Bukit Malawati

This article is part of my 2019 Kuala Selangor trip series.

Kuala Selangor was the seat of the Selangor Sultanate from its founding until 1857. The administrative center was on a hill called Bukit Malawati. Commanding a good view of the Strait of Malacca, Bukit Malawati was an important fortification for the newly established sultanate.
Today, Bukit Malawati is the most popular tourist attraction in Kuala Selangor. A one-way road loops around the hill and passes by several points of interest. Bukit Malawati can be explored by car or on foot.
To prevent congestion, private cars are not allowed on weekends and public holidays. On these days, Bukit Malawati offers tram rides for RM5.00 per adult and RM3.00 per child. Tram tickets can be bought near Pintu Gerbang Malawati (Malawati Gate).
The first stop is Perigi Beracun (Poisoned Well). Filled with poisonous saps, the well was used to torture traitors. The condemned was lowered into the well until he was submerged chin-deep, resulting in a slow and painful death.
Next to Perigi Beracun is Muzium Permainan Tradisional (Museum Of Traditional Games). The museum was damaged by fire in 2011 and has been closed since.
Muzium Sejarah Daerah Kuala Selangor (Historical Museum Of Kuala Selangor District) is perched at the top of Bukit Malawati. The museum is divided into 7 sections and describes the history of Kuala Selangor in chronological order. It is open from 9:30am to 5:30pm daily, except for a 2-hour break between 12:30pm and 2:30pm on Friday. Admission is free.
Before the advent of satellite navigation, lighthouses served as a navigational aid for passing ships. The one standing today was erected by the British in 1907 to replace the Dutch lighthouse some two centuries ago.
Kota Malawati (Malawati Fort) provided the Selangor Sultanate vital protection from land and from sea. The fort saw combat with Dutch forces, who briefly occupied the hill and built the first lighthouse.
Batu Hampar (The Bedrock) is located near the entrance of Kota Malawati. The squarish stone slab measures 5 feet by 5 feet, and is around 1 foot in thickness. The purpose of Batu Hampar is unknown, but it might have been used to execute criminals.
As a vital stronghold in the early days of Selangor, Kota Malawati was fortified with many cannons. Some of these cannons were left behind by Dutch and British forces.
The Islamic calendar is based on lunar cycles. The first sight of the new moon is used to determine the beginning of each month. Baitulhilal (New Moon Sighting Pavilion) was constructed specifically for this purpose.
Makam Diraja (Royal Mausoleum) was where the first three rulers of Selangor were laid to rest. The tomb also houses Meriam Penggawa, a sacred cannon wrapped in yellow cloth. Makam Diraja is not open to the public, so visitors can only view the mausoleum through the gates.
Tangga Seratus (Hundred Stairs) used to be the main entrance to Bukit Malawati. Visitors who arrive by sea had to moor their boats at the base, and then walk up the stairs. Tangga Seratus is said to have exactly one hundred steps in total, hence its namesake.
Telaga Tujuh (Seven Wells) refers to 7 wells that dot this section of Bukit Malawati. The wells were believed to be magical because they never run dry even during long droughts.
Like Taman Alam Kuala Selangor, Bukit Malawati is home to Selangor silvered langurs (Trachypithecus selangorensis) and long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis).
There are errant vendors who sell monkey food to visitors. Food encourages the monkeys come closer for visitors to take photographs. However, it is not advisable to feed these wild animals as they can become aggressive.

Address: 45000 Kuala Selangor, Selangor
Contact: 03-3289-6115
Business hours: 9:00am-6:00pm

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