In this post I outline how to walk the railway tracks from Padang Panjang to Lembah Anai, near Bukittinggi, Sumatra, Indonesia. It includes logistical requirements such as maps and facts. This is a self-guided cultural experience on a shoestring.
Following provided by Ulrich Rudolph, RAJAWALI-HOTEL, Bukittinggi, firstname.lastname@example.org or +62.752.31905
Total Cost Range of this Activity is: $
Walk the Railway Tracks from Padang Panjang to Lembah Anai
(The railway track through the jungle was abandoned in 1994, but their are talks to reopen it again. Please verify the tracks use at the railway station in Padang Panjang)
To go there, take the minibus or car from the Post Office and ask the driver to drop you in PADANG PANJANG at the RAILWAY STATION (“STASIUN KERETA API”). With this minibus the driver will charge you the full price to Padang (15.000,-), but it is OK if you have not much time and you want to get out of the car in front of the railway station.
If you have more time or less money or both, start your trip to Padang Panjang with the red minibus from around the corner (1500,-Rp) to the main bus terminal (Aur Kuning) in Bukit-tinggi and take the bus to PADANG PANJANG (7000,-Rp) or to PADANG. If the bus does not stop at the railway station, walk there. It is not far.
You can start your trip also by the red Minibus No. 14 from around the corner to “Simpang Jambu Air” (Simpang=Crossing) (1500,- Rupiah) and look for a minibus to Padang Panjang from there. It may be a little cheaper.
A VERY IMPORTANT HINT (in case they reopened the Padang – Padangpanjang line again): At the Railway station first ask for the timetable, trains leaving from Padang Panjang or arriving from Padang. THIS IS IMPORTANT if you walk over long bridges or you pass tunnels. HAVE ALWAYS A KEEN EYE ON TRAINS THAT MIGHT BE COMING IN FRONT OR FROM BEHIND OF YOU!!
With the railway station at your LEFT and the rails in front of you turn RIGHT and follow the rails in westerly direction always down the track. This leads you to the outskirts of Padang Panjang into the direction to the Anai Valley (Lembah Anai).
At the outskirts of Padang Panjang, 1.600 m after you left the railway station in Padang Panjang, you reach a high bridge (12m), crossing a river and a road. Leave the railway track down to the road (there is a footpath down) and follow the road 400 m to the RIGHT side (westerly direction). There you can visit the “ISTANA SILAUNG”, a large Minang-Castle and the “KAMPUNG MINANG”, the Minang village, right behind the castle. After your visit there, continue to follow the railway track from the bridge, where you left the rails, the next 6 Km down to “LEMBAH ANAI” and the WATERFALL.
You will see scenic landscapes, you walk over high railway bridges, through dense forests, and through a few short tunnels (you don’t need a torch). Left or right side of the ANAI RIVER (BATANG ANAI) and almost close to the main road to Padang, you reach the waterfall at “Lembah Anai”. Finish the walk there, have a look around and have a rest. Behind Lembah Anai from the waterfall is nothing interesting to come.
For the way back to Bukittinggi stop any bus (direction to Bukittinggi) at the main road in Lembah Anai and ask for Bukittinggi and the fare (about 8.000,-Rp).
Don’t forget: the prices changing without notice and whatever you do, you will do it on your own risk.