The Museum of National Awakening in Jakarta (Museum Kebangkitan Nasional) is not a very well known thing to do in Jakarta, but it is worth visiting.

STOVIA Building

It is located in the building of the STOVIA (School Tot Opleiding Van Inlandsche Arsten) or School for the Training of Local Doctors. The school and the building were created at the beginning of the 20th century by the Dutch, part of their "Ethical Policy" which consisted in improving the welfare of colonial subjects.

The STOVIA is famous in Indonesian history because it is the birthplace of Budi Utomo, the first Indonesian political movement. The day of its creation, May 20th 1908 is officially commemorated every year in the country.

The school changed location to Salemba in the 1920s and the building served different purposes until it was transformed into a museum by Suharto in 1974.

The story of the building is very helpful in understanding life in Indonesia during colonial times. It is also interesting to see how the Dutch themselves contributed to the Independence movement.
STOVIA dormitory
The classrooms have been recreated with statues
For Jakarta standards, the content of the Museum and the explanations are interesting but be aware that only half the displays are translated in English. You have some great old pictures of Jakarta, some dioramas showing the daily life of the students, and some old artifacts.

A section of the Museum is more modern and focus on the beginning of modern medicine in Indonesia.
The garden is very peaceful and it costs only 5,000rp to get in. If you stay near Senen, it is a pleasant place to walk around, especially with kids.
Overall: The Museum of National Awakening (STOVIA) is among my favourites in Jakarta along with the Museum Nasional and the Museum Bank Indonesia. If you have been living in Jakarta for a while and you are interested in the history of Indonesia, you will probably enjoy it also.

Museum of National Awakening (STOVIA Building)
Museum Kebangkitan Nasional 
Jalan Dr. Abdul Rahman Saleh No. 26 (Walking distance from Senen Atrium)
Central Jakarta 10410

Phone number: +62 (0) 3483 0033 or +62 (0) 21 384 7975
Fax: +62 (0) 21 3847975

Opening/Visiting Hours:
From Tuesday to Friday from 8.30am to 3pm
Weekends (Saturday and Sunday) from 8am to 2pm
Closed on Monday and on Public Holidays

Facebook: Museum STOVIA
Website: Museum Kebangkitan Nasional

Entrance Ticket:

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