We flew from Ende to Yogyakarta on the island of Java. It took most of the day just to get there so we just found a nice place to eat, walked around our area for awhile then hit the hay.
Next morning we were getting picked up at 5am to go see the famous Buddhist temple Borabodur. We arrive at around 6am when it opens and walk the path to the entrance of the temple. Adhering to Buddhist customs, we enter by the East entrance and make our way around the temple clockwise (the levels we actually get around to, that is). During our rounds we run into several groups of very nervous indonesian students who have been sent to practice their English with tourists. We humour the first few groups but politely try to run away from the next zillion so we can still look at the temple. We soon realise this is futile since we are so heavily outnumbered, so we develpe a new strategy: walk and talk. This seems to work beautifully and we cruise through 6 or 7 more groups before we're making our exit down the steps of the temple. Since we need to sign
the kids' paper and they need a picture with us to prove they're doing their work, I guess it appears I'm some sort of celebrity and a random asian tourist decides she wants her picture with me. Weird, but I oblige.
We go to another smaller Buddhist temple nearby and take some pictures, then head to Prambanan: a large Hindu temple complex. Most of this complex collapsed with the earthquakes that followed the many eruptions of Mt. Merapi (Indonesia's most active volcano), but quite a bit has been reconstructed so there is still quite a bit to see.
We spend several days in Yogyakarta and visit the sultan's palace, buy some batik and handmade silver, then head off to Bandung.
I wasn't expecting too much from Bandung, but we went there to meet up with a friend of Rene's. We spent another few days here and really enjoyed ourselves, but really only because we had a local guide. We ate some great local food and scratched the surface of the foods that Bandung is known for. We walked around the several craters that Tangkuban Perahu, Bandung's own volcano, has to offer. After that we treated ourselves and
our tour guide to a premium showing of The Hunger Games where there were only about 20 seats in the theater and we literally had a la-z-boy recliner to ourselves with a blanket. You could also get food and drinks served to you, all for the premium price of $7.50 (twice the price of the normal theater there). Awesome!
Finally it was time to leave Indonesia so we head to Jakarta for our flight out to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia for the next leg of our travels.
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