Photo: Choo choo!

Indonesian Railway Museum

Our rating:

Trainspotters and Thomas the Tank Engine fans will get a buzz out of the Indonesian Railway Museum in Ambarawa, about 40 kilometres south of Semarang.

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Even if you fall into neither of those categories, it’s worth an add-on when you visit nearby Candi Gedong Songo. On Sundays the appeal is increased tenfold, as you'll have the opportunity to ride a historic train in original wooden carriages pulled by an antique diesel engine.

Let‘s get this show on the road. Photo taken in or around Indonesian Railway Museum, Semarang, Indonesia by Sally Arnold.

Let‘s get this show on the road. Photo: Sally Arnold

Ambarawa, a mountainous agricultural and former military town was the site of Koninklijk Nederlands Indisch Leger’s (Royal Netherlands East Indies Army) Fort Willem I, statically built between Semarang and Yogyakarta, and connected by rail to both. During the Japanese occupation in WWII the fort was converted into an interment camp. Ambarawa Railway station, formerly named Willem I, is no longer operational for regular services, however it now houses an engaging, well presented collection of steam locomotives, railway memorabilia and history of Indonesia’s railway system.

The museum displays over twenty restored German, Swiss, British and Dutch steam locomotives along with some wooden box carriages parked on tracks and sheltered from the elements. It’s possible to climb inside to inspect the workings and (of course) pose for selfies. For train buffs, information includes history and technical data in both English and Indonesian. The Willem I station building houses the ticket office for the Sunday tourist train, along with displays of railway paraphernalia including ticket printers and manual signalling equipment. A collection of heritage teak station counters are arranged further along the ... Travelfish members only (Around 700 more words) ... please log in to read the rest of this story.


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Indonesian Railway Museum
40 kilometres south of Semarang
Mo–Su: 08:00–16:00
Admission: 10,000 rupiah for adults and 5,000 rupiah for kids

Location map for Indonesian Railway Museum

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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Semarang? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Indonesia.


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