Alkhder Travel: A basic guide to Jakarta

Alkhder Travel: A basic guide to Jakarta

One of the most popular destinations in Asia is Jakarta, Indonesia. Being the capital city, Jakarta is one of the most advanced places that you can visit. Often dubbed as the ‘Big Durian’, this city is the entry and exit point for all tourists visiting Indonesia. 

The charm of Indonesia lies in its bustling streets, invigorating city life, and the unique culture that you can see in every nook and corner of the city. Moreover, the blending of the traditional and contemporary lifestyle adds a great contrast for travellers.

So, if you’re planning to tour Jakarta, here’s a basic guide that can help you make your travel more worthwhile and exciting. 

How to get around the city 

Jakarta may seem like a small city, but it’s actually hard to navigate it for first-time travellers because of the complex structure of the city. Fortunately, there are several transportation options that can help you traverse the city without getting lost. 

Hop-on bus 

In Jakarta, hop-on busses are popular modes of transportation that are popular among tourists. Usually, this bus is a double-decker and can accommodate a lot of passengers. Moreover, it’s spacious and well-ventilated so you don’t have to worry about cramping during hot weather days. 

What’s more exciting about this bus is that you can ride it for free. However, make sure you catch it on time because it ferries people on a schedule. The pick-up schedule is from 7 AM to 7 PM only.  

By train 

Another mode of transportation you have when travelling in Jakarta is by train. Train stations in Jakarta are popular among tourists because it drops off in some of the most common attractions in the city. 

Moreover, it’s faster compared to a bus because it evades the relatively hectic traffic in the city. It also ferries to farther states, which is convenient if you want to explore more of Indonesia. One thing you should remember when taking the train is avoiding the rush hour. 

By tuk-tuk 

One of the most unique ways to get a ride in Indonesia is by tuk-tuk. Also known as rickshaw, this type of transportation can give you a hitch in nearby places you want to visit in the city. It’s a cheap and convenient way to go around the city. 

Things to do in Jakarta

Jakarta is an exciting city that will give you a unique experience of Southeast Asia. If you’re curious to know more about Jakarta, here are some of the activities you can do and places you can visit. 

Drop by Menteng to shop 

One of the most popular things to do in Jakarta is to visit Menteng and go on a shopping spree. Menteng is a flea market where you can find various stalls that sell an assortment of items from food to antiques. You can purchase products for arts and crafts, artisanal food items, and even antiques. 

Inside the Menteng, the most popular shop is the Jalan Surabaya flea market that was established in the 1970s. You can find hard to find items such as ornate wooden furniture, vinyl, and more. 

If you’re shopping on a budget, you don’t have to worry about breaking the bank here because you can find priceless items without breaking the bank. Additionally, vendors and sellers in Menteng are nice, so don’t worry about haggling! 

Visit the Istana Merdeka 

If you’re interested in visiting important landmarks, Istana Merdeka is one of the places you should visit. Located near Merdeka Square, this establishment is the presidential palace which serves as the home of the president. While it’s not a place open for the public, you can admire the building’s remarkable architecture from the outside. 

The palace is one of the most important buildings in the city that bears a political and historical significance to the people. It was built in 1879 and was the place where the first flag changing ceremony took place at the end of Dutch colonial rule. 

Visit the azure waters of the Thousand Islands 

If you want to take a break from the city, you can visit the Thousand Islands and enjoy the relaxing waters. From Jakarta, it will take you just a few hours to arrive in the area where you can book a boat that will take you from one island to another. 

Enjoy your time island hopping because you can see beautiful beaches, pristine coves, and inlets that will show you the beauty of Indonesia. Within the islands, you can also find hotels and accommodations that you can book if you want to prolong your stay.  

Pay the Monas Tower a visit 

The Monas Tower is one of the most notable landmarks in Jakarta. This tower was built in 1945 when Indonesia was released from its long years of colonial rule. It serves as the symbol of the independence of the country. 

Located in Merdeka Square, you can also find a gallery inside the tower that will tell you about the tumultuous history of the country and the colonial tensions left behind by the Dutch. The main attraction of the tower is that it has a deck where you can get a good view of the city. 

Marvel at the majestic animals in Ragunan Zoo 

With a sprawling size of 185 hectares, the Ragunan Zoo is one of the most popular tourist hubs in the city. Inside this zoo, you will find at least 3,600 species of animals. You can find orangutans, Komodo dragons, and other animals from across the globe.

Moreover, the zoo also boasts a wide variety of flora and indigenous plants that are native to Indonesia. If you’re curious to know more about the country’s wildlife, this zoo is the perfect place to visit. 

Experience the Taman Mini Indonesia Indah 

Indonesia is a big country with 17,000 islands with at least 26 provinces. A single day isn’t enough to travel to the whole country. So, if you want to get more overview of Indonesia, you can drop by Taman Mini Indonesia Indah.

It is a park where you can find small models of traditional housings and landmarks of Indonesia. You can learn about the local traditions, costumes, and set of beliefs across the country. This place is a good landmark to visit if you’re travelling with kids and young adults.

Learn about Islam at the Istqlal Mosque 

In Indonesia, the largest religion practised is Islam so you can find several mosques across the city. One of the most popular places of worship you can visit is the Istiqlal Mosque, which is considered one of the biggest mosques in Southeast Asia and has the capacity to accommodate 120,000 worshippers. 

Located near Monas, you can easily visit two national landmarks. Moreover, the Istqlal boasts beautiful Islam-inspired motifs that will leave you in awe. You can find symbols of water, stars, and other engravings inside. People who do not follow Islam are welcome as long as they wear modest clothing and behave well inside the praying area. 

Wade by the pristine waters by the Ancol Beach 

It might come as a surprise that an urban jungle like Jakarta would have its own beach. Located in the wider Ancol Jakarta Bay City, the Ancol beach is one of the most popular tourist hubs in the city. 

Once you visit the place, you will witness a marvellous strip of white-gold sand that stretches as far as the eye can see. While this is a public beach, there’s an entrance fee you have to pay to enjoy the facilities. 

If you want to take a dip, you can do so because it also has several swimming pools. Moreover, there are also restaurants where you can order authentic Indonesian cuisine. 

Learn about Indonesia’s history and culture when you visit the National Museum 

Also known as the Museum Nasional, this place is rife with Indonesia’s rich culture and heritage. You will see remnants of the colonial period, as well the country’s story before it was colonized. 

Marvel at the galleries where you can find rare ceramics and Hindu art that has survived. This place has been operating since 1868, so expect that you will find rare and hard to find artefacts.  

Experience fun at Dunia Fantasi 

If you want to have a laid back adventure, you can visit the Dunia Fantasi which is the local version of Disneyland in Indonesia. Inside this theme-park, you can find fantasy themes that will entertain you. You can find a variety of rides such as the Niagara Flume and Halilintar Twister. 

Have a luxury shopping experience at the Anggrek Mall 

Indonesia is popular for its long line of high-end malls. One of the most popular is the Taman Anggrek, which is located in the West of Jakarta. According to locals, around 10,000 people visit the mall every day. Shop until you drop in this mall because you can find various stores where you can find hard-to-find items.