The Grand Istiqlal Mosque – One of South Asia’s Most Significant Places of Worship

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Indonesia is rising fast to become one of the most significant tourist destinations in the world. It has a Muslim majority of almost 90% and boasts South Asia’s largest mosque, the Masjid Istiqlal.

The Colossal Capacity of the Mosque

The Istiqlal Mosque is astonishingly massive, and has accommodated congregations in surplus of 120,000 worshippers. Not only is this the largest mosque in South-East Asia, but the third-biggest Sunni mosque in the world. The looming minarets and the dome with a diameter of 45m is an iconic landmark in the nation’s capital.

Gunawan KartapranataIstiqlal Mosque Eid ul Fitr Jamaah 4CC BY-SA 3.0


The mosque is situated at the very heart of Jakarta, in Jalan Taman Wijaya Kusuma towards the north-east of the iconic Merdeka Square. Interestingly, right across from the mosque stands the equally iconic Jakarta Cathedral, which is the seat of Roman Catholic Archbishop of Jakarta. With so many attractions situated nearby, if you’re staying at a Jakarta hotel in the vicinity such as Alila Jakarta then you should definitely visit this place.

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The Mosque’s Interesting Interior

Despite the awe-inspiring exterior of the mosque, the inside is a striking contrast. The interior of the mosque is surprisingly simple, which makes it very fitting as a place of worship. The massive prayer hall within the dome has 12 columns and has 4 levels of balconies.

Gunawan KartapranataIstiqlal Mosque MinbarCC BY-SA 3.0

Reaching the Mosque

The easiest way to reach the mosque is by train since it’s close to the Gambir Train Station. Given it’s iconic status, any travel provider will know how to get you there.

Roland Lefevre is a travel writer who specializes in creating features on leisure as well as business travel destinations across the globe. Google+

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