It’s only a short hop from Malang to Surabaya with a distance of less than 100km. However, the only afternoon train with a good timing that suits me so happens to be the most expensive option – the KA Bima.
Luckily though, there is a special flat fare of Rp60,000 for journeys on the KA Bima between Malang and Surabaya Gubeng.
For Eksekutif class trains, there is a separate entrance and waiting area at Malang Railway Station, to the left of the main ticket hall. Since I’ve got my ticket and checked-in already, I just headed straight for boarding.
Inside the Eksekutif waiting area after getting my boarding pass checked.
The exit to the platforms. I spent a few seconds seated in the waiting area before I realised that the Bima was ready for passengers, just that the rest of the passengers prefer to wait in the waiting room first. Well, not me.
Platform 3 will be where I’m headed.
And since I have the whole train to myself for the time being, I got a great opportunity for empty interior shots of the new K10 bogie Eksekutif class coaches, though these are 2016 batches.
Each seat is ready with a pilow.
The not-so-comfortable single seat.
One thing about the seats on the 2016 batch of coaches is that it still has the hard plastic backing similar to older Eksekutif class coaches, as compared to the full leather wraparound and magazine holder on the 2017 batch.
The space and legroom one gets when the seats are reclined.
The button to press to recline resembles those found on planes.
Looking towards Surabaya and still waiting for the locomotive to couple to the rake.
The route map found above the gangway doors of this Bima trainset.
I’ll just be riding on this short portion though.
It’s worth to note that the Bima is an abbreviation of “Biru Malam” or “Blue Night Train” and its efficient southern route is also due to the fact that it once carried blue-coloured sleeper coaches for the night journey. Unfortunately, it’s no longer the flagship train of PT KAI and there’s no longer any sleeper coaches in Indonesia.
Inside the Kereta Makan of the Bima train.
The Musholla space for one in the Kereta Makan.
The exterior of the K10 bogie coaches.
Finally, the locomotive is attached just a few minutes before departure to take the train to Surabaya Gubeng and thereafter to Jakarta Gambir. CC206 13 85 is on duty today.
Welcome messages played on the information bar together with the announcements.
The famous Mount Bromo appearing shortly after departure from Malang.
Some housing and plantations with the view of Mount Bromo.
Approaching Bangil and the junction towards Banyuwangi Baru.
Making an unscheduled stop at Bangil.
My driver heading for a toilet break as what the sign suggests, which means the train isn’t moving off anywhere for the next few minutes.
The platforms at Bangil. Usually, when these things happen on a single track, it means there’s an oncoming train.
And true enough, here comes a Pertamina oil tanker train.
Once the opposing train made a stop, the station master clears my train on to Surabaya Gubeng.
Just outside of Bangil, the train runs very close to the parallel road.
A short while later, the twin volcano Arjuno-Welirang is visible on the left side of the train.
Shortly after, the Reska staff goes around the train to sell some drinks and snacks.
Arriving into Sidoarjo slightly late due to the crossing at Bangil with the Jenggala and Logawa waiting.
Departing as quickly as we arrived.
Soon after, the train passed by the entrance to Juanda Airport. There’s no rail access to the airport though.
Next station: City Hall.
Merging with the line from Kertosono, Yogyakarta and Jakarta before Wonokromo.
Crossing over the Surabaya River.
Approaching Surabaya Gubeng with the old station on the left.
Decoupling the locomotive for it to run-around to the other end of the train to form the onward Bima towards Jakarta Gambir.
Alighting at the new Surabaya Gubeng station.
However, I still walked to the end of the train to cross the tracks to the old Surabaya Gubeng station as it was on the city side.
This is the reason why I have to walk to the end of the train – because there’s no other way.
The exit is at the north end of the station.
Once outside, it’s within walking distance to my hotel.