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Yogyakarta is the cultural heart of the island of Java, and its many heritage-filled ancient structures and buzzling streets attest to that fact. Its history stretches back to the 8 th and 9 th centuries, when the magnificent UNESCO-listed temples of Borobudur and Prambanan were built, and extends through the 16 th and 17 th centuries when it was the seat of the Mataram kingdom. Elements of its storied past can be found throughout the modern city, which still overflows with traditional flavor in its markets and arts. As the gateway to the wonders of Central Java, Yogyakarta is filled with things to do, from hiking majestic Mount Merapi to tasting Javanese flavors on a food-filled walk through Jalan Malioboro.
With UNESCO-listed temples and a multitude of historic sites within the city, Yogyakarta has no shortage of sightseeing destinations. Immerse yourself in the amazing heritage of the city and the surrounding region as you explore each incredible spot.
Kotagede - Established in the 16th century as the first capital of the Mataram Sultanate, Kotagede is a historic neighborhood. Although only a few parts of the royal palace remain, the area is still home to the Kotageded Royal Cemetery and the Great Mosque, which you can explore by bike. Kotagede is famous for its ornate silverwork crafts, with many stores lining the main street of Jalan Kemasan, and its delicious local Javanese cuisine.
Prambanan - The UNESCO World Heritage Site of Prambanan, also known as Candi Rara Jonggrang, is an ancient Hindu temple compound from the 9th century. Visit the impressive 3 main Trimurti temples, which honor the deities Shiva, Vishnu, and Brahma, and admire the smaller Vahana temples among other well-preserved structures that display intricate Hindu architecture.
Kraton - The Kraton of Yogyakarta, formally called the Keraton Ngayogyakarta Hadiningrat, is a walled palace complex and the main seat of the Sultan of Yogyakarta. The area acts as a political and cultural focal point for the city, and a large part of the palace is used as the Museum Kereta Keraton. Tour through the grounds, stopping by the Alun-Alun green square in front of the palace, and see the nearby Taman Sari water castle.
Aside from Prambanan, Yogyakarta is full of astonishing temples rich in history. Borobudur, the world's largest Buddhist temple and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, was constructed in the 9th century and boasts breathtaking Javanese Buddhist architecture that tells the story of Buddhist cosmology. Thanks to its elevated location, the site is a popular spot for watching the sunrise, and the nearby Pawon and Mendut temples make the area worth a visit. Immerse yourself in Javanese culture as well by watching a performance of Ramayana traditional ballet, which tells the ancient epic poem of Ramayana.
Along with its incredible temples, one of Yogyakarta's charms is its proximity to wonders of nature. The stratovolcano of Mount Merapi is a popular destination for hikes, with sunrise journeys offering spectacular views of the region. Go caving in the Jomblang Cave, or Goa Jomblang, an enormous sinkhole and tunnel created by thousands of years of rainwater and underground rivers, and discover the vast Goa Grubog cavern where sunlight pours in from far above. Yogyakarta city itself also features an abundance of cultural and exciting experiences. The area is prized for its beautiful
fabrics, with the market in Beringharjo being one of the most famous places to find the exquisite textiles, and there are many opportunities to try your hand at making your own. Get engaged with local culture by exploring bustling markets and shops on the major shopping street of Jalan Malioboro, near the old Dutch fortress of Fort Vredeburg. Yogyakarta is also famous for its sumptuous street foods and local cuisine, including traditional Javanese dishes like the jack fruit-based
ayam goreng kalasan
, and sweet
You'll find loads of fun activities to do with the kids in and near Yogyakarta. Keep the crew entertained with our family friendly experiences.
They say the best things in life are free. Be sure to explore the following around Yogyakarta:
Museum Sasmitaloka Panglima Besar Jenderal Sudirman - Whatever your age, this gallery will spark your imagination and capture your attention.
Bank Indonesia - Architecture buff or not, there's a good chance you'll be awed by this landmark's modernistic design.
Gadjah Mada University - If you plan to explore the region's history through its landmarks, pencil this one in your travel itinerary.
Great Mosque Kotagede Mataram - Wander the sidewalks and lose yourself in the vibe of this favorite area.
Bringharjo Market - Chat to a few locals and discover why many sightseers drop by this place.
Sambisari Temple - Toss a bit of spirituality into your trip by spending some time at this religious attraction.
A Yogyakarta Night Walking and Food Tours and a Private Mt. Merapi Slopes Hiking Tour (departure Yogyakarta) are exciting outdoor experiences that are literally a breath of fresh air.
A Borobudur Sunrise, Chicken Church & Taman Sari Private Tour is a terrific indoor activity to sign up for if the weather is misbehaving.
Enjoy yourself without spending a fortune with an Explore Hutan Pinus or a Rent Car Fullday Jogyakarta ( Include Driver, Gasoline, Parking ).
You could store your cash in the hotel safe for the day, because these great attractions won't cost you a penny: