Top 5 Best Mosques of Architectural Interest by Philippe Robichon

1. Masjid Cheng Hoo Surabaya

Masjid cheng hoo in downtown Surabaya is a mosque that is deserved. The construction of this recent mosque was completed in 2002. The building looks like a temple, with bright red, green and yellow colors. The entrance looks like a pagoda, there are also wax reliefs of dragons and lions with 'Allah' written in Arabic letters on top of the pagoda. The architecture of the Cheng Ho Mosque is inspired by the Niu Jie Mosque in Beijing, built in 996 AD. Note that the other side of the mosque overlooks a basketball court.


2. Masjid Al-Islamiyyah Muhammad Cheng Ho Sriwijaya


Masjid Al-Islamiyyah Muhammad Cheng Ho Sriwijaya Palembang

You will find an XXL version in Palembang Masjid Ceng Ho. If you want the full name Masjid Al-Islamiyyah Muhammad Cheng Ho Sriwijaya Palembang. Its name pays tribute to the famous Chinese Muslim admiral Zheng He. This recent mosque was inaugurated in 2006. This mosque is seen as a testimony to cultural diversity and a space to express these identities - Chinese and Islamic - in the context of Indonesian society.

3. Masjid Istiqlal

Masjid Istiqlal the mosque of independence (Istiqlal meaning independence in Arabic). I'm not going to make friends, but I prefer it inside than outside. It is the largest mosque in Southeast Asia and the sixth largest mosque in the world in terms of worshipping capacity. Perlahan-lahan say the Indonesians. The committee for the construction of the Istiqlal Mosque, was founded in 1953.

Sukarno wanted that a national mosque should be located near the most important square of the nation, near the Merdeka Palace. Sukarno also choosed that the national mosque should be built near the Jakarta Cathedral and Immanuel Church, to symbolize religious harmony and tolerance as promoted in Pancasila.

The Sumatran Christian architect Friedrich Silaban, with his project "Divinity", won the project. The foundation stone was laid by Sukarno on August 24, 1961; [the construction took 17 years. President Suharto inaugurated it as the national mosque on February 22, 1978. The mosque underwent a major renovation at a cost of 35 million US dollars.

There is only one minaret here, 66.66 m high, which stands out from the main building and is known by the local community as the "manaruh (lighthouse)". Outside there is a bedug, a very large wooden drum used for the call to prayer, the largest in the archipelago, 3 meters long, 2 meters in diameter, weighing 2.30 tons, over 300 years old. This bedug was made from a red wood tree, the meranti of Kalimantan. The skin is that of a buffalo.

Note that a friendship tunnel (Silaturahmi Tunnel) connecting the Istiqlal Mosque and St. Mary of the Assumption Cathedral was built by the Indonesian authorities and was completed in September 2021. The mosque has seven entrances and the seven doors are named after Al-Asmaul-Husna, the names of God in Islam. Each door is named after one of the 99 names of Allah.

The simplicity, the sobriety, the stripping of the mosque is deliberate. Its architecture is resolutely modern in the style of the sixties. The interior design is minimalist, simple and uncluttered, with a minimum of geometric ornaments in stainless steel. The 12 columns are covered with stainless steel. The dome measures 45 meters in diameter, the pillars are 17 meters high and are spaced 8 meters apart, marking the date of the proclamation of Indonesia's independence on August 17, 1945. The mosque is built mainly of concrete. The walls and floor are covered with marble, from Tulung Agung, East Java quarries.



Masjid Istiqal interior Jakarta

4. Masjid Agung Jawa Tengah - Semarang



Masjid Agung Jawa Tengah, Semarang even though it is located outside the city. This mosque has become one of the tourist attraction of the city and Instagramable. The site is impressive not its size and beauty. The complex covers 10 hectares. The work is recent. Begun in 2001 it was completed in 2006 and has a capacity of 16,000 worshippers

It mixes three different architectural styles : Roman, Islamic and Javanese. The central roof resembles the roof of a "joglo" and adopts the Javanese Limasan style and has a large dome with a diameter of 20 meters surrounded by 4 towers . In the courtyard, tourists can see 25 beautiful pillars representing the Roman culture.

The six large hydraulically operated umbrellas like those in the AI-Nabawi Mosque in Madinah can be deployed automatically and used on important occasions or Friday prayers, to protect the courtyard from the hot afternoon sun, making the space usable for worshipers

5 - Masjid 99 Kubah Makassar



Masjid 99 Kubah makasar Artikel Indonesian atap
Masjid 99 Kubah makasar Artikel Indonesian

Instagrammable mosques, Masjid 99 Kubah Makassar. With its unique design it has become the icon of the city, with the 99 domes that make it up. It is now the largest mosque in Sulawesi and can accommodate about 13,000 worshipers. Built on an artificial peninsula, it faces the famous beach of Losari in Makassar. It has just been inaugurated this year, nb March 12, 2022, by the new governor of South Sulawesi Andi Sudirman Sulaiman.

The mosque is the work of architect and politician Ridwan Kamil former mayor of Bandung, now governor of the province of Western, the most populous province of Indonesia. Wether we like or not, this building on the water, does not leave anyone indifferent.


About abigail wuisan

Hi, i am Abigail. As an Indonesian professional who has been living in France for 6 years, I am happy and proud to share with you the Indonesian heritage and to increase your awareness of the wealth of Indonesia. I present you the best of the Best of Indonesia !