Revolving viewing tower
Menara Taming Sari’s revolving viewing tower is not quite a fairground ride, but it is a fun (if somewhat pricey) way to view the sights of Melaka.
The slowly spinning donut-shaped viewing chamber rises 80 metres up the tower (menara in Malay), offering a 360-degree vista over St Paul’s Hill, the Melaka River, Melaka’s newly reclaimed lands and much of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed city. Seats face outward around the glass-enclosed chamber, which can hold up to 66 passengers, so everyone is guaranteed a good view. Air-con will cool you down, but we found it way too cool even on a hot day.
Once filled with enough punters (we had to wait about half an hour), the chamber rises to the top of the tower and descends slowly as it spins, getting in a couple of rotations in the less-than-10-minute ride. You can add to the experience by hiring binoculars for three ringgit. The ride advertises (safe!) Swiss technology, but slightly disconcerting, a sheet with prayers is displayed near the entrance, although only in Malay and Arabic. The tower is named for a mythical kris (traditional dagger) of Malay folklore, Taming Sari, so skilfully crafted that anyone wielding it was unbeatable, said to be owned by the great warrior Hang Tuah. One of its mystical powers was to hover in the air, not unlike the spinning tower of Menara Taming Sari, which when the viewing chamber is at the top resembles a kris.
Tickets are sold in an adjacent complex, which offers a couple of other attractions including bumper cars and Duck Tours. We’d recommend a daytime ride on a clear day. The attraction gets busy on weekends and holidays, so be prepared to queue. Time your visit early in the course of your trip to Melaka as it will offer you a good understanding of the geography of the town and layout of the sights (it helped us spot a nearby public swimming pool we didn’t know was there!).
For other views head to the viewing platform at The Shore Sky Tower, where you can walk out onto a glass-bottomed platform 43 floors above the city (makes us nervous just to think of it). Entry is via the 42nd floor of The Shore Mall. Or, not so high but an excellent backdrop for a drink, try Alto Sky Lounge on the 22nd floor of Hatten Hotel. For more down-to-earth views of the town, jump on a river cruise of the Melaka River, good to do in the evening to see the pretty city lights reflected on the water.
Address: Jalan Merdeka, Melaka
T: (06) 288 1100; (06) 281 3366;
Coordinates (for GPS): 102º14'50.04" E, 2º11'27.36" N
See position in Apple or Google Maps: Apple Maps | Google Maps
Admission: Adults 23 ringgit, kids (below 12) 15 ringgit (17/11 ringgit for Malaysians).
These tours are provided by Travelfish partner GetYourGuide.
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