- Southeast Asia Railways
- Vientiane-Kunming passenger train service begins
Vientiane-Kunming passenger train service begins
April 2023: Jakarta-Bandung high-speed train gets an opening date, Laos-Vietnam railway plan, and the proposed revival of a cog railway in Vietnam.
Welcome to the second edition of the Southeast Asia railways news round-up.
This month I took the following trips:
Sai Gon - Phan Thiet
Binh Thuan - Da Nang
Bangkok - Hua Hin
Even though Bangkok has a shiny new mega station (see the article in the links below), it is still possible to get a train to Hua Hin from the old Bangkok Station (Hua Lamphong). There are also trains from Thonburi Station on the other side of the river, giving you three departure options from Bangkok.
I got the train from the classic old station, and here is a video of the national anthem being played at the old station at 8 am.
“We hope that the President will inaugurate it on August 18,”.
I don’t know if this is realistic, but I am keeping my calendar clear in case it happens.
There is a daily service in each direction between Kunming and Vientiane.
I took this train last year and I finally got around to writing about it. Not that there was much to write about, as this 5 -minute train ride is possibly the shortest international train ride in the world.
The East Coast Rail Link is the longest new rail line project that is under construction in Southeast Asia. The project includes a 16.39km tunnel through the Titiwangsa Range.
“Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim met President Xi Jinping on Friday during his first trip to China as Malaysia's leader, as his delegation hopes to tie up several projects, likely including assistance for a high-speed railway linking Kuala Lumpur and Singapore.”
I found this map on Reddit. What is more amazing is that it is from an official government website, and not by some railfan that has made a fantasy map. Most of it makes sense, but the Penang to Kota Bharu line would require crossing a gigantic mountain range. It is obviously just a dream, but I’m glad to see there are dreamers doodling on maps in the government.
The current commuter railway that serves Manila will be closed for 5 years while the North-South Commute Railway is built. This line will form part of a railway that will eventually connect Northern and Southern Luzon.
Here is my guide to the largest train station in Southeast Asia.
Tickets for this excursion train can be bought at https://www.dticket.railway.co.th
I rode this segment again last year, and here is my update on the most scenic section of the North-South railway.
“As Việt Nam aims to build the longest flower path of its kind in the country, stretching over 3,000km along the north-south railway line, many experts and residents have applauded the plan as a potential tourist draw, though concerns over railway safety have also been raised.”
“Stadler Rail, a leading Swiss manufacturer of railway rolling stock, has shown interest in joining Vietnam’s efforts to restore the Thap Cham-Dalat railroad, the only cog railway in the nation built before 1975.”
Read more about the proposed Da Lat–Thap Cham railway restoration.