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Bus to MelacaIdeally located, accessible in both monsoon seasons and on the strategically located narrowest point in the straits between Malaysia and Sumatra, Melaca had the potential of growing into a major port and prosperous town from its early beginnings. But it's when the Islam culture was adopted, during the 14th century, when Melaca really started evolving into a booming economy. During this time, the Sultans of Melaca attracted Arab traders from far and wide, whilst trade with merchants of all races and religions continued to blossom.
Around the middle of the 15th Century, after Chinese Muslim Admiral Cheng Ho's visit to Melaca, China and Melaca became staunch trading partners. Not much later the powerful Melacan kingdom was founded by the Sultan of Samudra-Pasaicalled. The Malay era had arrived.
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But soon a new power struggle ensued with the arrival of the Portuguese in 1509. Although they quickly wore out their welcome and were forced to retreat, the Portuguese returned in earnest in 1511, this time conquering the city of Melaca. During this period, a large Eurasian community prospered here, protected by fortified walls and arrays of canons, designed to keep out other European nations venturing into Asia for a slice of the exotic commodities pie.
It was the Dutch that brought down the Portuguese reign in Melaca. But the Dutch, in turn, would lose their grip on Melaca during their war with the French and the British then stepped in and took the Melacan spoils.
Melaca's rich and turbulent history has led to a diverse people, the Babas and Nyonyas, the Peranakan culture, and a delicious fusion-type cuisine. To this day Melaca is renown for its colorful echos from past nationalities and rulers and that once made Melaca their home.
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Cultural treasures abound in Melaca
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