Home Jakarta National Museum
Jl. Merdeka Barat 12 Central Jakarta
Phone: (62 21) 381-1551 / 386-8172
Fax. (62 21) 381-1076
History and Aims
On April 24, 1778, a group of Dutch intellectuals established a scientific institution under the name Bataviaasch Genotschap van Kunsten en Wetenschappen, (Batavia Society for Arts and Science). This private body had the aim of promoting research in the field of arts and sciences, especially in history, archaeology, ethnography and physics, and publish the various findings.
One of the founders - JCM Radermacher - donated a building and a collection of cultural objects and books, which were of great value to start off a museum and library for the society. Due to the growing collections, General Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles built a new premises on Jalan Majapahit No. 3 at the beginning of the 19th century and named it the Literary Society. In the 1862 the Dutch East Indian government decided to build a new museum that would not only serve as an office but also could be used to house, preserve and display the collections.
The Museum was officially opened in 1868 and became known as Gedung Gajah (Elephant House) or Gedung Arca (House of Statues). It was called Gedung Gajah on account of the bronze elephant statue in the front yard donated by King Chulalongkorn from Thailand in 1871. It was also called Gedung Arca because a great variety of statues from different periods are on display in the house.
On February 29, 1950 the Institution became the Lembaga Kebudayaan Indonesia (Indonesian Culture Council) and on September 17, 1962 it was handed over to the Indonesian government and became the Museum Pusat (Central Museum). By decree of the Minister of Education and Culture No. 092/0/1979 of May 28, 1979 it was renamed the Museum Nasional. The Museum Nasional is not only a centre for research and study into the national and cultural heritage, but also functions as an educative, cultural and recreational information centre.
Currently the Musium Nasional houses collections of 109,342 objects under the categories of prehistory, archaeology, ethnography, numismatics-heraldic, geography and historical relics.
In 1994, the museum started with is expansion project. The new building, constructed in the same architectural style as the old, comprises an arena for theatrical performances and more spaces for exhibitions. The building is scheduled for completion this year.
The museum offers two type of services :
The museum curators provide detailed information and guidance on collections-related subjects during working hours. For private/personal appraisal, please contact the museum information desk at +6221 386-8172 for reservations.
Conservation & Services
Daily activities at the Museum Nasional include collecting, caring for and protecting collections and providing information on the museum and its collections to visitors and the public at large. The Indonesian Heritage Society (HIS) voluntarily assists the museum in handling the inventory of the collections.
The museum's Conservation and Restoration Division is dedicated to conserving and restoring the collected objects in order to protect them from possible damages and loss. The staff also take preventive measures against possible damages or loss through manual, alarm and control system.
The Museum Nasional is open from 8.30 am to 2.30 pm on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday, from 8.30 am to 11.30 am on Friday, and from 8.30 am to 1.30 pm on Saturday.
The Museum is closed on Monday and Public Holidays.
Adults - Rp. 750
Children under 17 years and students - Rp. 250
A small gift shop located in the entrance hall has the same opening hours as the rest of The Museum. It offers a selection of books, postcards and reproductions of various exhibits.
The Museum is situated on jalan Merdeka Barat. The front courtyard can accommodate cars and tour buses.
The Indonesian Heritage Society conducts tours of the Museum at the following times
English: Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 9.30 am & LAST SUNDAY of every month at10.30 am
Japanese: Tuesday 10 am and FIRST SUNDAY of every month at 10 am
German: Thursday 10 am
The times and dates of guided tours in Dutch and French can be obtained by telephoning the Indonesian Heritage Society Office at Musium Nasional on (62-21) 381 1551 extension 46
Visitors are kindly asked to refrain from smoking, eating and drinking in all areas of the Museum, and are prohibited from touching the exhibits.
Transportation to the Museum:
Bus Way, Blok M - Kota
Bus Way, Pulogadung - Monas
Patas AC 79, Kp. Rambutan - Kota