Public transport doesn’t necessarily have to be all about old, conventional and clichéd trains, buses, cars or bikes! When visiting a new country, the best way to travel is to travel how the locals do, and you’ll be surprised at the uniqueness and unusualness of some of these public transport modes! Be it a train cart made of bamboos, a boat made of reeds, a wicker toboggan or truck that can run on land as well as water, here is an interesting list of some of the most unusual public transport modes from around the world!
Bamboo train, Cambodia
Bamboo trains, yes! Locally referred to as nori, the Cambodian bamboo train essentially consists of a bamboo platform powered by an electric generator engine. The bamboo platform is hoisted merely inches above the railway tracks, and is known to travel up to a speed of 40 km/h. Bamboo trains are undoubtedly one of the most economic ways to travel around Cambodia, and an ideal way to explore the breath-taking Cambodian countryside.
A rather cool variation of the jeeps used in World War II, by the American military, the famous jeepneys of Philippines are one of the most coveted modes of transportation in the country. They are not only cheap, but are also an amazingly convenient way to make your way around the country! What’s more, these jeeps are delightfully colourful to look at, and the interiors consist of two benches, and an added roof on the top, for shade.
Monte Toboggan, Madeira
Want to experience a sleigh ride minus the snow? If yes, welcome to Madeira! Once known to be the most popular mode of transport for locals looking to travel downhill to Funchai, the Monte Toboggans of Madeira are hands down one of the most thrilling ways to travel here! Consisting of a two-seater wicker sledge gliding on wooden runners, Monte Toboggans are steered by two men, who are usually in a traditional attire of a straw hat and white cotton clothes. You’ll definitely enjoy some adventure along the ride, with the sledge going up to a speed of almost 48 km per hour!
Planning a trip to Thailand? Looking to experience a unique and reasonable wat to travel within the country? How about traveling in a vehicle that looks more like a combination of an open-air taxi and three-wheeled motorcycle?! Say hello to the quintessential Tuk-tuks! Originated in Thailand, and also used in countries like India and Cambodia, these open-air carriage are a great way to soak in views if the city, besides enjoying a ride of a lifetime!
Barco de Totora, Peru
An icon of Peru, the famous Barco de Totora boats are simply magnificent and classic to say the least! A group of people called the Uros, make these iconic Barco de Totora boats using bundles and bundles of dried reeds (totora), which are most notably grown on Lake Titicaca. If you’re planning a trip to the Lake Titicaca region, a ride on the Barco de Totora is the most scenic, delightful, unique, and enjoyable way to get across the lake and revel in the breath-taking scenery!
DUKW, London, UK
Ever fancied savouring a ride on a vehicle that runs on land as well as water? Yes, it’s possible, and yes, such modes of transport do exist! Pronounced as “duck”, DUKW are amphibious trucks, designed during World War II by the American military. These amphibious trucks were used to transport troops and equipment over water as well as land. You can opt for a delightful DUKW trip in Central London, by taking part in the aptly named, famous “London Duck Tours”. On the tour, zoom past the iconic landmarks of London, before you are launched into the shimmering Rives Thames, to soak in views of yet more iconic landmarks, from the water!