Batavia district, where Jakarta is located, in the past it was influenced by great Asian cultures: Indian, Chinese and Muslim. In the first centuries AD. newcomers from India settled here, enriching the culture of the local tribes. From the 15th century on,. Arab influence was visible. The city was founded on the coastal lowland, on the Java Sea, at the beginning of the 16th century. as Sunda Kalepa. W 1527 r. came under the control of the Bantam Sultanate and then changed its name to Jakarta, which originally functioned as Jacarta among the natives. W XVI w. European colonial expansion began in this area, as a result of which the city became a colonial estate for three centuries, mainly the Netherlands. W 1619 r. The Dutch established a fortress here, which they called Batawia (Batawus – Dutchman). It was the headquarters of the Dutch East India Company. W 1699 r. Jakarta was significantly damaged by a strong earthquake. During the Napoleonic period, Batavia was occupied by the French, then the British, w 1814 r. returned to the hands of the Dutch. Do 1945 r. was the capital of the Dutch East Indies. During World War II, the city was occupied by Japanese troops, a w 1949 r. became the capital of independent Indonesia.

Dutch architecture

Old part of Jakarta, the so-called. lower town, it was built in a swampy lowland area and, following the example of Dutch cities, it is crisscrossed by drainage canals. Next to it, new districts were created, forming the “upper city”. The more valuable buildings of the Old Town are clearly Dutch in character, The town hall and the palace from the 18th century stand out among them. The monumental National Monument commemorates the liberation of Indonesia from Dutch rule in 1945 r. The most important tourist attraction is the National Museum with a rich collection of art from all over Southeast Asia. You can see there, among others. collections of porcelain and collections of wood and stone sculptures. One of the city's most powerful buildings is the modern Istiglal Mosque.

Slums and metropolis

Jakarta is a rapidly growing metropolis. The number of high-standard hotels and shopping centers continues to grow. The city has the best accommodation base in the country. There is, among others. Hotel Intercontinental Indonesia, possessing 666 rooms intended for tourists, who start exploring thousands of Indonesian islands and islets from here. In addition to the rich shopping district of Mangga Dua or the Chinese Glodok, which houses many shops and banks, there are also many poor estates in Jakarta. The paupers live in suburban slums or roadside campungs (housing estates). Some are engaged in catching "prey” from very littered river-canals, others steal or beg.