Melaka is a popular choice among backpackers, as it is a tourist destination with a rich culture and history. The simplicity and rich heritage of the city invites visitors all over the world.
The heritage status of Melaka attracts tourists, especially those who are touring Malaysia, and most of these will begin their journey from the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur. Tourists from Singapore also travel to Melaka by bus as it is merely 4 to 5 hours drive away.
Buses are departing from Kuala Lumpur to different places from two main bus terminals in Kuala Lumpur such as Terminal Bersepadu Selatan and Pudu Raya or Pudu Sentral. Kuala Lumpur is the major transportation hub in Malaysia, from where buses to various parts of Malaysia are serving the passengers. Pudu Sentral was the only bus terminal in Kuala Lumpur previously, but due to heavy traffic and increasing travellers, the transport authority decided to make Pudu Raya to serve buses towards north of Malaysia to reduce traffic congestion. Hence, the new TBS bus terminal became the departing station for southbound buses. These services to Melaka from TBS start from 7am and continues until around 11pm.
The bus operators that serve passengers from Kuala Lumpur to Melaka are Konsortium Bas Express, Transnasional, Delima, Maju Express, Nice Executive Coach, Mayang Sari, Jebat Express, and Cepat & Cekap Express. There are several buses plying the route from KL to Melaka, which allows the passengers to catch buses every half an hour.
The Transnasional buses are the only option for those who travel from Kuala Lumpur International Airport to Melaka, which includes the travellers from the low cost carrier terminal. Hence, it is necessary for the passengers to schedule their travel by considering the bus schedule, if you are taking the bus to Melaka from the airport bus terminal.
From KL airport, the buses take two and half hours and from TBS at Bandar Tasik Selatan, buses take 2 hours to reach Melaka and will end their journey at Melaka Sentral.
It is easy to purchase bus tickets from Kuala Lumpur to Malacca on the same day of departure. If you are travelling on a Melaka Public Holiday or religious holiday, then you may find it difficult to get the bus tickets on the same day of departure. On holidays, it is better to book bus tickets through online. After reaching TBS, you buy bus tickets either by going to the booth windows where you can purchase the ticket, or you can make use of the electronic machines to buy bus tickets.
The charges for bus tickets vary from one bus operator to another. The bus fare usually ranges from RM15-50 for a one way ticket. The price of the ticket is usually higher if you are taking a luxury coach with wide seats and WiFi facilities, although despite the increase of price I actually recommend this option.
Of all the places in Malaysia that I visited, I wouldn’t put Melaka near the top of the list but it does have an interesting atmosphere to it. There is a lot of history and culture here that many travellers would really enjoy, and seeing as the city is located pretty much on the main route from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur, it is actually a destination where people do indeed tend to stop over, yet for all too short a time. I would recommend at least 1 full day in Melaka before heading back to KL!