Navigating Jakarta

Indonesia’s economic, cultural and political centre and the most populous city in Southeast Asia, Jakarta is located on the northwest of the island of Java. Filled with an exciting nightlife and vibrant shopping areas, the city is the centre and melting pot of Indonesian culture. The secret behind a good trip is always knowledge. Knowing about the how can you navigate yourself in Jakarta, can only help you plan the perfect itinerary.

Central Jakarta or Jakarta Pusat
Central Jakarta is the Heart of Jakarta’s Administrative, Government and financial. This district is the site of Jakarta’s symbol, the 132 meter Monas (Monumen Nasional) which is located in world’s largest city square “Lapangan Merdeka”. The presidential palace, the government building, Istiqal Mosque (the largest in Southeast Asia), and the National Museum of Indonesia, all surround the central area. You can also find Bundaran HI or the Hotel Indonesia traffic circle in Central Jakarta; this is one of Jakarta’s major landmarks where Jakarta’s top most malls are located. Apart from the top most malls, Central Jakarta also houses a small road called Jalan Jaksaor Jaksa, which is actually a backpacker street, with a number of budget hotels and restaurants for travelers.

West Jakarta or Jakarta Barat
West Jakarta is home to Jakarta’s only surviving old town area, “Jakarta Kota Tua”. A small are that has a number of Dutch colonial buildings, the streets of Kota are full with hawker food, craft vendors, and artists. The Fatahillah Museum or Jakarta History Museum, and numbers of few other museums cafes converted from old Batavia’s offices, banks, warehouses and shops can be found in this area. West Jakarta is also the home to Jakarta’s very own Chinatown, better known as the “Glodok” area. Rich in street hawker food and Chinese cuisine, and Chinese temples, Glodok is more of an electronic promenade of Jakarta. West Jakarta is also the place where a lot of shopping goes on, as it is home to Indonesia’s largest shopping mall “Mall Taman Anggrek”(Orchid Garden Mall).

South Jakarta or Jakarta Selatan
Jakarta’s middle upper class and elite’s residential area and is also part of Jakarta’s business centre. In South Jakarta you can find upscale shopping centers and malls, restaurants, hotels, bustling nightlife and entertainment centers as well as the affluent residential areas. One of the attractions of South Jakarta is Kemang, a street filled with boutiques, restaurants, night clubs, and pubs. Some of the city’s hippest and best restaurants can be found in South Jakarta in the Senopati area. The SCBD, Central business district also has some great lunch options as well as the best clubs and lounges in the city. South Jakarta is also home to Gelanggang Bung Karno stadium in Senayan sport complex area, which happens to be Indonesia’s largest stadium.

East Jakarta or Jakarta Timur
East Jakarta is actually the Industrial Quarter of the city. Here you can see parts of Indonesia’s multiethnic community at the Taman Mini Indonesia Indah. East Jakarta is also where you can find crafted goods at Utan Kayu art community, or the Cibubur camping ground, as well as Jakarta’s 2nd airport, Halim Perdanakusuma airport.

North Jakarta or Jakarta Utara
Famed for its seafood, and as the gateway to the Thousand Island province of Jakarta, Jakarta Utara, or North Jakarta is home to the Ancol Bayfront City, which just happens to be Asia’s largest integrated tourism area, consisting of the fascinating Dufan theme park, Sea World, eco parks, art markets, a shopping mall, along with beachside entertainment.

With perfect knowledge about all the areas of Jakarta, it will be easier to plan out the perfect trip, knowing where you have to go for what.

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