Gelora Bung Karno Sports Complex : Jakarta’s Centre Point

Word “Gelora” means sports arena, word “Bung” means fellow and word “Karno” means short name of Soekarno, the first presiden of Indonesia. Gelora Bung Karno (GBK) named after the former presiden’s name as an honor for him as the mastermind behind the build of this sports arena. GBK was build from 1960 – 1962 with GBK national stadium as the landmark of Gelora Bung Karno area. This sports center was build to accommodate The 4th Asian Games 1962 in Jakarta. To financing this project Indonesia had supported a loan from Soviet Union in the amount of US$ 12.5 million in 1958.

Gelora Bung Karno, Sports Complex Arena
Gelora Bung Karno, Sports Complex Arena (Source : kompas.com)

GBK is the largest sports center area in Senayan, Jakarta, which has become most destinations for people doing sports activity. GBK area consists of swimming pool stadium (8,000 capacity), Tennis indoor stadium (5,200 capacity), Multi purpose sports hall named Istora (10,000 capacity), Basket ball stadium (3,500 capacity), Hockey field, Archery field, Softball field, Soccer training field, Golf driving range, jogging track and national soccer stadium (88,000 capacity). Beside all those sports facilities there are also Jakarta Convention Center, The Sultan hotel, Century Park hotel and Mulia hotel. As GBK located in the heart of Jakarta, the area is surrounded by commercial building and shopping centers.

Gelora Bung Karno complex
Gelora Bung Karno complex (Source : skyscrapercity.com)

The national stadium used to named was Stadion Utama Senayan, in 2001 the name changed to Gelora Bung Karno. The characteristic feature of the national stadium is the steel gigantic ring shaped as the roof to protect the spectators from the heat. The oval shaped stadium has long axis (north to south) 354 m long, short axis (west to east) 325 m long, 110 x 60 m soccer field on the center and elliptical running track and surrounded with 920 m outer ring line. Most people use this outer ring line as jogging track and other sport activities.

Jogging, Gelora Bung Karno
Jogging, Gelora Bung Karno (Source : mariberjalansantai.blogspot.co.id)

The national stadium had been held some international sport event; host for the Asian Games (1964), host for the SEA (South East Asia) Games (1979, 1987 and 1997), joint host with Singapore for Tiger Cup (2002), host for the ASEAN Club Championship (2003), semi final and first leg final Tiger Cup (2004), host for AFC Asian Cup quarter final and final match.

Gelora Bung Karno area is usually crowded by people doing recreation or sports activity on Sunday or public holiday in the morning and afternoon and also on Friday in the afternoon.

How to get there?

GBK area location is surrounded by Jenderal Sudirman Street, Asia Afrika Street and Jenderal Gatot Subroto Street. The location is nearby Jembatan Semanggi landmark.

Travel tips

There is no entrance fee to enter GBK area unless you are taking vehicle with. The entrance fee starts from 15,000 IDR.

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