnants of the old still existed, like the Chinese temple with its overpowering infusion of giant incense coils.

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Zeelandia fort (later anping fort)

Anping Fort was in the heart of the area’s tourist bubble, where from the bus stop, stalls lined both sides of the road all the way to the entrance into the fort. The site was typical of 17thcentury forts and a symbol of Dutch governance on the island. 

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