Indonesia is a land that is rich with arts and cultural diversity. With thousands of impressive historical sites to see, there is no doubt that one would need more than a week to visit most of the incredible places there. However, there is a ‘short-cut’ for you to get a quick glimpse of every historical place in just one day: Jakarta’s Taman Mini Park.
Taman Mini is a cultural site consisting of 26 traditional houses of Indonesian archipelago, various museums, performing arts theatres and entertainment parks. Kanika Som flew to the Republik last week and recommends three must-sees and must-dos for Taman Mini visitors.
1. West Sumatra House
The very moment you stepped into the Park, your eyes will be drawn towards this majestic building. With a striking architectural style, Sumatra Houses are designed with a distinctive vernacular styles by adapting the culture of Sumatra ethnic groups. These Houses are typically constructed in a boat-shaped design with intricately-carved gables and upsweeping roof ridges.
Inside the Sumatra House, a variety of traditional costumes from different ethnicities were displayed. Aside from that, visitors also get a chance to learn about ethnographic artifacts including weapons and daily tools. Many models of traditional architectures are in display to illustrate the diverse ways of life in Indonesia.
2. Toraja house, the South Sulawesi pavilion
Walking into the main entrance of the Toraja House, you would instantaneously get to ‘taste’ the intricacies of Toraja’s culture. The traditional ancestral house is known among locals as Tongkonan. In the original Toraja society, only a noble family had the right to build a Tongkonan.
Tongkonans have a distinguished boat-shaped and oversized saddleback roof. The construction of Tongkonan is no easy feat. It takes a lot of hard labour is usually built with the help of all family members and friends.
Visitors will be intrigued by the decorative buffalo head with real horns mounted on the front, top part of the Tongkonan. This is known as Kabongo. According to the customs, buffalo horns hung in a vertical manner on the front gable are a sign of prestige and are customarily used to signify the wealth of the household.
3. Sky-lift Indonesia cable car
In Taman Mini, one of the most exciting attractions that you wouldn’t want to skip is the Skylift cable car. Riding in the ‘flying cabinet’, you will be able to get an aerial view of the historical sites in Taman Mini Park without any obstructions. Take in the beauty of each architectural wonders as you watch from the Skylift’s windows.
Along the ride, you will also experience a magnificent view of Indonesia’s marvelous archipelagos as the cable car passes the main lake. Not only would you be able to get a panoramic view of Taman Mini, but the luscious greens surrounding the area are also pleasing to the eyes.