Often regarded as just the point of entry for international visitors making their way to Bali or Yogyakarta, many people overlook the variety of possible activities in Jakarta. The Indonesian capital may not be the most typical definition of an ideal destination, but there are many secrets waiting to be discovered in the city that locals like to call ‘The Big Durian’.
More than just a capital in the most literal terms, Jakarta is also the cultural center of the world’s largest archipelagic state. It is here where the cultures and traditions of 17,000 islands converge, ready for the world to see. This is evident in the many attractions Jakarta has to offer.
Start your day at Monumen Nasional (Monas), or the National Monument. Smack dab in the heart of the city, the 132-meter tall obelisk commemorates the Indonesian peoples’ struggle for freedom from the Dutch Empire. A small fee will take you up to an observation deck with the best view of the entire city.
After taking in the breathtaking views from up top, head back down to Merdeka Square, which is where you will find a host of the other top activities in Jakarta. The Indonesian National History Museum features a vast collection of dioramas depicting some of the most important moments in the country’s rich history.
Tours in Jakarta are never complete without a visit to the Istiqlal Mosque. Fortunately for you, the Independence Mosque is just a stone’s throw away from the Monas. This domed structure is the largest mosque in all of Southeast Asia and testament to the Indonesian faith that majority of the nation’s population adheres to.
Interestingly enough, located right across the street from the country’s national mosque is the Jakarta Cathedral, seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Jakarta. A visit to the two sites are essential to your list of activities in Jakarta, if only to witness the harmony between what many regard as two conflicting religions. The display of tolerance and appreciation by followers of the two is a sight to behold and proof that peaceful coexistence is possible.
A Day at the Beach
After taking in all the cultural sights of the city, head on down to Ancol Bay City for some fun by the beach. Not all tours in Jakarta feature this area prominently, but Carnival Beach and Festival Beach, both found within the Ancol resort complex, are great getaways from the busy city. If the beach is too crowded on the day of your visit, then may your way over to the theme park, waterpark, or eco park. Ancol Dreamland is an integrated city where you will find some of the best activities in Jakarta.
Jakarta is a destination that truly embodies how wonderful Indonesia truly is. Discover all that it has to offer and start planning your tour in Jakarta today.