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What to see in Yogyakarta

Yogyakarta Attractions

Yogyakarta is a lovely city, popular with tourists and brimming with attractions. It is the arts and crafts centre of Java and has retained its traditional charm and character while still developing into a modern city with all the expected amenities.

At its heart lies the quaint Old City with the elegant Sultan's Palace at its centre, containing the Water Palace, an interesting bird market and several museums and galleries. Guarded by traditionally dressed gentlemen, the splendid interior features extravagant pavilions and courtyards. Leading away from the centre, where sightseers usually start their adventures, are boulevards and backstreets filled with the confusion of markets containing galleries, shops and numerous other craft industries - a shopper's paradise for souvenirs and Javanese art. The silver centre of Yogya, Kota Gede, has streets lined with silver workshops creating the well-known and distinctive designs. Workshops allow the visitor the opportunity to watch traditional art in action. On every corner becaks (bicycle rickshaws) clamour for business, wobbling their way down the windy streets with bargain-weary passengers inside.

Yogya is also a great base for further travels on Java, especially as it is conveniently close to two of the most famous tourist attractions in Indonesia: the Buddhist temple complex of Borobudur, and the Hindu temple complex of Prambanan. It is also near the volcanic splendour of the Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park.


One of the greatest Buddhist monuments in South East Asia, Borobudur was built in the 8th century and stands on top of a hill surrounded by volcanoes and green fields. This UNESCO World Heritage Site…

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Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park

The Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park encloses spectacular volcanic landscapes and one of the most impressive natural sights in Indonesia. The ancient Tengger crater in its midst stretches for six…

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Prambanan Temple Complex

Rivalling the Buddhist monument of Borobudur, this magnificent Hindu temple is the largest in Java and arguably the most beautiful in Indonesia. Prambanan was built in the 9th century, possibly to…

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Wayang Kulit (Shadow Puppets)

Shadow Puppet performances are a proud part of Indonesia's cultural heritage. In fact, UNESCO has declared wayang kulit a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity, meaning that…

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