Image by Peter Dunne - (Zoinretep) - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0 from Wikimedia Commons

MONAS or the National Monument is the icon of Jakarta City. It was designed and constructed by the Indonesian architects in 1959.

Ir. Sukarno, the first president of the Republic of Indonesia inaugurated the National Monument on August 17, 1961. Later, it was officially open to the public on June 12, 1975.

The purpose of building the National Monument is to commemorate the heroes and heroines of the revolution and inculcate patriotism into the young generation. Besides that, it has become a tourist attraction and the center of educating the population. Not only do the Jakartans have recreation at Monas, but also the citizens from all over the country.

The National Monument has a unique architectural style and on the top of it is a large flame shaped metal which looks like a fire that will never go out. The everlasting fire symbolizes the strong spirit of struggle of the Indonesian people. The flame on the top of Monas is made of gold plated bronze.

In the park of Monas, there’re different types of trees and the carpet-like green grass give visitors a feeling of comfort and joy. People tend to go to the park in the afternoon as this location is suitable for recreation. It’s a good place to spend the day with family and friends.

The Dancing Fountain is one of the major visitor attractions at Monas. It is open to the public free of charge on Saturdays and Sundays. There’re only two sessions of the dancing fountain show in a day. The first session is at 19:30 and the second is at 20:30. The duration of each session is 30 minutes.

National songs and folksongs are played during each session of the dancing fountain attraction. The water movements are adjusted to suit the music of the song. Therefore, it looks like dancing. It is also decorated with colourful lights and laser lighting display.

Monas has a museum which is three meters under the surface of the ground. The walls and the floor of the National History Museum are paved with luxurious marble. It has the size of 80 x 80 meters and a capacity of 500 visitors. There’re dioramas which show the Indonesian historical events starting from prehistoric age till the New Order.

Visitors can go by lift up to the peak of Monas. Binoculars are prepared for visitors to get a bird’s eye view of the metropolitan city. If you intend to go up, you must stand in line to wait for your turn.

Visitors should leave their cars and motorbikes at the parking lot. It’s fun enough to ride a bicycle around the park of Monas. You don’t need to bring your own bicycle because it can be hired at the park.

Statues of patriots can be found on every corner of the park, such as Prince Diponegoro, Chairil Anwar and Raden Ajeng Kartini. Various reliefs show the Indonesian histories from Majapahit Empire to post-independence period.

A lot of people jog around the Monas almost every day. Besides, they’re also allowed to do other sport activities, such as badminton and volley ball.

Children and animal lovers can see deer at Monas Park. The lovely deer will approach whenever they see human beings. Everyone is advised not to give food to the deer.

Lenggang Jakarta is the place where food sellers sell different kinds of Indonesian traditional food. For those who want to taste the food should pay with e-Money. Many people like eating Bandung shaken noodle, Acehnese noodle, fried rice, fried chicken and so on. In addition, you also can buy ice cream when the weather is hot.

The National Monument opens from Tuesday to Sunday and it remains closed on Monday. If the National Day falls on Monday, Monas is also open to the public. You should buy the entrance ticket before you go in to have a look.


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