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Official seal of Palangkaraya
Palangkaraya is located in Kalimantan
Location of Palangkaraya in Kalimantan
Palangkaraya is located in Indonesia
Location of Palangkaraya in Kalimantan
Coordinates: 2°12′36″S 113°55′12″E / 2.21000°S 113.92000°E / -2.21000; 113.92000Coordinates: 2°12′36″S 113°55′12″E / 2.21000°S 113.92000°E / -2.21000; 113.92000
Country Indonesia
Province Central Kalimantan
Founded 17 July 1957
 • Mayor Riban Satia
 • Total 2,678.51 km2 (1,034.18 sq mi)
Elevation 5 m (16 ft)
Population (2014)
 • Total 236,601
Time zone WIB (UTC+7)
Area code(s) 0536

Palangkaraya is the capital of the Indonesian province Central Kalimantan, also famously known as Central Borneo situated between the Kahayan and the Sabangau rivers. The closest airport serving the city is Tjilik Riwut.[1]

The city had a population of 220,962 inhabitants at the 2010 Census[2] (compared with 158,770 at the previous Census in 2000), with an average population density of 92.1 per km² (Indonesian Population Census 2010 results). The latest official estimate (as at January 2014) is 236,601.

The city was built in 1957 (Emergency Law 10/1957 on the establishment of the Autonomous Region Central Kalimantan Level I)[citation needed] on wilderness that opened through the Pahandut village alongside Kahayan river banks. Palangkaraya is the largest city by land area in Indonesia.[3][citation needed]Most of the area is still forested, including protected forests, nature conservation areas, and Tangkiling Forest.[4]


Kalimantan Tengah (Central Kalimantan) province was established on 23 May 1957. The First Indonesian President, Sukarno, initiated construction of the city of Palangkaraya, the capital of the new province. Initially, Palangkaraya was prepared as the new capital of Indonesia to replace Jakarta; a proposal that was discussed until recently.[5][citation needed][6] To support this process, many iconic buildings were built to reflect the idea of Greater Indonesia. For example, the Bundaran Besar (Big Roundabout) in downtown Palangkaraya consists of a meeting of eight roads that symbolizes the eight great islands of Indonesia (Java, Sumatra, Sulawesi (Celebes), Kalimantan (Indonesia's Borneo), Bali, Nusa Tenggara Islands, and Papua). This makes Palangkaraya one of the most well-constructed planned cities in Indonesia.[citation needed]

According to the Gazette van Indië Nederlandisch 1849, Great Dayak areas including areas in this part of zuid-Ooster-based Besluit van den afdeeling Minister van Staat, Gouverneur-Generaal van Nederlandsch-Indie, on 27 August 1849, No. 8. Establishment of Central Kalimantan province through a long process that culminated on 23 May 1957 and was confirmed by the Emergency Law No. 10 of 1957, which is on the establishment of the Autonomous Region Level I of Central Kalimantan. Since then the province of Central Kalimantan is officially an autonomous region, as well as the anniversary of Central Kalimantan province.[citation needed]

The first pillar of Palangkaraya City development was done by the President of the Republic of Indonesia at the time, Soekarno on 17 July 1957 marked the inauguration of the monument to the provincial capital of Central Kalimantan in Pahandut. Then, based on Law No. 21 of 1958 that which was formerly Provincial Capital Pahandut was renamed to Palangkaraya.[7]


Palangkaraya consists of a combination of two words which are from Dayak Ngaju Language and a word of Sanskrit. Palangka (Ngaju) means a sacred site and raya (Sanskrit) means vast, so Palangkaraya means a vast sacred site.[8]

Administrative districts[edit]

Prior to decentralization in 2001, Palangkaraya had two administrative districts, namely Pahandut and Bukit Batu. Now, Palangkaraya consists of five administrative districts: Pahandut, Jekan Raya, Bukit Batu, Sebangau, and Rakumpit.[9]

Markets and culture[edit]

The city is famous for local dishes both delicious and healthy such as juhu asem patin baung (catfish and herba stew almost like Thailand Tom Yam in term of flavour), pais patin (steamed catfish and herba inside banana leaf), patin bakar (grilled river catfish,very recommended), nasi kuning (yellow rice), and juhu tana (rattan's shoots soup which is bitter,but also act as medicine), soto banjar and ketupat kandangan. Japanese dishes such as suki and Oriental dishes are also popular. Other delicacies are Lempok (durian sweets), Amplang (fish crackers), Kue Cincin or Wadai Cincin (bread-shaped four rings).[citation needed]

There are two main traditional markets in Palangka Raya, Pasar Besar (The Big Market) and Pasar Kahayan, where many types of goods are sold.[citation needed]

Languages and demographic[edit]

Many people in Palangkaraya speak Indonesian alongside local Dayak languages such as Dayak Ngaju Language, Dayak Maanyan,(Dayak Kahayan language) etc. Local lingo is mixed of Bahasa Indonesia, Dayak and Banjar.[citation needed]


The Nyaru Menteng Orangutan Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre is close to Palangkaraya. The Center is within the boundaries of the Nyaru Menteng Arboretum, a 62.5 hectares (154 acres) lowland peat swamp forest ecosystem, founded in 1988 by the Ministry of Forestry Regional office of Central Kalimantan. It is operated by the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation, and founded and managed by Lone Drøscher Nielsen. The Centre was featured on Animal Planet's award-winning series Orangutan Island, the BBC's Orangutan diary, Saving Planet Earth and Growing Up... Orangutan (BBC/Discovery Channel), and in the 2008 Australian documentary-drama, The Burning Season. Good Morning Kalimantan (BBC Knowledge) are BBC Documentary that showing Palangkaraya and Yayasan Kalaweit led by Chanee struggles to save Gibbons (Uwa-uwa) and wild animals.[10]

Public facility[edit]

Aviation Academy[edit]

With a high rate of economy growth[11] followed by a fast proliferation of middle income economy citizen that can afford to travel by airplane there are growing demands for both civil and military pilot in Indonesia.[12] Palangkaraya with its large airspace and relatively clear air traffic recently been given opportunity to host a Lion Air subsidiary Aviation School.The school construction officially started by Central Kalimantan Governor DR.Agustin Teras Narang in Friday 15 February 2013 and already been finished recently. The school called Angkasa Aviation Academy has a squadron consisting of 14 Cessna 127 and a DC-3 aircraft. The Academy has capacity to train at least 50−70 cadets annually.[13]

The future capital of Indonesia[edit]

In 1957, when President Soekarno inaugurated a monument in the place that was then still called Pahandut, he expressed his desire to make the city the new republic’s future capital.[14]


External links[edit]