Jakarta Finds: Shopping at Pasar Tanah Abang

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A dizzying array of merchandise at Pasar Tanah Abang.

According to my dear friend Wikipedia, Pasar Tanah Abang has been around since 1735 (super ancient). It is the largest textile and garment wholesale center in Indonesia + Southeast Asia with over 13,000 kiosks and ten thousands of shoppers per day. It is even bigger than ITC Mangga Dua Mall, which I already think is mega HUGEEE.

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Menswear level.

At Tanah Abang, you can find just about everything and anything — batik, woven cloth, kebaya, children’s clothing, menswear, womenswear, Muslim wear, jeans, bags, shoes, accessories, household and bedding items.

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Shop after shop carrying tons of pretty batik.

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Art and craft supplies.

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Bedding items. (My American friend custom-makes her fitted sheets and duvet at Tanah Abang for a good price. Prices differ according to the thread count.)

As it is a wholesale center, the goods sold in Tanah Abang are more varied and cheaper than that of ITC Mangga Dua or Thamrin City Mall (its competitors).

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Don’t forget to bargain!

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Random items you may want to sew/iron onto your fabrics.

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Children’s bags.

Tanah Abang consists of several ‘Bloks‘, with Blok A and Blok B being the biggest, newest, and most comfy to shop in (fully air-conditioned). They remind me somewhat of a modern organized market.

My personal opinion is that shopping at Blok A and B is more than sufficient. My driver actually dropped us off at Blok F’s carpark and we had to walk through a maze within Blok F to get to Blok A. I didn’t like Blok F at all; it was dark, dingy, and very smokey (cough cough).

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Blok A, Tanah Abang.

For those who are thinking of dropping by Tanah Abang, you may find this shopping directory helpful. (Reference: Going shopping at Tanah Abang market? – The Jakarta Post).

Shopping Guide

B1 floor: Various bedding items including sheets, pillows and bed covers, as well as fabrics for kebaya (traditional Javanese blouse), jeans, batik and woven cloth.

SLG & LG floors: These floors are the place for hijab, mukena (female prayer dresses), gamis (Islamic robes), blouses, Muslim wear, kebaya and kaftans. Besides these items, children’s wear can also be found on the LG floor, from school attire to children’s swimwear and sportswear.

G and 1st floors: Menswear including T-shirts, shirts, pants, sportswear and jackets.

2nd and 3rd floors: More variations of womenswear can be found here, including office attire, accessories, bags and wallets.

3A and 7th floors: Various kind of clothes, from original labels to imitations, new to secondhand, are sold on these floors.

5th and 6th floors: A mix of clothes are sold on these floors, from women’s and men’s to children’s and family wear. Clothes for youngsters can be found on the 6th floor.

8th floor: The eighth floor has a food court with fast food and traditional Indonesian cuisine options available.

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Shopping directory for Blok A.

If possible, reach Tanah Abang as early as you can on a weekday. The crowd starts to build up towards the afternoon and the place is especially crowded on weekends/public holidays (crowded might be an understatement).

My loot from Tanah Abang: 1 pair of nice fitting jeans, a shirt for Agent D and 2 necklaces which I absolutely adore!

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Bought a shirt for Agent D from this rack. Can you guess which one? :p

P.S. Bring enough cash $$$.

P.P.S. Must bargain/haggle!

P.P.P.S. Protect yourself from pickpockets. Spread out your money in different places!

Happpppy shopping. x

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Wholesale Fashion Center in Jakarta: ITC Mangga Dua Mall

ITC Mangga Dua is a shopping mall in North Jakarta specializing in fashion, clothes and accessories – both retail and wholesale. It’s kind of like the Indonesian equivalent of Bangkok’s Platinum Fashion Mall.

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Six levels of intense shopping at ITC Mangga Dua.

ITC Mangga Dua is actually part of the Mangga Dua shopping district which includes five other complexes – Mangga Dua WTC, Dusit Mangga Dua, Pasar Pagi Mangga Dua, Mangga Dua Mall, and Harco Mas Mangga Dua. ITC Mangga Dua focuses on fashion and accessories whilst the other malls specialize in computer accessories, electronic devices, automotive products, etc.

Inside ITC Mangga Dua, there are hundreds of shops packed into six levels selling just about everything…clothes, bags, shoes, accessories, watches, spectacles, home decor, kitchen stuff, flowers, the list goes on. And of course food. 🙂

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A food stall smack right in the middle of shops.

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Yes you read it right – ICE CREAM SINGAPORE!!

On my first visit, I only managed to cover three levels. The second time I went with my parents, we spent the entire day there and yet still didn’t complete all six floors.

Ohhh and if you happen to see something you fancy, buy it right away. DO NOT attempt to mull it over and locate the shop later on – there’s a high chance you may not find it again (speaking from experience :/).

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An overwhelming sight.

If you get hungry halfway through shopping, you may want to check out Bakmi Aliang (rated 4.7 on Google). We walked past it by chance and seeing how it was packed with an endless stream of people, we decided to give it a try!

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Lunch stop at Bakmi Aliang.

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Bakmi Gede (with pork!!) for IDR 20K.

I saw some locals squeezing lime and adding black (?) sauces to their bakmi and decided to follow suit. Turned out to be pretty good stuff. After my fulfilling meal, I was energized to start shopping again.

Some of my buys from my most recent trip to ITC Mangga Dua:

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Handmade cookie monster rattan storage (IDR 180K).

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Waterproof jelly flats/wedges perfect for rainy days (or floods) in Jakarta.

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IDR 70-100K for each pair.

P.S. Bring enough cash $$$.

P.P.S. Must bargain/haggle!

Have a great time shopping. x


Address: Jl. Mangga Dua Raya, North Jakarta.
Opening Hours: 10am to at 6pm.