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Yogyakarta, Java

Written on: Wednesday May 14th, 2008

A journal entry from: Southeast Asian Adventures!

We took a night train to Yogya, which was pretty comfortable, but freezing cold. We arrived in Yogya at 5am, sleepy and eager to get to our hostel, Losmen Setia Kawan, which we had booked a head of time. Despite our scamming taxi driver, Yogya was definitely the most interesting city I visited in Java.

Losmen Setia Kawan is by far the most unique and impressive guest house I've ever stayed in. The owner is an artist, and the walls of the guest house are covered in amazing murals. Even our room was covered in beautiful paintings. The owner is also a really helpful and great guy. We went straight to sleep upon arrival, and woke up around noon with plans to visit the temple Prambanan for sunrise.

Prambanan was an impressive sight, but unfortunately, it is no longer possible to go inside the temple due to damage from the many earthquakes it has sustained. We walked around the ancient Hindu temple, which was built around 9th century AD, but then mysteriously abandoned soon after it was built.

The next day we woke up before sunrise to visit the Buddhist temple Borobudur. Borobudur definitely ranks as one of my favourite temples in Southeast Asia. It was beautiful watching the sun rise from the temple, creating magnificent shadows on the many Buddhas sitting around the temple, with the volcano Mount Merapi in the background. The only downside to Borobudur were the Indonesian university students who were there to seek out bules (westerners) to practice their English. It made the experience less peaceful, being followed around by these students while we just wanted to walk around the temple in silence.

Our stay in Yogya was a quick one, as Charlotte had to return to work in Surabaya and Alan and I decided to take the train there with her. Yogya is a city I would definitely return to in the future.