Yogyakarta is a city on the island of Java. Yogyakarta's centre is the Kraton, or Sultan's palace. Surrounding the kraton is a densely populated residential neighborhood that occupies land that was formerly the Sultan's sole domain. Evidence of this former use remains in the form of old walls and the ruined Taman Sari, built in 1758 as a pleasure garden. No longer used by the sultan, reconstruction efforts began in 2004, and an effort to renew the neighborhood around the kraton has begun.
Yogyakarta is renowned as a centre of education (Kota Pelajar), classical Javanese fine art and culture such as batik, ballet, drama, music, poetry and puppet shows. Nearby to the city of Yogyakarta is Borobudur (world's largest Buddhist archaeological site) in Magelang, Prambanan temples and Mount Merapi in Sleman Regency that you can visit.
How To Get There
Flights from major cities in Indonesia regularly fly in and out of Yogyakarta airport (Adi Sucipto/JOG). Continue with an hour car drive to Yogya city, where the yogya sultanate, Kraton, is located, or 2 hour car drive to Magelang for Borobudur temple.
From Yogya airport, you can take a public bus to Yogya city or Borobudur, Magelang. There are public bus, motorbike taxi, car/motorbike rental you can easily find within Yogyakarta (ask your accommodation staff the nearest to get them) to Borobudur, Prambanan temple, and Mt. Merapi.
You can have a private taxi from Yogyakarta airport/hotel, or share it with other travelers going the same way with you, or arrange a shared/private taxi with your hotel/tour operator.
A very wide selection of accommodation, from 5 star to budget stay is available in Yogyakarta and around Borobudur temple.
Central Javanese people (Yogyakarta, Semarang, Solo) are gentle, polite, and introvert - but friendly people. Javanese maybe like asking "where are you going?" same as western culture asks "how are you?", and they usually will initiate a chat and ask you about yourself only if they think they have known you quite well and this is usually when they can consider you as one of their family member.
Some of the famous cultural aspects of Yogyakarta are: Batik (Java traditional fabric), silverwork & fine filigree jewellery in Kotagede region, wayang kulit (a traditional Javanese leather puppetry used for shadow plays), Gamelan music, including the local Gamelan Yogyakarta which was developed in the courts and traditional Javanese dance performance (at Kraton, 10 am), Ramayana Wayang wong dance performed in Prambanan Temple (7.30 pm)and Purowisata, annual traditional Javanese festivals such as Sekaten or Gerebeg Mulud, and visual artists including the Taring Padi community in Bantul region.
While famous cuisine are: (1) Gudeg Yogya - a traditional food which is made from young unripe jack fruit boiled for several hours with palm sugar, and coconut milk. (2) Ayam goreng Kalasan: chicken, stewed in spices consisting of coriander, garlic, candlenut, and coconut water, then deep-fried until crispy. Served with sambal and raw vegetables. (3) Sego kucing: rice with small side dishes. (4) Bakpia (Mung bean cake): a sweet pastry filled with sugared mung bean paste. Derived from Chinese pastry. (5) Wedhang Ronde: a hot Javanese dessert containing glutinous rice balls stuffed with peanut paste, floating in a hot and sweet ginger and lemongrass tea.
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