The Top Things to Do in Jakarta
As a travel writer, I have been fortunate enough to explore many cities around the world. But one city that has truly captured my heart is Jakarta, the bustling capital of Indonesia. From its rich cultural heritage to its modern skyscrapers, Jakarta offers a perfect blend of old and new. In this blog post, I want to share with you the top things to do in Jakarta that will make your visit to this vibrant city an unforgettable experience.
Explore the Old Town (Kota Tua)
The Old Town, also known as Kota Tua, is a must-visit for anyone traveling to Jakarta. This area is a testament to Jakarta’s colonial past, with its Dutch-style buildings and cobblestone streets. You can spend hours wandering around and admiring the beautiful architecture, or you can visit some of the museums located in this area.
One of the most popular museums is the Jakarta History Museum, also known as Fatahillah Museum. This museum was once the City Hall of Batavia, and it showcases the history of Jakarta through various artifacts and exhibits. Another must-visit museum in Kota Tua is the Wayang Museum, which displays a vast collection of traditional Indonesian puppets.
After visiting the museums, make sure to stop by the Fatahillah Square, where you can find street performers, food stalls, and horse-drawn carriages. This area is perfect for taking a break and soaking in the vibrant atmosphere of Kota Tua.
Try Local Delicacies at the Street Food Markets
One thing you cannot miss when in Jakarta is trying the local street food. The city is famous for its delicious and affordable street food, and the best place to experience it is at the street food markets. Some of the most popular markets include Jalan Sabang Food Street, Pecenongan Culinary Area, and Pasar Santa.
At these markets, you can find a variety of dishes, from traditional Indonesian favorites such as nasi goreng (fried rice) and satay (grilled skewers) to unique and modern fusion dishes. Don’t be afraid to try something new and be prepared to be blown away by the flavors and spices of Indonesian cuisine.
Visit the Iconic National Monument (Monas)
No trip to Jakarta is complete without a visit to the National Monument, or Monas as it is commonly known. This 132-meter tall monument symbolizes Indonesia’s struggle for independence and is one of the most iconic landmarks in the city.
You can take an elevator to the top of the monument, where you can enjoy a panoramic view of Jakarta’s skyline. But the highlight for many visitors is the National History Museum located at the base of the monument. Here, you can learn about Indonesia’s history and see artifacts and exhibits related to its independence.
Shop Till You Drop at the Grand Indonesia Mall
For all the shopaholics out there, Jakarta has the perfect place for you – the Grand Indonesia Mall. This massive shopping complex houses over 500 local and international brands, making it the ultimate shopping destination in the city.
Apart from shopping, the mall also has a variety of entertainment options, including a cinema, bowling alley, and an indoor theme park. And when you need a break from all the shopping and fun, head to one of the many restaurants and cafes located within the mall for a delicious meal or a refreshing drink.
Escape to the Thousand Islands
If you want to escape the hustle and bustle of Jakarta, then a day trip to the Thousand Islands is a must. This group of islands, located in the Bay of Jakarta, offers a tranquil retreat with its crystal clear waters and white sandy beaches.
You can take a boat from Marina Ancol and spend the day snorkeling, swimming, and relaxing on the beach. Some of the popular islands to visit include Pulau Ayer, Pulau Bidadari, and Pulau Sepa. You can also opt to stay overnight at one of the many resorts on the islands for a more extended getaway.
Experience Jakarta’s Nightlife
When the sun goes down, Jakarta transforms into a vibrant and lively city with its buzzing nightlife. From rooftop bars and clubs to live music venues and street performances, there is something for everyone to enjoy after dark.
One of the best places to experience Jakarta’s nightlife is in the trendy area of Kemang. Here, you can find a variety of bars, restaurants, and clubs that cater to different tastes. Don’t forget to try the local beer, Bintang, and dance the night away to the beats of Indonesian music.
Jakarta may not be the first city that comes to mind when planning a trip to Indonesia, but it is undoubtedly worth a visit