My blog stats indicate readers like my Jakarta walkabouts, so here’s another!
What a fine day it was yesterday, Easter Sunday in Jakarta!
Got outa bed quite early – 8.30am, driven by the thought of a proper Sunday breakfast!
But I had the previous night determined to get out of the house and into town, my first goal being that bazaar advertised last month, in the Kunstkring Paleis. No particular purpose, except an inclination to go back and appreciate the amazing interior of that 100-year-old building in Menteng.
- The event was nice enough, but the prices were…well, pricey. It was Menteng, after all! So I contented myself with window-shopping.
After an hour or more there, the sun was still shining outside – off I went, heading out the gate and sharp right, then across what is probably, on weekdays, a very busy road.
Almost at once Gongandia Railway Station hove into view – and THAT, BTW, clued me into the best way to reach Kunstkring the next time.
Yesterday, I’d travelled by Busway, disembarking at Latuharihari, then walking up through those leafy streets again.
My walk took me along Jalan Imam Bonjol, past the Proklamasi Museum, the very spot where Indonesia’s Declaration of Independence was written out and signed by Soekarno and Hatta…
– that’ll be another excellent excuse to go back there some other weekend!
But thanks to not retracing my steps southwards when I left the bazaar, I now realise there’s an even easier way to get to Kunstkring – if you don’t fancy the enjoyable twenty minute walk from that Busway stop!
Just take the Kopaja 20 – if you’re too posh for the Rp.4000 ordinary version, remember there is now an Executive variety – used to be Rp.5K but will have gone up since last I used it.
The 2o runs all the way up from Lebak Bulus, along Simatupang, then through Mampang and up Rasuna Said, so you’re almost bound to have somewhere you can get on board. Anyway, it stops at Gondangdia – and indeed just about anywhere you tell the conductor you want it to!
Once within sight of the station, no further orienteering effort was required of me – straight down Jl. Johar! I knew exactly which way to go, past the splendid Austrian cuisine of Ya Udah.
But before that, on the opposite side of the road, it came as a surprise to see a branch of Gang Kelinci, an eatery I’d rather liked when a new kid on the Jakarta block. There was once a big branch on Jalan Sabang, and it was one of the very first places I had a meal in this city.
It had a second floor window, which gave a great view of the ebb and flow of the street below. Alas, it closed about 7 or 8 years ago, I guess; there’s still a branch at Blok M Square, but finding another was a nice surprise.
Had my mind succumbed to the soaring temperatures – it was a scorcher! – I might have pressed on to Jalan Jaksa, but that once-proud entertainment hub is a shadow of its former self. Few people I like to meet go there any more, so I don’t either.
- Monumen Nasional
- No, a thought had struck me – Monas!
- Always fun on Sundays, if the rain stays away….crowds of happy Jakartans. And indeed it was. A huge queue was visible around its pedestal, eager to gaze on the capital from on high.
Not me! Four or five times I was dragged up there, by friendly natives, when I was still new. Quite enough, thanks!
Because I had not crossed a church doorstep this Easter, my fingers were crossed, and sure enough, there, opposite the palace, the GKI Yasmin Christians were just getting started on Amazing Grace, as I arrived!