Jakarta is a megalopolis city spread around 290 square miles around the western side of Java Island. Centuries of conquest, trade, and recent rapid modernization hasn’t erased the irrepressible “Betawi” spirit of the town.

You might say that Jakarta sports its civilization with layers: Dutch colonial rule, dictators with a severe edifice complex, and today’s bustling democratic tide have all contributed to creating Jakarta’s endlessly exciting places.

It’s challenging to pick out just a few intriguing spots to visit within this big city, but here we provide you the best three things to do in Jakarta.

  1. Go Antique-Hunting at Jalan Surabaya

Jalan Surabaya is an open-air antique market in the border of Menteng District (where President Obama dwelt for a couple years). Its Central Jakarta location makes it effortless to reach by taxi or”Bajaj.” Jalan Surabaya has a lot of stalls selling crafts, antiques, and many different souvenirs.

Many of the antiques on display come from the Dutch colonial era, left over from old Dutch families… or are they? A good deal of these”crafts” on screen are newer than they seem, so it takes a fantastic eye for detail and a willingness to negotiate on the price to get the most from your Jalan Surabaya shopping experience.

  1. Explore the Central Jakarta by Bike on Car-Free Sundays

Every Sundays, from 6am to 11am, Jakarta closes off a four-mile stretch of Jalan Sudirman and Jalan Thamrin to automobiles, allowing only bicycles and pedestrians to cruise the streets between the Monas and Ratu Plaza shopping mall.

Over 100,000 appear every weekend to make the most of this break from the usual Jakarta gridlock: fitness freaks jostle with one another and glancing at street food stalls, colorful banner and traditional Betawi’s Ondel-Ondel on the sidelines.

Car-Free Day is a great time to see Jakarta during its cleanest and most vibrant moment. Ride on a neon-colored air balloon set off to the skyline, and you will see in the town center, particularly the part of Jakarta around the Bundaran HI roundabout, which is surrounded by skyscrapers, shopping malls, and five-star hotels.

  1. Encounter History in the Jakarta History Museum

Jakarta History Museum in Fatahillah Square brings you face to face with the Dutch colonial encounter – a harsh interval that the museum’s curators do not whitewash. The inside of the museum is filled with cultural artifacts left over from Dutch rule. The museum has a covered-up well and a cramped prison which had witnessed the cruelty inflicted on Indonesian prisoners back in the day.

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