The Cultural Capital
Dec 2018 – Jan 2019
Indonesia was a last minute trip owing to the failure of INZ to process visas for my parents. This was also one of the rare ocassions in which me, my sister and my parents all had holidays at the same time. I was super excited as it had been forever since all the three of us had a holiday together.
Our first stop was Yogyakartha or simply Jog as the locals like to call it. This city is a part of the special administrative region of Indonesia. The city falls under the jurisdiction of the Indonesia government but the Sultan is prevalent, though he is only a figure head.
fancy bicycle cars @Alun Alun Kidul
Jog is steeped in tradition and has quite a lot of cultural significance in Indonesia, it also serves as a gateway city to two important UNESCO sites… Borobudur and Prambanan Temple, one the biggest Buddha monument in the world and the other a massive Hindu temple complex dedicated to the trinity gods of Shiva, Brahma, Vishnu and their vehicle mounts of Nandi, Garuda etc.
The astonishing Jamblong Cave (make sure you come before 12 noon)
Or you can spend the day exploring the rustic street of Malioboro, a choking cacophony of street food, handicrafts, Batik printed shirts and other merchandise; while your there, swing by to the Sultan’s palace and the stunningly impressive Taman Sari or Water Castle (it gets a bit tricky to find as its hidden but ask your way through) and finishing it off with a fun activity of cycling at Alun Alun Kidul.
Jeeping at Mt Merapi
I would recommend three days in Jog, a day to explore the local attractions starting off at Malioboro street trudging through to the Sultan’s Palace, Taman Sari and Alun Alun Kidul. The second day to go to Jamblong Cave and Kali Susi.
One final day with a super-early morning start (3:00 am) for a sunrise at Borobudur, taking a WW2 jeep up an active volcano Merapi and rounding it off with a late afternoon to Prambanan temple. Also if you can cramp in a Ramayana ballet at Prambanan in the evening.
Borobudur at Sunrise
A member of the Hindu Trinity (Brahma) @ Prambanan
Its such a fulfilling city with a rich heritage.