Monday, June 16, 2008


Museum lovers, you really have to check historical museums in Jakarta, although I might say that some museums are not well-managed by the government and some are creepy enough and made me get goosebumps when I entered..

Fatahillah Square
This open-air museum of Old Batavia, now called Jakarta, Taman Fatahillah (Fatahillah Square) has three main establishments standing on the south, east and west of the cobblestone square proper. The first is the Jakarta Museum which exhibits the colonial history of the city by also includes relics from the pre-colonial past. The edifice on the east, formerly the Supreme Court, houses the Fine Arts Gallery and the Ceramics Museum containing, among others, the excellent Chinese and Southeast Asian ceramics collection donated by the late former Vice President Adam Malik. On the western side of the square is the Wayang Museum, filled with all sorts of puppets used in the indigenous puppet theatre. The largest part of the collection consists of wayang kulit flat leather puppets of various types from various regions. Demonstrations of the shadow play, lasting two hours, are given every Sunday morning. Fatahillah Square in colonial era was used as a prison for those who against the colony.

TIPS : Fatahillah Square, now, located in Kota, you can access this museum easily by TransJakarta (see TransJakarta Corridor Map) and there's a Batavia Cafe just in front of Fatahillah Square, good choice for your afternoon tea or dinner. Do not go there on weekdays, you'll lose your excitement because of the exhaustion from long and awful traffic in Kota.

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National Monument (ID: Monumen Nasional)
The 137-metre tall monument with the gold flame on top facing the Presidential Palace in Jakarta symbolizes the nation's independence. The basement of the monument houses a Museum of History with dioramas depicting the history of Indonesia from prehistoric times up to the present. A good portion of it is devoted to the national war for independence waged from 1945 to December 1949. Not part of the museum but located similarly at the foot of the National Monument is the Hall of Silence, Indonesia's first President, Soekarno, can be heard. Located at Jalan Silang Monas Jakarta.
TIPS : Nowadays, Monas often used as a center of public demonstration, so please check local radio (SONORA or ELSHINTA) before your visit.

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Armed Forces Museum |

Located in the southern part of Jakarta, is the Satria Mandala Museum, or Armed Forces Museum. This museum has an interesting collection of arms, including Japanese fighter planes of World War II vintage, Russian and American guns and armoured cars. Dioramas give the visitor an insight regarding the role of the Indonesian Armed Services in this country. Located at Jalan Jend. Gatot Subroto, Jakarta.
TIPS : skip your lunch or maybe just bring your lunch, the location near business district (Kuningan), so you you will save your time on weekends to go somehere else. Please be aware of Jakarta traffic rules and regulations, Three-In-One, in Gatot Subroto.

The Textile Museum | 

The Textile Museum on Jalan Sasuit Tubun in Jakarta, a many times renovated 19th century mansion, houses a collection of about 600 different kinds of traditional Indonesian textiles, from batik to ikat and Dayak bark cloths. Weaving was and often still is closely connected with religious practice In many regions such textiles are still user to pay fines, avert illness or for other social and religious purposes. Some of the oldest Indonesian ornamental designs arc found in their original textiles.
TIPS : We just realize that we really proud of Batik (finally), Indonesian local designers make some improvement for Batik to be more accustomed and wearable on daily basis activities. Modern Batik can be easily purchased with reasonable price (bargain required) in any ITCs (International Trade Center) in Jakarta.

Central Museum |
Jakarta's Central Museum is reputedly one of the finest in Southeast Asia. Founded in 1788, it still has the world's most complete collection of Indonesian artifacts. Its Hindu-Javanese collection rivals that of the Leiden Museum in Holland, reputedly the finest in the world. It has one the richest collections of Han, Tang and Ming porcelain and an array of Chinese, Thai and Vietnamese export ceramics Its numismatic collection includes rare specimens of cloth-money used in the past in various areas of Indonesia. Adjacent to the museum is the National Library with over 700,000 old and recent volumes of books, manuscripts and periodicals covering virtually every subject on Indonesian. Located at JI. Merdeka Barat 12. This museum is popularly known as Gedung Gajah or "Elephant Building" because of the stone elephant offered by King Chulalongkorn of Thailand in 1871, placed on the front lawn of the building.

TIPS : Three-In-One rule is applied in the area, use TransJakarta would be a good choice.


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