With the dawn of the twentieth century, the world witnessed the great decolonisation movements that helped the majority of African and Asian nations to achieve independence from their colonial rulers. In celebration of their newfound political autonomy and civic freedom, most such newly independent states chose to mark this iconic moment with a monument that often became a symbol of the particular nation’s freedom. In Indonesia, this symbol has manifested in the form of the National Monument which stands tall in the middle of Merdeka Square in Jakarta while the word ‘Merdeka’ itself is the Malay word for freedom.
The National Monument, commissioned and completed under the patronage of President Sukarno, is an iconic attraction in the city and an evening at this Square would no doubt be well spent. Located in the heart of Indonesia, the Square is believed to be found in the centre of Jakarta as well. While the Merdeka Square is a well frequented location in the city, especially during the evenings and the weekends by those who wish to play, jog or exercise, it is also believed to be the largest square in the world.
In addition to being home to the National Monument, also known as Monas, the Square, exactly one square kilometre in area, is frequently used for parades and military processions and is surrounded by important governmental, judicial and administrative offices and buildings such as the Supreme Court of Justice, Army Headquarters, the Embassy of the United States of America as well as the Merdeka Palace. As a result, a tourist could opt to embark on a journey of sightseeing by visiting the National Museum of Indonesia, the National Gallery of Indonesia and perhaps the Immanuel Church and end their day on a high note by making their way to the Merdeka Square.
For tourists travelling to the heart of Indonesia, accommodation is varied and ranges from hotels to Jakarta serviced apartments and a fit for every budget can usually be found with ease. However, for those who wish to return to luxury after a tiring day of exploring this beautiful city, a serviced residence in Jakarta capable of attending to all your needs is the Ascott Jakarta.