• Chinatown • Local Cuisine • Handicrafts
and Shopping • Places of Interests •
Kuala Terengganu, the state
capital stands on the bank of the Terengganu River. The feeling is laid
back, slow paced and free and easy. Kuala Terengganu was a port-of-call
for spice traders in early 1900s. The port attracted traders from all over
Southeast Asia, exchanging goods like pepper, onions and salt with local
rice and spices. Kuala Terengganu has grown tremendously since the
discovery of oil.
described as a city that fell asleep in the seventies - there are hardly
any shopping centres, and very few high-end fashion brands. Instead,
Chinese shops exhibit advertisements from the sixties or seventies with
drawings of girls with yesteryear hairdo’s and guys donned in
bell-bottoms. Trishaws are still visible as a means of transport. One main
road winds from the east side up around the north side, it has only two
fast-food restaurants, a Pizza Hut and a KFC, side by side near one end of
the very small Chinatown.
For most travellers, this is the favourite part of Kuala Terengganu is
definitely Chinatown. A row of pre-war Chinese shophouses filled with
familiar scents of the past- old fusty rooms with cardboard boxes full of
bric-a-bracs, aged documents piled up high in the corner with a lingering
faint smell of dampness.
A few of the shophouses have been taken over by island resort operators,
but many of the premises are still maintained by the original owners. If
you get a chance to snoop around, the back of the shop extends out onto
the river, which opens an entirely different scenario from the bustling
street. Here, you may be able to spot the fishing boats coming back from a
day's fishing and the usual daily routine of river life.
Traditional Chinese food can be had in Kampung Cina. The “Golden Dragon
Restaurant” serves excellent spare ribs and fish. On the highest level of
Central Market, a small food court offers decent Malay food coupled with a
great view of the waterfront and Pulau Dayung.
try local famous delicacy keropok leko, which is made primarily from a
combination of dough and pounded fish, fried and served with hot sauce.
Fish makes up 90 per cent of the ingredients and is essential in bringing
out the flavour. The types of fish mainly used are the ikan parang
(herring), tamban (sardine-like fish) and selayang (decapterus russellii).
The famous Nasi Dagang is located at Chendering, so don't missed to try
this local delicacy while you were here. The dishes is made by cooking
plain rice and glutinous rice together. Coconut milk is then added. Nasi
Dagang is eaten with its own specially made side dishes of tuna fish curry
and a light pickled vegetable. Besides being considered as the centre for
handicraft and traditional textiles in Terengganu, it will also be
worthwhile to visit the beautiful beaches of Chendering.
Handicrafts and Shopping
Terengganu is known for its attractive handicrafts, notably silverware and
songket. It also produces the best batik and songket in Malaysia. The
vibrant cottage industries involved in the making of traditional
handicrafts, such as songket, batik, brassware, pandanus mats and basket
weaving, bear testimony to a people whose heritage dates back as far as
2,000 years - the rapturous celebration of its many generations of
cultural and traditional heritage.
vast choice of traditional textiles can be purchased on the first floor of
the Central Market. Rattan baskets and farmers’ hats are also popular. In
Chendering, a village 6 km away from the city centre, is also home to a
weaving centre as well as the Malaysian Handicraft Centre.and Noor Arfa
Batik in Chendering Terengganu Craft Centre. The Craft Centre attempts to
preserve the local cottage industry by bringing together a large array of
handmade craftworks obtained from the villages throughout the state – such
as batik, songket, mats and bags woven from pandanus leaves – in one large
showroom. Visitors can see the production of selected handicrafts such as
brassware and songket.
Located within an easy 10-minute walk from the Craft Centre is Noor Arfa
Batik, where visitors will find most educational since the centre provides
batik-making demonstrations and explanation on its production processes. A
renowned household name in Malaysia, the Noor Arfa Batik showroom features
batik and other local crafts which are on sale.
Suterasemai Centre, located in Kuala Ibai, 6 km from Kuala Terengganu, is
Malaysia's pioneer silk-weaving centre, offering insights into silk
production, from the spinning into yarns, to textile-weaving and batik
printing. Beautiful batik, hand painted or printed are for sale in the
Places of Interests
There are many places of interests in Kuala Terengganu such as markets,
historical places, museums, palaces, fishing villages, magnificent mosques
and other sights.
Central Market (Pasar Payang)
/ Bukit Puteri (Princess Hill) / Istana Maziah (Maziah Palace) /
Terengganu State Museum Complex
Pulau Duyung / Seberang Takir
Fishing Village / The Floating Mosque / Crystal Mosque
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