Trishaws in Malaysia

When I look at my photo albums, I noticed that I have some trishaw pictures and decided to write about it. I am no historian but we all know that trishaw was one of the main transporation in Malaysia up to the 70s. Since then, rapid urbanisation has increased demand for more efficient public transport, resulting in the decreasing numbers of trishaws. I try to remember hard but I can only remember that I rode on one during the 70s in Alor Star when I was a child.

Today, they are operated as tourist attraction, mainly in Melaka, Penang, Terengganu and Kelantan.

Let’s take a look at trishaws in Melaka. I prefer it way back when it was in its much simpler state where there were no fake flower decorations. LOL. Less is more. But if fake flowers can attract tourists, so be it. I guess I can live with that. On second thought, I think the creativeness of the trishaw operators somehow made the trishaw unique. I would love to interview one of the operators one day and find out who started the trend.

And this one was in Penang. I love the trishaws in Penang, they were quite an antique! The originality is still there, no fake flower decorations. And look at the back stand; antique and precious.

And this one was in Terengganu when my son, Yassin was 3. Some were undecorated…

…but some were decorated with fake flowers as well. But not as exaggerated as the ones in Melaka.

I don’t have any pictures of trishaws in Kelantan but will definitely take a snap or two if I pass by the town. I did passed by Jeli during my road trip last February but did not went into town.

Last but not least, let’s take a look at the one in the National Museum. Purely an antique, 1950s.

Have you rode on trishaw before? Mind sharing the experience?


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  1. I remember how my grandma (in melaka) always hired a trishaw to get us all to the market; I was 7 & and my bro 5. She was big so she occupied the whole seat; the kids squat the whole trip. She always paid slightly more because she said she’s heavy; pity the rider. The trishaw back then looked very much like the one with the 3-year old Yassin; and we called it ‘taxi’. I hold this memory dear to me; so I keep postcards, stamps and anything i can find that bears he trishaw pictures. Thanks for this post!

  2. Tak pernah naik beca .. walaupun biasanya jika ke Kota Bharu, Kelantan memang banyak. Anyway hari tu pergi Melaka pun tak naik juga. Lain kali kena naik nak rasa

  3. kak em, i noticed there’s no travelogue entry on places in kelantan yet, im from kelantan, hope someday u’ll have a chance to visit kelantan n feature it in ur blog.. 🙂 we do have lots of trishaws in kelantan and some of the locals still use trishaw as a mean of transportation not juz for sightseeing. 🙂

    1. Ya belum lagi. I actually went to Kelantan few years back before I started blogging, gambar tu ada tapi rasanya dah basi kalau nak letak. My dad lived in Kelantan before he moved to his hometown in Temerloh. kelantan kampung mak tiri I.

      Nanti one fine day, I’ll visit Kelantan, OK. And meet you juga. Kita naik beca.

  4. teringat saya waktu kanak2… my dad suka bawa kami naik beca kalau pulang ke kota bharu 😀
    kak emi ada buat drawing berkaitan dengan beca?

  5. when i was child around 95’s, i used to ride t’ganu beca….
    only 50 cents or $1 per ride…
    nowadays… still ade kat bandar kuala trg but only the elders prefer to ride it…
    and looking at pak cik beca ni, kind of pity.. most of them seems too old but still got strength to kayuh the beca… and the money the get only around $2-$5..

  6. 2 tahun yg lalu, saya naik beca with my friends – the decorated one in Malacca 🙂
    Since we are 4 people, so 2 per one trishaw. My other friends were more lucky because the trishaw rider knows a lot about Malacca’s history and jadi mcm tourist guide gitu.. while yg kitorg punya beca pulak, org tu pegi buka lagu entah apa2. kuat pula tu.. stress dibuatnya =_=
    So, next time nak naik beca, kena tgk juga penunggang becanya mcm mana. baru la dpt menikmati pengalaman menaiki beca 😉

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