Dusk in west Bali, dawn in east Java
Trip Start Jan 14, 2012
14Trip End Feb 05, 2012
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Ok, here I am in Jogja. I keep thinking, how on earth did I get here?! I found a cheap losmen, wandered around, found a map (and stopped feeling so lost and freaked out by being in a city with no corresponding guidebook). It's hot here! I mean HOT. The bus ride was long and arduous. It sure feels different from Bali here in Java. Different surroundings, different people, different vibe overall
Jogja turned out better than I'd expected. Getting to see Borobudur, Prambanan and Sewu was incredible; I gawked at them for hours. They deserve separate posts entirely. Saw a gamelan/wayang kulit performance at a museum. Javanese gamelan and wayang kulit (shadow puppet plays) are distinct from the Balinese versions; it was neat to get to see each island's version of both.
On the last day I met a dude from Australia and we wandered around the city together checking out the sights: a market, an old water palace, and the sultan's residence (Kraton). Yeah, Jogja has a sultan. Fancy! The residence wasn't amazing, but it was interesting. I can't say it was really a highlight, and it seemed to be more of an attraction for domestic tourists. But that makes two fellow travelers I've met so far. I didn't realize how fun it can be to travel solo and run into other solo travelers! Mental note: must do this more often.
Before long I was back on another looong bus ride back to Bali. People with money, of course, take the one-hour flight back to Denpasar. Then there's the people with no money but plenty of time. Think slow, and cheap. The perk is that so much more can be seen that way. More landscape, more small villages that would otherwise be overlooked.
Next time, I'm going to Sumatra.