Places of Interest and Tourist Attractions in Jakarta
Information on the main tourist attractions, places of interest and sights to see in and around Jakarta...
The capital has a number of interesting sites which are of historical, social and cultural significance. They are also extremely popular with Jakartans, especially during both school and public holidays.
Sunda Kelapa Harbour is Jakarta’s old harbour in the Penjaringan district in North Jakarta, and lies at the estuary of the Ciliwung River. The harbour’s name can be found in Chinese records dating from the twelfth century, when the city was known as Sunda Kelapa. It remains an active and bustling area with berths for traditional fishing boats and inter-island ships. There are also traditional phinisi from Sulawesi in eastern Indonesia. These boats are made in the same way as they were centuries ago, without the use of nails.
The National Monument (Monas) is a located in Merdeka Square, in the Gambir district of Central Jakarta. During colonial times, the square was known as the Royal or King’s Square (Koningsplein). The square was later known as Ikada Square during the Japanese occupation in the Second World War. It was also the site of President Soekarno’s famous speech, which he gave a month after the Proclamation of Independence on 19 September 1945.
The monument is 137m tall, and is topped by a bronze flame weighing 14.5 tonnes, plated with 35 Kg gold, which was donated by Teuku Markam of Aceh. It is shaped in the form of a phallus (lingga) coupled with its feminine counterpart (yoni). The idea was Soekarno’s, who instructed the architects Soedarsono and Silaban to design the monument. Construction started on 17 August 1961, and the monument was finally inaugurated on 12 July 1975.
The National History museum is located at the base of the monument, and it contains the original text of the Indonesian Proclamation of Independence.
Taman Mini Indonesia Indah, which literally means "Beautiful Miniature Indonesia Park", was opened on 20 April 1975. Located in East Jakarta, the park was the brainchild of the first lady, Mrs Tien Soeharto, who wanted to exhibit Indonesia’s various cultures. There is a lake with a miniature Indonesian archipelago, the Golden Snail (Keong Emas) cinema, and the My Homeland (Tanah Airku) theatre. A cable car goes through the park, offering an aerial view of Taman Mini.
Founded in 1864, Ragunan Zoo is a zoological garden covering 140 hectares in South Jakarta’s Pasar Minggu district. With over 3,000 animals, it is home to both foreign and indigenous animals, including lions, elephants, giraffes, chimpanzees, various birds, snakes and reptiles, as well as orang-utans, komodo dragons, anoa, Sumatran tigers, and native oxen (banteng). There is also a separate primate centre.
- Ragunan Zoo
At: Jalan RM Harsono 1, Pasar Minggu, Ragunan, Jakarta 12560
Tel: 021 780 6975
Taman Safari is located about 80 Km away from Jakarta in Cisarua, Bogor, West Java. The park is situated on 170 hectares of land bordering the Halimun-Salak Mountain National Park. Cheetahs, tigers, giraffes, zebras, hippopotamus, and other species roam freely in certain zones. Cars may be driven through these areas so that visitors can view the animals.
Built in 1760, the National Archives Building (Gedung Arsip Nasional) is the former home of the National Archives. It was also the residence of the governor-general of the Dutch East India Company (Verenigde Oost-indische Compagnie - VOC), Reinier de Klerk. Since 1992 the building has not been used to store archives, but it is still known as such. Today, it is often used for receptions and events.
The Toko Merah was originally the residence of Baron von Imhoff, another one of the VOC’s governor-generals. Built in 1730, it later became the home of the Dutch Naval Academy, and is reputedly older than the one in the Netherlands itself. At various stages of its history, the building was used as lodgings (one of its most famous guests was William Bligh), and was a bank at the turn of the twentieth century.
The Thousand Islands (Kepulauan Seribu) is a mini archipelago off the coast of North Jakarta. Kepulauan Seribu comes from pulau which means "island" and seribu "one thousand". It is an administrative regency forming part of DKI Jakarta. Among the many islands is Pulau Onrust, where the VOC was allowed to build a naval base by the Banten Prince Jayakarta in 1610. Later, the island became a quarantine port for returning hajj pilgrims from Mecca. After Indonesia’s independence, it was briefly used as a leper colony.
Other islands worthy of note are Pulau Bidadari, Pulau Ayer, Pulau Tidung, and Pulau Putri. Pulau Pramuka, Pulau Semak Daun, Pulau Kelapa and Pulau Panggang have private resorts and ecological tourism.