Melaka Shopping Tip :: Jonker Street a.k.a Jalan Hang Jebat

Jalan Hang Jebat was once called Jonker Street and is translated as ‘Young Noblemen’s Street’ in Dutch. This is another street that was once inhabited by the more affluent group of the society. Many beautiful town houses still line both sides of this bustling street that is renowned for its antique shops. The presence of the antique shops that sell many of the antique goods of the past period reflects the historical significance of the street. One of the oldest antique outlets in this street belongs to the Kuthy family, which is one of the prominent Indian families in Melaka. The late T.J Kuthy, an Indian Muslim from Kerala, started the first Jonker Street junk shop in 1936.

Many Baba families had lost their fortunes when the price of rubber plummeted during the Great Depression and were forced to sell their precious heirlooms just to survive. Kuthy bought their treasures and started the antique business that his descendants still run today. There is an intimate and homely atmosphere about the street due to its narrowness which gives a sense of enclosure and rich sensory experience from the smell of cooking that exudes from the kitchen and restaurants nearby.

Jonker Street reborn as a tourist spot when the state government decided to close the street from traffic on the evening of each Friday, Saturday and Sunday started in year 2000.

Jonker street is a pioneer in red lanterns decoration during the Chinese New Year since 1990s before this old Chinese cultural event is spreading like wildfire to all over Malaysian cities and towns. Malay community was influenced too by having their green ketupat lanterns during the hari raya.

Patronizing Jonker street brings back the nostalgic old days with its old buildings, historic clan houses, old temples, local food stalls, antique and souvenir shops. Our energetic senior uncles and aunties are enjoying their pastime in dancing, singing and kara-OK, a living culture in Melaka city.

The iconic foodstuff are ball chicken rice and pineapple tarts.

The original ball chicken rice is the shop beside the riverbank.

Jonker street's pineapple tarts

 

Some interesting statistics about Jonker Street,

Antique shops: more than 20x
Souvenir shops: more than 10x
Local foodstuff stalls: more than 10x
Funeral parlor: 1x
Coffin trader: 1x
Restaurant: about 20x
Tailor:about 5x
Traditional coffee shop:2x
Ancient mausolem: 1x
Pineapple tart shops:more than 10x
Ball chicken rice restaurant:3x

Jonker Street’s Night Market

There are about 300 traders and stalls in the night market selling various goods like local food, souvenirs, clothings and other traditional crafts.