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An adventure to the past

Known as the city of malls, probably only few people know that Jakarta actually also houses dozens of museums. A wikipedia post lists more than 30 museums in the city! So, if you have been bored to visit shopping centers, you probably want to visit those museums.

I have made a vow that I will visit museums more often this year. So far I have visited five museums. Why visiting museums? it's cheap and you can learn lots of things.

For starter, last Sunday, I visited the National Museum located in Jl. Medan Merdeka Barat No. 18. The museum, which is also known as Museum Gajah (thanks to an elephant statue in front of its building), is located just across the Monas shelter of Transjakarta bus.

With an entrance fee of Rp 5,000, you can see thousands of artifacts dated from pre-historical era.

After paying the fee, you can start your journey by exploring statues from Hinduism and Buddhism era. These statues mainly come from Central Java areas. 

Silent witnesses: These statues have witnessed various facets in Indonesia's history

Ancient legacy: One of many ancient inscriptions documenting the nation's early history

The God of Destruction: A statue of Shiva, the most respected God in Hinduism 
King of all king: King Adityawarman of Malay Kingdom is represented as Awalokiteswara. This is the highest statue in the museum.  
Ancient beauty: Various portrayal of Durga, the wife and protector of Shiva

After exploring the statues, then you will witness this iconic view of the National Museum's inside yard. 

Dream yard: the inside yard houses various Lingga - Yoni artefacts as well as Andini Cow 
Dream yard, the other view: A lovely view from this side, showcasing the building's Dutch style

The museum also has a room documenting the nation's textile history. However, I decided just to stroll around the area because I will explore more the nation's textile history in the Textile Museum next month. 

Fancy fan: The fan is used by Balinese for ceremonial events
God of Prosperity: Dewi Sri figure, made of lontar leaves! 
The museum also has collections of models of Indonesia's traditional houses from various ethnicities.

Call me vintage: This one is from Papua
Everyone's favorite: Rumah gadang of Minangkabau tribe

How to decorate your house? The Museum also offers its explanation. If we remember our deceased grandparents by placing their pictures, then how did they do it in the past? 

Forget me not: The people of Papua stored their ancestors' skulls to respect them. 

The National Museum also has collections from historical eras. It has information about man's evolution. It also has skeletons of pre-historical people. The skeletons (of course it is just a replica) is showcased in a glass coffin so that we can see right trough it. 

RRrrrrR: RRRrrrrrrRRRRrrrRrRr

Rest in Peace: Don't disturb me. 
Besides replicas of skeletons, the Museum also has collections of ceramics as well as golds (real golds) and silvers from various eras in Indonesia. 

If you want to visit the National Museum, it opens at 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. on Tuesdays - Fridays and at 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. It closes on Mondays and the national holidays. You can get there by using Transjakarta bus, stopping at the Monas shelter. 

Photos by Rizqi Arifuddin | Photo effects by


  1. ahhh, that whirlwind statue reminds me to my trip with Transjakarta.
    anyway, i thought this museum didn't house this kind of collection (and known as museum Gajah also). i mean, this looks not-so Jakarta right?? haha although i didn't get a chance to visit this, but luckily i can see what's inside from this post. :)

    so, did you get there by yourself? or with your 'female companion'? :p

    1. "this looks not-so Jakarta" is a comment that should be dismantled once you visit these kind of places in Jakarta. The city has 30 (or more) museums!

      I went there with two friends loh ....

  2. hmm, so Jakarta can be considerably known as the city of museums then. but well, 30 (or more) seems still a little number compared to 100 (or more) malls, cafes, and night clubs. haha
    oh i see, spending time with friends are always nice. :) but spending time with someone we care most is 10x nicer. ahaha


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