The National Monument Monas (Monumen Nasional) is a 132 meter high tower in Jakarta standing in the middle of Medan Merdeka (Merdeka Square). The monument symbolizes the Indonesian independence struggle.
President Sukarno directed the construction of Monas which began in 1961. It was opened to the public only 14 years later at 12 July 1975 due to construction problems. The monument consists of two parts. The first part is the base platform called the goblet, at a height of 17 meters. Above this is the 117.7 meter tall obelisk made of Italian marble. The goblet represent the Yoni, which resembles a lesung rice mortar (grinder cup) and symbolizes the female organs while the obelisk resembles Lingga, an alu rice pestle (the grinder) symbolizing the male organs.
At the top of the monument is a golden flame called the Flame of Independence. The flame 14 meters heigh and is made of 14.5 ton bronze coated by 50kg of gold.
At a height of 115 meter is a 11x11 meter viewing platform which can be reached by an elevator at the south side of the structure. Binoculars are provided to fully enjoy the Jakarta skyline. A ticket to the Monas viewing platform is Rp. 7,500.
Inside the goblet is the Hall of Independence (Ruang Kemerdekaan) containing various symbols of the Indonesian independence like the original text of the Proclamation of Independence, a map of the archipelago coated in gold and the Indonesian coat of arms.
A level below, inside the base of Monas is the Indonesian National History Museum. Inside are 51 diorama's (three dimensional models) telling the history of Indonesia from the prehistory to recent times.
Around the monument is a big park where you can hide for a minute from the Jakarta traffic.
Monas is conveniently located next to Gambir Train station and close to the Jalan Jaksa area. From the Jl. Jaksa it is easily reached by foot.