15 (November 2, 2018) Jakarta
In our last day in Indonesia we take an early flight to
so we should be in the capital city by 8:45 AM. As our flight back to
home is at 6:30 PM, we plan to leave our baggage in a storage in the
airport and spend the morning in the city, mainly in National Monument
Monas area, where the mosque and cathedral are too. If we have some
more time, we could take a look at colonial area in Kota Rua.
In any case, we should take our way back to the
airport after lunching for the mentioned flight to home.
The spots marked at map are:
0- Jakarta International Airport
1- Monas, Mosque Istiqlal y Cathedral
2- Kota Tua
The problem we’ve got for this morning is our
flight is at 7:35 AM while breakfast in hotel starts at 6 AM, so it’s
pretty tight. Yesterday, we asked taxi for 6:15 AM today and, when
we’re in the restaurant at 6 AM o’clock, taxi driver is already waiting
for us. We do it as fast as we can and we’re finally leaving hotel
nearly 6:30 AM. As airport is very close and our experience on these
small airports here is everything goes quick, we’re fine with the time
we’ve got and, actually, everything goes smooth for our flight with
Flight gets Jakarta as scheduled and it’s a bit over 9 AM
when we’re ready for today’s plan with all our baggage in this huge and
modern airport. So, first step is going to Terminal 2 to check our
chance of checking in our bags for our flight this evening. In any
case, we’ll need to look for the place to leave the rest of our
baggage. We go up to the sky train linking terminals.
Once in T2 we’re confirmed that, indeed, it is too early as
per checking in for our flight: it opens three hours before flight
time, so we go to the ground floor where the baggage storage service is
and leave all four bags there. We pay 35,000 rupees for each small bag
and 45,000 for each medium (less than 20 Kg) bag, so we pay a total of
This terminal looks great, with lots of
restaurants and shops but, as our idea is having our lunch in the city,
we come back to the sky train to stop between terminal 1 and 2, where
the train station is.
Railink is a modern train which links airport with different
spots in the city. I’ve already checked our best destination, so I join
the line for the tickets machine and pay 70,000 rupees for each ticket
for BNI City train station. Next train is at 10:50 AM, so we take seats
in the waiting room until they open access to platforms. Screens in
waiting room are endlessly displaying goals scored by Messi. It seems
Indonesians like football and I’ve been receiving proves about the
knowledge they have about Barcelona team every time any of them knows
I’m from that city.
This train is modern and clean too which makes a contrast
when, 40 minutes later, we’re already going through the city and we can
see how the other trains are. This train goes through a neighborhood of
small flats piled one over the other which goes until the very edge of
the railways in the way that we are so close to them that our train
window feels like theirs.
When we leave the train in BNI City station after one hour we
take the stairs up until what looks like a modern building. We follow
the people and see how the most of them goes to the exit or taxi stop.
I thought it was a metro station here but it’s not so, as we would need
a taxi anyway, we join the line there.
These taxis are from Bluebird company, the ones recommended
in the guides. We ask driver for going to the mosque, which is the main
attraction in the area we want to visit, with the Cathedral and the
National Monument. As it’s nearly 12 PM, we won’t have time for other
areas of the city, so we’ll have our lunch and come back to the
airport. With that in mind, as we’ll need a taxi to the train station
anyway, I ask to the driver how much a ride to airport would be and he
answers around 300,000 rupees. I think we’ll go to the airport by taxi.
We can see from the taxi the big obelisk which is the
National Monument soon but, just a bit later, we’re in the middle of a
traffic chaos where we’re stuck. We can barely go ahead a few meters
every when and then. Besides, in the street there is a strange
atmosphere: people wearing white clothes are running at both sides of
this avenue. We can see Islamic flag everywhere and a truck completely
covered with this flag with people on it with a megaphone.
We ask to the driver what is happening here and he, who can
barely understand English, gives us his cell phone with Google
translator set for English – Indonesia so we can write our question
there and then the following conversation happen:
- What is happening?
- It’s a demo
- A demo of what?
- Some flags have been burnt and today there is a demo of
support for Islamic flag.
So that’s what it is. It seems the center of this
manifestation of Islamic fervor is – logically – the mosque Masjid
Istiqal, the third bigger mosque in the world and the one we’re heading
to. When we finally reach it’s looking really crowded with a sea of
people all in white, inside and outside, which are also explaining the
traffic jam has made us to spend 30 minutes for a one kilometer.
We’ve already understood before we’ve chosen a bad day for
this visit and we had already asked driver to go to the airport. With
this, all our pictures of Jakarta are made from the taxi.
We leave that part of the city and get into the usual traffic, which is
not easy, in our way through Jakarta. We keep taking pictures from the
taxi about the live in this big city while we’re saying good bye to it
and, in general, to Indonesia.
Once in the motorway we need to pay 9,500 rupees in the toll
and, when we’re delivered at terminal 2 we pay 242,000 rupees in total,
which is pretty good considering what the driver told us about the cost
of a trip to the airport and we’ve been nearly two hours in that taxi.
As it is 2 PM we’re choosing a restaurant from the
big offer of them here.
Before, we make some shopping in a supermarket for things we want to
bring to home. We finally choose Imperial Kitchen & Dimsum
where we get a feast of Chinese food for which we pay 263,000 rupees.
After this, we take our bags back and check in.
Then we go around looking for good chances to spend the remaining
rupees until the time to board for our flight back to home. We’re
waiting in a beautiful boarding gate.
Night is there all our way, including link hours
in Doha, which helps in our rest. We’re flying with a smile, recalling
the fantastic experiences we’ve been living in Indonesia.