The region of Kota Tua Jakarta is a small region in Jakarta, the capital city of Indonesia, which used to be the governmental center during the Dutch Colonialism era. The region is filled with the remnants of old buildings built by the Dutch government during that era. The buildings were abandoned by the Dutch after Indonesia declared their independence in 1945. Those are then restored by the government of Indonesia. Some of them are reused as functional buildings and tourism objects.

The Ambience of Kota Tua Jakarta (Source: Flickr. Credit: Eric Arianto)
The Ambience of Kota Tua Jakarta
(Source: Flickr. Credit: Eric Arianto)

On the previous article, we have already given information about how to get there. On the region of Kota Tua Jakarta, there are several unique buildings that are amazing to visit. Two most popular buildings are Museum of Wayang and Fatahilah Museum, which we have already discussed on the previous article as well. Now, we would like to recommend some other places worth exploring. Here we go:


What to Explore (Continued)

3. Museum Seni Rupa dan Keramik

Museum Seni Rupa (The Museum of Fine Arts and Ceramics) is one of most visited building on Kota Tua Jakarta. Just like its name, the building is a museum that shows numerous collections of ceramics and fine arts. The building was originally built as Ordinary Council of Justice Inside the Castle of Batavia (Ordinaris Raad van Justitie Binnen Het Casteel Batavia) during the Dutch colonialism in 1830.

Museum of Fine Arts and Ceramics (Source: Flickr. Credit: WCities)
Museum of Fine Arts and Ceramics
(Source: Flickr. Credit: WCities)

The fine art products shown at this museum were made by Indonesian artists from the year of 1800 until now. There are also several traditional fine art products such as the sculpture and totems from Asmat, Papua. Meanwhile, the ceramics were acquired from many countries such as China, Japan, Vietnam, Thailand, and Europe during the 16th to 20th century.

To visit the museum, you need to pay for the entrance ticket with only $0.2. The museum opens every Tuesday to Sunday since 09.00 to 15.00 o’clock.


4. Jembatan Kota Intan

Jembatan Kota Intan, or also known as The Bridge of Intan City, is a double-leaf bascule bridge built by the Dutch during the colonialism era. It stands on the Besar River of Jakarta. The bridge was built with double leaf bascule to provide enough clearance for boats and ships to pass by.

Since it was built, the name of the bridge had changed several times. When the bridge is built in 1628, it was named as Engelse Burg which means “The English Bridge” because it was located nearby the English Fortress. On the next year, the bridge was damaged due to a war with local citizen.

In 1930, it was renovated and renamed as Hoenderpasarburg which means “The Bridge of Chicken Market”. It was because there was a chicken market nearby the area. In 1655, the building once again was renovated and renamed as Het Middelpunt Burg which means “The Central Bridge”, considering the bridge became a vocal point. In 1938, the name was changed to Ophaalsbrug Juliana in order to honor the ruling queen at that time, Juliana. After Indonesia declared their independence, the bridge was taken over and renamed to be “Jembatan Kota Intan”.

Jembatan Kota Tua at Night (Source: Flickr. Credit: pratanti)
Jembatan Kota Tua at Night
(Source: Flickr. Credit: pratanti)

When it was built, the bridge was mainly constructed using woods. But it was damaged in around 1650-1655 due to massive flood. In 1655, the bridge was renovated and some wooden materials were changed with steel to make it more durable. After it was taken over by the Indonesian government, the bascule leaves were made permanent. It no longer could be moved up or down.


Other Activities

There are many things you can do at the region of Kota Tua Jakarta. Besides walking around and visit the awesome buildings mentioned before, you can also do following activities:

1. Bike Riding

Kota Tua Jakarta is car free area.  The area is wide, the view is great, and the air is fresh. This way, Kota Tua Jakarta is the best place to ride your bike. If you do not bring your own bike, you can rent an onthel bike which is commonly available at this object. Onthel bike is an antique bike which is very popular in the ‘70s.

While riding the onthel bike, it would be more fun if you are wearing sun hat for girls or safari hat for boys. This way, you would feel like a Dutch lady or gentleman from the ‘70s. Renting this onthel bike only costs you about $1.5 to $2.25 including the hat. In Kota Tua Jakarta, riding bike is one of the most favorite activities.

Onthel Bikes with Sun Hats for Rent (Source: Flickr. Credit: Susi Tanto)
Onthel Bikes with Sun Hats for Rent
(Source: Flickr. Credit: Susi Tanto)

2. Photography

The unique architecture of Kota Tua Jakarta is really nice to capture. The environment is beautifully supporting the classic atmosphere on the region. With people walking around and onthel bikes are passing by, the ambience of Kota Tua Jakarta is just perfect for a photographic shot. Almost every tourist visiting this region would love to capture the ultimate ambience of this area. In fact, some photography lovers would intentionally visit this region for earning an exquisite shot.


3. Hunting for Culinary

Hanging out without buying something to eat or drink is plain boring. But that would not be your problem while visiting the exotic Kota Tua Jakarta. At this region, you will find plenty of food/beverage vendors. Most of them are selling traditional Jakarta culinary. These street vendors are worth buying because the price is incredibly cheap and the taste really kicks in. Besides the affordable street foods and beverages, there are also several restaurants and cafes that offer fancier menu. Kota Tua is considered as one of culinary centers in Jakarta City.

A Street Vendor is Waiting for Customers at Kota Tua Jakarta (Source: Flickr. Credit: Jodicka Ramadhan)
A Street Vendor is Waiting for Customers at Kota Tua Jakarta
(Source: Flickr. Credit: Jodicka Ramadhan)

4. Shopping for Souvenirs

While visiting a tourism object, surely it would be fun to buy some things to be kept as souvenirs. In Kota Tua Jakarta, there will be many souvenir vendors offering various goods for you to keep. There are tee shirts, key chains, masks, wayang, sculptures, accessories, and many other unique items. The best seller item is the key chain with the shape of Monas Tower, a national monument of Indonesia. Besides the street vendors, you can also buy the souvenir from a souvenir shop located nearby Fatahilah Museum. This shop opens everyday at 08.00 to 22.00.


5. Street Art Performance

While walking around or biking around the rustic area of Kota Tua Jakarta, you will see plenty street artists performing their skills in the open square. Performances available are breathing-fire man, statue men, ondel-ondel, tattoo artists, street dance, string puppet show, silhouette painter, and much more. If you think their performance is fun and impressing, please give away some money to show your appreciation. You can also get your fortune predicted by a fortune teller. It will cost you only $0.8 to $1.5.

The Breathing Fire Man is Performing (Source: Flickr. Credit: Anton Hassan)
The Breathing Fire Man is Performing
(Source: Flickr. Credit: Anton Hassan)


Kota Tua Jakarta is such a fun place to visit. This tourism object is popular not only for the unique ambience, but also because there are various attractions available. And the best thing is, everything is incredibly affordable. Thus, do not be surprised if some people would love to hang out at this rustic place.