Malaysia > Kelantan > Tumpat Train Station

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For local railway fans, Tumpat is as famous as  the big KTM stations at Singapore Tanjung Pagar, Kuala Lumpur and Gemas. Tumpat is literally the end of the line for the rail track from Gemas to Kelantan. On 04/04/09, I made my maiden visit to the Tumpat Station.

Location: HERE

The facade of the Tumpat Station is as sterile as all the other ‘new’ KTM stations. But the original station was founded in 1914, so  it has deep historical significance.
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Enter the platform and one sees the end of the East Coast Line, literally, a fair distance away.
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The longish platform accommodates intercity trains heading for Kuala Lumpur Sentral and Singapore Tg Pagar.
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At the end of the platform, steps lead down to the tracks.
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A path made of neatly arranged disused wooden sleepers finds its way past the buffer stops marking the end of the East Coast Line.
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Next to a lone rusty boxcar, a train is being prepared for the 6.30pm departure to Kuala Lumpur, a 13-hr journey.
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At the end of the platform, down the steps, Aina and I gingerly walk past the buffer stops.
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Another view of the yard, and I wonder what those stacked short rails are for.
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The End of the Line. From this spot to Gemas – some 530km down the metal path – the line is nicked the ‘Jungle Railway’, opened in 1931. From Gemas, Singapore is a further 220km south and Kuala Lumpur 175km the other direction.
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Under a tree in the hot tropical sun, a lonesome rusty boxcar reminisces the good old days.
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Past the tracks, we come face to face with some real gems!
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A preserved ancient crane …
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… and a little lighthouse of a bygone era, 23m high, built before World War II. Apparently KTM managed this lighthouse which guided vessels plying the treacherous sea just 150m away beyond the station perimeter and the village houses.
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The crane is a magnificent beast.
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Born in Carlisle, England, in 1950 …
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… though this bit says ‘1949’.
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Anyway this 60-year-old contraption is impressive.
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Big metal tablets stuck to the crane’s body are full of important reminders.
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In the shadow of the giant crane, a rolling stock sits humbly. [My friend Azmal tells me this is Plymouth Shunter. Thanks, bro!]
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One of several brick maintenance buildings in the yard reminds me of my own train trips decades ago. With its unique design, it’s so ubiquitous at the major old stations.
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Inside one, I find another huge intriguing machine.
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There’s an ominous sign on its side: ‘Rescue Tumpat’. For use when there is a derailment? To lift the rolling stocks?
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Back at the main platform, the 6.30pm train to KL slowly reverses to park for passengers to board.
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As the train slowly glides past, a crew talks to the locomotive pushing it.
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Enough of trains, we head to the well-regarded Pantai Sri Tujuh nearby.
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At a cosy spot we order an early dinner.
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They say there are 7 lagoons here (whence ‘Pantai Sri Tujuh’), so maybe when I’m bored I’ll try to count them via Google Earth. :D
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As the sun sets, we end our Tumpat outing at the beach, where hardcore fishos try their luck at the South China Sea. By the way, there’s Thailand territory over there, less than 5km away.
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> THE END

===

EPILOGUE

I just realised I have some pics of another well-known train station, just 10km down the line from Tumpat. It’s PALEKBANG, dateline 4 Apr 2009.

But alas, Palekbang is no more! What a let-down.

This is what is left of Palekbang Station now. Come to think of it, in the heydays this is *the* station for Kota Bharu, the capital of Kelantan.

Back then train passengers checked in in Kota Bharu, at the Kelantan river bank, before boarding a special boat to cross the 800m-wide river to Palekbang. That’d have been fun, a boat ride thrown in.

Even the Police Station next to it has been modernised.

The lonesome track towards Wakaf Bharu must have seen better days.

Anyway the ruin is still government property, but what a pity, another historic station just vanished!


> THE END

9 responses so far

9 Responses to “Malaysia > Kelantan > Tumpat Train Station”

  1. en_meon 08 Apr 2009 at 0805

    chantekkknyerr gambooo.. salam kenalan dr me dikejauhannns

  2. Howard Yon 12 Apr 2009 at 0232

    I’m not 100% sure that the Palekbang station was operating when I was in KB in the mid-1970’s. Of course, we usually caught the train at Pasir Mas (good food to eat and pretty girls to watch before boarding the train), so I never got off the train beyond Wakaf Bharu.

    I do remember the boat trip from Kg Cina area in KB to Kg Laut, where you’d be mobbed by becak drivers wanting to give you a ride. My wife (we weren’t married then) used to do that trip almost every day back then; she’d load up her bicycle and get on the boat. Then she’d get off at Kg Laut and bicycle to Dalang Hamzah Awang’s house in Kg Gerong, where she rehearsed with and learned the musical instruments from Hamzah’s wayang kulit troupe. Many of the surviving members of Hamzah’s troupe still live in the Kg Laut/Palekbang area.

    Thanks again for the memories, Naim!

  3. naimon 12 Apr 2009 at 0923

    My mom told me last weekend, she actually took me on the KB-Palekbang boat ride to send her uncle off on a hajj pilgrimage. She said I was a little boy back then, not yet in school. That must be the 60s!

    If you & ma’am still keen on wayang kulit here’s a forum, but in Kelantanese/Malay.
    http://dikirbarat.net/forum/index.php/board,22.0.html

    Btw, site of above Palekbang (‘Plekbe’ as the Kelantanese say) photoshoot is:
    http://wikimapia.org/#lat=6.143691&lon=102.2273111&z=16&l=0&m=h&v=1

  4. Howard Yon 12 Apr 2009 at 2202

    naim wrote:
    My mom told me last weekend, she actually took me on the KB-Palekbang boat ride to send her uncle off on a hajj pilgrimage. She said I was a little boy back then, not yet in school. That must be the 60s.

    I feel old…

    naim wrote:
    If you & ma’am still keen on wayang kulit here’s a forum, but in Kelantanese/Malay.
    http://dikirbarat.net/forum/index.php/board,22.0.html

    Now, THAT is cool! A forum where much of the conversation is in Kelantanese! I will send the URL to my missus. (And I need to get my Pattani Malay Dictionary out and start reading the threads!)

    naim wrote:
    Btw, site of above Palekbang photoshoot is:
    http://wikimapia.org/#lat=6.143691&lon= … =0&m=h&v=1

    Thanks! I was mentally going over how I got to Palekbang and Kg Laut in those days on my Suzuki 100cc JPT motorbike. (Cross the big bridge and straight to the Wakaf Bharu roundabout, then turn right and go straight thru kampongs first then padi fields until T-junction, then turn right at T-junction, then turn left at the Palekbang sign and then straight thru Kg Laut then along the padi fields for a while until we reach the laterite road [later paved] on the left, then turn onto laterite road and straight to Kg Gerong to Hamzah’s house.) Your aerial photo confirmed that… thanks! 🙂

  5. Farahon 01 Jan 2010 at 2159

    Very useful information. I am already bought a KTM ticket to Pasir Mas. This is my first time travelling to Kelantan by train and third time travel to Kelantan. I feel good when u said there is a lot of food stalls and good food there (hope to see good looking guys there.. heheheh)

  6. Williamon 03 Feb 2010 at 1436

    Hi Naim,

    I noticed that there was a Captiva in one of your pic taken in Pantai Sri Tujuh.
    Is that your car?

    I’m looking at purchasing a Captiva in the future.
    If it is indeed your Captiva, hope you could share some comment about it with me.

    Cheers,
    William
    (019-385-xxxx)

  7. dodixon 09 Dec 2011 at 1743

    lawanya kelantan,sorry noriza….I shouldn’t meet you….coz I can’t visit you……bagi sesiapa yang tahu noriza binti abdul razaq,ianya dari palekbang,tumpat,kelantan,mohon kirimkan salam kangen,rindu padanya….akulah kekasih yang dilema……sampaikan permohonan maafku pada dia,aku tak bisa datang tuk pinang kau,walau aku ingin sangat,semoga kau temukan seseorang yang jauh melebihi aku disana,semoga kau bahgia selama-lamanya……………………………………..from:Yogyakarta,midlle of java with million love

  8. che maton 21 Dec 2011 at 1000

    La ni…ish..ish.. cukup lawa mata memandang sekitar stesyen keretapi tumpat. Dulu…80-an…jauh benar bezanya pemandangan. La ni kawe duduk di johor , merantau..sekali-sekala bila balik kampung…rindunya nak tengok perubahan di sini. Cukup mengkagumkan…Allahu akbar. Nasi kerabu dan laksa meme menjadi santapan berselera yang utama bila saja menjengah kampung di pasar tumpat..tqvm

  9. saRahon 07 Jan 2012 at 0141

    v.nice photos! tak sabar nak naik train pegi Tumpat this coming CNY. kempas baru – tumpat – kempas baru within 3 days. woo hoo!!

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