Java temples : Borobodur and Prambanan

BOROBODUR

Definitely the most impressive temple of Indonesia, it’s one the third most sacred site of Budhism along with Angkor Wat in Cambodia and Bagan in Myanmar.

It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site and by the way the single largest Budhist structure worldwide. It was build during the 8th century. Fun facts, the temple stayed abundonned for centuries before some British governor decided to look for it. It took 2 months to clear the jungle and revealed the monument.

There is a total of 6 squares terraces topped by 3 circular terraces. All the walls are beautifully carved with panels that tell the lives of the Budha. The level of details is amazing.

Expect to be interviewed and to take photo with a lots of kids. Their teachers actually request them to ask some foreigners a few questions in English so they can practice. They used to write down your answers on a paper and ask you to sign it. I guess there was too much fraud because now teachers ask them to take a video of you answering.

 Is the sunrise ticket worth It ?

The site is open to public from 6AM to 5PM. But Hotel Manohara, run by the park authority, sells expensive Sunrise Tour that allow you to enter the park before the official hours.

Prices can be checked here. As of October 2016 it’s 400,000 for foreigners, 270,000 for local and 250,000 for hotel guests.

The classic entrance fee for the temple is 280,000Rp for foreigners and 30,000 for locals (also apply if you have a KITAS).

An alternative is to find someone to give you a ride to a hill a few kilometers from there (Bukit Punthuk Setumbu). Just look for ojek (motorbike taxi) around the temple early enough to enjoy the sunrise from the viewpoint

TRANSPORT / ACCOMODATION

The access is quite simple, everything is explained on WikiTravel.

There is plenty of accommodation for every budget around the temple.

Renting a motorbike in Yogjakarta

If you like your independence and enjoy riding, you can rent a motorbike in Yogjakarta. It takes about 1h30 to drive to Borobodur.

You have 2 options either go to Jl. Pasar Kembang (the street of the train station) where you will find dedicated shops or use a rental service including delivery.

Just google ‘Sewa Motor Yogjakarta’ and you will get tons of rental services that can deliver motorbike anywhere you want in town (you can contact them by Whatsapp). It’s even possible to get the motorbike delivered directly to the airport for a small fee.

PRAMBANAN

Another famous temple near Yogjakarta is the hindu temple of Prambanan. Access cannot be simpler: just take the right Yogjakarta city bus ! If you want go there from Borobodur, go back to Yogjakarta bus station and then hop onto the right TransYogja  bus.

Really close from Prambanan you got 2 other smaller temples : Candi Plaosan and Candi Boko.

Organizing my trip over a weekend

2 days are enough to visit the two temples. From Jakarta, follow this plan:

  • Leave for Yogjakarta on Saturday morning (by plane) or Friday night (by train).
  • Visit Yogjakarta, in the middle of the afternoon leave for Borobodur (by bus / by car / by motorbike).
  • Spend the Saturday night next to Borobodur temple
  • Enjoy the sunrise over the temple on Sunday morning
  • Visit the temple
  • Transfer to Prambanan by bus / car / motorbike
  • Return to Yogjakarta to catch the return flight

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