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The new Gajayana between Malang and Jakarta BLITAR - It has been a year ago that I used the Indonesian railroad services. That was a trip from Yogyakarta to Jakarta with a dirty, cold and old-fashioned train. Trains like that are still widely available on Java. It normally is really cold on board of one of these trains, which makes traveling with them not the best option available.

I am talking about the eksekutif class trains that offer at least some form of comfort in comparison to the kelas kambing (cattle transport) as they are popularly called here. If you take one of those trains you will have to sit on iron seats for shorter distances. The air-conditioning is made up from thrown-in windows and holes in the floor.

I was not fearing that, because the Gajayana train belonged to the highest eksekutif class, so we would most likely have comfortable seats with leg space that is much bigger than that of a business-class plane seat, big windows and enough time to take a few hours of sleep as well. And that for just 270.000 Rupiah (20 euro) per person.

When we arrived at the main train station in Malang it was about four in the afternoon. We still had some 20 minutes left to spend on the wooden bench on the platform. I also had the time to make some pictures of a departing train - an orange bisnis, slightly more than that cattle transport - before the already waiting Gajayana train was guided to the first track.

The train looked clean from the outside and it did not have any thrown-in windows - stone throwing was a national sport a few years back, but has receded now - as well. When the train parked itself most passengers had found their place in a matter of minutes, while the plane would not leave for another 10 minutes. The train was not full and the wagon we are in still has place for some 20 odd passengers.

Once inside I saw - to my relief - that it was not just a clean wagon, but a new one, produced by INKA (PT Industri Kereta Api). No imported second-hand wagons from Japan or other countries in the region, but very Indonesian produced wagons. And you can not even see that directly, everything looks fine.

The chairs don't wobble and there are shades in front of the large windows. Storage space are like the overhead compartments in a plane. In the front and back - but passengers don't see that - are two large LCD televisions on which a movie is played by now. No interference from Indonesian television transmission through the air.

The interrior of the eksekutif class Gajayana train between Malang and Jakarta.
The interrior of the eksekutif class Gajayana train between Malang and Jakarta.

This article was written and posted on board of the Gajayana train using a wireless connection from Indosat.


Related link Related link:
Website 'PT Industri Kereta Api'

Related blog entries (category 'Travel') Related blog entries (category 'Travel'):
18 November 2009 · Passengers Singapore Airlines can fly to Yogyakarta and Makassar
17 November 2009 · Thank you for the emails
17 November 2009 · Garuda invited to resume flights to the U.S.A.
15 November 2009 · Back in Yogya: crowds in the streets
14 November 2009 · A bigger and much improved airport for Bali
14 November 2009 · Back to Yogya: twelve hours by bus

Related blog entries (category 'Travel') Tags: INKA, train, Gajayana, new


Posted in Travel @ 19 November 2009 12:31 CET by Jeroen · 'Blog' RSS feed · permalink






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