is a city on the north coast of the island of Java
. It is the capital of the province of Central Java
. It has an area of 373.67 km²
and a population of approximately 1.5 million people, making it the Indonesia's fifth largest city. Semarang is located at . A major port during the Dutch
colonial era, and still an important port today, the city has a large ethnically Chinese
The name of the city, Semarang, may have originated from the concatenation of the words "asem" (tamarind) and "arang" (rare). Another version is that Semarang is originated from Chinese word Sam Po Lang (San Bao Loong, 三宝垄), meaning "the city of Sam Po" (Admiral Zheng He).
Semarang's history dates back to the ninth century, when it was known as Bergota. By the end of fifteenth century, a Javanese Islamic missionary from nearby Sultanate of Demak
with the name of Kyai Pandan Arang
founded a village and an Islamic boarding school in this place. On May 1
, after consulting Sunan Kalijaga
, Sultan Hadiwijaya
declared Kyai Pandan Arang
the first bupati
(regent) of Semarang, thus culturally and politically, on this day Semarang was born.
In 1678, Sunan Amangkurat II promised to give control of Semarang to the Dutch East India Company (VOC) as a part of a debt payment. In 1682, the Semarang state was founded by the Dutch colonial power. On October 5, 1705 after years of occupations, Semarang officially became a VOC city when Susuhunan Pakubuwono I made a deal to give extensive trade rights to the VOC in exchange of wiping out Mataram's debt. The VOC, and later, the Dutch East Indies government, established tobacco plantations in the region and built roads and railroads, making Semarang an important colonial trading centre.
In the 1920s, the city became a center of leftist and nationalist activism. With the founding of the Communist Party of Indonesia in the city, Semarang became known as the "Red City". The Japanese military occupied the city along with the rest of Java in 1942, during Pacific War of World War II. During that time, Semarang was headed by a military governor called a Shiko), and two vice governors known as Fuku Shiko. One of the vice governors was appointed from Japan, and the other was chosen from the local population. After Indonesian independence in 1945, Semarang became the capital of Central Java province.
The city of Semarang divided into 16 districts (kecamatan
) and 177 sub-districts of (kelurahan
). The 16 districts are: West Semarang
, East Semarang
, Central Semarang
, North Semarang
, South Semarang
, and Tugu
A Bupati (regent) used to be the head of government in Semarang until 1906. After 1906, the city of Semarang was headed by a Mayor (Walikota).
Mayors of Semarang after Indonesian independence:
- Moch. lchsan
- Koesoebiyono (1949 - 1 July 1951)
- RM Hadisoebeno Sosrowardoyo (1 July 1951 - 1 Janu 1958)
- Abdulmadjid Djojoadiningrat (7 January 1958 - 1 January 1960)
- RM Soebagyono Tjondrokoesoemo (1 January 1961 - 26 April 1964)
- Wuryanto (25 April 1964 - 1 September 1966)
- Soeparno (1 September 1966 - 6 March 1967)
- R. Warsito Soegiarto (6 March 1967 - 2 January 1973)
- Hadijanto (2 January 1973 - 15 January 1980)
- Imam Soeparto Tjakrajoeda (15 January 1980 - 19 January 1990)
- Soetrisno Suharto (19 January 1990 - 19 January 2000)
- Sukawi Sutarip (19 January 2000 - present)
Semarang is located on the northern coast of Java. The northern part of the city is built on the coastal plain while the southern parts, known as Candi Lama
and Candi Baru
, are on higher ground. Two rivers run through the city, one on the east side and one through the west side, essentially dividing the city into thirds.
Semarang is mostly an industrial town. The port of Semarang is located on the north coast and it is the main shipping port for the province of Central Java. Many small manufacturers are located in Semarang, producing goods such as textiles, furniture, and processed foods.
Semarang is home to several upscale hotels that cater to business travelers. The most noteworthy are Hotel Ciputra
, Grand Candi Hotel
and recently opened Hotel Gumaya
The service industry in Semarang has recently begun to develop. Signs of this development include the addition of the first five-star hotel, several new shopping centers, and improvements in the Achmad Yani International Airport
, all of which are scheduled to be completed in 2008.
The population of Semarang is predominantly Javanese, though with smaller numbers of people from many regions in Indonesia. The city is known for its large ethnically Chinese
population. The main languages spoken are Indonesian
Semarang is home to several notable universities and high schools. A notable state-owned university at Semarang is Diponegoro University
. Other notable universities are Soegijapranata Catholic University
and Sultan Agung Islamic University
. Among the other schools is Karangturi, a national private school which has facilities for children in Kindergarten through senior high school. Karangturi is known for having a high proportion of Chinese-Indonesian
Temples and monuments
As a result of its large ethnically Chinese population, the city boasts several Chinese temples. These include Sam Po Kong (Gedung Batu), built in honour of the Chinese Great Admiral Zheng He who visited the area in 1405, and Tay Kak Sie Temple. Blenduk Church, a 1753 Protestant church built by the Dutch, is located in the old town (called "Oudstad"). Tugu Muda (Youth Monument), a monument to heroes of Indonesia's independence struggle, is located in front of Gedung Lawang Sewu and Semarang Cathedral, at the end of Jalan Pemuda, one of the city's major shopping streets. The Cathedral of the Holy Rosary is the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Semarang.
Semarang is widely known for its Bandeng Presto (pressure-cooked milkfish) and Lumpia.
Semarang has ? sister cities
. They are:
- Graaf, H. J. de (Hermanus Johannes), 1899-(?), "Chinese Muslims in Java in the 15th and 16th centuries : the Malay Annals of Semarang and Cerbon / translated and provided with comments by H.J. de Graaf and Th.G.Th. Pigeaud; edited by M.C. Ricklefs. Publisher: [Melbourne] : Monash University, 1984. Description: xiii, 221 p. : folded map ; 21 cm. ISBN 0867464194 : Series: Monash papers on Southeast Asia ; no. 12