"Kulim Town" Kulim by lalatbotak

Kulim Travel Guide: 16 reviews and 13 photos

Kulim

This is the town where I was born and bred. A sleepy hollow which blossomed into a gigantic industrial hub.
Streets which where once deserted by 6.30 pm has emerged into a township burtsling with activity right into the depths of night. Kulim somehow still manages to retain its rustic , small town image with quaint kampongs stringed like pearls along its fringes.

The Old Town quaters started as a line of shophouses along the Jalan Raya before WW2. So the initial beggining of the Old Kulim Town was just a row of shophouses along the main road. The town gradually grew in size as more shophouses were erected sometime before the out break of WW2. In the late 50's and early 60's more buildings and shophouses were build as the town blossomed into sort of a mini metropolis in South Kedah.

The iconic Kulim Clock Tower was built to commemorate the Merdeka Celebration . I still remember the Sepuluh Tahun Merdeka Celebrations in 1967 where we have motorized floats and procession along the main road to celebrate Merdeka!

The Old Town is surrounded by rubber plantations ,notebly the Merah Estate near Jalan Pegawai ( old name :- Jalan Merah ) and Tin Mines which is located near the present Bus Station. The hums of the Tin dredge was be heard into the distance during the old days.

The old wet market was built in 1959 , so the inhabitants of Kulim did their daily shopping of vegetables,meat,fish etc at the 'new' market from there on. Back in the 50's and early 60's we have chinese fishmongers going from house to house on bicycles selling their produce to housewifes who patiently wait for the them to make a pit stop at their door steps. The fish,prawns and squids are carried in huge bakuls packed with ice while the greens are nearly arranged around and on top of the bakuls. Balancing the bicycle was indeed an art only posessed by the fishmongers at that particular time in Kulim's history.

Till the late 60's and early 70's the unit measure we were using was the Kati and Tahils to buy foodstuff , fish and greens . Rice was sold in Chupak and Gantangs. The metric system was still unheard of. Paperbags and not plastic bags was the order of the day.!!

In the mid 60's the Kulim Bus Station was on the portside of the Kulim Wet Market. As you board the busses you will be able to see the commerce going around the market, the slaughtering and manual prosessing of chickens and many more unimaginable sights to behold.

Kulim Town had three theaters at that time. The Cathay Cinema, the Capitol and the Coronation. Special mention about the Coronation Theater, rubber tappers ,budget minded inhabitants flocked to this particular theater to view re runs of old films. The seats are way down cheaper compared to the Cathay and Capitol which usually broadcast first run but late flicks!

The Rumah Murah located at the terminal end of Jalan Tengku Bendahara was completed in 1965 and was sold mostly to government servants working as clerks ,peons etc.

-To be continued- Lalatbotak

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Small town, Low cost of living, Near to Penang
  • Cons:Too modern
  • In a nutshell:A Town in its Early Stages of Transformation
  • Intro Updated Feb 6, 2008
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lalatbotak

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