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Best Things to Experience In Jakarta (2021)

By Tibs →
Many tourists hate Jakarta because they visit it the wrong way. They check the things to do in a guidebook or on the internet and then try to do as many as possible in a short time. Since they are not familiar with the city, they get stuck for hours in traffic, walk in the heat from one sight to the other, and spend more time bargaining than actually talking with Indonesians. I am not saying that Jakarta is perfect, but if you know what to do, you can definitely have a good time. Below is my list of the most recommended things to do or experience in Jakarta, starting from the best. An alternative title for the article could probably have been "How Not To Hate Jakarta". Your suggestions are welcome, please just write a comment at the end. You can also read  Is Jakarta worth visiting?  for more information. Try Indonesian food Every time I come back to Jakarta from Europe, the first thing I do after landing is to eat some Indonesian food. It is a very underrated cu

9 Best Things to Do at Night in Jakarta (2021)

By Tibs →
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 t

16 Best Museums in Jakarta

By Tibs →
I visited almost every museums in Jakarta this year (I'm only missing the TNI Satria Mandala Museum and the Galeri Nasional Indonesia). The idea of this review is to give you my recommendations on the best museums to visit and the ones to avoid . I also wrote individual articles for each with a full description, just click on the name of the venues to read it. Contrary to what people might tell you, most are interesting and worth your time. They are a good introduction to Indonesian history and culture, and at the same time they give you an opportunity to explore authentic neighborhoods. The entrance ticket for each museum is very cheap, usually between Rp2,000 and Rp20,000. You can refer to the opening and closing hours on each separate reviews. All museums are rather small and you'll often need only a couple hours to visit them. English explanations are not always available. I don't think it's a big problem: Just take pictures and notes, then find out mo

Jakarta Travel Guide - For Single Guys

By Tibs →
In this article, I will explain everything you need to know about traveling to Jakarta as a single guy. I tried to keep it as concise and short as possible. For more details, you can email me directly at thibaud@jakarta100bars.com. If I wrote something inaccurate, please leave me a comment and I'll correct it. Note: I updated this article in January 2019. Visas for Indonesia The citizens of almost every country on earth can enter Indonesia without a visa for at least 30 days. This visa is non-renewable and non-extendable so you'll have no choice but to leave the country after it has expired. Overstaying is currently charged IDR250,000 per day. For staying for more than 30 days as a tourist, you have 4 options : → Make a 60-day tourist visa in any Indonesian consulate abroad (I did one in Saigon, Bangkok, KL, Singapore and Paris). It takes 3-4 days and costs 50$. This visa can then be extended 4 times 30 days for about 40 dollars (you must use an agent).

25 Best Traditional Markets to Visit in Jakarta

By Tibs →
Apart from the ubiquitous malls, Jakarta is filled with traditional markets and shopping streets. This review covers all the shopping areas to visit as a tourist. Some of them are very famous and some completely off-the-beaten track. I've listed them in 4 different categories: Traditional markets used by Indonesians for their daily household needs Interesting shopping streets for the tourist or the urban explorer Low-cost / wholesale shopping centers and malls with fake goods and great bargains Specialty markets (Precious stones, birds, flowers, fish, etc...)

Salsa, Tango and Latin Dancing in Jakarta

By Tibs →
Update June 2019: Classes by Damaris are held every Tuesday at 6.30 PM in Up in Smoke Restaurant in RDTX building (Mega Kuningan), every Saturday at 6 PM in Grand Kemang Hotel, and every Sunday at 5PM in Al-Jazeerah Signature Menteng. The cost is IDR100,000 for group classes, and IDR600,000 per private classes. More info on Facebook: Cuban Salsa Indonesia .  Salsa has been popular in Jakarta since the early 2000s.   You can actually dance and listen to Latin music any single night of the week in selected bars, clubs and restaurants in the city (see the lastest schedule below).   The best Salsa nights in Jakarta are run by two teachers who have lived in Indonesia for many years now, Luisa and Damaris. They have contributed to the building of a passionate Salsa community, which is made of both locals and expats.  Luisa Damaris - Please note the woman wearing a jilbab next to her

What to do in Jakarta in 24 Hours?

By Tibs →
Many tourists stay in Jakarta for only 1 night, usually before heading to Bali. If you are in the same situation, you might be wondering what are the best things to do in the city in 24 hours or less. To help my friend and family when they visit me, I have written for them a complete 24-hour itinerary that covers the town's best attractions. It is a bit rushed but it is realistically doable in a day. You can always skip a few steps to make your tour more relaxed. Don't hesitate to write me directly if you have more specific questions (thibaud@jakarta100bars.com). You can also read 10 Best Things to Do in Jakarta , Jakarta Travel Guide and Is Jakarta Worth Going?

What To Buy in Indonesia: Souvenirs, Gifts and Cheap Stuff

By Tibs →
If you are visiting Indonesia as a tourist, you are probably looking for gifts or souvenirs to bring back home. You may also be wondering if there are some cheap items that are worth buying here more than in your home country. The objective of this article is to help you with your shopping. I will give you tips on what to buy, what NOT to buy, where to shop, and how to avoid scams. I've written it with two locations in mind, Jakarta and Bali, where most tourists will go at least once.

28 Best Shopping Malls in Jakarta

By Tibs →
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 Tibs →
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

6 Best Cinemas for Watching Movies in Jakarta

By Tibs →
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.

Is Jakarta Worth Visiting?

By Tibs →
There are barely any tourists visiting Jakarta. Most foreigners you see are expats or businessmen. In the backpacker street of Jalan Jaksa, you will have a maximum of 50 travelers on any given night. For a capital city with 10 million inhabitants, this is exceptionally small.  It is not difficult to understand why most people avoid Jakarta: It is noisy, smelly, dirty, polluted, hot and messy. Getting around is difficult with massive traffic jams, no sidewalks and bad public transportation. There are no spectacular tourist sights and the attractions are disappointing compared to those in Bali, Bangkok, Singapore or Kuala Lumpur .  Things are not as bad as they seem though. If you can get past your first negative impression, you will discover that Jakarta is home to museums , modern malls, authentic neighborhoods, traditional markets , monuments, religious buildings, parks, cultural centers, art galleries, a beachfront and of course one of the best nightlife in Asia

15 Best Luxury Hotel Spas in Jakarta

By Tibs →
Jakarta must be one of the cheapest places on earth for luxury spa treatments. Massages that would cost hundreds of dollars in Europe cost less than 50$ here, including the tax and service charge. If you ask some expat wives, this is one of the reasons they can cope with living in the city. Unfortunately, most hotels do not have proper spas with branded products and inviting facilities, especially compared to those in Bali. In general, they will use the Decléor brand from France, meaning all therapists receive similar training. To help you figure out where to get a luxury massage in Jakarta, I reviewed below all the spas located in the city's best 5-star hotels . In particular, I indicated the prices of the most popular treatments. If the price changes, please don't hesitate to leave a comment below.

Museum Bank Indonesia (Jakarta)

By Tibs →
I did not expect much from the Museum Bank Indonesia in North Jakarta, but after my visit I must say that it is one of the best things to do during the day in the city. Inaugurated in 2009 in the former building of the De Javasche Bank, the ancestor of Bank Indonesia, it is a modern museum, clean and rather well-organized. The building itself is over a hundred year old and was designed by the famous Dutch architect Eduard Cuypers.

Museum of National Awakening (STOVIA School) Jakarta

By Tibs →
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.

Jakarta Museum of Fine Arts and Ceramics (Kota)

By Tibs →
The Jakarta Museum of Fine Arts and Ceramics (Museum Seni Rupa dan Keramik in Indonesian) is located on Taman Fatahillah Square in North Jakarta. It is one of the 5 museums in the area with the Bank Indonesia Museum , the Bank Mandiri Museum, the Jakarta History Museum and the Wayang Museum. It is located in a building that served as the Court of Justice of Batavia during colonial times from 1870 until the Second World War. It then became a museum in 1976.

Kampung Arab (Arab Quarter) - Jakarta

By Tibs →
Kampung Arab could be a tourist attraction in Jakarta. It has not been developed yet so you have both the benefit of the authenticity and the disappointment of finding out the sights are not properly taken care of. Located in Pekojan, in the Tambora district in North Jakarta, it is a 15 minutes walk from Taman Fatahillah. If you go by taxi, you can ask to be dropped at the corner of Jalan Pekojan Raya and Jalan Pengukiran Raya. The area has several old mosques to visit, among which Masjid Al-Anshor (that I already reviewed separately as the oldest mosque in Jakarta ), Langgar Tinggi and Masjid Jami' Annawier. At the time they were built, some of the worshippers were Muslim Indian merchants who helped spread Islam to the rest of Indonesia.