We almost missed the museum as it is discretely tucked away although it is a beautiful traditional Baba Nonya Mansion which was the warehouse of the Chinese Admiral Cheng Ho (Zheng He). An old and very lovely Indian lady who was working at our hotel came to talk to us one morning, and said we should visit it, she gave us a flyer and said she was working over there too. She convinced us (as well as the flyer) and we did visit it. And what a wonderful visit it was!
The museum contained large and numerous rooms where the life and era of Cheng Ho was admirably told, some scene reconstitutionsartefacts, local objets and customs,We arrived in the beautiful main courtyard And there were greeted by the owner of the museum, a very friendly man who gave us the honor to make some tea for us, and to explain us how tea should be served. We were very attentive and interested.
His wife then arrived and was as welcoming as her husband. She fed us some sweets,
which I absolutely loved and asked the recipe for. It is hard boils eggs cooked in water sweetened with rock sugar, flavoured with chinese herbs: "Tong Kwai"
We had a great conversation with the couple and it turns out that they are planning to make a part of the museum unused for now as a B&B, and to organise a special event this summer for the Chinese Valentine Day, which will certainly be a great event.
The last part of the visit was a theatrical performance about the story of Cheng Ho, a wonderful work of beautiful painted panels crossing the theatre in layers and changing in a very poetical manner, we loved this bit, that lasted about 20 minutes, it was the cherry on the museum cake!
The owner also serve dim sum in the mornings, do not miss them!
If you go through Melaka, do not miss the visit of the museum, and if you want to organise an event or get some information, you can contact the owners there:
Cheng Ho Cultural Museum
51 Lorong Hang Jebat
75200 Melaka, Malaysia
Tel: 606-283 1135