Most foreigners when taking holidays in Indonesia go to Bali which is one of the most popular destinations in the country.

Some flights also have stop offs in Jakarta whilst this city is also a popular city break destination.

Jakarta isn't usually a place to visit for choice as it doesn't quite have the same reputation to similar cities in Asia like Bangkok, Singapore and Kualar Lumpur.

However, for all those who think all the fun and excitement lies within Bali, think again. Jakarta is a really underrated tourist destination as it boasts of tons of attractions, restaurants and great value accommodation.


Getting to Jakarta

What works in favor of Jakarta is that several international airlines fly here making getting to this city easy.

There are lots of connections to worldwide airports and you can get cheap flights to Jakarta especially if you book in advance on a comparison website like Skyscanner.

From locations in Asia you can fly with several low cost budget airliners which can save you a lot of money. 

You can find direct from United Kingdom to Jakarta with Garuda Indonesia whilst you might want to book Emirates flights which are recommended.

Other airlines which fly from other destinations include Japan Airlines, Asiana Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Thai Airways, EVA Air, Qatar Airways, British Airways, China Airlines, KLM, Qantas, SriLankan Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Oman Air, Air China, Turkish Airlines, All Nippon Airways, Ethiopian Airlines, Etihad Airways, Korean Air, Philippine Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, China Eastern, Royal Brunei, Saudia, China Southern and Vietnam Airlines.

Flights land at the Soekarno-Hatta Airport which has good transport connections to the city centre.


Where to Stay

Jakarta is a really cheap destination especially compared to similar cities in Asia and you can find options for all budgets. From budget backpacker hostels, to cheap/mid range hotels right up to 5 star luxury. We recommend searching accommodation on and book in advance to get the best prices.


How to Get Around Jakarta

Jakarta 2 day itinerary

It is very easy to explore Jakarta, thanks to the inexpensive taxis and tuk-tuks. Moreover, all the major sights of attractions are located very close to each other so depending on where you stay a lot of places can be reached on foot. For places outside the city centre private transport or organised tours can be arranged. 


Best Places to Visit in Jakarta

If you have a trip to Jakarta on the horizon and you are on a tight travel schedule and plan to spend a quick stop over for at least 48 hours there are lots of things to do.

Here is a well-designed itinerary for a short stop over in Jakarta (2 days and 1 night) allowing you to see the highlighs of the city in a short space of time.


Day 1

If you are staying at a hotel or hostel excursions and activites can be booked on arrival.

We highly recommend you book a trip to the Thousand Islands as soon as you arrive. Yes you might be tired after a long flight but you won't regret this excursion as these islands are spectacular and the perfect place to unwind.

Jakarta 1000 islands

Scattered through Jakarta Bay are beautiful islands famous for amazing beaches, watersports and activities. Around 30 islands are privately owned while others are uninhabited or used for tourism. This area is a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and relax and enjoy water sports here like paddle-boarding, kayaking, and snorkeling. 

Spend the morning and afternoon relaxing on the islands and enjoy freshly cooked meals of rice, seafood and vegetables. If you are going to travel to Indonesia then this is really one of the best places in the world country to see. There are lots of different trips to the Thousand Islands each with different itineraries.

We recommend in the evening you head back to central Jakarta and wander around the Old City, Kota Tua. This is an ancient part of Jakarta that dates back to the 1600s and has buildings and remnance from the Dutch occupation.

You will get a real feel the culture and bustling atmosphere of this city. Watch the locals go by and explore the local food stalls and shopping outlets which are found throughout the city. You can end the day with a nice dinner at a place like Social House which offers a fine dining experience in surroundings which are similar to some cool cafes in Europe.

If you have time and are keen to learn more about the city head to the Jakarta History Museum which is well worth a visit and offers a great insight and background to the old European rule. Once you have seen the museum, head to the Jakarta Cathedral which was built in 1901 and is pretty stunning.

You will probably be tired after travelling and a day of sightseeing so try to get lots of sleep in preparation for tomorrow.


Day 2

Jakarta stopover ideas

After a good nights rest, you can start the day with a trip to the National Museum of Indonesia where you can understand more about the history and people of Jakarta.

The National Museum provides in-depth information about Indonesia’s history and displays various Hinduism and Buddhism sculptures and reminisces. Despite the small size, the museum holds an impressive collection of ancient gold artifacts, ceramics, and ceremonial weaponry.

You can easily spend a morning at the National Museum but when midday arrives head for lunch at Cafe Batavia which is located within a 1830s building. Here you can enjoy dining within a colonial ambiance in the two-storied resto-bar that serves authentic Dutch East India cuisine.

In the afternoon you might like to visit the Istiqlal Mosque that is where many of the local Muslim population go to pray. This is the fourth largest mosque in the world and it is really impressive up close! However, the mosque may not look like a typical mosque as its architect was a Christian.

Once inside, the building will impress you because of its size and is sure to make you feel very small and tiny. The large prayer hall and those vast courtyards are indeed a photographers dream. Be sure to dress responsibly and respectful.

If shopping is your thing you must not leave Jakarta without heading to the Thamrin City Trade Mall which is just perfect for that. The brick and mortar setup sells cheap local products and other artifacts. Explore the market and bargain to get the best buys.

If looking for a great dinner, Jimbaran Restaurant is the right choice, especially if you are a seafood lover. You can enjoy a great meal as you watch the sunset at Jimbaran.

Think of it as a superb dining experience while watching the sunset on a white sandy beach. Jimbaran is one of the rare places in Indonesia (and they have a restaurant in Bali too) which provides you with this fantastic opportunity.


Plan a City Break to Jakarta

This really is a super quick itinerary with some of the best places to see in Jakarta in a short period of time.

This city really does have a lot of places which will appeal to you and if you have a longer duration here you will be able to see a lot more. If you would like to see more of the country and have a flexible schedule, view Indonesia tours

If you have been to Jakarta and have any recommendations to share let us know in the comments section below.