10 Travel Tips for Jakarta, Indonesia


1. Start with the Maritime Museum

I would say to start your journey in Jakarta with the Bahari Museum (the Maritime Museum) to get a real glimpse on the historical influence of the Dutch and Japanese over this part of Indonesia.

The museum was built in the old dutch warehouses that used to store spices such as nutmeg and pepper, as well as coffee and tea, before being sent to Europe and Asia.

It is closed on Mondays and national holidays and the price is around 5000 Rp (Indonesian rupiah) for an adult / 2000 Rp for a child.

Check here for flight prices

2. Don’t miss out the dolphins

There are few places where you can actually interact with the dolphins in Jakarta but I highly recommend the Ocean Dream Samudra because of all the extra fun activities happening there.

It’s very cheap to swim with the dolphins in Jakarta ~ we paid around 50$/ per person and we had plenty of time (more than 90 minutes) to enjoy the company of this beautiful, smart mammals. Plus it’s an unconventional place where they don’t use dolphins for shows or other forms of abuse.


3. The traffic

The traffic can be absolute hell.

Everytime I go to Jakarta I am being told by the hotel concierge that I should not go out because there is strike or national holiday, therefore there is traffic jam.

I recommend for you to take only the accredited taxi drivers from the Blue Bird company (to avoid taxi scams) or the famous bajaj ( tuk tuk in Thailand) very early morning so you can skip the peak hours (between 7 am – 12 pm) .

4. Best safari ever: TAMAN SAFARI

This is by far the best safari i’ve ever done.

The animals are free to move and come to meet the visitors and you can actually feed them  carrots, bananas or greens – from your car.

I had a lot of fun and interaction with them, the only minus i see it’s the long distance to get there (approx 3 to 4 hours drive from central Jakarta).


5. See where your tuna comes from (visit the Fish Market)

The Fish Market (Pasar Ikan) it’s not the type of place that I would recommend just to anyone, and that is just because of the hard smells and poor hygienic conditions. For me it was interesting i would say, i saw it more as a place sparkling of life and colour and somehow different than one would expect. The locals are very friendly and children tend to follow you everywhere you go. ☺


6. The Mangrove Forest

The park name is Angke Kapuk Nature Reserve and is situated in North Jakarta, near the airport area.

If you want to get away from the busy city to a cool place, away from the heat,  you should definitely visit this mangrove plantation.

You’ll take a boat trip around this nature reserve, admiring the fauna and flora of the place. Do not get scared of the crocodile looking creature that is just the Komodo Dragon (“The King of Lizard” – a lizard that can reach up to 3 meters !).

Please do bring a mosquito repellent with you.

7. Check your room hotel for snakes or reptiles

Ok, maybe I should have started with this one.

Being a flight attendant you get to hear many stories, some not even close to the truth, some maybe with a little truth side.

The stories we heard about Jakarta were all about crew finding snakes or strange reptiles in their rooms: under the bed, in the closets or in the bathtubs, use your imagination. Nevertheless, all that I ever found in mine were mosquitos and perhaps a lost spider.

8. Locals will chase you to click a picture together

If usually is the other way around, in Jakarta I got the surprise of people asking me to click a picture with them. Of course I was very amused by all the attention i was given, even if it didn’t last for long.😃


9. Travel safe

Always carry your passport or at least a copy of it because police often stops cars at checkpoints. You could also take a picture of your passport in case something happens to it.

When you are crossing the street check well, raise your hand for the drivers to understand you’ll need time to do it and proceed.


10. Don’t drink tap water

Try to not even brush your teeth with regular tap water because some might into your system by mistake.

Unfortunately the city has reached a high level of pollution over the last couple of years and this is affecting everyone.


13 Comment

  1. I love the flower at the first photo. Is it a national symbol of Jakarta?

    1. No, at least I don’t think so :). But you can find it everywhere in Jakarta, so you may consider it a symbol.

  2. If I visit Jakarta, I would love to check out the Mangrove forest and immerse myself into the peaceful natural environment. I have never met any crocodiles and see the mock creature would be fun. Do you have the picture of the Mangrove plantation by the way?

  3. rhiydwi says: Reply

    These are great tips! I often see visit the fish market as one of “the” things to do in many Asian cities, but being a vegetarian it’s not really my thing! One of the most endearing things about many parts of the continents is how they treat westerners like royalty! I’ve lost count of how many people’s babies I’ve held for photos, it’s so funny!

  4. Indonesia is making lot of right noises off late. I am very keen to see the country as I am stumbling upon more and more blogs such as this one. It’s a dream to see a komodo dragon for myself. It’s close to my country India and I hope I make it there soon.

  5. Sabs says: Reply

    I would love to swim with the dolphins. The safari also looks nice. I suppose as humans we crave interaction with animals.

  6. Thanks for these great tips. It is funny about the picture taking. We’d similar experiences in other parts of Indonesia too. Locals come up and ask to take photos with you. It is funny.

  7. Looks like it was fun to be with the dolphins in a place where they are not used or abused! Funny how the people stop you to take a photo, they do this in China as well 🙂

  8. Nice tips. But – snakes and reptiles in your room?! Was surprised by this one, but than again, it seems like another travel myth. 😉 Thanks!

  9. Good tips! I have never been in Indonesia but would sure like to visit someday. Checking your room for snakes… eek! But yes, better be safe than sorry. You never know what might be in there. I have heard some people finding iguanas in their rooms in some destinations but finding a snake would be a turn off for me.

  10. I would not miss Taman Safari and solphin show for the world. I had just heard about the partyscene in Jakarta till now – never knew there was so much to do there.

  11. Ariane says: Reply

    Oh no, missed the mangrove forest when I was in Jakarta!!! Well, I guess I have to return quite soon.
    I would not go to the dolphin show and Taman Safari, though… I love animals and want to respect their nature and well-being and I feel stronly against animal cruelty… You never know the details about how they are treated in such facilities. Sorry, but this is my opinion on that matter… That being said, I really loved that you did a post about Jakarta, most people find it’s just a gray, congestioned and loud city without any charms which I don’t think is true!

  12. Izzy says: Reply

    I recently had to write a travel itinerary for Jakarta and was so surprised by all it had to offer. Personally, I think that every Southeast Asia city while touted as big polluted cities have a dynamic selection of things to do. I’m really scared of visited any animal related facilities, esp. ones where they allow you to hold the creatures. Echoing everything Ariane said, not to chastize, but my opinion as well if you’re not privy to what conditions they’ve been brought up in. LOL to the hotel room check up! Its actually super true! My friend found a huge snake slithering on her bed in Indonesia!

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