The Indonesian capital Jakarta is located on the north coast of the island of Java, where the river Ciliwung has its estuary. With a population of nearly nine million people, it is the country's largest city, and also known as a very colorful, multicultural and densely populated capital. Jakarta is the perfect stopover for capital adventures before other Indonesian destinations call your name.
Big city life of Jakarta
Jakarta's city centre has wide boulevards, monuments of all kinds and business districts of glass and marble. It is a city with many faces, next to modern skyscrapers you will find open sewers and, in many places, bleak slums. The streets are full of an energetic cosmopolitan atmosphere and quick traffic, but also quite a lot of smog because of the broad highways that wind through the giant city.
Jakarta's shopping malls and markets
For those who want shopping, there are ample opportunities on a trip to Jakarta. Around the city you will find markets with stalls and traders as well as several shopping centres, especially in the southern part of town where you will find the biggest ones.
Jakarta's cuisine - A taste of heaven
Good food is not difficult to find when travelling to Jakarta. Here in the Indonesian capital you can get acquainted with delicious Indonesian specialities made from fish, shellfish, coconut milk, bananas and fresh vegetables. The Indonesian and Javanese cuisine is fantastic, so for food lovers this is like visiting heaven. And since the city has a lot of immigrants, you can find restaurants serving cuisine from all corners of the world.
Sightseeing in Jakarta
If you travel to Jakarta you should make sure to make a visit to Ragunan Zoo, which is a combination of a park and a zoo. For those who want a glimpse of modern Indonesian art, it is worth visiting the art center Taman Ismail, which has works by both modern and much more traditionally oriented artists. Among the attractions you will also find the old port of Sunda Kelapa Harbor, Jakarta's Old Town and Museum Gajah, which gives a good insight into Indonesian culture through the ages.
Island hopping in Indonesia? Start out in Jakarta
Indonesia is a large country, stretching 5000 kilometer from east to west across the equator. It consists of more than 17,000 islands with their own character and is a popular destination for backpackers because it is well suited to touring and island hopping. In Indonesia you can both see volcanoes, rainforests, coral reefs and abundant wildlife.
Jakarta itself may not be among the most coveted tourist destinations, but because of the city's international airport, Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, there are many who begin their travel in Indonesia in this hot and steaming metropolis. Moreover, the island of Java is a must for those contemplating a trip around Indonesia. It is the heart of the country, a place with drive and energy. And because of the tropical climate, there is an almost constant temperature of 30 degrees, so don’t worry about what to wear (expect perhaps for a light raincoat thanks to its tropical showers that come and go).