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Home » Destinations » Malaysia » Kuching » Kuching Transportation

Airports nearby Kuching, Malaysia

Kuching International Airport Map

Kuching International Airport

Kuching, Malaysia

Latitude: 1.48, Longitude: 110.35

Kuching International Airport (KIA) is Sarawak's main international airport and is situated 11 km (6NM) south of the city of Kuching. The airport is also an airbase for the Royal Malaysian Air Force and the newly renovated terminal complex is capable of handling 5 million passengers per annum and it is the third largest airport in Malaysia after Kuala Lumpur International Airport, Kota Kinabalu International Airport ...

Get In

    As Kuching is in Sarawak, which retains control of its own immigration procedures, some additional complications apply and an ordinary Malaysian visa may not suffice. Most visitors, though, can get visas on arrival at Kuching International Airport. See Sarawak for details.

  • By boat

    The Express Bahagia and Express Sejahtera express boats run an alternating once daily service from Kuching to Sibu, each boat returning the next day. RM38 (RM45 1st class) one way and the journey takes 5 1/2 hours, with stops at Sarikei and Tanjung Manis. The boats depart from the Pending wharf to the east of the city at 8.30AM. You can usually buy tickets at the wharf. Getting there/away: Chin Lian Long buses No. 1A, 17 and 19 go to the express boat jetty. 60 sen one way. Taxis usually charge RM15.

  • By bus

    Kuching's regional express bus terminal is located along Jalan Datuk Tawi Sli, also dubbed as "3 and a half miles", located south of the city, just before the Boulevard shopping mall. All long-distance express buses arrive from and leave for major Sarawak cities like Sibu, Bintulu and Miri, as well as Pontianak in Indonesia. Regional buses for some towns near Kuching such as Lundu (for the Gunung Gading National Park and Tanjung Datu National Park) and Sri Aman also arrive/depart from here. However, buses for some towns and destinations nearer Kuching, such as the Bako National Park, Bau and the Semenggoh Orang Utan Centre, leave from various locations in the city centre, depending on the bus company being used. See the individual destinations below for details.

    • To/from Bau:
    • To/from Bako National Park: Petra Jaya Transport(white and yellow) bus No. 6 departs from the open air market near Electra House in the city centre. RM1.50 one way,journey time 45 mins. There are also public mini buses for RM5 a little bit faster and more regular. The buses bring you to Bako Bazaar where you have to transfer to a boat to reach the national park. See Bako National Park page for details.
    • To/from Lundu: Sarawak Transport Company (cream and green) express buses depart from the regional bus terminal at 08:15, 11:00, 14:00 and 16:00. Buses depart Lundu at 08:00, 11:00, 14:00 and 16:00. Travel time approximately two hours. At Lundu, take a taxi or van or walk appoximatly 2.5 kms (north) to the Gunung Gading National Park. For Tanjung Datu National Park, catch a connecting Sarawak Transport Company bus to Sematan where you will have to charter a boat to the park.
    • To/from Pontianak: Biaramas Express (Tel: +60 82 456999 at the regional bus terminal, +60 82 610111 headquarters) buses depart Kuching regional bus terminal for Pontianak via the Tebedu-Entikong border crossing daily at 07:45. RM45 adult one way. From Pontianak, buses depart daily at 21:00. Fare is Rp140,000. SJS Super Executive (Tel: +60 82 456999) buses departs the regional bus terminal at 11:00 and cost RM70. Click Pontianak_to_Kuching for travel itinerary on this route.
    • To/from Semenggoh: Feeding times for the Orangutans are 9AM and 1PM so catch the 7:30 or 11AM bus. Sarawak Transport Company buses No.6 depart from their bus terminal (RM2.50, 1 hour) near the open air market in the city centre but are not so frequent (at 1 and a half hour or even rarely). Also there are plenty of mini buses at the open air market that can drive you there (public - RM5-10 per passеnger) and also more expensive mini bus taxies (bargaining starts from RM100 for the whole bus for return journey).
    • To/from Sibu: Various express buses depart from the regional bus terminal. Most of them go via Sarikei.

  • By car

    From Indonesia

    To travel by car from Indonesia is pretty straight forward. As a member of Asean, Indonesian driving license is legal and accepted in Malaysia.

    Click Pontianak_to_Kuching for travel itinerary on this route.

    Within Malaysia and From Brunei Darussalam

    Sarawak is a huge state. The road networks connecting towns and places in Sarawak including Kuching are somehow quite satisfactorily maintained. However, long and winding roads with sometimes no rest stops in between might bore you or scare you. Here are the distance chart from Kuching to other towns:

    Distance Table from Kuching to other towns in Sarawak! From !! To !! Distance/Accumulative Distance From Kuching (in Kilometre) !! Rest Stops|-| Kuching || Sri Aman || 193/193 || Siburan, Tapah, Beratok, Tarat, SERIAN, Balai Ringin, Lachau|-| Sri Aman || Sarikei || 179/372 || Engkilili, BETONG, SARATOK|-| Sarikei || Sibu || 90/462 || Meradong, Julau, Pakan, Jakar|-| Sibu || Bintulu || 202/644 || Stapang, SELANGAU, TATAU|-| Bintulu || Miri || 198/842 || Suai, BATU NIAH, Sibuti, Bekenu, Bakam|-| Miri || Limbang || 230/1072 || Sg. Tujuh, Kuala Belait (Brunei), Seria (Brunei), Tutong (Brunei), BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN (Brunei)|-| Limbang || Lawas || 1072/1200 || TEMBURONG (Brunei), Sundar, Trusan

    Sabahan people as well as from Brunei can also commute freely to Kuching using Pan Borneo Highway network. However, it is subject to a lot of stopover at immigration checkpoints. Therefore, travelling to Kuching from Sabah is not advisable. Bruneian commuters should produce driving permit which is simply by filling a form at the Malaysian border checkpoint. Bruneian driving license is a valid, legal and accepted form of document in Sarawak/Malaysia.

  • By cruises

    There are some cruise liners operating daily between Kuching and Singapore. One of them is StarCruise.

  • By helicopter

    In case you are in hurry or in the event to experience luxury, helicopter and other method of air transports are available by using Hornbill Skyways.

  • By plane

    Kuching International Airport is Sarawak's main gateway. There are near-hourly connections to Kuala Lumpur as well as frequent flights to Singapore, Johor Bahru, Labuan, Kota Kinabalu and other cities in Sarawak like Sibu, Bintulu and Miri. MASwings, which took over the rural air service from Fly Asian Express (FAX) on October 1, 2007, links Kuching with Mukah. International connections are rather limited, although there are a few weekly services to Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Macau and Pontianak. Flights to Kuching are also operated by AirAsia. International airlines operating in Kuching includes SilkAir, Royal Brunei, Tiger Airways, Jetstar Airways and Batavia Air.

    The airport underwent a major facelift in 2005-2006 and is now modern and pleasant. When checking in, note that all flights outside Sarawak are considered "international", even if you're only going elsewhere in Malaysia. A restaurant is on ground floor at the far end and a 24-hour McDonald's outlet, before security. There is also a KFC outlet and a Starbucks outlet on the 2nd floor (departure level), left of the departure gates.

    Getting there/away: Kuching city is about 20 minutes away by taxi, a fixed RM26.00 from the taxi coupon stand just outside arrivals. Ignore the touts, even if they show you price lists. From the city (Tune hotel) you can get a private vehicle (RM20.00) or catch a mini bus (RM8.00)leaving hourly from 8:30 to evening.

    The Sarawak Transport Company (STC) Bus No. 12A no longer serves the 5 daily trips between the airport and the city centre. There is a series of other buses which can drop you off or pick you up approximatly 1 Km west of the Airport (turn left as you exit the airport and walk to the main T intersection, turn left again and walk until you reach the big roundabout (Have a look on google maps)and catch a bus heading north to town...3A, 6, 8g, 9). The most convenient place to catch these buses back to the airport intersection is at the main bus terminal located in the city.

Get Around

  • By boats

    Boats are sometimes available for visitors who wish to travel from one place to another along the Sarawak River.

  • By bus

    Kuching stage buses nowadays have quite a sad reputation for a few reasons. The most obvious fact is that the bus companies are still using old chassis (half of the fleet is 15-20 years old) despite covering it up with (apparently) modern bodywork. It results in cheap fares, but passengers will have to bear with the inconvenience of noise (like you hear in old cars) and heat (for non-A/C buses). Although all buses show route numbers, most (if not all) buses neither show names of bus termini (the last bus stops) nor en route landmarks or places of interest. Therefore, it is wise to ask the bus driver where the bus ends its route and whether your destination lies along that particular route before grabbing the seat of the bus.

    Do not expect any brochures showing route information from the bus companies. It is best to just ask around if you really need a bus to wherever you want to go. To add things worse, the Kuching City Centre does not have a main bus terminal.

    Local stage buses are run by 6 companies of colourful assortments, 5 of which are in a consortium, but there's a reasonably logical route numbering system and bus stops usually have some signage indicating bus route numbers.

    • Sarawak Transport Company (STC) - these green and beige STC buses mainly serve downtown and along the protocol roads leading southbound out of the city centre.
    • Chin Liang Long Motor Vehicle Company (CLL) - these blue and white CLL buses serve almost all routes (fixed, radial dan cross-town) within the Kuching City South limits.
    • Matang Transport Company (MTC) - these orange and beige MTC buses serve the Kuching-Matang road and suburban settlements along the northern bank of the Sarawak River. This company is the only one not included in the Kuching City Bus Services consortium.
    • Petra Jaya Transport - these white buses with red, yellow and black striped livery serve the outskirts of Kuching City North (routes ending at Damai and Bako) and also the Kuching-Kota Sentosa-Kota Samarahan route.
    • Regas Transport Company - these brown and purple buses are rarely seen nowadays serving mainly downtown areas.
    • Bau Transport Company - these brown and red buses serve the Kuching-Bau route.
    Bus drivers and conductors do not actually have Public Relations and Tourist Guiding as part of their training syllabi. Should the bus conductor exist, kindly demand for the ticket because some bus inspectors might just walk inside and do a surprise inspection of passengers' tickets. There are some OMO (One Man Operation) buses that are equipped with a big coin box beside the driver's seat. Ask for the fare first before inserting the exact change into the box. Sit in the front half of the bus so you have easy access to the driver or conductor. Cheating, pickpocketing and sexual harrassment might sometimes occur in public buses, so be watchful of your surroundings.

    Kuching city hotels had once banded together to offer a free City Tram (really just a bus) service that shuttles around major sights once every hour. You would just ask for a City Tram sticker and route map from your hotel lobby. As of the year 2008, the service has been terminated due to "technical problems".

    Inconsistent passenger load along certain routes can lead to drops in frequency and thus, bus operators cannot comply to a fixed timetable and that results in frustrating delays.

  • By car

    All major roads in Kuching city and suburban areas are well tarred and fairly maintained. Driving orientation is on the left (like most of the former colonies of the British Empire) and is generally slow-paced. Speed limits on dual-carriageway roads can reach a maximum of 90km/h and can be reduced to 80km/h or 70km/h during festival seasons.

    Tourists from cosmopolitan cities may not appreciate the driving attitude of local road users. Some drivers tend to make a turn or overtake without using indicators, and others drive beyond the speed limit. You may also find a handful of road hoggers (cars, lorries and even motorcycles alike). Honk car horns and flash high beams with careful discretion.

    Self-driving in and around Kuching can be challengingly fun. Directional signs in Kuching are so inadequate and it takes a good road map and a good sense of direction to get you around.

    Car rental companies:

    • Kuching City Car Rental, Ground Floor, Terminal Building, Kuching International Airport, +60128838318
    • Car Rental Kuching, , +6 0168621613
    • Sime Darby Rent A Car, GL20, Ground Floor, Terminal Building, Kuching International Airport, +60 82 450740

  • By cruises

    Cruised might not be available at the posting date. Previously, it was available for tourists who wish to go for sightseeing along the Sarawak River.

  • By helicopter

    In case you are in hurry or in the event to experience luxuriousness, helicopter and other method of air transports are available by using Hornbill Skyways.

  • By motorcycle

    • Three Bikes Rental & Services. Operate at Singgahsana Lodge No.1 Temple St, Tel. +6082233835 or email us
    • Teck Hua Motor. Motorbike rental at 68B Tabuan Road, Tel. +6082233957

  • By river taxi

    For a leisurely commute across the Sarawak River, river taxis locally known as tambang or penambang offers daily services at various points along the Kuching Waterfront, with a one-way fare at RM0.40. The fare hikes up to RM1 from 10.00PM to 6.00AM the next day. Kindly place the exact change on the designated plate instead of giving it to the operator, as you disembark the river taxi at your destination.

  • By shuttle van

    Yellow roofed kereta sewa or shuttle vans fill the void left by stage bus operators, offering somewhat more frequent trips throughout Kuching to as far as Tebedu and Bau. Each shuttle van has their own commuting routes so watch out the routes by reading the destination on the body of the van. Minimum fare for each trip is RM1 and increases with respect to distance. Fares also differ from one shuttle van to another plying the same route by commuting frequency, peak and off-peak periods and passenger load. If in doubt, ask the passengers, not the driver.

  • By speedboats

    Speedboats are available for people who wish to go to Taman Negara Bako, Satang Island and Layang-layang Island from Santubong. Rate differs according to hotels, and in regards to public holidays, peak hours and etc. Check schedule and rates at the respective hotels, such as Damai Lagoon.

  • By taxi

    Taxis are somewhat expensive in Kuching. Although taxis are metered, the drivers seldom use it and normally they will charge you any fare they like. Reasonable taxi fare from Kuching city centre to Santubong is RM42 (after considering June 2008 petrol price hike). Some hotels provide their own shuttle vans or buses to designated tourism spots and city centre. Kindly check with your hotel should they provide this kind of service.

  • On foot

    Kuching is unusually pedestrian-friendly for a Malaysian city, with tree-lined sidewalks and pedestrian crossings, and the city core is compact enough to cover on foot. Good walks include the Kuching Waterfront and the pedestrian shopping street of Jalan India (Kuching's Little India).

Get Out

  • Consulates

    • Australian Consulate, Suite 504, 5th Floor, Wisma Bukit Mata Kuching, Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman, Kuching, +6082 233350
    • Bruneian Consulate, No. 325, Lorong Seladah 10, Jalan Seladah, Kuching, +6082 456515/458515
    • General Consulate of the People's Republic of China, Lot 3719, Dogan Garden, Dogan Road, Kuching, +6082 238344
    • Consulate General of Indonesia, Lantai 6, Bangunan Binamas, No. 1 Jalan Pandungan, Kuching, +6082 241734/421734

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