Jakarta is nicknamed “The Big Durian” for its strong-smelled fruit native to the region. It sits on the northwest coast of the island of Java and has a historic blend of cultures ranging from the Javanese, Malay, Chinese, Arab, Indian and European, this mix has greatly influenced its architecture, cuisine and language. It has a special capital region status, though it is still referred to as a city. Being the largest city and capital of Indonesia with business opportunities and standard of living with an influx of international tourists visiting every year, Jakarta is a major tourist city of Indonesia that has plenty of attractions to explore. Let’s get to know some handy Jakarta travel tips before visiting the capital of Indonesia.
11 Jakarta Travel Tips For An Amazing Indonesian Vacay!
If you plan to visit this special capital region, it is expected you must know one, two or more important Jakarta travel tips that will make your stay a memorable one. Before you embark on this journey to Jakarta or anywhere in the world, it is advisable to have a Jakarta travel guide and know travel tips for Jakarta, Indonesia.
1. Best Time To Visit Jakarta
Jakarta lies on a low, flat alluvial plain with historically extensive swampy areas and it is known to be easily flooded during the rainy season. It is therefore advisable to travel during the dry season which falls between July – October. You can still travel throughout the year if you want as the tropical climate is hot and humid year round with the rainy season between October – April. Jakarta has a figurative monsoon climate and the average 24-hour temperature ranges from 26.1 ̊C in January to 27.2 ̊C in May.
2. What To Pack For Jakarta Trip
Deciding what to pack depends on the season you’re traveling in. If you decide to go during the dry season, it is expected you pack less warm clothes and more light clothing while during the rainy season, the possibility of a cold weather and flood is very high so it is advisable to pack an umbrella or raincoat, and rain boots. Most population of Jakarta are Muslims so a female tourist should travel with scarf(s) of different colours if possible to fit her outfit for each day to enable her cover her hair.
Travel tips for visiting Jakarta will not be complete without mentioning the importance of language. The official language in Jakarta is Indonesian with various other languages like Chinese, Dutch, Javanese, Betawi, Prokem and English. English is widely used to communicate in the Central and South Jakarta. Jakarta is a city with diverse cultures so learning a few Indonesian words will come in handy for you.
4. Traffic Rules
Due to the congestion and traffic issues in Jakarta, the odd-even policy was created. If you intend to drive during your stay at Jakarta, you should know this policy. The odd-even policy was formed to help limit the number of cars entering Jakarta. The policy states that cars whose license plate ends with an odd number are only allowed through certain roads and toll gates on odd numbered date and vice versa.
5. Getting Around Jakarta
One of the travel tips for Jakarta is knowing how to get there and how to move around the city. You can get to Jakarta by air, bus or train and also move around via these means. Despite the various transport systems, Jakarta faces traffic congestion especially during rush hours. Due to this issue, the airport rail link was created so that one can get to the city as fast as possible.
Busway transport – The Transjakarta Busway is one of the many ways to commute around the city. There is also the City Tour Jakarta bus and a multitude of other public bus companies.
Online rides – You can also use your smartphone to request for a moto-taxi, motorbike or car. The prices for these rides are usually cheaper than the public ones found on the road.
Railway transport – There are available commuter trains that connect the city. It is usually worth a try to avoid the hustle and bustle of the roads.
Taxi – In Jakarta, the Blue Bird company runs the taxi. Be sure to use the right taxi, it is blue doesn’t mean it is safe as some drivers can pose as drivers of the company. Make sure to check that the door, roof, headrests and windshield have the Blue Bird logo, also check that the driver is in uniform before entering the taxi.
Bajaj transport – A Jakarta Bajaj is one of the most popular, affordable and environment friendly means of public transport. They are small in size, so they can weave through traffic jams easily.
Motorcycle taxis (Ojek) – One can use a motorcycle taxi if you want to pass through narrow roads or in a hurry to get to a place. Be sure to wear a helmet while riding on Ojeks.
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6. Money Matters
Be sure to have enough money on you in case you can’t use the ATM and you have an emergency or need to purchase an item urgently. Having money on you will always be one of the tips for travelling to Jakarta or anywhere in the world.
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7. Interacting With The Locals
Jakarta is a city known for a high level of population. With the blend of different cultures, you are bound to meet all kinds of people. Some locals might be friendly and hospitable and some might be harsh and notorious. Keep it in mind that it is bound to happen. The mix of these cultures and people is also one of the reasons you will enjoy Jakarta as you will get to learn about different cultures.
8. Places To Visit
There are three main parks in the city- Dunia Fantasi, Taman Mini Indonesia Indah and Jungleland Sentul City. These parks have rides and water features for everyone. There are many museums in Jakarta and the popular one being The National Museum which displays Indonesian history via archaeological relics, ceramics, statues and jewelry. Amongst religious sites, there’s the Istiqlal Mosque, which is the biggest mosque in Jakarta, Jakarta Cathedral, Sion church which is the oldest church in Jakarta located near Kota Tua area, a historical site. You can also visit The Ragunan Zoo, The Bird Market, The Thousand Islands which has beach resorts and so many other places to visit.
Some important landmarks in Jakarta include:
The National Monument “Monas” is the highlight of Jakarta.
The Presidential Palace, the official residence and office of the Indonesian president.
The Gelanggang Bung Karno Stadium.
Bundaran Hi, a large fountain at Central Jakarta.
9. Major Events And Festivals
The Chinese New Year takes place in January/February. There is also the Jakarta International Java Jazz Festival in March. The Jakarta Fair takes place between mid-June to mid-July to celebrate the anniversary of the city.
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Jakarta has many shopping malls, markets, supermarkets and convenience stores. There is also an antique shop where you can purchase antique items and traditional Javanese souvenirs.
11. Where And What To Eat
The Big Durian has a vast range of food available at hundreds of eating complexes. You can find great Chinese, Japanese and many other foods. There is also availability of street foods. Your visit to Jakarta won’t be complete if you don’t try Nasi Goreng (fried rice) which is considered to be the Indonesian national dish.
It is impossible to visit all the 17,000 islands and 26 provinces among many other places in Jakarta but be sure to do as much as you can during your stay. From the climate, what to eat, to the traffic policy to what to pack, Jakarta travel tips can’t be overemphasized. We hope you have an amazing time on your trip to Indonesia with the help of these tips and tell us about your experience later!
Frequently Asked Questions About Jakarta
A. You can visit Jakarta all year round but the best time to visit Jakarta is during the dry season which is between July – October.
A. It is okay to wear shorts especially when visiting the beach resorts and islands. But you can choose to wear gowns (for females) when going to restaurants or museums. Be sure to cover your hair with a scarf. When visiting places like The Presidential Palace, you are to wear formal clothing with a pair of shoes not sandals.
A. There are a lot of historical sites, museums, markets, malls and islands in Jakarta but it is more famous for The National Monument or “Monas”, a marble obelisk with an observation deck which is located at the Central Medan Merdeka Square.
A. Jakarta is becoming expensive due to the influx of tourists in the city but it is also quite affordable. The food, accommodation and transportation is quite inexpensive and you will be able to spend only within your planned budget. Some sellers might want to hike the prices of their goods so try to bargain properly to get your money’s worth.
A. The mix of cultures in Jakarta leads to the availability of various cuisines and street foods but Nasi Goreng (fried rice) is considered to be the Indonesian national dish.
A. The hottest month in Jakarta is October with a temperature of 30 ̊C and the coldest month is January with a temperature of 28 ̊C, it is also very wet.
A. One can stay a maximum of 4 days in Jakarta. Within 4 days, you should have explored, visited and done majority of the exciting things in Jakarta.
A. There are many languages in Indonesia, like Chinese, Javanese, Dutch, English and many more, but the main language is Indonesian.
A. The main problems in Jakarta are congestion, traffic jam and flood during the rainy season.
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