I can't wait to tell you guys about our story on Yogya. After a good night sleep we woke up early to catch first train to Yogya. Did I tell you how much does it cost? Anyway, it's 175,00rp per person including lunch... Yummy....saved a few thousand for lunch! Even though it took us 8 hours to get to Yogya, I was fascinated by the views along the trip. Faizal as usual, zzzzzzzzzzz because he couldn't sleep the night before worrying he might miss the train...These are the photos might interest you guys.
Around 3.30pm we safely arrived in Stasiun Tugu,Yogyakarta. Once we came out from the station we've been "attacked" by the becak and taxi drivers. I was so confused which way to go even though I have read a few time the guide to our hotel. As usual, we like to stay in hotel/hostels close to our transportation. It was 5 mins walk to the hotel, Istana Batik Hotel (300,000rp per night). It's very small and nice hotel, some of them called it romantic hotel. It might compliments the honeymooners. He...he...
After a short rest, we headed to Jalan Malioboro, also 3-5 mins walk from the hotel. Wow! There're a lot of souvenirs, batik, leather goods, crafts, silver, paintings and all sort of handicrafts can be found here. At first, I didn't know where to start. It's 2 kms of pavement plus shops to browse.Besides that, you also can take becak or kereta kuda (horse carriage) for sight seeing. It costs about 5,000rp - 20,000rp depends on distance and duration. I can tell you, this place is one of the best shopping paradise that I've been to.
Your trip wouldn't be complete without visiting Candi Borobudur, largest Buddhist temple in the world. There are a lot of travel & tours offering packages for Borobudur and Prambanan. What you have to do is to pick which suits you the best. For group tour, it's 85,000rp per person (Borobudur, Prambanan & City tour) or private tour 350,000rp per car, up to 5 person in one car. We picked the private because we wanted to go to more places. We started our excursion at 5.00 am in the morning. It was so kind of the hotel to bring us breakfast before we go. The reason why we had to start early, so we can see the sunrise, but we're not that early, actually. Along the way, we could see smoke-plumed Gunung Merapi ("Giving Fire") and still there are people trekking up to the mountain. Candi Borobudur opens at 6.00am - 5.00pm everyday. So we were among the first who got in. Admission is USD12, about 126,000 per person, but for local people is only 10,000rp (not fair... but it's theirs anyway...)
This is our first time going to any candi besides Bali, so we were kind of stunned for a while. We started by climbing to the top, actually supposed to be the other way round, but nobody sees.. There are 10 levels all together and on top is the main Stupa called Arupadhatu. I think you guys have heard or read about Candi Borobudur, so I can skip this time and I'm sure photos can tell even more stories.
We were there for 2 hours from berkabus sampailah ke matahari naik..the views are changing. There a lot of pro photographers capturing the moment. Inside the Taman Wisata, there is a museum called Karmawibhangga Museum where you can see the 160 panels yang telah bersembunyi di kaki Borobudur. Juga patung Unfinished Buddha serta 10,000 batu yang tak dapat dipasang kembali di Candi Borobudur. I can on and on telling stories on Borobudur but let's find out what's in Candi Mendut.
Tak jauh dari Borobudur, ada satu lagi Candi Buddha yang merupakan sebahagian daripada 4 candi Borobudur, iaitu Candi Mendut. Satu lagi dikenali sebagai Candi Pawon, 1km dari Candi Mendut (we didn't go there). Ada satu lagi candi yang tak dapat di baik pulih lagi terletak di Bajong. For your information, this world's largest Buddhist stupa was actually built on Hindu foundation. Sebenarnya kalau diperhatikan betul-betul, candi2 Borobudur ni ada influence Buddha dan Hindu.
Selepas Candi Mendut, we took detour to city to get close to Universiti Gajah Mada, one of the oldest university in Indonesia. Dari luar kelihatan seperti universiti2 lain, cumanya the feeling to be in the university area made the difference. Instead of going straight to Prambanan, we stopped at The Kraton, menempatkan istana kepada Sultan Hamengkubuwonos. The Kraton itself home to almost 10,000 thousand people. Terdapat 2 entrance to Kraton, satu dari utara dan satu lagi dari selatan. To tell you the truth, we ourself pun confused. Kalau mengikut sejarah, Yogyakarta ini dibina oleh empayar hebat Mataram. Mengikut kata our tour guide, Pak Thomas, Mataram ni keturunan yang paling tinggi kedudukannya. Sultan yang masih memerintah di sini ialah Hamengkubuwono X, if I'm not mistaken. Ramai yang beranggapan Yogyakarta dalam Jawa Tengah, tapi sebenarnya Yogya berada di sempadan Jawa Tengah. Borobudur terletak di dalam Jawa Tengah, Prambanan di dalam Yogyakarta.
Di dalam kawasan Kraton terdapat beberapa attraction lain seperti Taman Sari, Bird Market, Museum Kereta, Masjid Agung serta Sono Budoyo Museum. We didn't go to all places but if you're happened to be here, check these places out. But we sempat pergi ke Batik Painting Gallery di Jalan Dagen where you can see the master pieces from professionals to students. I bought one painting which I haven't framed it yet.
Skipped our lunch to go to Prambanan, about 16km from Yogyakarta. Prambanan Complex is a largest Hindu temple in Java that divided to 3 squares. There are about 9 temples inside the squares such as Brahma, Vishnu,Civa and others. Admission is 110,000rp per person but we were lucky because I was accidentally spoke in Indonesian so we've got local price 12,500rp per person. Yahooooo!
Actually the whole area is big, the other temples are scattered all over. There are Candi Sewu, Candi Bubrah and Candi Lumbung. We couldn't take it the hot weather so we took the tram to go to others. Sempat jugak makan gado-gado kat sini, sedappppp....
After 2 hours under the hot sun, we decided to go back to our hotel. We really had a great time with our friendly tour guides, Pak Thomas and Pak Har. Selain itu ada sebuah lagi tempat yang kami decide not to go because we don't really fancy silver, iaitu Kota Gede. Di sini tempatnya kerajinan barangan perak. Maybe next time... After had our shower, I started to shop in Malioboro. I tell you, the things are good and the price are cheap, cheaper than Bandung. I'm not talking about factory outlets, it's more to batik and souveniers. Kebetulan another 2 friends joining us later for dinner at lesehan. Lesehan ni tempat makan sepanjang bahu jalan yang dibuka dari pukul 7mlm-2pagi yang cara makannya duduk di bawah. Bagi kita, perkara biasa la but for westeners, is a good experience to eat bersila dan pakai tangan..
Tapi di lesehan ni dinasihatkan supaya memilih tempat makan yang ada menu dan tanda harga supaya tidak diambil kesempatan. Lesehan ni memang sangat popular kat sini, dan makanan tradisi orang Jogja ialah nasi gudeg, nasi yang dimakan bersama lauk nangka muda. Menariknya, sambil makan kita dihiburkan dengan pengamen (musisi jalanan). Apalagi siap request lagu Nidji, tapi our friend yang nyanyi lagi kuat dari diaorang.
The next day, we spent most of our time shopping after curfew from Bandung. Kalau nak shopping kat Yogya ni, Malioboro is the best place, ada shopping mall kat sini, Mal Malioboro (actually tempat we normally had our meal), di Jalan Mataram, belakang Jalan Malioboro ada deretan kedai distro dan kedai CD, itu yang Faizal suka tu... Kalau nak cari batik atau barang2 souvenir selain di kaki lima Malioboro, ada sebuah kedai yang agak besar 2 tingkat terletak di hujung Malioboro, Mirota Batik (Ana banyak shopping kat sini). Kalau nak cuba different experience boleh cuba shopping kat Pasar Beringharjo, juga terletak di sepanjang Malioboro. Di sini kebanyakan barang2 dijual secara pukal/kodi. Kalau nak bisnes best la....
Disebabkan hotel kitaorang yang terletak di tempat yang strategik di Jalan Pasar Kembang, jadinya we never get bored keluar masuk keluar masuk hotel. Di sepanjang jalan ni banyak budget hotel/hostel serta kemudahan laundry, internet dan tempat makan. Sampai annoucement dari train station pun boleh dengar dari sini, punyalah...dekat.. To complete our stay in Jogja we finally took becak for sight seeing after a few "offer" by the becakman. At that time we felt so lucky and grateful compared to them (becakmen), until I felt so kesian dan tak sampai hati nak suruh dia kayuh jauh sangat. Ada yang dah sangat berumur but still kuat to do this job, kita yang muda ni suka sangat complaint without any reason.. Tomorrow we'll be leaving for Surabaya, went to station to get the ticket then again.....
We didn't get morning ticket. At least I've got time to book hotel in Surabaya. Actually the day before we left for Surabaya we didn't get any hotel yet. On that day itself finally we've got Hotel Sahid, next to station as usual for 400,000rp per night, whoops! we burst a bit this time. What to do that's the risk of being backpackers. To treat ourselves before another destination, we spent luxury a bit on massage in one of the hotels nearby, Inna Garuda Hotel for 250,000rp for 2 person...Yes it's worth every rupiah.
If you ask me, I would definitely come back for more.... It's a place where you can shop, leisure, relax and at the same time appreciating the heritage. Off for now and final destination coming up next..... Surabaya.