Aside from being a metropolitan with its hustling and bustling, Jakarta has an artistic side that remains mostly untouched by the traffic and the city’s hot air. In case you don’t know, the area is called Kota Tua. In Kota Tua, you’ll visit many historical sites that can enrich your knowledge and experience in Indonesia.
Places in Kota Tua to Visit
Bank Indonesia Museum
Although there are many private banks in Indonesia, we all know that the number one bank in the country is still Bank Indonesia. It is a bank that runs the entire country. The number one bank in the country has made important decisions that affected the country’s economy. If you want to know about them, you can check them out in this museum. This museum will tell you all about the central bank’s decisions and the reason they created such rules and regulations. You can also buy coins in front of the museum. They’re pretty unique because they cannot be found easily in the entire city. So grab them while you can!
Stasiun Beos (Stasiun Kota Jakarta)
Although Stasiun Beos can no longer be used, we can still visit the station and admire its artistic and architectural beauty. Stasiun Beos has been standing still since 1929, making it one of the silent witnesses who sees the development of Jakarta. The old station is so loved by the city to the point where it becomes the city’s cultural heritage and is protected by the town.
If you’re feeling tired, it’s time for you to stop by at Fatahillah Square. The square is located in front of Museum Sejarah Jakarta, and it is always bustling with people, especially during lunch and dinner time. Everything is thanks to the square’s strategic location. There’s never a moment where the square is empty. So, don’t be surprised if street performance or classic bikes are circling the area. After all, there is no such thing as no activity in Fatahillah Square.
Kali Besar, which literally means a large river, was once one of the busiest waterways in Batavia (the older name of Jakarta). Merchants and other boats would fill the river, and some would stop to have a conversation nearby. Although we can no longer experience such feelings, we still can appreciate the river’s beauty. Because the river is no longer filled with boats, we can see the river’s blue color and feels the soothing feeling it gives. Besides, it is also the perfect place where we can take memorable pictures too.
Toko Merah (means Red Shop) is another photo spot you should not miss. The building is dominated by the color red thanks to the brick and the washed-out colors of the doors. It is one of many buildings that have witnessed the occupation of Dutch East Indies Company (VOC) since the building has existed since the 1700s. The building is also well-known for its mysterious area. It is not uncommon for people to visit the place at night to test their guts. It’s pretty dangerous to be around the city at night, though. So it’s best to look at the building from the outside in the afternoon.
Cafe Batavia is one of the most well-known restaurants in Kota Tua. Its fame is due to its ambiance, the unique menu, and the regular live music. The place matches the vintage ambiance of the city, so everything there uses classical design. Even the restroom/toilet is classic.
Besides the ambiance, the restaurant also offers food that reminds us of the 90s. At least, that’s how the dishes are served. So when you eat there, you will feel as if you were eating during the era when you were not born yet.
Museum Wayang (shadow puppets museum) wasn’t always a museum. Before, the building was actually a church. Now, the building has been turned into a museum that stores wayang (shadow puppets) while displaying them at the same time. Thanks to the museum, there’s no need for you to travel around Indonesia to know its wayang. You can visit the museum instead.
Of course, the museum does not discriminate. It stores not only wayang from Indonesia but also hand dolls from other countries such as Vietnam, America, and others.
Bank Mandiri Museum
Do you want to know how banks looked like before ATMs existed? Wait no more, because you can find out in Musem Bank Mandiri. In the museum, you can find objects used by banks before the technology is as advanced as now. From the typewriter to the cash register, everything is there in this museum.
If you’re tired, you can stop by in the middle of the museum. There is an outdoor garden in the middle of the museum where you can sit back and relax. Once you’ve recharged your energy, you can continue exploring the museum. If you’ve finished exploring the museum, you can always explore it again. Who knows, you might find something you didn’t see before.
Relieving the Past in Kota Tua
Staying true to its name, the historical sites in Kota Tua reflect the part of Jakarta. You can see traces of VOC from the buildings and their architecture. You can also find out about the history of the city by visiting the museums. To make it even better, the buildings there are also great for photoshoots. So while you learn about the past, you will also get great photos!