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Monday, June 29, 2009


Palembang is the capital city of South Sumatra Province of Indonesia. It was formerly known as the capital city of the ancient Kingdom of Srivijaya . Located on the Musi River banks on the east coast of southern Sumatra Island, it has an area of 400,61 square kilometres and a population of 1.441.500. Palembang is the second-largest city in Sumatra Island after Medan and the fifth-largest city in Indonesia.

Major landmark of Palembang are the AMPERA bridge and Musi River that divided this city into two parts, the north (Seberang Ilir) and the south part (Seberang Ulu). The Seberang Ilir became the economy and cultural center and the Seberang Ulu became the political center of this city.

Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II International Airport serves Palembang and other cities around South Sumatra Province. The Boom Baru Harbor is the main harbor of Palembang, it is located on the north coast of Musi River and also connected Palembang with Bangka Belitung Islands Province.


The city was once the capital of the ancient, Buddhist Kingdom of Srivijaya that controlled a large part of what is now Malaysia and Indonesia. Following a 1025 raid by the Chola Empire (In the period of Emperor Rajendra Chola I) of southern India it began to gradually decline in importance. Srivijaya's capital eventually moved northward to Jambi. Palembang is also the origin of Parameswara, founder of the Malacca Sultanate.

The architectural legacy of Dutch colonization is still visible in the city. Deep-water port facilities are built along the Musi River, which flows through the city.

The naval Battle of Palembang was fought near the city during the Second World War between February 13-February 15, 1942.


The Palembangnese is one of Malay family, they speak Malay as their language but with their own dialect and they called it Bahasa Palembang. Other people that are not native to Palembang but still came from South Sumatra usually blended their language with Bahasa Palembang, such as Bahasa Komering, Lahat, Rawas, etc. There are also the people that came from outer South Sumatera. Most of them are Javanese, Chinese, Arabian, Indian, and Sundanese.
The major religion in Palembang is Muslim. But they are also Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Konghucu.

Bidar boat (The Sriwijaya Festival)

Tanggai Dance

Interesting Places

Palembang is rich for its culture and it makes Palembang as one of tourism destination in Indonesia. These are the interesting places that you must visit when you come to Palembang:
1. Musi River
2. AMPERA Bridge
3. Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II Grand Mosque
4. Kuto Besak Fortress
5. Major Office Building
6. Kambang Iwak Family Park
7. Punti Kayu Forest
8. Museum of the ancient Kingdom of Srivijaya
9. Siguntang Hill
10. MONPERA (People Struggle Monument)
11. Balaputradewa Museum
12. Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II Museum
13. Kawah Tengkurep Cemetery
14. Cheng-Ho Sriwijaya Mosque
15. Kapitan Town
16. Arabian Town
17. Fantasy Island
18. Bagus Kuning
19. Songket crafts center
20. Kemaro Island
21. Pertamina refinery
22. PUSRI fertilizer factory
23. Sungai Gerong

Arts and Cultures

These are some of the famous arts in Palembang:
>Dul Muluk (the Palembang's traditional performing arts (drama))
>Many of traditional dances such as Gending Sriwijaya Dance to welcome guests and Tanggai Dance that usually performed in wedding reception
>Many of traditional songs such as Dek Sangke, Cuk Mak Ilang, Dirut, and Ribang Kemambang

The traditional house of Palembang is Limas House and Rakit House. You may visit the Limas House for 10,000 Rupiah. (About $1 US).

There are many festivals that are always held every year in Palembang such as: the Srivijaya Ferstival on June to celebrate Palembang's anniversary, the Boat festival on August to celebrate Republic of Indonesia's anniversary, and other festivals to celebrate the Ramadhan, New Year, Chinese New Year, etc.



Traditional Foods

Palembang also known as the Pempek City. It is because there is a traditional snack that was made from a fish and sago called pempek or empek - empek. This delicacy has many variation in shape and taste, but all of them are absolutely delicious. Other traditional food from Palembang are tekwan, model, laksan, celimpungan, mie Celor, burgo, pindang patin, pindang tulang, malbi, tempoyak, otak - otak, kemplang, kerupuk, maksubah cake, delapan jam cake, srikayo cake, etc.

"LIMAS" The Traditional House

In Palembang, another interesting attraction is the traditional Limas houses, which you can find scattered all over the city. Most of them were built along the riverbank, facing away from the waterfront, so the residents can have more privacy in their daily household activities.

These ornate prototype of traditional houses in Palembang are easily identified by some of their unique characteristics; - their trapezoid shaped roof; multi-floors structures; and intricately hand-carved columns, door and window frames and ventilation panel which shows the charisma and identity of the house. These houses are built on poles of Unglen (hardest) wood in rather sizeable measurement, with most measuring 400 – 1000 sq meters, Some of these Limas houses are open to the public; there are two well-preserved Limas House which are still used as of today: Rumah Hasyin Ning and Rumah Bayumi. You can make arrangements through the tourist office to visit one of these attractive architectures.

Masjid Agung (Grand Mosque)

The Masjid Agung was built in the 1740s by Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin. It has been restored a few times, however, the original part of the mosque is still maintained. It is now a very large and beautiful mosque and a major landmark of the city.

The State Museum Built in 1977, The State Museum features a large collection of around 2000 relics and antiquities which originate from the province. It is worth visiting to discover the remnants of the region’s ancient culture.


Benteng Kuto Besak which means Fortress of a Big City, is another landmark of the Palembang. The idea of development was initiated by Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin I, to defend his sultanate from the attacks of the European enemies. The actual construction was only realized by his prince Sultan Muhammad Bahaudin. It took 17 years to build the fort, the construction was completed by Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II.

The fortress is 290 meters in length, 180 meters wide and 9.99 meters high. It is the pride of the people of Palembang. The Kuto Besak fortress is the only fort built at the expense of the Palembang Sultanate; and the only modern fortress which has stone walls up to standards of a castle. The fort now houses commercial and tourist premises as well as the local military division.


The bridge that spread above Musi River is becomes the main characteristic of Palembang city. It was built on 1962 - 1965. Ampera Bridge has 78m high of tower. However, the special feature of this bridge that it can be opened and closed, the mechanism is no longer working, whereas is fact, it is the only bridge in Indonesia with the open-and-closed mechanism. Now it is only history. The bridge has to be lifted up of the middle shares each time there every king sized ship, with height above nine meters, will pass by quickly. Both for going to downstream and also which going to the upstream.

Started in 1970, the Legendaries Bridge does not make a move to fluctuate again. The moving bridge build, besides to connected Ulu and Ilir that separated by Musi River, also to anticipate if there is big ship, which sail in the river. Each time, when the bridge body make a move to go up or go down always interesting to look up, and caught up to king sized ships pass under the bridge, make amazing moment for the citizen who have see it from the river boundary, or from other ship. The construction build started in April 1962, after getting approval of President of Soekarno. An expense of its development is taken away from fund of Japan.

In initially, bridge as long as 1.177 meters widely this 22 meters, named 'Bung Karno's Bridge'. A historian of Djohan Hanafiah, the name mentioned as appreciation to The President of Republic Indonesia. Bung Karno had fight seriously for desire of Palembang citizen, to have a bridge above Musi River. 1965 is an opening usage of bridge ceremony, at the same time, Bung Karno name as a name of the bridge. However, after turbulence of politics happened in 1966, when there was a movement of anti-Soekarno very strong, name of that bridge even also turned into Ampera Bridge. At this time, the name of Ampera Bridge had not changed yet. There are some citizens in Palembang wish its name return to Bung Karno's Bridge. According to Djohan, the commutation request of name of Ampera Bridge become Bung Karno as a streamlining effort of middle story.

The parts of Ampera Bridge, when it has been woke up, as long as 71,90 meters, widely 22 meters. Part of bridge heavy entirety 944 that ton can be lifted with speed about 10 meters per minute. Two jacking tower of the bridge upstanding as high as 63 meters. Apart between these two tower is 75 meters. This two Tower provided with two pendulum of about 500-ton weight. Then the bridge lifted up, wide ship of the size 60 meters and highly maximum 44,50 meters, can pass to ford of Musi River. And when middle shares of this bridge did not lifted, maximum high of ships, which can pass under the bridge only 9 meters of water level of river.

Since 1970, the bridge shall no longer fluctuate again. Time used to lift this bridge that is about 30 minute, assumed to bother traffic current between defecting Ulu and Ilir, two Town of Palembang area dissociated by Musi River. The river is only connecting by Ampera Bridge. But Arsyad anticipate, the reason of Ampera Bridge do not fluctuate again because of there is no big ship which can sail in Musi River. The river become worse superficiality that cannot navigate by king sized ship.

Ampera Bridge has been renovated in 1981, by finishing fund about Rp 850 million. Renovating conducted after emerging care of threat damage of the bridge can make it fall down. Today, expanding discourse about the important thing to development of Musi III Bridge and Musi IV Bridge as another way to connective Ulu and Ilir, at the same time the development meant to develop Ulu area.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

'Indonesia Raya', Music & Lyrics

Indonesian lyrics

"Indonesia Raya"
Verse I (Official)

Indonesia, tanah airku, tanah tumpah darahku.

Di sanalah aku berdiri, jadi pandu ibuku.

Indonesia, kebangsaanku, bangsa dan tanah airku.

Marilah kita berseru, "Indonesia bersatu!

"Hiduplah tanahku, hiduplah neg'riku,Bangsaku, rakyatku, semuanya.

Bangunlah jiwanya, bangunlah badannya

Untuk Indonesia Raya!


Indonesia Raya, merdeka, merdek

Tanahku, neg'riku yang kucinta.

Indonesia Raya, merdeka, merdekaHiduplah

Indonesia Raya! (*2)

Verse II

Indonesia tanah yang mulia, tanah kita yang kaya.

Disanalah aku berada untuk s'lama-lamanya.

Indonesia tanah pusaka, P'saka kita semuanya.

Marilah kita mendoa, "Indonesia bahagia!"

Suburlah tanahnya, suburlah jiwanya,Bangsanya, rakyatnya, semuanya.

Sadarlah hatinya, Sadarlah budinya

Untuk Indonesia Raya!


Verse III

Indonesia, tanah yang suci, tanah kita yang sakti.

Di sanalah aku berdiri, Jaga ibu sejati.

Indonesia, tanah berseri, tanah yang aku sayangi.

Marilah kita berjanji, "Indonesia abadi!"

S'lamatlah Rakyatnya, S'lamatlah putranya,Pulaunya, lautnya, semuanya.

Majulah negrinya, majulah pandunya

Untuk Indonesia Raya!


English Lyrics
Verse I

Indonesia my native land, the land where I shed my blood. (Note: tanah air literally means "land (and) water")

There I stand, as a guard of my mother. (Note: "mother" here refers to ibu pertiwi which means 'motherland')

Indonesia my nationality, my nation and my country.

Let us exclaim "Indonesia Unites!"

Long live my land, long live my state,My nation, my people, everyone.

Awaken your spirit, awaken your bodies

For Great Indonesia!


Great Indonesia, independent and free,

My land, my country, which I love. (probably equivalent to English's Long live my land)

Great Indonesia, independent and free,

Long live Great Indonesia! (*2)

Verse II

Indonesia, an eminent country, our wealthy country.

There I shall be forever.

Indonesia, the country of our ancestors, a relic of all of us.

Let us pray for Indonesia's prosperity.

May her soil be fertile and spirited her soul,The nation, the people, everyone.

Conscious be their heart and their mindFor Indonesia the Great!


Verse III

Indonesia, a sacred country, our victorious country.

There I stand, guarding my true Mother.

Indonesia, a beaming country, a country I love with all my heart.

Let's make a vow, "forever Indonesia!"

Blessed be her people and her sons,All her islands, and her seas.

Fast be the country's progress and the progress of her youth

For Indonesia the Great!.


Jozef Cleber, a dutch composer, created Indonesia Raya arrangement for philharmonic orchestra in 1950. This arrangement is widely been used currently for formal and some informal purposes.
Many people abroad said "Indonesia Raya" is one of the best anthems in the world

'Indonesia Raya' , National Anthem of Indonesia


"Indonesia Raya" (Great Indonesia)
Words by: Wage Rudolf Soepratman

Music by: Wage Rudolf Soepratman
Adopted: 1945

The song first appeared as a Nationalist Party song (the party working for independence of Indonesia from the Netherlands) in 1928 and was published in a Chinese Indonesian newspaper "Sin Po" that same year. The colonial Dutch regime forbade the anthem to be sung under Dutch rule, and after the successful independence declaration in 1945, it became the national anthem..