Browsing "Older Posts"

Browsing Category " Living In Jakarta "

9 Best Things to Do at Night in Jakarta

By Jakarta100bars →
I recently wrote about the best things to do in Jakarta . In the following review, I will be more specific and focus on night-time activities. A cliché used to describe Jakarta is that of "a city that never sleeps." While this could apply to any major capitals in the world, I think it is particularly accurate here. There is always some kind of life in Jakarta, whatever the time and whatever the location. It is quite logical considering the city has one of the highest population densities in the world. Another reason is that there are a lot of Indonesians working long shifts or night shifts, especially small business owners and independent workers. As long as money can be made, they won't close shop or go home. This is why you can always get food, cigarettes or a taxi ride at any time of the night. For the traveler, the advantage of this situation is that there are a lot of things to do at night. Even better, if you go out after 9pm, you'll also enjoy less tr

Where Do Expats Live in Jakarta?

By Jakarta100bars →
The population of Jakarta is predominantly made of Indonesians from Java, Sumatra, Borneo, Sulawesi or any of the other islands of Indonesia. The first ethnic minority would be Indonesian Chinese. Expatriates represent a fraction of the population, with the main communities being Japanese, Korean, American, Australian, and European. Expats in Jakarta are spread in the whole city, but as each community tends to stay in the same areas and frequent the same spot, it is possible to get a general mapping of where they live and hang out: - Indians in Jakarta (Expat or Indonesians): Many live in Pasar Baru or Sunter area. You will find them in clubs like Immigrant or Cloud or in one of the restaurants listed here: Indian restaurants in Jakarta. - Japanese and Korean Expatriates : Most live in South Jakarta in Kebayoran Baru area (Pakubowono, Senopati, Dharmawangsa, Pondok Indah). Many offices from Japanese companies are located in Thamrin or in the Northern part of Jalan Sudirm

Guide to Choosing Your Hotel in Jakarta

By Jakarta100bars →
I am asked daily by readers for tips about choosing a hotel in Jakarta . This little guide should answer all the questions I've ever received such as: - What is the best area to stay in Jakarta? - Where can I find a cheap guesthouse for under 10$ per night? Is there a backpacker area in Jakarta? - What are the best budget hotels in Jakarta? Which hotel chain offers the best value for money ? - What is the best accommodation for less than 50$? - Which 5-star hotel should I choose? Which 5-star hotel is the closest from action ? Which 5-star hotel has the best bars and restaurants? - Can I bring girls to my hotel in Jakarta? What are the names of girl-friendly or guest-friendly hotels in Jakarta ? - Can I actually sleep in Alexis Hotel , Malioboro Hotel, Travel Hotel or Classic Hotel? - Is there a spa or massage parlour near my hotel? - Which hotel do you recommend near the airport ? - Which hotels are connected to popular malls?

How Dangerous Is It to Use Drugs in Indonesia?

By Jakarta100bars →
From time to time, I receive an email from a reader asking me if it is safe to use drugs in Jakarta. The obvious reply is that it is extremely dangerous, as even carrying a small joint might land you in jail.  But Indonesia is much more complicated than that, hence the need for a longer article to explain you the subtleties of drug use in the country. Why foreigners should be extra careful when using drugs in Indonesia From my personal perspective, the law in Indonesia only exists to give a pretext to powerful people to extort some money or benefits. Most often, it is used when the authorities want to target someone in particular, with some categories that are more at risks than others. The most vulnerable are poor people, ethnic and religious minorities, foreigners, or anyone without a network among government officials. The laws of Indonesia, including drug laws, will normally apply to them with greater severity, meaning they will either receive harsher sentences or

28 Best Shopping Malls in Jakarta

By Jakarta100bars →
Malls in Jakarta are much more than just shopping venues. They are privately-owned cities where you can find pretty much anything including offices, residences, cinemas, schools, hospitals, restaurants, nightclubs, gyms, mosques, churches, karaokes, games, banks, boutiques, supermarkets, etc. It is not surprising that many malls add the words "town", "village" or "city" to their names, for instance Kuningan City, Grand Indonesia Shopping Town, Kemang Village, etc. The environment of Jakarta has become so hostile that malls are one of the only places where you can escape from the heat and the pollution. Living in Jakarta means that you will spend large chunks of your time visiting malls, whether you like it or not, because it is one of the very few  things to do  here.

10 Best Muay Thai Boxing Centers in Jakarta

By Jakarta100bars →
Jakarta is not the best city to stay fit. The absence of sidewalks, the lack of parks, the pollution and the heat all conspire to make exercising difficult. It is even worse if you work in an office and spend most of your day sitting down. If you care a minimum about your health, you are probably looking for a sport or an activity that you can easily do in the city center. Getting a gym membership is often the first thing that comes to mind, but there are a lot more options available: Yoga, Fitness, Crossfit, Boxing, Jujitsu, Salsa, etc... Today, I will talk about Muay Thai, a martial art originally from Thailand. About 10 years ago, it was introduced to Indonesia and it has gain more and more popularity ever since. There are several reasons explaining its appeal: It is a complete workout that will train each muscle of your body; it improves both your strength and your cardio; it is fun to do and not repetitive; it helps you gain self-confidence; and finally it does not r

Yes, You Need Travel Insurance for Indonesia. Here's Why:

By Jakarta100bars →
When I speak with short-time travelers in Indonesia, I am baffled to realize only a few have a proper travel insurance or a medical evacuation insurance. Among long-term residents and expats, there are also many who do not have health insurance, particularly among those without a working permit. The objective of this article is to convince you that spending a few dollars per day on an insurance is not a waste of money. Even if you are on a tight budget, you can get a cheap one ( as low as 3$ per day if you take a yearly subscription - check here ) that will at least save your ass in case of a serious illness or accident. If you cannot afford it, then you probably should not travel to Indonesia. Why you need a travel insurance in Indonesia While you certainly need insurance everywhere, there are even more reasons to get it when you travel in Bali , Jakarta or the rest of Indonesia: You are exposed to more risks There are several risks specifically related to being in Ind

11 Best Bars to Meet Expats in Jakarta

By Jakarta100bars →
The expat population in Jakarta has always been limited, both because of government regulations and because of the lack of attractiveness of the city. My guess is that if it wasn't for Indonesian girls, there would probably be close to zero foreigners around. The upside of this situation is that the expat community is compact and rather friendly. It is easy to meet people as long as you are willing to socialize in the right places. To help you with that, the following article will give you a list of the best bars in Jakarta to meet other expats. Note: If you are single, you may want to meet Indonesian girls instead. Check my article Best Dating Websites in Indonesia for that. Eastern Promise (Kemang) Live music in EP Kemang Also called EP, Eastern Promise is certainly the most famous expat bar in Jakarta. It has 4 distinct rooms: A small bar, a restaurant (serving Indian and British dishes), a sports café and a beer garden with live music. Weekends are pack

Abortion in Indonesia: My Personal Experience

By Jakarta100bars →
Note from Jakarta100bars: One of my readers sent me the following email regarding abortion in Indonesia. I'm publishing it because it might interest some people. This is NOT a professional medical advice. Please consult a doctor if you need to perform an abortion. You can also get support from Indonesian women's group such as Samsara  (email: or Misocare . "Hi Thibaud, As you know, abortion is officially forbidden in Indonesia. My girlfriend got pregnant a few weeks ago and since we didn't want to keep the baby, we had to find a solution. We considered several options, including going to Vietnam where abortion is legal. Finally, we met an expat who told us it could be done in Jakarta because my girlfriend had been pregnant for just a couple weeks. In my home country in Europe, chemical abortion follow this procedure: → 1st step: The girl takes one pill of Mifepristone (Mifegyne) to stop the pregnancy to develop further →

Buying Alcohol in Jakarta - Liquor, Wine, Beer

By Nyoman →
Buying alcohol in Jakarta used to be an unpleasant chore, especially after the law banning the sale of beer in minimarts was passed in 2015. With the development of internet and delivery services, it has become much easier as long as you know the right websites and application. I personally use HappyFresh and Gojek, but there are other services that I will describe below.  For those who are still living in 2010, I will also give you the best "brick and mortar" wine and spirit shops, particularly those that are located in Central and South Jakarta.  To give you an idea of where it is cheaper, I've added the prices of popular bottles. You can comment on these or suggest a better place to buy beer, liquor or wine in the comment section below. What to Know Before Buying Alcohol in Jakarta Import Tax The import tax is 150% on spirits and 90% on wine. This means you will pay at least twice as much for any bottle that was not produced in Indonesia. If

How Life in Jakarta Turned Into a Nightmare for George Pritting

By Jakarta100bars →
Today I want to share a story happening right now in Jakarta. We all remember the Ice Bucket Challenge. It was a worldwide fundraising effort to fight against ALS (or Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), a chronic and rare disease that affects the neuroglial system and leads to a complete paralysis. It had a huge impact and massive funds were raised at that time. It hasn’t reached George Pritting yet.  The thing is George is not really as sympathetic and fun as the challenge. To be honest, George is not really friendly:  He insults people, screams and requests help that no one wants to give. George is not really "bankable" i.e. the kind of guy that generates a lot of empathy. Worse, he has even been suspected of scams.

6 Best Cinemas for Watching Movies in Jakarta

By Jakarta100bars →
Watching a movie is one of the best things to do in Jakarta Compared to most movie theaters in France, those in Jakarta have larger screens, more comfortable seats, better technology, more premium features, and above all, they are cheaper... On the downside, the choice of movie is limited to American blockbusters and Indonesian comedy or horror flicks. If you are hoping to watch the latest art house movies from the Cannes Festival, you'll better forget about it (see below for Independent Cinemas in Jakarta). I find that Indonesian spectators are rather disciplined when watching a movie: Once the film is started, you'll rarely hear a mobile phone or a noisy discussion. A bigger issue is the smell of the food as everybody is eating something from Hot Dogs to Nasi Goreng... The air-con can also be a problem: I recommend you to bring a small sweater to avoid freezing during the show.

Jakarta Nightlife During Ramadhan

By The Jakarta Team →
BATS is usually the best bar in Jakarta during Ramadhan. Nightlife in Jakarta during Ramadan is quiet and rather boring. For expats, it can be nice to rest for a few weeks because partying in Jakarta can be exhausting. It is a great way to save money too. For those who don't want to wait until the end of Ramadan, you can still have some fun, but the atmosphere is different than usual. Each year, the government announces new rules concerning the opening/closure of entertainment venue: The more often, during the first 2 days following the beginning of Ramadan, everything is closed and you should really avoid going out. After that, the nightlife starts again slowly, with shorter opening hours, for the following venues:

How To Rent A Cheap Room in Jakarta (Daily, Weekly, Monthly)

By Jakarta100bars →
Renting a cheap room in Jakarta has become much easier in the past few years, thanks to the internet. The following guide will give advice to anyone on a budget looking to stay in Jakarta from a few days until several months. You will learn: Where are the best-value areas in Jakarta near the offices, attractions and entertainment What are the options available for cheap stays in Jakarta How much does it cost to rent a room in Jakarta for a day, a week or a month What are the best low-cost apartments in Central Jakarta

STDs / HIV Check-up and Treatment in Jakarta

By Jakarta100bars →
Many readers ask me where they can get a medical check-up for STDs such as AIDS, HIV, Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis, Hepatitis, Herpes, HPV (Human Papillomavirus), Genital and Anal Warts, etc. I will give you a list of recommended places in this review, plus some tips about safe sex in Jakarta. If you are wondering whether STDs are prevalent in Indonesia, the answer is "of course". If you are wondering whether you should get checked after sleeping with someone without a condom, the answer is "of course". Sex education in Indonesia is almost non-existent, and very few people know about STDs. For many, condoms are just a way to come inside a vagina without making babies. It is very common for Indonesians, guys or girls, educated or not, to have sex without any protection.

10 Weird Stuff Indonesians Typically Post on Facebook

By Jakarta100bars →
Indonesia has the fourth largest number of Facebook users in the world, but the way Indonesians use Facebook is sometimes unique. From a Westerners perspective, some posts will appear to be weird, if not totally inappropriate. Here is my top 10 of weird things I regularly read on my Facebook newsfeed: 1) The "I'm on my period" status Short translation: "I'm on my period and you should all know about it" Being on your period in Indonesia is not something you keep for yourself. If you work in an office, you will probably be informed of every details of your colleagues' periods, either by looking if there is a bottle of Kiranti on their desk, or by checking their facebook/twitter/instagram statuses.

Why Restaurants in Jakarta Should Serve Free Water

By Jakarta100bars →
Do you know that restaurants make their highest margins on bottled water? Very few restaurants in Jakarta will offer free water to their clients. And even if you are willing to pay, more and more venues will only give you a tiny 330ml bottle instead of at least 500ml so you may need to buy a second one to quench your thirst. I've promised myself to boycott any places using this trick  as I believe it is an indication of poor customer service. Unfortunately, it is so common that I may have to blacklist all the restaurants in Jakarta if I want to abide by that rule. Would you pay to use a restaurant's toilets or parking space? I don't visit restaurants to buy water. I have water at home or I can buy it easily in any convenience store. I go to restaurants to eat food that I cannot cook myself. Incidentally, I need to drink because that's a natural and healthy part of any meal. It is not a choice but a necessity.  It is the same reason I would not pay

Why Living in Kemang is About to Get Worse

By Jakarta100bars →
If you live in Kemang, you have probably noticed the green fences with the signs "Tanah Milik TNI - Kodam Jaya" (Land belonging to the Army - Kodam Jaya units). They are circling a huge area from Bangka XII almost up to McDonald's. If I refer to the website of the Kodam Jaya , it takes 2,6 ha. Unfortunately,  all buildings on this land will be destroyed after lebaran. This is what I was told by local residents. The fate of some buildings is not settled yet though as there seems to be some people trying to make their connections work to avoid closing.

10 Stereotypes About Jakarta (and why they are inaccurate)

By Jakarta100bars →
Jakarta was named as one of worst expat cities to live in by BusinessWeek in an article published in 2009. Among long term expatriates living here, this ranking could not have been more inaccurate and it was laughed at widely. Jakarta is a city facing many enormous challenges, but it is not the hellhole some people like to describe. To bring back some justice to this city, here is the list of 10 stereotypes that I hear about Jakarta, and why they aren't true: 1) "Jakarta is one of the most polluted city in the World" Jakarta is polluted of course, but it is far from being among the most polluted in the World, especially if you stay in South and Central Jakarta. According to this document (click on "2011 air pollution in cities database"), from the UN World Health Organization, which compares the annual measurement of PM10 (particulates that have a diameter of up to 10 μm) by cities, Jakarta is less polluted that most other cities in Asia . I

Why Are Ojeks More Expensive Than Taxis?

By Jakarta100bars →
  Update 2016: This review has become completely irrelevant with the development of applications like GoJek, Grab and Uber! I keep it here though if you want to understand what was life like before those apps came: I had an argument this morning with the ojek driver (moto taxis in Jakarta) who works outside of my residence. I was planning to go to Pacific Place Mall, just one kilometer away. This normally takes about 5 minutes and with a taxi it costs less than 10,000rp. The ojek's starting price was 30,000rp, which is crazy, and after much talking he gave me a last price of 20,000rp. I tried to bargain harder but I felt I didn't have the upper hand. I gave up and I took a taxi (for which I paid a sweet 8,000rp). This experience made me wonder: How can a taxi be cheaper than an ojek? This is not the first time it happens. On average, I would say it is more expensive to go around with ojek or bajaj than by taxi in Jakarta.