Mosques in Indonesia

Religious

Indonesia being predominantly a Muslim country has some of the most beautiful mosques in the world. As of 2020, there are estimated to be over 555,000 mosques in Indonesia. The architectural style of these mosques is a blend of Arabic, Persian, Indian and Chinese architecture. Here we take you through some of the best and most beautiful mosques in the country.

Here is the list of 14 Mosques in Indonesia

1. Dian Al-Mahri Mosque

Dian Al-Mahri Mosque
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Dian Al-Mahri Mosque is better known as the Golden Dome Mosque, located in West Java. The mosque complex is a fusion of Arabic, Persian and Indian architectures, hence attracting scores of tourists here to witness the unique blend and learn more about the fascinating heritage of the place. Its dazzling domes have been compared to that of the Taj Mahal in India, making it a popular tourist destination.

2. Soko Tunggal Mosque

Soko Tunggal Mosque

Soko Tunggal translates to 'one pillar'. It was named so because it takes the support of only one pillar for the roof while usually the roof is supported with at least four pillars. The inner part of the mosque contains a lot of carvings, each with an interesting meaning behind.

3. Rahmatan Lil' Alamin Mosque

Rahmatan Lil' Alamin Mosque

Rahmatan Lil' Alamin translates to 'blessing for the whole world and its content.' This mosque is considered to be the most majestic and historical mosque in Indonesia. It has seven floors, and the top floor alone can hold nearly 4000 people.

4. Demak Great Mosque

Demak Great Mosque

Located in the centre of town Demak, The Demak Great Mosque was built by the Wali Songo (Nine Muslim Saints). The mosque was constructed from timber and walls of this mosque contain Vietnamese ceramics and Javanese wood carving. Built in the 15th century, it is a classic example of a Javanese Mosque.

5. Muhammad Cheng Ho Mosque

Muhammad Cheng Ho Mosque

Cheng Ho Mosque was built for the Muslim Chinese people and the name of this mosque is dedicated to Muslim Chinese Admiral Zheng He. Established in 2002, the mosque is mostly red, yellow and green, with its design resembling that of a temple. The mosque can hold up to 200 people. Cheng Ho Mosque is known for beautiful vibrant colours and the architecture.

6. Al Irsyad Mosque

Al Irsyad Mosque

Also known as Ridwan Kamil Mosque, this mosque was uniquely designed to blend with nature. The mosque is in the shape of a cube and has no dome. The walls of this mosque were constructed using stacked stones to withstand any disaster. The stacked stones allow the air to flow naturally in and out of the mosque. Located in the centre of Bandung, this mosque has to capacity to accommodate nearly 1000 people.

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7. Menara Kudus Mosque

Menara Kudus Mosque

Menara Kudus Mosque is also known as Al-Aqsha Mosque. Built during the 1540s, this mosque is one of the oldest mosques in Indonesia. The architecture of this mosque resembles ancient Hindhu-Buddhist work, decorated with Vietnamese ceramics ornaments.

8. Masjid Amirul Mukminin Mosque

Masjid Amirul Mukminin Mosque

Built on sea the Masjid Amirul Mukminin Mosque gives a floating during high tides, which brings it the name the 'floating mosque' of Indonesia. The mosque is small but is constructed with beautiful architecture which can hold nearly 500 people. The environment around this mosque is considered holy and stress-relieving.

9. The Grand Istiqlal Mosque

The Grand Istiqlal Mosque

'Istiqlal' is the Arabic word for Independence. The Istiqlal Mosque was built and named so to commemorate the Independence of Indonesia. Located in Jakarta, it is the largest mosque in Southeast Asia. This mosque is easily accessible as it is close to Merdeka Square and is situated right opposite to the Jakarta Cathedral. Its location close to the Cathedral portrays Indonesia's secular philosophy and promotes religious harmony.

The architecture is embedded with various cultural and historical symbols. The huge mosque has only one minaret to demonstrate the oneness of God, standing 66.66 meters tall to symbolize the 6,666 verses in the Quran.

10. Baiturrahman Grand Mosque

Baiturrahman Grand Mosque

Located in the heart of Aceh, a province which is sharia governed, the mosque features grand domes, hydraulic umbrella-shaped towers. a beautiful pond in its front yard and a classic black and white façade. The mosque, when constructed in 1612, was made from wood and a thatched roof. It was reconstructed by the Dutch in 1881 on the orders of Aceh’s governor. It was renovated multiple times in 1936, 1957-65, 1992 and 2008. Its stones were allegedly imported from the Netherlands, hence many locals initially refused to worship in the mosque built by foreigners who never believed in Islam.

The mosque became popular after it survived the disastrous 2004 tsunami which devastated the entire province of Aceh. It sheltered thousands of people within its well-built strong structure.

11. The Great Mosque An-Nur

The Great Mosque An-Nur

The Great Mosque An-Nur in Pekanbaru is the largest mosque in the town. Its iconic shape, similar to The Taj Mahal, makes it a photographic destination for tourists. Its architecture is inspired by Turkish, Indian, Arabic and Malaysian architectural styles.

Equipped with a pool at the entrance, the mosque was designed by “the father of Indonesian concrete”, Roosseno Suryohadikusumo. The three-story mosque comprises of a school, a library, meeting rooms and offices. The building is equipped with escalators to connect two floors. The top-level is designed for prayers and the lower level for multiple offices and meeting rooms. This massive mosque is a must-visit if you are planning for Pekanbaru!

12. Al-Akbar Mosque

Al-Akbar Mosque

Popularly known as the Grand Mosque of Surabaya, it is a national mosque located in East Java. It is the second-largest mosque in Indonesia with the Istiqlal Mosque being the largest. It is claimed to be the most beautiful mosque in Indonesia owing to its splendid blue-green dome.

The mosque covers a total area of 23,300 square meters and has 45 main entrance doors made out of teak. The most unique feature of the Al-Akbar mosque is its large colorful dome along with four small blue domes. It is home to the largest “mihrab” (semi-circular arches pointing towards the direction to pray) in Indonesia. It has beautiful entrances paving way into the high and huge rooms of the mosque. The minarets are 99m high symbolizing 99 names of Allah and giving visitors scenic views of the towns of Surabaya, Sidoarjo and Bangkalan.

13. Central Java Grand Mosque

Central Java Grand Mosque

Located in Semarang, the capital city of Central Java, the huge mosque complex comprises of three buildings placed in a U-shape covering a massive area of ten hectares. The grand mosque is a beautiful mix of Javanese, Arabic, and Greek styles of architecture.

The most remarkable attraction of this newly built mosque is its six ornamental pillars which open to become colossal hydraulic umbrellas representing the six tenets of iman (the six articles of faith in Muslims). The design resembles the Al-Masjid al-Nabawi Mosque in Medina. It is built so with a motive to provide worshippers with shade and protection from the rain. Inspired by Javanese design principles, the central roof is in the form of a ‘joglo’ which symbolizes a stairway to heaven. It is home to a 7.8-ton inscribed rock that was once a part of Mount Merapi volcano.

14. Baitul Muttaqin Mosque

Baitul Muttaqin Mosque

Initially known as the Samarinda Islamic Centre Mosque, this enormous mosque is built on a state-owned site covering 7.2 hectares on the northern bank of the great Mahakam River. Later, it was renamed to the Baitul Muttaqin Mosque, which means “House of the Righteous”.

The magnificent architectural design of the Baitul Muttaqin Mosque, decorated with seven towering minarets and a stunning main dome makes it an iconic location of East Kalimantan. Inspired by the Hagia Sophia mosque in Turkey/museum, the main dome is remarkably adorned with the unique motifs of Kalimantan’s native Dayaks.

Mosques are holy places of worship for Muslims, as a visitor and traveler make sure you adhere to the Islamic traditions and cultures when you visit. But also don't forget to marvel at the beauty of man-made structures, the architecture of the mosques.

This post was published by Muhammed Salih

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