Where We Be
Small tour boats ply up and down the Melaka River all day (9 am - 11:30 pm)
and offer a leisurely and affordable way to see the prettiest parts of the city
River Walk & Cruise -- Melaka, Malaysia
We suggest walking along the river first, preferably in
the early morning when all is calm and quiet -- and cool!
Murals and street art have turned ordinary buildings into colorful attractions
Although Penang is the street art capital of Malaysia, we think Melaka's river walk
could give it a run for its money. Just have a look at the three images below.
Stand on one of the bridges crossing the river and remember that
Melaka was once the most important commercial port in all of Asia
Early on you'll pass the neo-gothic Church of St. Francis
Xavier built in 1856. It's located just past Dutch Square.
Much of the art focuses on Melaka's rich history
and culture, but some of it is just colorful and fun!
Along the way we spotted this large Malayan water monitor swimming in the canal
We saw these jackfruit growing right next to the path. The fruit is
sweet and tangy, like a cross between mangos and bananas.
This is the swanky Casa Del Rio Hotel which borders the Melaka River. When it came time to leave Melaka,
this was our bus meeting point! It's one of the reasons we chose Superior Coach bus service to
Singapore. Casa Del Rio was an easy five-minute walk from our Courtyard at Hereen hotel.
After our river cruise we parked ourselves at Sid’s Pub, just across from
the Dutch fort, and enjoyed a beer while looking out over the water
We began our cruise at the Muara Jetty located just a short walk from Dutch / Red Square. From the square, face the river
and turn left, following along the river towards the Portuguese ship replica. You'll soon see the River Cruise ticket counter.
Taking a river cruise may sound a bit touristy but that doesn't
mean it isn't fun! We almost didn't do this but are so glad we did.
You'll sense a change as you go further along the river and leave the historic parts of
Melaka behind. The skyscraper up ahead signifies the more modern parts of the city.
The cruise takes you upstream as far as Taman Rempah jetty (an alternate boarding point), then
the boat will turn around and head back. The round trip takes about 45 minutes and covers 9 km.
We spied another water monitor hugging the side of the canal, trying to blend in
and stay hidden. The boat slowed to a crawl so we could watch it for awhile
From this angle it looks like an enormous sea snake. Now that we think of it,
we never saw anyone swimming in the river, and maybe this is the reason why!
Bridges cross the river periodically so you
can pick your side based on views and shade
The river area has received a major facelift in recent times
and has now become a centerpiece of tourism in Melaka
River Cruise
River Walk
One benefit of the cruise is that it takes you further than you might want
to walk, so you'll see parts of the river you would have missed otherwise
Maps are posted along the path. It's pretty much
impossible to get lost as long as you stay by the river.
We've saved the best for last: the River Walk.
The Melaka River is where the town began, and
it has played a crucial role in the city's history.
The best place to start is right near Dutch / Red
Square, where Jonker Street crosses the river.
From here you can follow the quiet paths that
wend along the river on either side. It reminds
us a bit of the River Walk in San Antonio, Texas
but with an Asian twist. Strolling along the
Melaka River was our favorite morning activity
as the lighting was beautiful and all was quiet
and calm. Murals and colorful street art cover
many of the building facades along the way.

A second great way to experience the river is
by boat. You can take a pleasant river cruise
for just RM 16 ($4) each. This was great value
and an enjoyable way to spend the hot part of
the afternoon as you get a nice breeze along
the way. We cruised beyond the part of the
river we’d walked before, so we got to see
some new territory. And we spotted two large
water monitors swimming in the canal like mini
sea serpents, doing their best to stay hidden.