Located on the eastern coast of Bangka Island, Pangkalpinang is the island’s largest city and capital of the Province of Bangka-Belitung Islands. Aside from its role as the center of the provincial government, economic, and commercial activities, Pangkalpinang serves as gateway for visitors who wish to explore the enchanting beauty of Bangka and Belitung Islands.
Long known as the center of the tin mining industry, in its heydays Bangka produced some of the best tin ore and tin handicrafts. The tin mining industry drew Chinese workers and their descendants to the island, who brought their culture to root-down on Bangka, thus decorating the city of Pangkalpinang with visible Chinese nuances in its architecture and rituals. But besides its rich cultural heritage, Pangkalpinang also boasts some pristine beaches.
As visitors step down at the Depati Amir Airport, a huge sign welcomes them saying “Welcome to the land of Serumpun Sebalai”. Serumpun Sebalai or Seiya Sekata in Bahasa Indonesia has deep meaning that unity only comes with actions that correspond to speech and promises. More than the Province’s slogan, however, Serumpun Sebalai underscores the spirit that unites the plural society of the islands into one big family.
Pangkal or Pengkal in the Malay language means center or beginning. It refers to the city’s role as the center of the tin mining industry. This once small mining town subsequently grew into the island’s commercial center as well as connecting port among all the islands. Pinang on the other hand is the palm tree found abundantly on the island.