Vibrant and historical, Melaka is one of the most fun-filled cities in Southeast Asia.

Its energy is bound to sweep you up with diverse and exciting activities.

From the loud trishaws decorated with colored lights and fluffy toys to the bustling night markets of Jonker Street, Melaka has it all.

And with an abundance of fun activities for children, Melaka gets our vote for a family stay.

For your upcoming vacation, choose from our list of the best things to do in Melaka with your family.

1. Stadthuys

Explore the 16th century Stadthuys, which is believed to be the oldest Dutch building in Asia.

Modelled after the Hoorn city hall in Netherlands, it once served as Melaka town hall and Dutch governor’s residence.

Today, it houses several museums such as the Museum of History and Ethnography.

The museum collection features costumes and relics from Melaka’s historical past.

Visitors can browse musical instruments, kitchenware, currency, weapons and stamps.

The collection paints a picture of what life was like for the various Melaka communities throughout its history.

Why is exploring the Iconic Stadthuys a good option for families?

  • It’s a great place for photo ops with the children.
  • You can take the whole family on a fun ride in a Trishaw taxi.
  • It’s ideal for an evening stroll.

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2. Baba Nyonya Heritage Museum

Journey back to 19th century Melaka with a tour of the Baba Nyonya Heritage Museum.

Get the inside scoop on Baba Nyonya culture and heritage with skip-the-line access.

Learn how the historical building was once home to a Peranakan family.

It was then transformed into a museum to preserve their unique cultural heritage.

Along the way, marvel at the architecture, antique furnishings and cultural artefacts.

Gain insights into life in Malaysia during the late 19th century to early 20th century.

Why is a visit to the Baba Nyonya Heritage Museum great for families?

  • It’s a great place to learn the history of Melaka.
  • Everyone in your family can admire the architecture, furnishings and artefacts.
  • It’s a must for first time visitors to Melaka.

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3. Cheng Hoon Teng Temple

Discover the Chinese heritage of Melaka at the Cheng Hoon Teng Temple.

Built in 1673, Cheng Hoon Teng is the oldest temple in Malaysia.

Its amazing ornate roof and painted murals have since been restored using traditional techniques.

Today, the temple remains an active place of worship for the Chinese Buddhist community in Melaka.

On arrival, make sure your family is appropriately dressed and act with respect.

The temple is free to enter, although donations are accepted.

Why is Cheng Hoon Teng Temple a good option for families?

  • For the best experience, time your visit during annual festivals like the Lunar New Year or the winter solstice.
  • Gather here with local families and stay up late celebrating the Dong Zhi Festival.
  • The temple is a must for history buffs and spiritual travellers.

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4. Historical Sites Tour

Discover the cultural and historical sights of Melaka on a private tour.

Marvel at the architecture of Stadthuys and Christ Church.

See the remains of A’Farmosa Fort.

Explore the main gate, prayer halls and traditional opera theatre at Cheng Hoon Teng Temple.

Admire the structural design of Kampung Kling mosque.

See other top landmarks such as St. Paul’s Church, Melaka River, the Middleburg Bastion and Hang Tuah’s Well.

Why is a visit to Melaka’s Historical Sites great for families?

  • At Jonker Street, browse shops selling handicrafts, textiles, antiques and souvenirs.
  • Learn about the traditional houses of Malaysia and Southeast Asia.
  • Family members who love wildlife can enjoy bird watching at Cape Rachado Lighthouse.

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5. Jonker Street

Situated in Melaka’s city center, Jonker Street runs through the heart of Chinatown.

It was once popular for its antique dealers, and it’s still possible to find rare artefacts and relics here.

Shoppers will also be delighted by the array of boutiques, craft shops and restaurants.

Jonker Street comes alive on Friday and Saturday nights during the night market.

Families can watch street performers and eat delicious food at the hawker stalls.

Be sure to sample the chicken rice balls, the Nyonya-style laksa, grilled corn and cendol shaved ice.

Why is eating Street Food at Jonker Street a good option for families?

  • Asian night markets are always fun to experience.
  • It’s a must for foodies, shoppers and people-watchers.
  • You can share tasty treats with the kids at the night market.

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6. Melaka’s Portuguese Square

Portuguese Square is a hub of Portuguese culture and community in Melaka.

By day, visitors can explore the bars, restaurants and museums.

The square comes alive in the evenings and on weekends when locals come to dine out.

Go hungry to feast on amazing seafood and Portuguese cuisine.

Be dazzled by the traditional performances in the square.

Check the bulletin board in the square to be updated on upcoming cultural events.

Why is dining out in Melaka’s Portuguese Square great for families?

  • If you visit around the Feast of Saint Peter you can enjoy live music, food and dancing.
  • At Christmas you can see homes and streets decorated with colorful lights and nativity scenes.
  • The square is a must for foodies and those interested in Malaysia’s colonial history.

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7. Melaka River

Melaka River is a top destination in Melaka that cuts across the city.

The river draws both Malaysians and international visitors who come to soak up its history.

Families also come to marvel at the diverse architecture from the city’s colonial heritage.

There are Portuguese, Dutch and British architectural style buildings to admire along the way.

While on the river, you’ll glide past picturesque riverbanks and sail under many landmark bridges.

A typical day trip from Kuala Lumpur will include this cruise.

Why is a cruise down Melaka River a good option for families?

  • The river is a very popular tourist area in Melaka.
  • It’s a great way to take in the city’s colonial architecture.
  • Families can learn the history of Melaka on this cruise.

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8. Skytrex Adventure Park

Enjoy a thrilling family day out at the Skytrex Adventure Park.

Skytrex Adventure Park is located among the numerous tourist attractions of Ayer Keroh Melaka.

The first of its kind in Malaysia, the park is a hub for extreme sporting activities which kids will love!

Enjoy a tree to tree sky-trekking experience that is safe, fun and will keep your adrenaline racing.

Fly, glide, swing or dangle on different aerial obstacles suspended over the lush tropical Malaysian rain forest.

Enjoy other signature challenges such as the first Skybike in Malaysia, the Tarzan Bungee Swing and the UFO.

Why is a visit to Skytrex Adventure Park great for families?

  • You get to experience a popular forest adventure in Malaysia.
  • The circuit is challenging with plenty of exciting games for everyone.
  • Enjoy an exhilarating family day out with the kids.

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9. Melaka Zoo

Take the kids on a journey of wildlife discovery at Melaka Zoo.

See over 450 species and more than 1,200 specimens of birds, fish, reptiles, mammals and amphibians.

Marvel at tigers, rhinoceros, wild horses, monkeys, panda and more.

Get up close with your favorite animals through the free live displays.

At certain times, you can watch elephants during their feeding session or see the bird show.

Everyone in the family will learn more about wildlife through educational displays around the zoo.

Why is Melaka Zoo a good option for families?

  • It’s an exciting wildlife adventure.
  • Your family will enjoy watching the elephants feeding and the bird show.
  • The kids can learn more about the elementary sciences.

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10. Melaka Wonderland

Have a fun family day out at Melaka Wonderland Theme Park with over 12 attractions.

Enjoy access to thrilling water features and rides in a forest setting.

Take the little ones to Float the Lazy River before catching a ride in the Wave Pool.

For kids who prefer more action, they can enjoy a high-speed ride at Adventure Island.

This active water play structure combines eight slides into one big playground.

The kids will especially enjoy getting drenched by the water dump!

Why is a visit to Melaka Wonderland great for families?

  • There’s something for everyone here.
  • Its guaranteed fun for kids of all ages.
  • You can choose from the child-friendly to adrenaline fueled attractions.

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11. A’ Famosa Water Theme Park

Have a fun-filled day at A’Famosa Water Theme Park.

Enjoy exciting rides and animal encounters at Malaysia’s largest water theme park.

Grab your suits and brace yourselves for a thrilling water escapade.

Escape the hustles of life as you laugh and share in the fun with your family.

Choose from the cool pools, tantalizing treats, awesome attractions and spine-tingling slides.

Continue your adventurous day out at Safari Wonderland and the Old West nearby.

Why is A’Famosa Water Theme Park a good option for families?

  • Children will love the Kids Adventure Pool with its mini slides, water sprays and playground.
  • The whole family can have fun together on the Family Raft.
  • Adults can get an adrenaline rush on the Hula Hula ride.

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12. A’Famosa Old West Cowboy Town

Discover the wild, Wild West at A’Famosa Old West Cowboy Town.

Feel the thrill of exploration in Melaka!

Get rowdy with cowboys and Indians in a charming setting of rustic buildings.

See the culture of the old west come to life with exciting performances.

Your family will enjoy attractions such as the Children Theme Park, the 4D Theater, Carnivals and Fun Fairs.

Continue your adventure at the nearby Safari Wonderland or A’Famosa Water Theme Park.

Why is a visit to A’Famosa Old West Cowboy Town great for families?

  • You all get to spend a fun evening in the charming Old West.
  • The whole family can hit the dance floor and dance to disco music.
  • The day ends with a vibrant fireworks display that the kids will love.

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13. Skywalk in Melaka Bird Park

Covering 1.8 hectares, Melaka Bird Park is the largest aviary in Malaysia.

Visitors can see over 700 bird species that call Malaysia home through the Skywalk.

On the ground floor, there is a miniature river filled with colorful mandarin ducks and swans.

Visit the spacious boardwalk and cascading waterways for a relaxing moment in the park.

You can also enjoy the beautiful natural surroundings of the Ayer Keroh forest.

If you have kids, they can learn more about bird life through the educational and recreational programs.

Why is a walk along the Skywalk in Melaka Bird Park great for families?

  • It’s a relaxing and tranquil bird park for the whole family.
  • Photographers can get beautiful shots of the colorful birds and lush greenery.
  • You can admire the impressive design of the bird park.

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14. Homecooked Peranakan Meal with a Local

Savor an authentic Peranakan home cooked meal with your hostess Cat.

She learned to cook traditional Malay dishes from her late grandmother and mother.

Sip on a refreshing welcome drink before you join Cat at her table.

She will then serve either Malaysian or Peranakan cuisine.

Sample local delicacies such as pineapple kerabu with squid chili and petai, assam prawns pan-fried in tamarind or braised pork in fermented soy bean.

End your meal with kuehs, the popular bite-sized desserts.

Why is enjoying a home cooked Peranakan Meal great for families?

  • It’s perfect for those wishing to connect with local culture over food.
  • You get to visit a local home and explore traditional cuisine and culture.
  • Share delicious food with your loved ones.

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15. Cook Local Dishes

Gain insights into Malay and Peranakan food during a private cooking class at a local’s home.

Your hostess Cat is a passionate cook.

She has taken extensive cooking lessons to expand her knowledge of traditional cuisine.

Cat will invite you into her kitchen where you will learn how to create a Peranakan or Malay dishes.

During the class with your family, you will also be taught how to prepare herbs and greens, fried fish, fermented shrimp and braised pork.

After that, take a seat and feast on your own creations.

Why is learning to cook authentic local dishes a good option for families?

  • You are guaranteed fun for the whole family.
  • You get to learn more about Peranakan and Malay cuisines by cooking them.
  • Kids will enjoy being part of the kitchen and helping the adults cook.

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16. Lion Dance and Other Cultural Shows

Watch the Lion Dance and other cultural performances in a beautiful setting in Melaka.

Join in the fun as you dance to the drum beats of the lion dance performance.

It’s a great way to usher in the Chinese New Year with your family.

During the show, be thrilled by the music, fire crackers and colorful costumes.

Learn the Lion Dance history, operation, basic drumming and lion dance art.

Your family can also enjoy diverse cultural dances such as Malay, Chinese, Portuguese, Indian and Magunatip.

Why is watching the Lion Dance and other cultural shows great for families?

  • It is believed that watching the lion dance helps chase away evil and bring good luck to your family.
  • The kids will enjoy interacting with the colorful creatures.
  • You can enjoy the best performances during the Chinese New Year.

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17. Melaka Thousand Tales of Adventure

Add some adventure to your vacation with a visit to Melaka Thousand Tales of Adventure.

Take part in the fantasy of Sinbad, ultimately defeating the evil Shaman and his Dark Army.

Go on mysterious voyages to the depths of the earth aboard Sinbad’s ship, the Nomad.

Together with your family, search for hidden treasures and uncharted islands, and then help Sinbad save the world.

Enjoy an amazing story told using the latest laser technology and interactive touch screen displays.

Afterwards, go on a relaxing stroll to the nearby Upside Down House Gallery Melaka.

Why is experiencing 7D cinema in Melaka Thousand Tales of adventure fun for families?

  • This attraction is family oriented.
  • The cinematic ride is designed to be enjoyed by the whole family.
  • Your family can bond over this thrilling indoor action.

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18. Melaka Alive

Enjoy Melaka Alive, a musical theater performance that showcases the history of Melaka.

Take your family out for a day of activities and shows within the park.

Enter into the world of Pirate Adventure that will transport you to the golden age of Melaka.

Be dazzled by a 5D theatre experience that uses sophisticated technology and exceptional sound.

Tour the splendid heritage buildings inside the complex such as the Famosa, Taming Sari Tower and Christ Church.

If that’s not enough for the day, you can continue your adventurous day at Safari Wonderland and the Water Theme Park nearby.

Why is running with Pirates in Melaka Alive great for families?

  • It’s a great place to gain a better understanding of Melaka’s rich history.
  • The show is recommended for families that want a more immersive tour in Melaka.
  • Its guaranteed all-round excitement for your whole family.

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Without a doubt, Melaka is charming.

Its historical gems are among the best in the region, attracting travelers around the world.

But besides its history and culture, Melaka offers much more and is ideal for a family vacation.

These are our picks for things to do with your family in Melaka during your next vacation.

Which one will you try first?

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For all new cities, I go overboard on my itinerary, just to see every major attraction. Countries I've visited include New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, China, Cambodia, Japan and Thailand. Mostly Asian countries. Next target - Europe!