Saturday, June 21, 2008


malioboro yogyakarta yogyakartatown pasar beringharjo batik mirota dagadu shoppingMalioboro is well known for walking and shopping very popular among Indonesian and international tourists. Spread the station Tugu Sultan in place, Malioboro is 2 km long and home to hundreds of shops and street stalls offering different types of handicrafts. Several places Malioboro are as follows:

  • Pasar Beringharjo (Beringharjo market), Jalan Pabringan 1, Yogyakarta 55122 (north of Fort Vredeburg), +62 274 515871, 561510. Literally means inclined land, Beringaharjo is the biggest traditional market in Yogyakarta. Vendors sell many types of goods, ranging from basic household items (vegetables, fruits, meat) to many types of handicrafts. Haggle furiously.
  • Mirota Batik (opp Beringharjo Pasar), Jalan Ahmad Yani 9, Yogyakarta 55122, +62 274 588524, 518127, 547016. The large family-owned store offers many crafts, not only in Yogyakarta, but all part of Indonesia.
  • Dagadu (ground floor below Malioboro Mall). Offers contemporary funny t-shirts and souvenirs that revolves around Yogyakarta culture.
If you move a foot is not your thing, you can surf on the pedal power called trishaw becak, or horsecart Andong.

Warning: If Yogyakarta is safer than Jakarta, it is not free of Pickpockets. Most of the time, Malioboro sidewalk is crowded, take standard precautions to protect your property.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Kraton Complex

kraton yogyakarta Sultan's residential kraton complex yogyakarta tourism Sultan's Carriage MuseumThe Sri Sultan's palace or Kraton encompasses the main palace, Sultan's residential, two Sultan's grounds, and large residential area where sultan servants used to reside. Notable attraction in Kraton complex are:
  • Kraton Yogyakarta. A calm yet elegant Javanese heritage that consists of two separate entrances: the Main Court (Pagilaran & Siti Hinggil), and the Residence. The Main Court showcases the grandeur of Sultan's monarchy, while the Residence is more homey while still exhibiting the royal family's luxurious lifestyle. Open 8.30 AM to 1 PM daily, on Friday the attraction is closed at 11 AM. While the guide is part of the entrance fee, they might expecting tips. Some guide might offer extended trip to sultan's servants batik workshop, this is a scam as they only bring you to a regular batik shop with steep price. It's a good idea to refuse their offer politely. Rp 12500 (foreign tourist price) or Rp 5000 (Indonesian tourist price), Rp 1000 extra for a photo permit (price as of June 15, 2008).
  • Sultan's Carriage Museum (Museum Kereta) . This museum houses Sultan's horse-drawn carriages, including two beautiful carriages imported from the Netherlands and known as Golden Carts (kereta kencana).
  • Taman Sari, Jalan Taman, Kraton Yogyakarta 55133. Also known by the Dutch name waterkasteel (water castle), this is a partly ruined complex built as a pleasure garden by the first Sultan in 1765. One of the bathing pools was dedicated to the sultan's harem, and he had a tower overlooking the area so he could take his pick. Entrance fee does not cover the guide, who will expect tips. Open 9 AM to 3 PM daily. Rp 7000 for entrance, Rp 1000 for a photo permit (price as of June 15, 2008).
  • Siti Hinggil Selatan. This somehow-muted palace is rarely used for formal occasion. You can catch a shadow puppet performance during weekend night.
  • Alun-Alun or the Sultan's ground. There are two Sultan's grounds: Alun-alun Utara and Alun-alun Selatan or the northern and southern Sultan's ground, consecutively. If you are lucky, you can see the Gerebeg Maulud parade during Prophet Muhammad's birthday.
  • Masjid Gede Kauman, one of the oldest and largest mosque in Yogyakarta. Located on the west of Alun-alun Utara, this mosque was where the Sultan performs his religious rites and ceremonies. Non-muslim visitors should wear decent clothing. It may be a good idea to ask the mosque authorities prior to entering the mosque due to some rules that must be abide.

Yogyakarta city was built with deep philosophy: the city was designed so that the main elements of the city forms a imaginary line. This straight line starts from Parangtritis on the coast, to Kraton Yogyakarta, to Tugu Monument, and finally to Mount Merapi. This represents Sultan's strong relationship with the guardian spirits of Mt. Merapi and the beach of Parangtritis.

Thursday, June 19, 2008


Kota Gede in Yogyakarta is a very important place and is suspended as remains of a complex called Kraton housing in the palace of King and other important buildings. However, it was the end of the 1500s, that Kota Gede, a place of the palace.

Kota Gede is famous for the many legends and myths engulfing prices. There are many important stories in terms of Kota Gede and all these legends have contributed largely to the popularity of the place. The location is currently still a Royal graveyard and there are few remains of the wall in place for all tourists, preserved to come and see.

What is Kota Gede now?

Kota Gede actually inside the suburb of the city of Yogyakarta. The workers were given for advertising during the two Indonesian independence in 1940, and also in subsequent years. In Kota Gede actually Royal boy and the place is noted for the many grave dug within the inner depths of the grave.

In Kota Gede be considered a grave physical manifestation of "silsilah" or records of offspring or generations that follow. In Kota Gede supported by showing Kunci who is employed by the two palaces in Yogyakarta and Surakarta. The place is a cemetery of Mataram kings who were very popular during their time. It is attracting city called Penembahan Senopati and the amazing tomb of Ki Ageng Mangir. The bodies were buried in the graveyard and there is old, called "Watu Gilang".

Particularites regarding Kota Gede:

All those wishing to visit the cemetery or graveyard can only come here dressed in traditional clothing. All are advised to adhere to the dress code. Kota Gede has some strict rules to be followed as far as discipline and decorum are affected. In the cemetery is open on Mondays from 10 and closes at 12am sharp, while for other days as Friday of the cemetery is open from 1.30pm and again closes at 4pm sharpness. In Kota Gede cemetery also has pods on the premises where the turtles. This turtle is considered by many to miraculous by some supernatural powers.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Prambanan Temple

This magnificent Hindu temple derives its name from the village, where a small, Seventeen kilometers east of Yogyakarta. Locally known as Loro Jongrang Temple, or temple in the slender Virgin, which is the most magnificent and beautiful Hindu temple in Indonesia. Prambanan is believed to have been built by King Balitung Maha Sambu in the mid-ninth century. His parapets are decorated with relief depicting the Ramayana-famous story. Has eight sanctuaries, three main ones are dedicated to Shiva, Visnhu and brahma. The main temple of Shiva rises to a height of 130 feet and houses in a magnificent statue of Shiva is the husband, Durga. The Ramayana ballet performed in the open stage during the time the full moon in the months from May to October.

Thursday, June 12, 2008


Borobudur is a ninth century Mahayana Buddhist monument in Magelang, Central Java, Indonesia. The monument comprises six square platforms topped by three circular platforms, and is decorated with 2,672 relief panels and 504 Buddha statues.A main dome is located at the center of the top platform, and is surrounded by seventy-two Buddha statues seated inside perforated stupa.

The monument is both a shrine to the Lord Buddha and a place for Buddhist pilgrimage. The journey for pilgrims begins at the base of the monument and follows a path circumambulating the monument while ascending to the top through the three levels of Buddhist cosmology, namely, Kamadhatu (the world of desire); Rupadhatu (the world of forms); and Arupadhatu (the world of formless). During the journey, the monument guides the pilgrims through a system of stairways and corridors with 1,460 narrative relief panels on the wall and the balustrades.

Evidence suggests Borobudur was abandoned following the fourteenth century decline of Buddhist and Hindu kingdoms in Java, and the Javanese conversion to Islam. It was rediscovered in 1814 by Sir Thomas Raffles, the British ruler of Java. Borobudur has since been preserved through several restorations. The largest restoration project was undertaken between 1975 and 1982 by the Indonesian government and UNESCO, following which the monument was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Borobudur is still used for pilgrimage, where once a year Buddhists in Indonesia celebrate Vesak at the monument, and Borobudur is Indonesia's single most visited tourist attraction.

In Indonesian, temples are known as candi, thus "Borobudur Temple" is locally known as Candi Borobudur. The term candi is also used more loosely to describe any ancient structure, for example, gates and bathing structures. The origins of the name Borobudur however are unclear, although the original names of most ancient Indonesian temples are no longer known. The name 'Borobudur' was first written in the Sir Thomas Raffles book on Java history. Raffles wrote about a monument called borobudur, but there are no older documents suggesting the same name. The only old Javanese manuscript that hints at the monument as a holy Buddhist sanctuary is Nagarakertagama, written by Mpu Prapanca in 1365.

The name 'Bore-Budur', and thus 'BoroBudur', is thought to have been written by Raffles in English grammar to mean the nearby village of Bore; most candi are named after a nearby village. If it followed Javanese language, the monument should have been named 'BudurBoro'. Raffles also suggested that 'Budur' might correspond to the modern Javanese word Buda ('ancient') - i.e., 'ancient Boro'. However, another archaeologist suggests the second component of the name ('Budur') comes from Javanese term bhudhara (or mountain).
Approximately 40 kilometers (25 mi) northwest of Yogyakarta, Borobudur is located in an elevated area between two twin volcanoes, Sundoro-Sumbing and Merbabu-Merapi, and two rivers, the Progo and the Elo. According to local myth, the area known as Kedu Plain is a Javanese 'sacred' place and has been dubbed 'the garden of Java' due to its high agricultural fertility. Besides Borobudur, there are other Buddhist and Hindu temples in the area, including the Prambanan temples compound. During the restoration in the early 1900s, it was discovered that three Buddhist temples in the region, Borobudur, Pawon and Mendut, are lined in one straight line position. It might be accidental, but the temples' alignment is in conjunction with a native folk tale that a long time ago, there was a brick-paved road from Borobudur to Mendut with walls on both sides. The three temples (Borobudur–Pawon–Mendut) have similar architecture and ornamentation derived from the same time period, which suggests that ritual relationship between the three temples, in order to have formed a sacred unity, must have existed, although exact ritual process is yet unknown.

Unlike other temples, which were built on a flat surface, Borobudur was built on a bedrock hill, 265 m (869 ft) above sea level and 15 m (49 ft) above the floor of the dried-out paleolake. The lake's existence was the subject of intense discussion among archaeologists in the twentieth century; Borobudur was thought to have been built on a lake shore or even floated on a lake. In 1931, a Dutch artist and a scholar of Hindu and Buddhist architecture, W.O.J. Nieuwenkamp, developed a theory that Kedu Plain was once a lake and Borobudur initially represented a lotus flower floating on the lake. Lotus flowers are found in almost every Buddhist work of art, often serving as a throne for buddhas and base for stupas. The architecture of Borobudur itself suggests a lotus depiction, in which Buddha postures in Borobudur symbolize the Lotus Sutra, mostly found in many Mahayana Buddhism (a school of Buddhism widely spread in the east Asia region) texts. Three circular platforms on the top are also thought to represent a lotus leaf. Nieuwenkamp's theory, however, was contested by many archaeologists because the natural environment surrounding the monument is a dry land.

Geologists, on the other hand, support Nieuwenkamp's view, pointing out clay sediments found near the site. A study of stratigraphy, sediment and pollen samples conducted in 2000 supports the existence of a paleolake environment near Borobudur, which tends to confirm Nieuwenkamp's theory. The lake area fluctuated with time and the study also proves that Borobudur was near the lake shore circa thirteenth and fourteenth century. River flows and volcanic activities shape the surrounding landscape, including the lake. One of the most active volcanoes in Indonesia, Mount Merapi, is in the direct vicinity of Borobudur and has been very active since the Pleistocene.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Nine villages to highlight Yogyakarta art festival 2008

The 20th Yogyakarta Arts Festival 2008 will be held July 6 - August 3."Nine kampongs (villages) will take part in the so-called `babad kampung` (chronicle of village) program," spokesperson of the festival Rinda Maria said on Thursday.She added the nine kampongs are Tukangan, Kricak Kidul, Pandean, Samirono, Mergangsan Kidul, Suryowijayan, Minggiran, Dolahan and Pajeksan.She said the festival would make kampongs as the focus of the festival as it has always been identical with a dirty and old fashioned object.Such condition could be changed with the reposition of the kampongs as productive and creative part of the city.In the program, she added, the art performance could function as a media in the form of contemporary and traditional arts."The most important thing is how a kampong`s society understand the meaning of its past and how they think of their identities," she added.Besides performing the historical story of the villages, she added, the program would organize a documentary exhibition in the villages. (*)