This is one of the few places in Jakarta that when I visited, was consistently devoid of masses of people. It also seems to be one of the very few green expanses in the city, but I'd recommend MONAS even if it weren't in a park. It didn't cost much to shuttle up to the observation deck, but you'll probably just see traffic and miles of buildings from up there, as expected.
This imposing obelisk is Jakarta's most famous landmark, named Monumen Nasional (National Monument). Although its construction began under regime of President Soekarno it was completed during regime of President Soeharto in 1975.
There are a couple of museums to explore. Visit the observation platform right below the top of the obelisk which is the famous flame of 35 kilograms of gold. See the dramatic cityscape of Jakarta, mostly rarely clear.
A few do know about the phallus-form of the obelisk and its flame of gold which is connected with the Samudra Beach Hotel, Pelabuhan Ratu, in the far South ... where the President Soekarno entered into an alliance with Ratu Kidul, Spirit-queen of the Southern Ocean ...
The National Monument is one of the symbols of Jakarta. It's a tall marble obelisk topped off with a gold flame. For a small fee, you can go up by elevator to the top, where there is a viewing platform. Has good views of the city.
When in Jakarta, be sure to admire the Indonesian national monument Monas. Jakarta is an artistic vibrant city. Other than Monas, once you step out of Soekarno-Hatta Airport, you will see the stone sculptures of the Garuda bird and totem from Kalimantan. In the airport alone, you will see again the Garuda and the gamelan orchestra display at Terminal 2.
Jakarta is the ASEAN capital of the Arts. The sculptures of Jakarta are permanent and the Indonesians hold pride of their national achievements through monuments.
Jakarta's 132m-high gilt-topped National Monument (Monas), commissioned by Sukarno in 1961 and officially opened in 1975, symbolises the strength of Independent Indonesia. For a socialist perspective of Indonesian history, visit the National History Museum at its base, otherwise take the lift to the top for Jakarta-through-the-pollution views. Stroll the surrounding park, enlivened by street markets; see the Istiqlal Mosque (southeast Asia's largest) on the north-eastern tip of Merdeka Square, or lose yourself in the vast collections of the nearby Museum Nasional (National Museum), whose splendid ceramics and Hindu Javanese art collections are second to none.
The National Monument (or commonly known as Monas for Jakartans) is located just a stone's throw away from the Presidential Palace, Istana Merdeka. Another legacy left by Indonesia's first President, Sukarno, Monas' construction began in 1961 but the monument itself was not opened to the public until 1975.
Rising 132 meters (433 ft) tall amidst a 197 acre park, the monument is topped by a glittering flame, which is coated with 35 kilograms of gold and symbolizing the nation's strength and independence. The base of the monument is the home of National History Museum. Visitors can also take an elevator to the observatory deck at the top of the monument.
The monument proved to as popular as ever with hundreds of visitors flocking the site everyday. The park is a pleasant and safe place to take a stroll in and you might run into a few wild deers who call this park home.
The National Monument in Merdeka Square is a 137 meter tall white marble obelisk topped with a gold flame. It is a symbol of Indonesian nationalism. For a small admission price, visitors can take an elevator to the top observation deck, which has an incredible panoramic view of the city. In the basement is a historical museum that has dioramas to depict significant scenes in Indonesia's history.
Standing at 137 Meters and topped with 35 kilograms of gold coating. On the top observatorium platform we can see bir of eye Jakarta cityscape, The Museum Hall describe Indonesia's struggle for independence through a series of dioramas.
Another activity is surrounding Medeka Square by Delman (Traditionan Chariot).
Open daily from 08.00 - 17:00
See my travelogue National Monument "Spirit of Nation"
Near the entrance of the National Monument Park, stands an 8-ton bronze statue of Prince Diponegoro. The Prince is a famous Javanese warrior, who led his people against the Dutch colonials during his guerilla war in 1825-1830.
This magnificent statue was crafted by Italian sculptor Colbertado and was a gift from the Italian Government in 1965.
Monas, acronym from Monumen Nasional (National Monument). * see my travelogues about Koningsplein.
As a symbol of the Nations, which building at 1960’s. The design was simple, an obelisk from Italian marble, about 137 metres height with pure glittering ingot (gold) on the top. This design is reflecting the eternally flame -–symbol of our passion and optimism in facing the freedom as a Nation. At the bottom of the monument, we can find National Heritage Museum which contents our Sang Saka Merah Putih --first National flag, handmade by Mrs. Fatmawati --wife of President Soekarno at Independence Day, August 17th, 1945. And the recorded of President Soekarno's speechs, about 15 minutes. One of his famous words was “Jas Merah” acronym from “Jangan pernah Meninggalkan Sejarah” (means; to be a great Nations, please don’t ever leave our history. We can not reach this day, without passed the days before).
The National Monument or Monument Nasional (Monas)
The National Monument, or 'Monas' as it is popularly called, is one of the monuments built during the Sukarno era of fierce nationalism. It stands for the people's determination to achieve freedom and the crowning of their efforts in the Proclamation of Independence in August 1945. The 137-meter tall marble obelisk is topped with a flame coated with 35 kg. of gold. The base houses a historical museum and a hall for meditations. The monument is open to the public and upon request the lift can carry visitors to the top which offers a bird's eye view on the city and the sea.
The National Monument.
Has the best view in Jakarta. You can take the lift all the way up the top.
In the basement it also contains an interesting historical walk through of Indonesian history. Interesting because it is definetely an official Indonesian representation of events.
Locals joke that Soekarno built this as a monument to his virility. The line was huge so I didn't go in though I enjoyed the walk around it.