Amusement Areas in Jakarta are plentiful. It is home many theme parks, multiplex cinemas, museums and shopping malls. The Lippo Group developing a mutli-million dolar "ice palace" in a Jakarta suburb with a large rink and artificial snowfield under an inflated dome.

Taman Mini

Indonesia in Miniature Park (in East Jakarta, ½ hour drive southeast of central Jakarta) is Jakarta's premier tourist attraction. Opened in the mid 1980s and conceived by Suharto’s wife, it covers 100 hectares and contains miniature replicas of Indonesia's most famous natural and cultural sights. There are houses and crafts from most of Indonesia’s ethnic groups and sites from all of Indonesia’s provinces. Bali in particular is featured.

Indonesia’s call the park Taman Mini. Long names include the Taman Mini Indonesia Indah (TMII), or the Beautiful Indonesia in Miniature Park. The park also has an orchid garden, aviary and swimming pool here. The Golden Snail Theater shows a huge screen Imax film entitled "Beautiful Indonesia." The Museum Komodo is an entire museum dedicated to the giant lizard. The park is accessible via a toll road.

Taman Mini displays original Indonesian houses from throughout the archipelago, all with their unique architectural styles. The park attempts to present the ethnic cultures and traditions of all 34 of Indonesia’s provinces. Performances of drama and dances of the various provinces are regularly staged in the pavilions.

The core of the Park are replicas of traditional houses of chieftains found in places such as Aceh, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, Java and Papua. These are pavilions displaying the history, arts and crafts and traditions of each of the provinces. Here one can see a ‘Bogonjong’ house of the Ranah Minang from West Sumatra, a ‘Lamin’ longhouse of the Dayak who live deep in the interior rain forest of East Kalimantan, a ‘Tongkongan’ rice storage from Tana Toraja in the highlands of South Sulawesi, a traditional Batak Bolon house from Lake Toba in North Sumatra; and a ‘Joglo’ pavilion from Central Java.

Built for education and family fun, Taman Mini has large areas for family recreation, a number of flora and fauna parks, various museums, performing theatres, and accommodation facilities. To express Indonesia’s tolerance and the peaceful coexistence among the different religions in the archipelago there is a row the different houses of worship that are still actively used: a mosque, a Hindu temple, a Buddhist temple, a Catholic church and a Protestant church. Nearby is a large lake with islands in the shapes of the original Indonesian archipelago. On the sky lift that passes over the lake visitors can see clearly the entire map of Indonesia in the lake.

For small children there is the Istana Anak-anak, or the Indonesian Children’s Castle, featuring fairy tales from various parts of Indonesia as well as other tales known universally. There is an amusement park for kids and Swan boats to explore the Indonesian Archipelago on the lake. For for older children and adults there are the Imax Theatre at Keong Emas, a stage for musical performances, and the Snowy Bay, a water recreation park. There are displays dedicated to rare animals in the Komodo museum. Don’t miss the Asmat museum, a sports museum, and a museum displaying gifts received by President Suharto during his thirty years leadership. There are also gardens with cacti, herbs, and flower and a Bird Park.

The "Teater Tanah Airku" is the first theatre in Indonesia equipped with state-of-the art IMAX technology. The building is a blend of Indonesian and international aesthetics. Indonesian ornaments include the 'gunungan' (mountains), elements from Javanese puppet shows, the roof shapes of Sumatra and Sulawesi, with a touch of Kalimantan Dayak style, all harmoniously arranged. Combine this with modern sound and lighting effects and the complete stage equipment of a state of the-art theatre and you have a dramatic experience that will be long remembered.

Taman Mini is the brainchild of the late Ibu Tien Suharto, former Indonesian First Lady. Construction of Taman Mini began in 1971 and it was officially inaugurated on April 20, 1975. The Park has as chief mission the preservation and development of the various Indonesian cultures as a media to strengthen the nation’s unity and integrity and to instill these values especially in the young generation. For visitors who have little time to explore the Indonesian islands, Taman Mini is a good introduction to what this country has to offer in diversity and culture. As for getting around: Taman Mini has various types of transportation to take you through and around these extensive grounds: the Aeromovel fast train, a Sky lift, and shuttle buses. For detailed information visit:

Taman Mini is huge, covering more than 100 hectares of land. If you don't have much time, join a tour. That way, you'll save money and time. (You'll get a discount if you travel in a group). If you want to explore this site fully, it is best that you spend the night within this huge complex. Within the Taman Mini complex itself is the Desa Wisata, or Tourist village. Here are meeting facilities, rooms and cottages for better privacy. A youth hostel called Graha Wisata Remaja is ideal young people and backpackers. It is within walking distance to small restaurants, cable car station, pool, and several museums. The bus terminal is nearby from where shuttle cars buses will take you to other attraction within the park.

As for restaurants Try Restoran Caping Gunung. Its natural lighting (no light bulbs, light is provided with roof made of clear materials) and tasty food will provide a unique dining experience. At Pasar Tiban (Tiban Market) food vendors sell a variety of meals among the many stalls. There are also small restaurants scattered around Taman Mini. As for things to buy, TMII sells many small souvenirs to remember your trip by. Various shirts, hats, postcards are widely available.

Getting There: Taman Mini is about 25 kilometers from Central Jakarta or some five kilometers from the Halim Perdana Kusuma airport reachable via the Jakarta toll road. It is reachable by public transportation or taxi. Hire a car and driver for a more comfortable journey. By public transportation:
Metro Mini T. 45 (Pulogadung-PT.II TMII)
Angkot KWK S. 15 A (Ragunan - PT. II TMII)
Angkot KWK T. 01 (Cililitan - Bambu Apus)
Angkot KWK T. 02 (Cililitan - Cipayung)
Angkot KWK T. 05 (Cililitan - Setu)
Angkot KWK P. 15 (Cililitan - Cilangkap)
Angkot KWK K. 40 (Bekasi-Kmp. Rambutan)
Angkot KWK S. 19 (Depok - Pinang Ranti)
Bus Gandeng PPD BT. 03 (Grogol - TMII)

Waterbom Jakarta

Waterbom Jakarta is Jakarta’s leading water park and recreation destination. Located at Pantai Indah Kapuk in North Jakarta, next to the Damai Indah Golf Course, it covers an area of about 35,000 square meters, excluding a parking area that can accommodate 1,000 cars. Featuring various slides, pools and water-related attractions, it can be reached by a direct toll road only 10 minutes from the airport and not that much further from the heart of the city Operating Hours: Monday - Friday : 11.00am - 8.00pm; Saturday, Sunday and Public Holiday: 08.00am- 8.00pm. Remember to bring swimming suit, Rafts and tubes can be rented.

Waterbom Jakarta is set in sprawling 3.8 hectares are of tropical greenery and can accommodates up to 5,000 people. Attraction include the Twizted Zone (an assortment of open and semi-open slide tubes), the Whizzard ride, Pleasure Pool and Wave Pool The Hairpin ride sends riders through twisting, circular tubes, ending in the swimming pool. The Speed Slide is what it says. The Wild River which surrounds the park, features waterfalls, shallow pools and man-made beaches, and artificial waves. For small children there kiddy rides such as the Bomblazter, Kiddy Slide and Kiddy Pool..

Waterbom Jakarta is committed to providing a safe, clean, hygienic fun. The water used in the park adheres to the strictest water-filtration standards, without the use of harmful chemicals such as chlorine. Lifeguards at the water park undergo strict international certification training but many of them don’t speak English. Various promotional offers often available, with discounts of up to 50 percent for families.

Getting There: Waterbom Jakarta is easy to reach since it is located just off the toll road. 1) From Semanggi (15 minutes): From Semanggi Toll, head for Sukarno-Hatta Toll, exit at Pantai Indah Kapuk (PIK). 2) From Ancol (10 minutes): From Pluit Toll, head for Sukarno-Hatta Toll, exit at Pantai Indah Kapuk (PIK). 3) From TB Simatupang (30 minutes): Head for Semanggi Toll, head for Sukarno-Hatta Toll, exit at Pantai Indah Kapuk (PIK). For more information, you can visit their site:

Ancol Dreamland and Seaworld

Ancol Dreamland (along the coast in northern Jakarta) is Jakarta's largest and most popular recreation park. A Disney-style theme park, it sprawls over a large area and features huge slides, swimming pools, a roller coaster, other thrill rides, and a high-tech amusement fun park called Dunia Fantasia, or Dufan for short. It also an art center, a convention hall, hotels and a marina. The 'Pasar Seni' or art market has a varied collection of Indonesian handicraft, paintings and souvenirs on sale. An open-air theatre features live performances by local artists. Perhaps the biggest draw is Seaworld, a water park with different pools and slides, artificial waves, a lagoon for fishing and boating and exciting rides such as the Torpedo and the Hysteria. There hotels, restaurants, bars and sports facilities in and around the park.

Dunia Fantasi (Fantasy World) is regarded as Indonesia’s answer to Disneyland, where is supposed to experience a cultural journey as well as have fun. The rides and attractions include a thrilling cork screw rollercoaster, adventurous flume rides, turbo tour simulators, bumper cars and other thrilling rides such as the torpedo. . There are boat rides into It’s a Doll’s World and a large swimming arena complete with artificial waves and waterslides, On the Hysteria you can experience the sensation of zero gravity when you are dropped down from a considerable height. Open Monday to Saturday, from 2:00pm to 9:00pm; Sunday from 10:00am to 9:00pm

A village unto itself, the park has hotels, nightclubs, shops, and amusement centers, including an oceanarium with dolphins and sea lion shows, a golf course that has now been converted into an eco-park, a car race track, a four-pool complex with a wave pool, and water slides. Africa is represented by a comedy of mechanized monkeys, America by a Wild West town, Europe by a mock Tudor house, and Asia by buildings from Thailand, Japan, India, and Korea. Rides, shooting galleries, and food stalls surround these attractions, all set on 1,360 acres of land reclaimed from the bay in 1962. Open Saturday - Thursday 11:00am -6:00pm;, Friday 1:20pm - 10:00pm.

Marina Ancol is a marina for yachts, motorboats and sailboats. It is also the embarkation port for boats to Kepulauan Seribu, or Thousand Islands resorts. It is a good place to enjoy windsurfing and other marine recreation activities. Beach facilities for the sea or lagoon area are in ample supply. Water cycles, canoes, sailboats, fishing gear and jet skis can be rented. Stalls sell a variety of drinks, meals and snacks that you eat along the beach. You can go sailing or visit Bidadari Island, one of the islands among Thousand Islands Area

Seaworld (near Ancol Dreamland) is similar to its American counterpart. It has a dolphin pool, large tanks filled with coral and colorful fish and giant tank with an acrylic walk-through tube. Seaworld has more than 4,000 fish and sharks from 300 species, many of which can be seen while strolling through an 80-meter tunnel. The sea creatures live in some 500 million liters of seawater and are fed three times a day (some hand-fed). The attraction also features a theater which plays three educational films in English and Bahasa Indonesia. Open Monday to Saturday, from 2:00pm to 9:00pm; Sunday, from 10:00am to 9:00pm There is another aquarium in the area with a dolphin show.

If you go to the water park or beaches bring sun protection and bathing suits. Don’t forget extra clothes Within Ancol Jakarta BayCity area, you will find several hotels such as Raddin Hotel, Wisata Hotel, Mercure Hotel and Putri Duyung Cottages with various prices and facilities. You may find many food stalls serving their specialty dishes. At Pantai Carnaval you will find of restaurants serving local and international dishes with several serving seafood as their specialty. For a drink try "Es Kelapa Muda" or Young Coconut Ice drink.

A colorful open-air art market is located at the Ancol Amusement Park, which provides the unique experience of not only buying quality Indonesian arts and craft, but also a chance to see and meet the artisans at work. At this art and handicraft market, visitors get to watch Indonesian artists creating their masterpieces. You can watch puppet makers, wood-carvers, painters, and many other craft makers from throughout the archipelago cheerfully working on their creations. Hundreds of artists from all over the country congregate here to exhibit their work, making this a fascinating place for tourists and art connoisseurs. You can even get a portrait of yourself done.

Both traditional and modern art and crafts are on display, including paintings, sculptures, traditional Indonesian wayang kulit (leather puppets), gemstone jewelry and many other artistic products. Art performances are frequently held at the Art Market (Pasar Seni) inside the Jaya Ancol Dreamland on Jakarta's beach. They normally range from wayang kulit shadow plays to folk dances and modern drama.

The market is open Monday to Saturday, from 2:00pm to 9:00pm; Sunday, from 10:00am to 9:00pm, Many souvenirs are sold with fixed prices. But, there are ample possibilities to try out your bargaining skills at Pasar Seni or Art Market You can buy souvenirs in each attraction in the Ancol Bay Area.

Getting There: Ancol Bay can be reached by bus, taxi, rental car or car hired with a driver. If you're coming from Bogor, there's a train available, but only on Sundays. You can move around inside the Ancol Bay area by using a car, walking or riding in a shuttle car provided by the parl

Ranguan Zoo and Schmutzer Primate Center

Ranguan Zoo (in the suburb of Rangunan in southern Jakarta) is laid out in a tropical setting and covers 135 hectares and embraces original rain forest. Among the 4000 animals are a number of famous ones indigenous to Indonesia like the Komodo dragon, orangutans, tapirs, anoa, Java tiger and many brightly colored birds, including the magnificent bird of paradise. There are many types of snakes. The Zoo also has a special section for Gorillas. The zoo is a Jakarta family favorite on public holidays.

Schmutzer Primate Center (inside Ranguan Zoo) is one of the largest primate houses in the world and houses many different primate species amongst which gorillas, chimpanzees and orangutans are the most well known. The facilities are designed in innovative ways where the animals can decide whether to be seen or not. There is natural food growing in the enclosures, the only place in the world where this is the case.

The primate center is constructed in such a way that it offers new ways of looking at the animals. For instance a seven meter high bridge crosses part of the gorilla enclosure, a very long tunnel guides you through the world of orangutans and swinging canopy bridges provide you with a feeling how feels to be living in the trees. In its short existence the center has reaped much praise for its very large enclosures and natural design. Several young animals were already born here. The Center intends to contribute to the wild population by sending groups of healthy apes and monkeys back to the wild to be released there.

The primate center opens seven days a week from 9.00am to 4.30pm. The entrance fee is 5.000 Rp for adults and 3.000 for children. You can not bring food or drink inside the Schmutzer Primate Center and you are not allowed to feed the animals For more information about the Schmutzer Primate Center and the activities of BOS (The Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation) please visit their website:

In Schmutzer Primate Center, you can walk on a seven meter high bridge over part of the gorilla enclosure, then go through a long tunnel guides you through the world of orangutans. Swinging on canopy bridges will provide you with a feeling of what it is like to live in the trees. There are many souvenirs related primates: T-shirts, monkey dolls and hats. There are a few places to eat.

Getting There: From your hotel you can take a taxi, bus, or car with a driver to reach The Ragunan Zoo.

Taman Safari

Taman Safari (in the foothills south of Jakarta) is a nature and wildlife park with a Sumatran tigers, Javanese rhino and other Indonesian wildlife. Wild animals roam free. You can observe wild animals like tigers, lions and crocodiles in their native habitats.

Taman Safari Indonesia or the Indonesian Safari Park is a conservation center as well as a modern zoological garden with various collections of flora and fauna. In this Park, you will not only enjoy the beauty of it‘s nature, but also interact directly or watch the animals wander around freely. Visitors can also travel in this conservation area using their private car or a provided bus through these amazing wild habitats.

In Indonesia, Safari Parks are available in three provinces; Taman Safari I in Cisarua Bogor, West Java, Taman Safari II in Mount Arjuna, Prigen, East Java, and Taman Safari III (Bali Safari and Marine Park) in Serongga Gianyar, Bali. Among these three tourist sites, Taman Safari I in Bogor is the most famous site for domestic as well as foreign tourists. It was built in 1930 and previously called Radio Safari Garden and Taman Safari Televisi Indonesia. It is also a buffer zone for Gunung Gede Pangrango National Park and is situated 900 to 1,800 meters above sea level.

There are more than 2,500 animals in Taman Safari Bogor with hundreds of species currently being maintained. There are animals from all over the world and as well as local animals such as Komodo dragons, Sumatran rhinoceros, sun bears, elephants and anoa. The climate is cool due its location in the Bogo highlands. Ample shade is provided by large rainforest tree trees and shadows from Mount Gede Pangrango.

For regular entry (during the day), driving your own car will give you the most control in when to stop to take pictures, for instance. If you're more interested in the Night Safari, we recommend you to take the shuttle. There's a guide in each shuttle who'll be able to explain to you about the wildlife out there. After you've passed all the Safari environments, you'll reach a free-zone where you can park your car and proceed on foot. This free-zone offers a variety of themed rides and scheduled entertainments (the menacing tigers, the acrobatic seagulls, and the hunting eagles, to name three).

You are not allowed to get out of your car or open your door or window where the animals roam free. After watching animals in their habitats, you can take your children to enjoy various animal attractions performed by orangutangs, dogs and even goats. These attractions take about half an hour. You could also visit the bird park, animal education show, reptile center, baby animal zoo, take elephant and horse rides, go on a safari trek or visit a Wild Wild West cowboy show. In the Baby Animal Zoo, where you can touch and hug the baby animals and take your picture withe them At the free-zone there are several stalls selling food. And there are two restaurants providing both western and eastern cuisine. Taman Safari also provides several spots where you can have a family picnic.

The park offers regular daytime Safaris and Night Safaris. Each offers a different kind of experience. At the free-zone, there's a spot where you can buy some carrots to feed the elephants with. Every three hours, these friendly elephants also put on an entertaining show. Riding the Cable Car allows you to see how vast Taman Safari is.

Taman Safari offers caravan-services for staying the night. A caravan provides a modest kitchen, toilet and comfortable beds. One is enough for a small family of four. It's very convenient if you want to enjoy the entire day in the park and experience the Night Safari. Taman Safari itself lies at Puncak Pass, an area lined with various kinds of lodgings, from a simple bed and breakfast to a bungalow or a villa. Inside Taman Safari, there are at least three official outlets selling merchandises, clothings, trinkets, and cute animal stuff

Getting There: Its not difficult to reach Taman Safari. Its located near the Puncak Pass area“a favorite site for Jakartans for relaxing. From Jakarta, you can take a rented car or buy a tour package offered by a travel agent.

Image Sources: Wikimedia Commons

Text Sources: Indonesia Tourism website ( ), Indonesia government websites, UNESCO, Wikipedia, Lonely Planet guides, New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, National Geographic, The New Yorker, Bloomberg, Reuters, Associated Press, AFP, Japan News, Yomiuri Shimbun, Compton's Encyclopedia and various books and other publications.

Updated in August 2020

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