Welcome to Jakarta.
The most modern city in the Indonesian archipelago, Jakarta is the proud Capital of the Republic of Indonesia.
It is the seat of the National Government and National Parliament, center of Banking, Finance as well as Business and Trade and the hub of domestic and international air transportation in the country.
Founded in the 16th century when the town was already a busy Asian trading port, Jakarta then became the center of administration in the colonial era under Dutch East Indies rule. But it was also in Jakarta where the people of Indonesia declared their Independence on 17 August 1945 from three centuries of being burdened under the yoke of colonization.
Today Jakarta is an autonomous province comprising 5 Municipalities and one District, namely Central Jakarta, North Jakarta, West Jakarta, East Jakarta and South Jakarta and the Districit of the Thousand Islands, or Pulau Seribu in the Bay of Jakarta. The city is cut by no less than 13 rivers with the largest being the Ciliwung river. With a population of over 9 million people, Jakarta continues to spread out to link with its neigboring districts and towns to make up the Greater Jakarta area, popularly known as Jabodetabek, short for the names of the towns of Jakarta-Bogor-Depok-Tanggerang-Bekasi.
Jakarta today is a melting pot of Indonesia’s hundreds of ethnic groups who call this multi-cultural and cosmopolitan capital city “home”.
For international Businessmen and Government officials, Jakarta is the city for meetings and conventions, offering large Convention halls for meetings and exhibitiions with latest state of the art facilities as well as luxurious hotels with large ballrooms and prime accommodation amenities.
For visitors, Jakarta offers the best in Shopping, Entertainment and Leisure activities. People from around the country and abroad come in droves to attend the many national and International Concerts performed here by world’s singing stars. Jakarta is also where to find Fun and Recreation parks for the whole family from the huge Ancol Dreamland with its many heart-stopping rides to the more cultural Taman Mini Indonesia and the popular Ragunan Zoo. There are also plenty of opportunities for world class Golf, and Diving and Beach sports. In this large city are an unbelievable wide choice for Shopping in over a hundred huge modern and fully air-conditioned malls, as well as at South East Asia’s largest wholesale textile market at Tanah Abang, or cute wayside antique stalls at Jalan Surabaya.
For lovers of food there is a wide array of cuisines to try from across the Indonesian archipelago – from nasi goreng and satay to rendang and more – as well as from around the world – from Chinese food to Korean, Japanese, Turkish, and European food , or just simple hamburgers or noodles. While in the evenings, numerous hangouts are open to plunge into Jakarta’s exciting nightlife.
For the more serious minded and history buffs, donot miss the National Museum, the National Monument and the Textile Museum, and you should visit Jakarta Kota Tua or Old Batavia, the 17th century center of administration and business activities of the Dutch East India Company, VOC. Today around the plaza are a number of Museums from the Wayang Museum to the Bank Mandiri Museum, where you can see banking activities in eras gone by.
To see for Chinese Heritage, Jakarta also has its own Chinatown in Glodok and Petak Sembilan. Visit Jakarta’s oldest temple, browse and shop in typical Chinese stores and eat your fill at Pecenongan. While all around the center of town you will also find European buildings, heritage from the Dutch colonial era.
Beneath Jakarta’s modernity, the indigenous culture of the people of Jakarta, known as the Betawi are far from forgotten. The Betawi openness, joviality and democratic nature have spread to newcomers permeating every day life in the capital. The Ondel-ondel, the giant puppets that are the icons of the city, are today an inseparable part of Jakarta. For a glimpse into the life of the Betawi take time to visit Setu Babakan, a true Betawi village.
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