Jakarta is the main international gateway to Indonesia; for details on arriving here from overseas, see the Transport chapter . Jakarta is also a major centre for domestic travel, with extensive bus, train, air and boat connections.
All international and domestic flights operate from Sukarno-Hatta international airport. Consult www.jakartaairport online.com for airport information and schedules. The city's second airport, Halim, is no longer used for passenger flights. For information on departure tax and international airlines, see the boxed text, respectively
Domestic airline offices in Jakarta include the following.
AirAsia : Batavia Air
Garuda (2311801,0804180 7807; www.garuda-indonesia.com; Garuda Bldg, Jl Merdeka Selatan 13)
Lion Air (632 6039; www.lionair.co.id; JIGajahMada?)
Mandate Air (314 4838,0804123 4S67; www.mandalaair.com; Jl Wahid Hasyim 84-88)
Merpati (654 8888,0800-101 2345; www.merpati.co.id; Jl Angkasa Blok B/15 Kav 2-3, Kemayoran)
Sriwijaya Airlines ( 640 5566; www .sriwijayaair-online.com; Jl Gunung Sahari)
See p848 for information on the Pelni ship-ping services that operate on regular weekly, two-week and four-week schedules to ports all over the archipelago. The Pelni ticketing office is northeast of the city centre in Kemayoran. Tickets (plus commission) can also be bought from designated Pelni agents: Menara Buana Surya,in the Tedja Buana building, 500m east of Jl Jaksa; or Kerta Jaya ,opposite Mesjid Istiqlal.
Direct Pelni destinations from Jakarta include Padang, Tanjung Pandan (Pulau Belitung), Surabaya, Semarang, Belawan, Kijang (Pulau Bintan) and Batam. Some of the most useful services include the Ganda Dewata, which sails to/from Makassar and the Kelud to Batam (near Singapore). To Kalimantan, the Leuser goes via Tanjung Pandan to Pontianak.
Pelni ships all arrive at and depart from Pelabuhan Satu (dock No 1) at Tanjung Priok, 13km northeast of the city centre. Busway Koridor 10 (at the time of writing, slated to begin in mid-2009) should provide the fastest connection to the port, and Koridor 12 should provide an additional link some time in 2010. A taxi from Jl Jaksa costs around 70,000Rp. The information centre at the front of the dock No 1 arrival hall can be helpful, or try the nearby Pelni Information Office, though you can't buy tickets here!
There are no longer any hydrofoils sailing between Jakarta and Batam.
Jakarta's four major bus terminals - Kalideres, Kampung Rambutan, Pulo Gadung and Lebak Bulus - are all a long way from the city centre. Take the Transjakarta busway to these termi-nals as the journey can take hours otherwise. Trains are generally a better alternative for travelling to/from Jakarta.
Tickets (some including travel to the termi-nals) for the better buses can be bought from agencies.
About 15km northwest of Merdeka Sq, this terminal serves points to the west of Jakarta. Frequent buses run to Merak (28,000Rp, two hours) and Labuan (36,000Rp, 3& hours). A few buses go through to Sumatra from Kalideres, but most Sumatra buses leave from Pulo Gadung bus terminal.
Buses that travel to areas south and southwest of Jakarta leave from this big bus terminal, some 18km south of the centre. It mostly handles buses to West Java, including Bogor (normal/air-con 9000/12,000Rp, 45 minutes), Cianjur (26,000Rp, 2V4 hours) and Bandung, via the toll road/Puncak Pass, (42,000Rp, three/four hours). Services also run to Pangandaran (from 65,000Rp, eight hours) and Pelabuan Ratu (31,00Rp, four hours) from here.
Twelve kilometres east of the city centre, Pulo Gadung (Map p98) has buses to Bandung, Central and East Java, Sumatra, Bali and even Nusa Tenggara. This wild bus terminal is the busiest in Indonesia. The terminal is divided into two sections: one for buses to the east and the other for Sumatra.
To points east, frequent buses go to virtually all cities in Central and East Java, and Bali. Destinations include Bandung, via the toll road (42,000Rp, three hours), Cirebon (from 48,000Rp, five hours) and Yogyakarta (from 90,000Rp, 12 hours).
Sumatra is a long haul from Jakarta by bus; most travellers fly these days. Services to Sumatra tend to leave between 10am and 3pm. Destinations include Bengkulu (from 210,000Rp), Palembang (from 180,000Rp) and even Padang (from 250,000Rp). Prices listed are for air-con deluxe buses with reclin-ing seats and toilets.
This terminal : is 16km south of the city centre, and is another departure point for the long-distance deluxe buses to Yogyakarta, Surabaya and Bali. Most bus departures are scheduled for the late afternoon or evening.
Car & Motorcycle
See opposite for details on car hire in Jakarta.
Door-to-door travel minibuses are not a good option in Jakarta because it can take hours to pick up or drop off passengers in the traffic jams. Some travel agencies book them, but you may have to go to a depot on the city outskirts.
Media Taxi5 : Has minibuses to Bandung (75,000Rp).
Jakarta's four main train stations are quite central, making trains the easiest way out of the city. The most convenient and important is Gambir station, on the eastern side of Merdeka Sq, a 15-minute walk from Jl laksa. Gambir handles express trains to Bogor, Bandung, Yogyakarta, Solo, Semarang and Surabaya. Some Gambir trains also stop a Kota station in the north of thi city. The Pasar Senen train station is to the east and mostly has economy-clas: trains. Tanah Abang train statioi has economy trains to the west.
For express trains, tickets can be bought ir advance at the booking offices at the northerr end of Gambir train station, while the ticke windows at the southern end are for ticket! bought on the day of departure. Check timetables online at www.infoka.kereta-api.com or consult the helpful staff at the station's information office (692 9194).
There's a (slightly pricey) taxi booking desk inside Gambir station; the fare to Jl Jaksa is 35,000Rp.
Comfortable Pakuan Express trains (8500Rp, one hour) leave from Juanda and Gambir stations roughly every hour until 9pm. No-frills trains (4000Rp, 90 minutes) also run this route, about every 30 minutes, but can be horribly crowded during rush hours (watch your gear).
There are frequent trains to Bandung along a scenic hilly track, but be sure to book in advance (especially on weekends and public holidays).
Six efficient and comfortable Parahyangan services depart from Gambir train station daily for Bandung (business/executive 45,000/65,000, 3Whr) between 5.15am and 4.30pm. Seven more luxurious Argo Gede services (executive 75,000Rp, three hours) cover the same route between 6.10am and 7.30pm.
Most trains that run along the north coast or to Yogyakarta go through Cirebon. Two of the best services from Gambir station are the Cirebon Express (business/executive 60,000/75,000Rp, three hours) with five daily departures, and the Argo Jati (business/ executive 70,000/85,000Rp, three hours), which runs twice daily at 9am and 5.10pm.
YOGYAKARTA & SOLO
The most luxurious trains are the Argo Latvu (220,000Rp, 8W hours), departing at 8pm, and the Argo Dwipangga (225,000Rp, SVt hours), departing at Sam. These trains go to Solo and stop at Yogyakarta, 45 minutes before Solo, but cost the same to either destination.
Cheaper services from the Pasar Senen train station to Yogyakarta are the Fajar Yogyakarta (business ll0.000Rp, 8V4 hours), departing at 6.20am, and the Senja Utama Yogya (1 l0.000Rp, nine hours) at 7.20pm. The Senja Solo goes to Solo (1 10,000Rp, 10 hours) at 8.30pm and also stops in Yogyakarta.
Most trains between Jakarta and Surabaya take the shorter northern route via Semarang, though a few take the longer southern route via Yogyakarta. Trains from Gambir range from the Gumerang (business 140,000Rp, 13 hours) that departs at 6pm to the smart Argo Bromo Anggrek (special executive class from 260,000Rp, 9& hours), which departs at 9.30am and 9.30pm.
To/From the Airport
Jakarta's Sukarno-Hatta international airport is 35km west of the city centre. A toll road links the airport to the city and the journey takes about an hour (longer during rush hour).
Damri: run between Sam and 7pm between the airport and Gambir train station (near Jl Jaksa) and several other points in the city including Blok M. From Gambir train station to Jl Jaksa, a taxi is a minimum of around 35,000Rp, or you could walk (it's just under 1km). Damri buses also run regularly to Bandung (115,000Rp) and Bogor(55,000Rp).
Taxis from the airport to Jl Thamrin/Jl Jaksa cost about 140,000Rp including tolls. Book via the official taxi desks to be safe, rather than using the unlicensed drivers outside.
A new train line is being constructed between Manggarai station in central Jakarta and the airport; it's expected to be operational sometime in 2010.
Jakarta has a very decent new Transjakarta busway system (see the boxed text, below), which has really speeded up city travel in recent years. Other buses are not very useful for visitors as they are much slower, hotter (no air-con) and crowded (pickpockets can be a problem). Nevertheless you may come across regular city buses, patas ('express') buses and orange Metro minibuses from time to time; fares cost between 2000Rp and 3000Rp.
The tourist office can provide a little information on buses around Jakarta, though at the time of research its city map did not plot the busway routes.
Jakarta has branches of the major car-rental operators, including Avis, and Trat Astra. Alternatively, enquire in travel agencies, as a vehicle with driver may be the most economical option.
A number of the 'transport' guys who hang around on Jl Jaksa can offer some of the best deals if you negotiate directly with them, avoiding hotel or travel-agency commissions.
The big operators charge about 550,000Rp per day with a driver (450,000Rp without), while private operators may ask for around 10% less.
Taxis in Jakarta are metered and cost 4500Rp to 6000Rp for the first kilometre and around 250Rp for each subsequent 100m. Make sure the meter (argo) is used. Many taxi drivers provide a good service, but Jakarta has enough rogues to give its taxis a bad reputation and a number of travellers have complained about pushy drivers. Tipping is expected, if not demanded, but not obligatory. It is customary to round the fare up to the next l000Rp. Carry plenty of small notes - Jakarta taxi drivers rarely give change.
Bluebird cabs : has the best reputation; a minimum of 20,000Rp is charged for ordered taxis. Any toll road charges and parking fees - there are lots of them - are extra and paid by the passenger.
Other Local Transport
Bajaj (pronounced 'ba-jai') are basically Indonesian tuk-tuks. They are being slowly phased out and there are few about now in central Jakarta. If you hire one it's worth remembering that they are not allowed on many major thoroughfares.
Jakarta has some other weird and wonderful means of getting around. In the back streets of Kota there are plenty of pushbikes with an additional padded seat on the back. These contraptions are ideal for shuttling to and from Sunda Kelapa; expect to pay 3000Rp to 7000Rp for a ride. Bemos are the original three-wheelers from the 1960s that still operate around Glodok and other parts of Jakarta. The helicak, cousin to the bajaj, is a green motorcycle contraption with a passenger car mounted on the front.
Jakarta also has plenty of ojeks, which are motorcycles that take pillion passengers. Weaving in and out of Jakarta's traffic on the back of an ojek is decidedly risky. Becak (bicycle-rickshaws) have been banned from the city and only a few tourist becak remain at Ancol.
A popular destination for locals and expats alike lies only kilometres from the polluted harbour of Jakarta. Pulau Seribu (Thousand Islands), a string of islands in Teluk Jakarta (Jakarta Bay), is the perfect respite for those stuck in the capital too long.
Despite the misleading name, there are actually only 130 islands in the group, and of these, 37 have been used for commercial purposes. Pulau Pramuka is the group's district centre, but most people live on Pulau Kelapa, which is about 15km north of Jakarta. Near Pulau Kelapa, Pulau Panjang has the only airstrip on the islands.
The most accessible islands have been developed into resorts with bungalows and water sports. Most of these are expensive by Indonesian standards and charge hefty weekend supplements. That said, they do have white-sand beaches and calm, clear seas (aside from the islands close to the mainland).
The resorts have offices in Jakarta or at the Ancol Marina for bookings. As well as booking through their respective offices, you can make reservations through the Jakarta Visitor Information Office ,allowing for better comparisons.
Getting There & Around
The resorts have daily speedboats from Jakarta's Ancol Marina for guests and day trippers, usually leaving between Sam and 1 lam and returning between 2pm and 5pm, with additional services on weekends. Some are just a 20-mmute ride away, but the furthest islands take around two hours to reach. Return daytrip rates to the resorts with lunch include Pulau Bidadari (240,000Rp), Pulau Ayer (314,000Rp), Pulau Sepa (618,000Rp) and Pulau Kotok (850,000Rp). Gray Line also offers day trips to the islands.
Locals will ferry you from one island to the next (but this can be pricey). Most islands are small enough to easily explore on foot.
This is the closest resort island and is popular with Jakarta residents for day trips. It is one of the least interesting resorts, but you can use it to visit other islands such as Pulau Kahyangan, Pulau Kelor (which has the ruins of an old Dutch fort), or Pulau Onrust (where the remains of an 18th-century shipyard can be explored). Boats can be hired for the short trip from Pulau Bidadari for 50,000Rp per hour.
The island's resort (per person incl full board from 454,000Rp) has a variety of simple cottages and sports facilities, and can be booked at Ancol Marina.
Pulau Ayer is a little further north and is another popular day-trip destination. Its resort packages incl full board Ist/additional night from ,has comfortable 'land' and 'floating' (built on stilts) cottages plus a small stretch of good beach with cloudy water.
Near the islands' administrative centre is Pulau Kotok, an island with coral reef that's in reasonable condition for snorkelling and diving.
On the western side of Kotok, Kill Kill Kotok Island Resort is about the quietest and most traditional option, scoring high marks in the deserted-tropical-island stakes. Two dives here cost l,375,000Rp. The resort can be booked through its Jakarta office.
About 4km north of Pulau Kelapa, Pulau Putri has a tunnel aquarium, a scuba-diving school and banana boat trips. Its resort (packages from U60,000Rp, additional night 835,000Rp; 8 g) consists of rustic yet charming cottages and has an idyllic setting at the north of the island; it can be booked through PT Buana Bintang Samudra (gj 8281093; Jl Sultan Agung 21).
Pulau Sepa is another island near Pulau Putri; it's quite small (on foot, it takes about 10 minutes to circumnavigate) and is surrounded by wide stretches of pristine white sand.
The rooms at Pulau Sepa Resort (full-board packages from 938,000, additional night 570,000% H) have hot water but are quite basic, while its cottages have more character. Book through PT Pulau Sepa Perrnai.
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