Last Friday was a public holiday (again!) so we decided to get out of the big smokey Durian and go somewhere we can walk around with the kids. Explore our city some more and force myself to get out of our condo.
My husband suggested Ancol Beach City. We haven’t been there before and I was eager to go somewhere outside of a mall. Ancol is easily accessible, located in the north side of Jakarta. Its a small island that you pay a toll to enter and there is A LOT to do there! There is an aquarium, water park, amusement park, cable car, zip lining, a really fun looking photo gallery (called Alive Museum) and Eco Park with animals and lots of greenery that I would definitely love to explore again next time. Now, just as a waiver, it is still in Jakarta so don’t expect it to be like Tokyo Disneyland with everything brand new and modern but its a nice spot for families. As an expat living here, I think its one of those places that you need to give a fair chance and go in with a positive attitude.
On Friday we decided to go for a short stroll only and wasn’t cut out for an entire day there, mainly due to the heat. So we went for a walk along the beach where the pier is. The pier itself is in a heart shape with a local cafe at the end (we decided not to stop at this one) and a spot where lovers (obviously those without kids and have time for such things) put their padlocks on for ever lasting love. We really enjoyed our walk. It had a nice friendly vibe to it with lots of families and young Indonesians spending a day out at the beach, taking photos and selfies with their selfie sticks. My tip is to bring scooters for the kids and perhaps go in the afternoon when he sun isn’t as strong.
There were also a lot of Indonesians swimming at the beach however we decided not to swim at this beach. Our kids were happy enough to play in one of their many playgrounds and enjoy a small train ride.
By this time, we were dripping in sweat and hungry, so we decided to drive to Pluit, which is about half an hour away. I love Pluit! It’s so different to central and South Jakarta. The houses there are huge, like mansions in Beverly Hills with their own private jetty and big power boats! My most favourite thing about Pluit is the boardwalk along the ocean.
We had lunch at my favorite restaurant there, The Jetski Cafe. I highly recommend this restaurant for kids and any visitors that you may have. The location of the cafe showcases another side of Jakarta that is rare. Wide ocean views, shaded outdoor dining with cute wooden love swings, delicious seafood and a place to walk! Every time I go to Pluit, I feel refreshed and recharged. Its quiet and I feel like I’m in a seaside harbour town, far, far away from Jakarta. Its honestly a beautiful spot for expats who are losing their minds in traffic and the business of the malls here. Jakarta is so under rated!