Jakarta Historical Buildings Tour, Part 2, Jakarta (Self Guided)

The tour continues with the neo-gothic Catholic church - Gereja Immanuel that will impress you with its architectural features and that represents a reminder of Jakarta's past. Don't pass by some of the most important historic attractions in Jakarta, mostly located on Merdeka Square - one of the largest urban plazas in the world. The National Museum of Jakarta is also a great way to discover its past and important historic events.
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Jakarta Historical Buildings Tour, Part 2 Map

Guide Name: Jakarta Historical Buildings Tour, Part 2
Guide Location: Indonesia » Jakarta (See other walking tours in Jakarta)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 6
Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.5 km
Author: jenny
1
National Museum

1) National Museum (must see)

The National Museum of Indonesia, also known to tourists as the Gedung Gajah (Elephant Building) because of the elephant statues in the front yard, hosts the finest historical, archeological, numismatic, ethnological and geographical exhibits from Indonesia and some of the completest collections from South Asia. The Museum boasts about 61,500 anthropological and prehistoric exhibits and over 5,000 archeological exhibits. The artifacts are mostly gathered from Indonesia, but other Asian countries are represented through rare objects too.

Among the highly valued collections one must notice the ceramic collection (with Indonesian exhibits as well as rare Chinese, Vietnamese and Japanese artifacts), the stone sculpture collection (with exhibits dating back from prehistoric period), the treasure rooms (featuring ancient gold and silver objects), the prehistory collection (exploring the beginnings of the Indonesian people), the historical relics collection (containing objects – mainly furniture – from the Dutch colonization period) and the ethnography collection. Other collections include numismatics, textile and bronze items.

Recently, the 1868 building proved too small for all the precious artifacts, and a new wing has been built following the original architecture. The new wing features seven levels with only four hosting permanent exhibits. The four levels are structured on themes (man and environment; knowledge, technology and economy; social organization and settlement patterns, and treasures and ceramics).

Operation hours: Tuesday - Friday: 8 am - 4 pm; Saturday - Sunday: 8 am - 5 pm
2
Arjuna Wijaya Statue

2) Arjuna Wijaya Statue

The Arjuna Wijaya Statue is another monument in Freedom Square, located in the southwest corner of the plaza. It represents the archer, one of the Five Pandava brothers, a legendary figure in Indonesia. He is depicted with a bow and an arrow riding a galloping horse. Some believe this statue symbolizes an open door to the spiritual world.
3
Prince Diponegoro Statue

3) Prince Diponegoro Statue

Located in Freedom Square, the Prince Diponegoro Statue was created by Italian sculptor Colbertado, and dedicated to the prince's struggle for Javanese freedom from the Dutch during the 19th Century. A source of pride to the whole Indonesian nation, this remarkable statue was presented to the state in 1965.
4
Monas (National Monument)

4) Monas (National Monument) (must see)

Designed by architects Frederich Silaban (the same architect who designed Istiqlal Mosque) and R.M. Soedarsono and built during the first Indonesian president, Sukarno, the Monas or National Monument is meant to commemorate the Indonesian people who fought for the national independence. The monument encapsulates Indonesian symbols such as the rice pestle (the upper part of the monument) and the mortar (the lower part of the monument), the numbers 17, 8 and 45 (August 17th, 1945 – the date when Indonesia’s Independence was proclaimed) and a gold plated flame called the Independence Flame, a pledge that the country will always remain an independent territory.

The monument measures 132 meters in height and features a larger part at the bottom (interpreted as the mortar or the yoni – female reproductive organs) and a high upper part (representing the pestle or the lingga – the phallus). In traditional beliefs, the monument is also a sign of people’s fertility and its power of surviving throughout the time.

The lower part hosts a History Museum where tourists can admire sequences of Indonesia’s history, starting with prehistory and ending with the declaration of Independence; there is also an Independence Hall where a copy of the Proclamation of Indonesia’s Independence is displayed.

The top part offers tourists a panoramic view over Jakarta. In sunny days, the ocean and Salak Mountain can be admired from the Observation Platform located on top of the monument, near the gold plated flame.
5
Lapangan Merdeka (Freedom Square)

5) Lapangan Merdeka (Freedom Square) (must see)

Lapangan Merdeka or Freedom Square is the largest and most popular square in Jakarta. Placed in central Jakarta, the Merdeka Square measures one square kilometer and it is divided into four major areas corresponding to the four cardinal points. Thus, Taman Medan Merdeka Utara is located in the North and features a bust of Chairil Anwar (local poet) and an equestrian statue of Diponegoro (Javanese prince who opposed Dutch colonization). The Taman Medan Merdeka Timur is located in the East and features a statue of Kartini (Indonesian heroine) and a reflecting pond. On the South there is the Taman Medan Merdeka Selatan where tourists can admire a spotted deer park and a plant collection representing 33 Indonesian provinces. The parking lots and food stalls are concentrated here, too. Last but not least, the Taman Medan Merdeka Barat is located on the Western part and features the famous musical fountain. Magical shows are held here every night during the weekends, when the fountain is illuminated.

In the center of Lapangan Merdeka stands the National Monument, while numerous other touristic and administrative buildings trim the square. Merdeka Palace, Istiqlal Mosque and the National Museum of Indonesia are only few of the buildings with important touristic value located near Merdeka Square.
6
Gereja Immanuel (Immanuel Church)

6) Gereja Immanuel (Immanuel Church) (must see)

A classic building in the Palladian style with Roman and Greek elements, the Immanuel Church is the oldest Protestant church in Jakarta. Formerly known by the name of Willemskerk in honor of King Wilhelm I of the Netherlands, the church was built in 1835 under the rule of the above mentioned king. The church’s name was changed to Immanuel (“God be with us”) in 1948, after Indonesia gained its independence.

From an architectural point, the Gereja Immanuel boasts an incredible equilibrium and symmetry which give rise to an elegant and imposing silhouette. The building is structured on two stories, with the first one used for the religious ceremonies and the second one hosting the old organ (dating back from 1843).

Apart from the imposing architecture and the old, yet functional organ, a highly sought for attraction is the Bible printed in 1748, one of the oldest exemplars in the world.

Visits inside the church are permitted, but in order to fully experience the feeling this old church gives you and hear the organ play, it is recommended to attend a service here. The service is held in Bahasa Indonesia, English and Dutch.

The Gereja Immanuel is located near the Gambir Train Station, in the Gambir neighborhood, central Jakarta.

Walking Tours in Jakarta, Indonesia

Create Your Own Walk in Jakarta

Create Your Own Walk in Jakarta

Creating your own self-guided walk in Jakarta is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
West Jakarta Walking Tour

West Jakarta Walking Tour

The western region of Jakarta city has much for the visitor to admire. You can see some fascinating museums, great shops and renowned architectural sites and monuments. Take our West Jakarta Walking Tour to discover the beauty of this part of the city.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.4 km
Jakarta Places of Worship Tour

Jakarta Places of Worship Tour

Indonesia has six official religions: Catholicism, Protestantism, Islam, Confucianism, Hinduism, and Buddhism. Most of these faiths began here during the country’s colonial times. Thanks to the city’s religious diversity, Jakarta is home to a large number of wonderful churches, temples and mosques that a visitor can admire on this tour.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.1 km
North Jakarta Walking Tour

North Jakarta Walking Tour

The beautiful city of Jakarta traces its history all the way back to the fourth century. The city's heritage is well manifested in its customs, food, culture and language. North Jakarta, in particular, has many interesting attractions for a visitor to see, including museums, temples and mosques. Take our North Jakarta Walking Tour to see the best sights in the area.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.7 km
Historical Jakarta Walking Tour Part 1

Historical Jakarta Walking Tour Part 1

Jakarta is an old city that has seen a lot of change over the course of its 1,700-year history. Today you can see a lot of fascinating buildings and other sites that show the imprint history had on the city, particularly by British and Dutch colonization. Historic places of worship also pay testament to the popularity of Buddhism and Confucianism over the course of time. Take our two-part tour to...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 km
Central Jakarta Orientation Walk

Central Jakarta Orientation Walk

Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia, is a massive metropolis and a melting pot of cultures historically inhabiting the city – Asian and European – each leaving their imprint on the local architecture, language, cuisine, etc. Follow this orientation walk to explore some of the key sights of Central Jakarta to learn about the city's eventful past and present.

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.4 km

Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip


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Tips for Exploring City on Foot at Your Own Pace

Whether you are in Jakarta for a quick stopover or have a few days to see the city in more detail, exploring it on foot, at your own pace, is definitely the way to go. Here are some tips for you to save money, see the best Jakarta has to offer, take good care of your feet while walking, and keep your mobile device – your ultimate "work horse" on this trip - well fed and safe.

Taking Care of Your Feet


To ensure ultimate satisfaction from a day of walking around the city as big as Jakarta, it is imperative to take good care of your feet so as to avoid unpleasant things like blisters, cold or overheated soles, itchy, irritated or otherwise damaged (cracked) skin, etc. Luckily, these days there is no shortage of remedies to address (and, ideally, to prevent) these and other potential problems with feet. Among them: Compression Socks, Rechargeable Battery-Powered Thermo Socks for Cold Weather, Foot Repair Cream, Deodorant Powder, Shoes UV Sterilizer, and many more that you may wish to find a place in your travel kit for.

Travel Gadgets for Your Mobile Device


Your mobile phone or tablet will be your work horse on a self-guided walk. They offer tour map, guide you from one attraction to another, and provide informative background for the sights you wish to visit. Therefore it is absolutely essential to plan against unexpected power outages in the wrong place at the wrong time, much as to ensure the safety of your device.

For these and other contingencies, here's the list of useful appliances: Portable Charger/External Battery Pack, Worldwide Travel Charger Adapter, Power Converter for International Travel Adapter, and Mobile Device Leash.