Borobudur & Prambanan
Trip Start May 20, 2010
3Trip End May 24, 2010
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Where I stayed
In the second morning, we got up at 5:30 and headed for Borobudur to enter at the opening time. The closest gate was only 5 minutes' walk from the hotel. Before we left, it was a bit raining, but it got the temple caught by mist and a view at the temple was mysterious, especially when the mist disappeared in the sunlight. The tropical scenery around the temple was also awesome with the mist. My mom was stunned by its greenery beauty, although she didn't spend even a single moment on the relieves depicting Buddha's stories. When we left the temple, we saw a lot of domestic and international tourists going up to the temple. The touts around the temple were a bit sticky, but friendly and we were not disturbed by them very much. As soon as we came back to the hotel, all-you-can-eat breakfast was ready. Unfortunately, we didn't have many choices in the buffet, but it didn't matter to us. When we checked out, I asked a hotel receptionist to call for a metered taxi, but she declined my request and told us to take a hotel taxi. So unwillingly we took the hotel taxi for Rp. 275,000 to Prambanan, another world heritage ruin near Yogyakarta. (There was a public bus station nearby, but that was not my mom's choice.)
Buddhist Cosmology: Borobudur Temple Compound
Three worlds of Buddhist cosmology are represented from the bottom to top level of Borobudur: the worlds of desire, formlessness, and enlightenment
The Stupa Video
Stupas are one of the most common architectures throughout Asia. Interestingly, its shape and decorations vary from county to country. In Japan, it is like a tower.
Prambanan is also a UNESCO's World Heritage Site and more accessible from Yogya than Borobudur. The temple complex looked large on its map, but its main temples stood in a limited area near the gate, so thankfully we didn't need to walk around much. There were 6 temples in the main site including the temples of 3 top-ranked Hindu Gods (Brahma, Shiva, and Vishnu) and their vehicles (Swan, Nandi, Garuda). The highest one was Shiva temple and 47m high, but its entrance was closed. The temple complex was so impressive that the other Hindu temples have looked minor since I visited Prambanan. When we got out of there, I found so many souvenir shops around the exit of the park, but fortunately they were not sticky. I bought a souvenir T-shirts for Rp. 25,000, although I haggled a bit.
Just out of the site, we were able to catch a local bus for Solo in a minute. I hailed the bus, because there was no bus stop around there. The bus was full of locals, but the conductor kindly found seats for us and stored my backpack under a seat. Interestingly, there were a few musicians (a guitarist or mandolinist and a singer) getting on and off in turns. After their performance, they asked for a tip from all the passengers. In addition to them, a few newspaper vendors and snack vendors got on and off the bus frequently