The Tanjung Kubong tunnel was once a site busy with coal mining activities for more than half a century from 1849 through 1911. This expansive network of underground tunnels is one of many important historical landmarks in Labuan. Operated by various British companies for 64 years, it was during the administration of the New Central Borneo, that an 8-mile long railway track was installed from here to Victoria Port to facilitate the export of coal, resulting in a flourishing coal mining operation here. However, an unfortunate string of mining accidents led to the closure of the mine in 1911.
Today, what still remains in the area are pits and tunnels dug long ago, old bricks and pieces of rail tracks and rusted cables strewn on the ground. Visitors may enter a low tunnel with the help of a short rope and emerge from the top, although this should only be attempted with great caution.
Tanjung Kubong is also the place where the famous and mysterious chimney is located. This 106-foot chimney was built in the 1880's using up to 23,000 pieces of red bricks imported from England. The architectural style and design has more or less a British influence.
The mystery surrounding the chimney lies in the fact that it bears no trace of smoke that would indicate its use as a chimney. While some of the locals believe that it was used as a ventilation shaft, many doubt this and entertain other theories of its origin as an unfinished mansion or as part of a lighthouse.
Until today, no one really knows the purpose of the chimney and why it was built. However, the mystery of the chimney has become part of the attraction and the reason why locals and tourists alike flock to the place.
Those curious to know more about the chimney can visit the nearby Chimney Museum which may either shed light or cast more shadow upon this unique structure.
You can take a taxi to reach the Tanjung Kubong Tunnel and The Chimney. You can also take the public bus services which offer affordable fares. There is another option that is to rent either a car or a scooter to reach there.
Who To Contact
Labuan Tourist Information Centre
Phone: +608-742 3445