The city of culture, history and islands is the best option to spend an amazing vacation. You can explore the beauty of Indonesia along with the huge variety of foods. It is a very unique and diverse destination.
Why should anyone visit the city?
People visit Jakarta for the diversity of culture, history and art. There is a huge list of activities to do in the city. From exploring the historical monuments to the works of artists and the worshipping places, there is a lot to see and enjoy.
How does one get to the destination (airport, ferry or others)?
Major airport that is used for the flights is Soekarno Hatta International Airport (CGK) whereas the secondary airport that welcomes the flights is Halim Perdanakusuma International Airport (HLP). CGK is among the top ten busiest airports in Asia. Check the airport carefully when you book the flight.
Railway station is located in the city center and it is the most convenient option to reach different cities and parts of Jakarta.
Currently the bus service is not very convenient for intercity travelling. Different bus terminals are located in several directions.
Regular passenger ship services are available to reach every part of the archipelago and Indonesia. However, it is the best option for the people having a plenty of time.
Is the city safe? What areas are not safe?
The unsafe area is Ancol Port and the neighborhoods of the north of the city. Common crimes in these areas are bag snatching and pick pocketing. There is no risk of assault or harassment for solo females. They should take care of their belongings and avoid accepting any drinks from strangers.
What’s the weather like?
- March through May is the fall season that is warm and humid. Tourism remains very slow with excellent deals of travel and accommodation.
- June to August is perfect for limited budget travelers because travel prices and accommodation is very cheap during these months. It is the winter season with precipitation of 2 to 4 days per month.
- September to November is the spring season with humidity and wind. Travel and accommodation prices start rising because of increasing tourism.
- December to February is the is the summer season with a big amount of rain. It is the busiest time of tourists in the city.
What languages are spoken in the area? Is English spoken?
Official language of Jakarta is Indonesian that is similar to Malay. English is spoken frequently in the tourist associated areas. Indonesians that belong to Chinese ethnicity speak fluent English.
What’s the local currency?
Is US Dollar widely accepted?
Indonesian Rupiah IDR is the official currency that is used in Jakarta. International hotel chains and some shops allow transactions in US Dollars whereas the exchange rate is very high so it is better to use the local currency. You will get very good exchange rate if you exchange USD from the local money exchange or banks.
What are the best areas or districts to stay in the city?
- Menteng is located in the heart of Jakarta and offer a variety of things to explore. There are plenty of places to stay, eat and entertain.
- Jalan Jaksa is the perfect area to stay for cheap accommodation and nightlife. There are many places which are designed for the backpackers. This area has many eateries, shops, book stores, pubs and bars.
- Tanah Abang is the best area to stay for backpackers and budget travelers. You can easily access this place from different parts of Jakarta by public transportation. Many hotels, tourist attractions and shopping malls are near Tanah Abang.
- Sudirman Central Business District (SCBD) is the southern part of Jakarta. This is the business district with hotels, exclusive entertainment places, office buildings and shopping malls.
What’re your top 3 hotels (budget, moderate, luxury) and why?
- Classic hotel is the budget place with free Wi-Fi, TV, minibars, suites and living areas. It has an indoor pool, café, restaurant, complimentary breakfast and many other amenities.
- Swissotel Jakarta PIK Avenue has a bar, restaurant, outdoor swimming pool, fitness center and shared lounge. Guests also get access to shared kitchen and free internet.
- Hotel Fairmont Jakarta is the luxury hotel in the business district. Rooms have minibar, safe, tea and coffee maker, TVs and free Wi-Fi. There are 9 restaurants, open air eatery, bars, spa and a ballroom.
How does one get around the city? Taxi, Uber, similar apps, ATVs?
- Cars and motorcycles are a couple of the ways to get around the city. You need a valid international driver’s license. It is expensive because of taxes in Indonesia.
- Taxi is a very convenient way to get around. Express and Blue Bird are taxi companies. Uber, Grab and GoJek are also available for the convenience of the visitors.
- Trans Jakarta, metro- minis, angkots and kopajas are the public transportation systems which are very well connected to all the popular sides of the city.
- Bajajs are the two seater scooters which you can hire on rent with a driver. However, this is a cheaper way of transportation that taxi.
- Soekarno-Hatta is the train that take a round trip from airport to the heart of the city.
Can you highlight the Top 5 MUST see sightseeing?
- Jakarta Chinatown (Glodok) is located near the old town Kota Tua. The nostalgic ambiance is filled with the beauty of historical and cultural sites. You will find many historical attractions belonging to the 17th
- Taman Mini Indonesia Park is a very unique theme park that represents the diversity and beauty of Indonesian archipelago. There are different performances of architecture, traditions, costumes, art and culture of the area.
- Indonesia National Gallery is the art lover’s paradise. This is the museum and art gallery with thousands of art pieces from all around the world. Apart from the permanent collections, various temporary exhibitions keep going in the place.
- Ancol Dreamland (Taman Impian Jaya Ancol) is the northern waterfront amusement park. It is a huge place with golf course, resort, fantasy world, water park, beaches, concert venues and numerous thrill rides.
- Jakarta old town (Kota Tua) is the must visit place if you are staying in any other area of the city. This place is rich in history and has many attractions like Dutch East India company, architectural structures and UNESCO world heritage sites.
What’s the best place to take a photo?
There are a plenty of places to click amazing photos in Jakarta whereas Puppet museum (Museum Wayang) is a not to miss place. It has a huge collection of masks, puppets, paraphernalia associated with art from Indonesia and other parts of the world. You can also attend a puppetry workshop at the place.
What about the top 3 restaurants?
- OKU is an exclusive Japanese bar and restaurant. This is a perfect place to relax because it is designed on the Japanese Zen principles.
- Lara Djonggrang is the name of ancient princess. The name represents the ambiance as mystical, romantic and ethnic. It is designed on the Indonesian imperial principles.
- Bandar Djakarta is the seafood restaurant. It is located near the coast and serves delicious crabs, fish and lobster.
What about the top 3 breakfast places?
There are a variety of eateries in Jakarta whereas some of the best places for breakfast or brunch are:
- Savior – homemade and Italian breakfast
- Benedict – classic and modern breakfast
- Maple and Oak – Melbourne Brunch place
What’s the one thing you MUST eat in the city?
Ketoprak Jakarta is the street food that is commonly available everywhere. It is available in meat and vegetarian options. You can select the spice level and enjoy it. This recipe is the mix of different vegetables and spices whereas the vegetarian one contains tofu instead of meat.
What about food markets?
These are the best markets to visit for Indonesian and international food along with many other products.
- Kota Tua Night Market starts at 5pm
- Ancol Art Market (Pasar Seni Ancol)
- Pecah Kulit Night Market
- Jalan Surabaya Flea Market
Where should one go at night? Any bar/nightlife areas or districts you recommend?
There are different nightlife areas which offer various services and entertainment options to the visitors.
- North Jakarta – best men spas, massages, bars and nightclubs
- Jalan Jaksa – budget friendly nightlife activities
- Mega Kunigan – youthful place with bars and clubs
- SCBD – trendy and upscale places
- Senopati – Indonesian Chinese local parties
- Block M – Red Light district
- Melawai/ Grand Wijaya – KTV bars and massage spas
Any rooftop bars or restaurants that you recommend?
You can sit and enjoy wonderful panoramic views from the following rooftops.
- Karumba – Rooftop of Mercure Simatupang Hotel
- BART – Rooftop of Artotel Thamrin Jakarta
- FJ On 7
- Sky pool bar café
Can you recommend the best shopping areas? Best shopping mall?
There are many shops in the entire city to buy handicrafts, specialty products and a lot more. You can visit following markets for local and international brands.
- Mall Taman Anggrek
- Grand Indonesia
- Plaza Indonesia
Do you recommend any tours outside the city? Islands? Boat Tours?
You can plan day trip to following places from Jakarta:
- Food trip of Central Bogor
- Cirebon Palace and other historical sites
- Banten beaches and ruins
- Sulah Nyada
- Palau Harapan of Thousand Island Pulau Seribu
- West Java, Gunung Pancar
Are Casinos allowed? Blackjack tables? If so, what’s the best Casino in town?
Gambling is completely illegal in Indonesia. There is no flexibility for foreigners or locals. There is a jail penalty for betting.
Any last advice for people visiting the city?
- Do not visit from January to March because of massive downpour.
- Stay alert of the surroundings and take care of your belongings.
- Exchange a little amount at the airport whereas go for the money exchange in city center or bank.