The Jakarta Post
Patung Perjoangan Jatinegara (Statue of Jatinegaran Struggle) on Jl. Matraman Raya on May 12. The statue was commissioned by Jakarta Governor Ali Sadikin and inaugurated by the next governor, Tjokropranolo, in 1982. (JP/Wienda Parwitasari)
Located in East Jakarta, Jatinegara is not only known for its dynamic, crowded market, but also for its historical buildings that deserve more attention.
Jatinegara itself is quite vast in size, thus The Jakarta Post began the trip from Patung Perjoangan Jatinegara (Statue of Jatinegaran Struggle) that serves as the meeting point of two busy streets, namely Jl. Jatinegara Barat and Jl. Matraman Raya.
Ojek drivers waiting for passengers in front of Jatinegara Railway Station on May 12.(JP/Wienda Parwitasari)
How to get there
Depending on where you are coming from, it is quite easy to reach the district as it is home to Jatinegara railway station, Transjakarta bus stops and many other forms of public transportation like Komilet Jaya public minivan and Mayasari Bakti bus.
However, if you are coming from Menteng area in Central Jakarta and thinking of hopping on a Transjakarta bus, you need to make several stops and walk for several minutes to reach Kebon Pala bus stop in front of the statue or Pasar Jatinegara bus stop. If you depart from Sarinah bus stop, for instance, you will need to pass through several bus stops, such as Bank Indonesia, Balai Kota, Gambir 2, Kwitang and Senen. Afterwards, you can walk to Senen Central bus stop that will take you to other bus stops, such as PAL Putih, Kramat Sentiong NU, Salemba UI, Salemba Carolus, Matraman 1, Tegalan, Slamet Riyadi, Kebon Pala and Pasar Jatinegara (Jatinegara Market). More information on the Transjakarta route can be obtained from its website.
A more efficient journey for those heading from Menteng area is therefore the commuter line network. Starting from Gondangdia railway station, hop on the Bogor – Jakarta Kota line that will make stops at Cikini and Manggarai railway stations. Afterwards, catch the Manggarai – Bekasi train that will take you to Jatinegara railway station. The commuter line network schedule can be obtained from its website.
Meanwhile, those from Kemang area in South Jakarta can consider using ojek (motorcycle taxi) via ride-hailing apps.
Read also: Jakpost guide to Glodok
What to wear
Wear comfortable, casual clothes and shoes since you will have to walk in order to explore all the interesting places. Also, apply sunblock beforehand and wear a hat. Both Pasar Jatinegara and the Jakarta Gems Center are air-conditioned, but sometimes these places can be quite crowded.
Pasar Jatinegara (Jatinegara Market) or Jatinegara Trade Center is also known as Pasar Mester (Mester Market).(JP/Wienda Parwitasari)
Where to shop
Pasar Jatinegara is also known as Jatinegara Trade Center or Pasar Mester (Mester Market) as the district itself was formally named Meester Cornelis after a legendary figure in the area named Cornelis Senen. Unlike Pasar Mayestik that mainly sells textiles, Pasar Jatinegara is a haven for many items; from fruits, cooking utensils and traditional cakes, to traditional toys, clothes and shoes.
The building consists of five floors; the semi-basement that offers souvenirs, cakes and staple foods; the ground floor and first floor that provide mostly clothes; and the second floor that hosts merchants selling shoes. It has escalators and elevator starting from the ground floor. However, most of the sellers there are wholesalers, therefore it is advised to ask first before making any transaction.
A collection of the Jakarta Gems Center on May 12. At first, the place was known as Pasar Rawa Bening and was built in 1974 and then revamped in 2010.(JP/Wienda Parwitasari)
Walk a bit further and you will find the Jakarta Gems Center across the Jatinegara railway station. This place features rubies, sapphires, pearls and other gemstones with prices ranging from hundreds of thousands to millions of Rupiah. Some of the sellers can also be found offering keris (traditional daggers) and vintage items.
The collective coordinator head of Puspa Cakra Association, association for gemstones sellers, Junaedi, says the gallery serves as an information and promotion center of Indonesian gemstones. .(JP/Wienda Parwitasari)
Newcomers to gemstones may want to visit the gallery on the second floor. The collective coordinator head of Puspa Cakra Association (gemstone merchants association), Junaedi, says the gallery serves as an information and promotion center for Indonesian gemstones. “It also has a laboratory to test the gemstones,” he said.
The collections are said to come from all provinces of Indonesia. Aside from gemstones with unique features and colors, visitors can also expect to find corals, fossils and wooden handicrafts.
What to see
Aside from the Patung Perjoangan Jatinegara that was inaugurated in 1982, another interesting historical building in Jatinegara is the Synod of Protestant Churches in Western Indonesia (GPIB) that was built in 1889. It was the first church built on the eastern side of Batavia, the old name for Jakarta. It is advised to contact the church staff before visiting.
GPIB Jemaat Koinonia that was built in 1889. It was the first church built on the eastern side of Batavia. It is advised to contact the church staff before visiting.(JP/Wienda Parwitasari)
Walk a little further from the Jakarta Gems Center and you will find a white, colonial-style building, which is known as the house of Cornelis Senen, a man from Maluku who resided in Batavia from 1621. According to kompas.com, Cornelis, who worked as a Christian religious teacher, established a school and gave sermons in Malay and Portuguese languages. The building itself later served as the headquarters of 0505 East Jakarta Military District Command (Kodim), but now has no clear function and is not well-maintained despite being officially under the wing of the Jakarta Tourism & Cultural Office. Visitors can still freely marvel at the establishment from the outside.
Walk a little bit more from Jakarta Gems Center and you will find a white, colonial-style building that is known to be the house of Cornelis Senen, a man from Maluku who resided in Batavia from 1621.(JP/Wienda Parwitasari)
Read also: Jakpost guide to Jl. Cipete Raya
What to eat
Ayam Goreng Ibu Haji (Ibu Haji Fried Chicken) is a legendary restaurant in Jatinegara. Established in 1980, it is open from 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. and is located near the Jakarta Gems Center.
In addition to its famous fried chicken, the establishment also offers other dishes including sayur asem (vegetables in tamarind soup), nasi uduk (steamed rice cooked in coconut milk) and perkedel (potato fritters). But what makes the place special is its sambal (chili) that is accompanied with peanut sauce and sweet soy sauce. The average price starts from Rp 15,000 (US$1).
Ayam Goreng Ibu Haji is a legendary restaurant in Jatinegara. Established in 1980, it is open from 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. and is located near the Jakarta Gems Center.(JP/Wienda Parwitasari)
- The gallery of the Jakarta Gems Center operates from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Be careful when attempting to cross the street of Jl. Jatinegara Barat and Jl. Matraman Raya since there is no adequate zebra crossing for pedestrians.
- Beware of your belongings; avoid wearing flashy jewelry.
- It is advised to not bring your own car to Pasar Jatinegara due to its limited parking space.
- Parking spaces are available for motorcycle riders if they want to visit the Jakarta Gems Center.
- Bring cash because most of the sellers in Pasar Jatinegara do not accept credit cards.
- If you arrive via commuter train and want to use ojek ride-hailing apps like Go-Jek or Grabbike, it is better to meet them in front of the Jatinegara Railway Station to avoid traffic jams. (kes)
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