Let’s face it, Jakarta is not the most exciting place in Indonesia. But that doesn’t mean you can’t do anything around. So I went there for a day and looked for the most basic touristy activities, before hopping on a flight further into Indonesia’s top attractions.
Galeri Nasional Indonesia
The National Gallery of Indonesia is a modern and contemporary museum just across Gambir Station. It houses permanent and temporary exhibits mainly by local artists. No admission fees so you can just show up and see some of the best artworks in Indonesia.
It’s a square park that features statues and monuments significant to the country. The most prominent one is at its center, the National Monument, that towers 132 m. It was built to commemorate the Indonesian National Revolution against the Dutch Empire.
Being one of the best in Indonesia, this museum has collections of artifacts from all over Asia. It’s perfect for visitors who are interested in everything about the prehistoric times.
This street is Jakarta’s center for cheap accommodation and nightlife. Think Khaosan of Bangkok but narrower and less developed. You can also find good restaurants along the street with tourist friendly staff.
So after a tiring day of walking around, it’s perfect to get some desserts at Sarinah Mall’s food court. It’s at the lowest floor of the mall and you can get all kinds of snacks there.
Jakarta is a common entry point for travelers, and some just skip it. It’s understandable, but I wanted to see if it’s worth skipping, so I spent a day there before going to Yogyakarta. What I learned is that this city is a perfect introduction to this country. With all the beautiful museums and monuments, it was best to get to know Indonesia first before heading on to my journey. And most importantly, Jakarta showed me the hospitality of Indonesian people that I experience throughout my trip to this beautiful country.