Kerteh is a sub-district, referred to as a mukim, in the Kemaman District, Terengganu, Malaysia. It is a base for oil platform operations off the coast. Kerteh is also a hub for petrochemical production. In nearby Paka, crude oil refining is one of the main parts of the economy. Kerteh houses a small airport that mainly offers helicopter flights to offshore oil platforms. The Kerteh Airport also handles charter plane flights for staff of Petronas, or Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Malaysian National Oil Company Inc.). The chartered flights generally take the staff to Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport, located near Kuala Lumpur.
Kerteh Rental Car Options
The Kerteh Airport is owned and operated by Petronas. When it was built, the purpose was to transport Petronas employees as well as employees of ExxonMobil to oil platforms that are within 100 to 200 kilometres offshore. Due to the high volume of staff needing to fly in and out of the airport, it houses a single runway measuring 1,362 metres in length, which allows it to accommodate a Boeing 737-400 airplane. Malaysia Helicopter Services mainly transports workers to the offshore oil platforms, so most of the airport operations focus on this company.
In the past, the Kerteh Airport offered fixed-wing charter service on one weekday to transport staff members to Subang, near Kuala Lumpur, but that service ended. Now employees can take Malindo Air scheduled flights to the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport. The airport does not offer rental cars.
What to Know When Driving in Kerteh
Kerteh is a very small sub-district without many major roads or highways. Travellers coming to Terengganu should know that it used to be the poorest state in Malaysia until the discovery of gas and oil off its coastline. Aside from gas and oil, tourism and fishing are some of the major industries in this coastal region.
Since Malaysia was formerly a British colony, Malaysians drive on the left-hand side of the road. First-time visitors may feel overwhelmed by driving here, especially with the high volume of motorcycles and motorists that don't always follow the rules of the road. In larger Malaysian cities, toll roads are common, so visitors should use either the Touch 'n' Go card or SmartTag to avoid having to pay cash for tolls.
The Best Attractions in the Area
Since Kerteh is such a small area of Malaysia, there aren't a lot of attractions. Visitors enjoy spending a day at Mesra Mall, a modern shopping district with a 24-lane bowling alley, a food court, several financial institutions, restaurants, and squash courts. The mall also houses the only movie theatre in Terengganu. The mall is about 13 kilometres from Kerteh Airport.
During a visit to this remote, tiny sub-district, a traveller might enjoy spending time off the beaten path and learning more about the rich history and culture of this area. It's important to know that the options for lodging, transportation, and amenities will be limited due to the low number of visitors that come each year.