Bizzare Museums in Malaysia you must visit

Asian Art Museum

Nestled within the Faculty of Economics and Management of Universiti Malaya is an art gallery cum museum called the Asian Art Museum. This is a unique and interesting place where art and culture are displayed, demonstrating the rich history of Malaysia to its visitors.  Universiti Malaya is the oldest and one of the most prestigious universities in the region and it brings about some of the most exotic displays of our time.

Integrating rich heritage

The Asian Art Museum is housed in its own building here. It is a structure with 3 levels where you get to view and learn about the many civilizations in one place name the Malays, Chinese, Indian and Islam. Here, there are permanent collections on display while they have periodical shows as well.

Some of the highlights here include paintings by Malaysian greats like Syed Ahmad Jamal and Awang Damit. The museum also hosts ceramic items that date back to the old Chinese dynasties while the top floor is where you can see some utensils used in Malaysian culture. Besides that, this is also a popular place where art talks and seminars are held for knowledge sharing and transfer among practitioners and students. It is open on weekdays and admission is free of charge.

National Automobile Museum

Malaysia was once part of the Formula 1 World Championships. This gave birth to the Sepang International Circuit which saw the best Formula 1 teams coming around each year. The circuit today, although no longer used in Formula 1 is still being used for other international racing events and others. At the circuit, you will find the National Automobile Museum which hosts some very interesting items.

Classic cars and more

Within the National Automobile Museum, you will find a wide range of things to see. This is surely a treat for any automotive or racing fan. You will surely be captivated by the collection of car models here. There are 22 classic and local vehicles on show. The rustic and early models of the Proton and Perodua are here while you can also see the Bufori. Other known models on display here include the MGTD, Austin Healy 3000, Jaguar D-Type and Ford Speedster, among others. The entrance is free of charge and the museum is open daily except for public holidays.

The 2 floors of vehicles on display is delightful  and very informative while you can find out how far the Sepang International Circuit has come since its early days of hosting the Formula 1 World Championships.

High 5 Bread Town Museum

When one mentions a museum, the image that will be conjured up would mostly be historical artifacts and items. It would not be common to think that there is such a thing as a bread museum but there is one called the High 5 Bread Town Museum in Shah Alam. This would be a truly unique opportunity for anyone who loves (or eat) bread because it shows how it is made and everything else that comes with it.

Interesting and informative tour

At the High 5 Bread Town Museum, you can join the tour of the factory. The aroma of bread can be scented the moment you step into the factory. This place does not only talk about the kind of bread that we are all accustomed to because it showcases the other types too. High 5 Bread Town has been certified as the ‘First Bread Museum’ in the Malaysia Book of Records. You get to learn about the history of how bread came about and check out the different themes of bread (14 of them) throughout history including those used during the Egyptian civilization. The price for admission is RM15 for adults and RM12 for kids and the tour of the factory is by reservations.

National Textile Museum

The Malaysian batik is the official attire for many formal events in Malaysia. But did you know that there are other textile designs that Malaysia is known for? One of the best places to learn all you need to know about Malaysian textiles is at the National Textile Museum. Located in Jalan Sultan Hishamuddin by the backdrop of the iconic building is this landmark, which is open daily and free for everyone.

All types of designs

The National Textile Museum houses various rooms and sections which are dedicated to the different styles of textiles in Malaysia. This includes the Malaysian Heritage Gallery, the Saindra Gallery, the Pelangi Gallery, the Ratna Sari Gallery and the Pohon Budi Gallery, all of which display different forms of textiles.

Among those that are on show here include accessories, fabrics used in batik, gold materials and so much more. It also documents how the textile industry in Malaysia came about, lasting through the tests of time and how they were eventually incorporated into traditional and formal wear. Expectedly, there is a gift shop here where visitors can buy home some souvenirs and textiles and a cafe to enjoy some snacks and coffee of the sights here.

Jade Museum

The Jade Museum is possibly one of the most uncelebrated museums around Kuala Lumpur. This is surely a place for those who are in the know and those who appreciate these precious stones. The Jade Museum, as the name implies is the place to go where you can learn more about what jade is and what makes it so precious.

Extensive collection of items

From the onset, this place does not look like any other museum you might come across. It has a simple outlook which is housed within a simple unit with signage. Once you are inside, your entire perception changes. Here, you will find one of the largest collection of jades that has been collected over more than 30 years in the making.

You will find some of the most exotic jade items here. They are on display like artifacts where most of them can be purchased. You will find here furniture, pieces of jewelry and art pieces, all of which are sourced from China and Myanmar. The Jade Museum is open daily except for public holidays and you can buy almost anything that jade is known for like earrings, pendants and even armchairs as well as other types of furniture.

Chocolate Museum

One visit to the Chocolate Museum will give you an entirely different perspective of chocolates. This is a delicacy loved by many, from all walks of life and all age groups and yet, they remain such a mystery that each time you take a bite, you feel all happy and fuzzy all over. Chocolates are just fun to have and there is a lot that you still need to know about them.

Discover the mystery

The Chocolate Museum is located in Science Park 1 in Kota Damansara. Entrance to the museum is free of charge and they are open every day. Here, you will be welcomed with the delicacies of what chocolate is all about. This is the first Chocolate Museum in the whole of Southeast Asia and visitors will surely not be disappointed here.

A life-sized statue of Hershey’s Milk Chocolate greets the visitor as you enter the premises. Then, you will see how far chocolates have come from its earliest form (cocoa) and its impact on civilization. It is here that you will witness just how influential chocolate can be over the generations. Besides that, the Chocolate Museum also organizes events like chocolate sculpture and chocolate-making demonstrations, among others.

Orang Asli Crafts Museum

If you are one who likes to know more about the Orang Asli people in Malaysia, then you should visit the Orang Asli Crafts Museum. Located in Jalan Damansara, this is the place to go where you get to learn about where the original people of the country came from and how they have maintained their livelihood to the present day. The Orang Asli Crafts Museum is just next to the National Museum (Muzium Negara).

Rich tradition and culture

The main focus of this museum is to showcase the lifestyles of the Mah Meri and Jah Hut people who are found in many parts of Peninsular Malaysia. There are wooden sculptures that greet the visitor at the front entrance and inside, you will find masks and carvings that are put on display. A documentary of their way of life and traditions are also on show.

Inside the museum, you will also be able to visit the World Ethnology Museum housed upstairs. This is the place that showcases the Malay culture and traditions. There are traditional games like congkak as well as carved boats and other items including the Wayang Kulit (Malaysia’s traditional puppet play). Entrance is RM2 per person and free for children below 12.

Illusion 3D Art Museum

For something entirely different from history or art, then the Illusion 3D Art Museum might be up your alley. As the name implies, this is the place where you will be ‘transported’ into another world with characters that literally stands out, as if they are real. 3D art has been quite popular in recent years but it is in places like the Illusion 3D Art Museum that you get to really immerse into them.

Expected reality here

This museum is the first of its kind in Kuala Lumpur where you will be greeted and welcomed into 3 sections. There are 36 paintings on display here all of which are unique and fun to look at. The paintings on display here reference the scenes that are unique in our country.

Among the popular paintings here include those that have Darth Vader, Barack Obama and Mona Lisa. While you are at it, you could be cutting hair for someone as a barber or working as a rubber tapper. Along with each painting ar guides on how you should post to take photographs so that your pictures look more genuine.

Entrance to the museum is per entry and it is RM33 for adults and RM15 for students. Senior citizens and children below 12 also pay RM15 while those below 8 are free of charge.

Royal Malaysian Police Museum

The Royal Malaysian Police Museum is located in Jalan Perdana in central Kuala Lumpur. Here, you will find a rich collection of thousands of items that will tell the story of how the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM or Polis Diraja Malaysia) came about, starting from its beginnings to how they are today.

Different sections of history

The Royal Malaysian Police Museum was opened in 1997 where it is divided into 3 sections. The first section houses items and tells the stories of the early days of policing during the early Sultanates (early Malacca). This also includes the times when the Dutch and Portuguese came to our shores and how the current force started under British rule.

The second section showcases how the police force changed throughout the country’s history. This includes the items used by the force including guns and buttons as well as vehicles. The third section here tells the story of the Malayan Emergency that took place and the experience of the Special Branch of the force.

Besides that, you also get to see the larger exhibits outside the museum including armored cars, a patrol boat, a WWII Japanese cannon and many more. The museum is open daily and entrance is free of charge.

Royal Museum

The new Istana Negara (National Palace) is a sight to behold but most Malaysians will still remember the former palace along Jalan Syed Putra. What many didn’t know was that the old palace was once built for a Chinese tin tycoon.

A Royal Heritage

Known today as the Royal Museum, this was once the official Royal Palace of the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia. It was originally the home of Chan Wing and his family. The tycoon then had 9 wives and 26 children. It was only in 1957 when Malaysia reached independence that it was converted to be the home for the royal family. This went on until 2011.

Today, it still stands strong where it puts on display how the place was used as a royal home. Here, you can see the facilities of the palace and its amenities. There is a large field here and you can view the meeting rooms and bedrooms used by the King and the Royal Family. The long driveway is a common sight and they have a cinema there as well. The walls are placed with commemorative pictures while you can visit the dental room too.

The entrance to the Royal museum is RM5 for adults and RM2 for kids. Non-MyKad holders pay RM10 for adults and RM5 for kids. Students pay RM2 and RM3 (with and without uniform) while Senior Citizens and OKU pay RM3 per entry.

Telekom Museum

The Telekom Museum is perhaps one of the best-known secrets in Kuala Lumpur. This museum is, as the name implies the place to go where you can see how far the country has come in the telecommunications industry.

Maintaining its roots

The Telekom Museum (or Muzium Telekom) is housed in one of the busiest places in central Kuala Lumpur. Its building exudes the neo-classical style which has stood the test of time. Today, it has been gazetted as a national heritage building of the country. Besides the museum, it is also the operational office for Telekom Malaysia, the national telecommunications company.

Among the items on show here include the telecommunications models and products that have been used in Malaysia, some dating back as far as the 1890s (when it was introduced in the country). You will see some very old telephone sets and how they used to connect the telephone lines then. Apart from that, there are items that show how telecommunications were used during the war. There is a dedicated section here that showcases Malaysian history.

For entrance, the price is RM5 for adults, RM3 for kids and RM2 for students. Foreigners pay RM10, RM5 and RM4 for adults, kids and students respectively.

Numismatic Collection

The Bank Negara Museum is the central bank of the country. Naturally, this is the place where you get to see everything about the money and currency of Malaysia and rightfully so, you can come to the Numismatic Collection.

Classic art and currency

The Numismatic Collection of the Bank Negara Museum is at Sasana Kijang. You can view it at the level where it houses the artwork collection of Bank Negara Malaysia from the region. This is where the Numismatics collection is found. You will see how money has evolved and changed back in the days of Malaya when banknotes were so different.

You are taken back in time when banknotes were issued by the then Board of Commissioners of Currency Malaya and British Borneo (which took place before 1967). Besides that, you can view some old coins dating back to the 15th century and others too.

As the main financial agency, you can find out about other issues pertaining to money as well like regulations and economic policies as well as the works of Malaysian renowned cartoonist, Lat. Entrance to the museum is free of charge and it is open daily from 10am to 6pm except on public and special holidays.

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