Yogyakarta


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Borobudur

Not far from Yogyakarta lies the Borobudur, one of the most important Buddhist temples in the world. The form represents life and the way to reach Nirvana. On the lower levels you can find reliefs depicting the life of Buddha and everyday life. You can spend hours here looking at them, except most guides will point out only part of them.

Relief of the Borobudur

On every level are Buddha's, in total about 500 of them. Many of them miss their head because of the volcano eruption and the earthquake that covered the Borobudur only short after building it. On the lower levels you can see them sitting, on the three highest levels they are covered in stupa's.

Stupa's on the highest layers

In front of the Borobudur

Buddha

When you can reach the hand or heel of the Buddha, you can make a wish. Father could reach the hand, but apparently he didn't wish we would not be troubled by sellers. Between the exit of the Borobudur and the parking place are so many sellers that it is really annoying. Even when you see something you like you will not buy it here, because you feel there won't be time to have a good look at it and then negotiate the price. Sorry, we will buy it in Yogya instead!

Pillar of the sultan's palace

Yogyakarta

Like Cirebon, in Yogyakarta you can visit the keraton, the palace of the sultan. But unlike Cirebon, you get only to see the first two, rather boring areas. Afterwards the guide brought us to a batikshop nearby the palace. Hmm, this looks like a tourist trap: "Let's get out of here!". You can better drive around with a horse driven coach, that's less touristic.

In the afternoon we went to Taman Sari, the Water Castle. Although it was closed, we easily entered because some local people were willing to make some extra money by guiding us around. And we were not the only people either. Taman Sari has two parts: a reconstructed complex with the bath of the sultan and the ruins of the house. Here we also found out what is the attraction of the keraton: in the area  around it live all the employees, in small streets where children play outside and everybody likes a talk with a stranger.

Looking at the behind of a horse Taman Sari Silver workshop
Yogyakarta is also famous for it silver. In Kotagede you can visit the workplace and see how the fine threads to make flowers for bracelets and earrings are made. And afterwards you have a look at the shop, where you can negotiate until you have reached a price both you and the seller are happy with.

Singing bird competition

In the Keraton you can stumble into the bird singing competition. A popular hobby is to keep singing birds. Three times a week in the afternoon competitions are held. People arrive with big cages holding small birds on their motorbike and hope to have luck. And there is also a small Luna park, with bike-powered attractions and of course lots of food.

Luna park
Seller of slippers at Jalan Malioboro

The Jalan Malioboro is the most famous shopping area of Yogyakarta. It is a mix of street vendors and luxurious shops, selling batik, shoes and so on. And of course, you can also find the M and other Western eating places here. By the way, M sells also rice and chicken, just like any other restaurant in Indonesia.

Jalan Malioboro


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