Dedicated to local bargains

Entrance into the Heritage Gallery
I WALKED past brightly-lit shops in Dataran Pahlawan Melaka Megamall and was drawn to attractive displays of international renowned and homegrown labels.

As I turned a corner, I was attracted to a colourful archway that marked the entrance to the Heritage Gallery. I was impressed that the mall in Bandar Hilir has dedicated a section to merchandise that reflects Malacca’s rich cultural heritage. After all, a visit to Malacca would not be complete without buying some local delicacies to take home.

Browse around in air-conditioned comfort

I could hardly contain my excitement at the sight of gula melaka, cincaluk, pineapple tarts, belacan and beautiful batik. These and other traditional favourites used to be available at a labyrinth of outdoor stalls in Bandar Hilir.

But with the Heritage Gallery, the hot and humid outdoor shopping experience is now a thing of the past. I can now shop for the same foodstuff and handicrafts in air-conditioned comfort.

Bargains Galore

Surrounded by a riot of colours and varieties, I was truly spoilt for choice. The merchants were friendly and helpful, ready to show off their goods, telling me they would offer a better bargain if I bought in bulk!

Wide choice of Malaysia batik to choose from

The display of goods was definitely tempting but I tried hard to remain focused on what I really wanted. With a trip planned to visit India soon, I was sure my foreign friends would appreciate our versatile sarongs. So I checked out Made-In-Malaysia batik sarongs to bring along as gifts.

As I made my choices, I reminded myself to thicken my skin to haggle and bargain until we struck a mutually agreeable deal!

Wide range of handicrafts and souvenirs to choose from

After hours of browsing and bargaining, I left laden with bottles of cincaluk, packets of fragrant belacan, fish and vegetable crackers, souvenir T-shirts and fridge magnets, a woven handbag, a dozen batik sarongs and packs of gula melaka (palm sugar). How I wished I were an octopus so that I would have more hands to hold my shopping!

Where It’s At

The Heritage Gallery is located in Zone C, Lower Ground Floor of Dataran Pahlawan Melaka Megamall, Jalan Merdeka in Bandar Hilir.

This article was first published in The New Straits Times, Travel Times on 27 November 2007

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