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Published: August 15th 2018
Jim put us in contact with somebody at the Jogja Habitat office who arranged a driver for us. Tono, our driver, picked us up at 9:00 for a day of exploring the area surrounding Jogja. Borobudur
was our first stop, about a two-hour drive from Jogja. Borobudur is a Buddhist temple dating back to the 8th
century. We bought a package ticket that included entrance to Prambanan
, our next stop. Fortunately, Brad still had his U Chicago student ID and was able to get a $15 discount!
The grounds at Borobudur are immaculately manicured. There are large grassy yards filled with shrubs and trees. The temple itself is a large, square pyramid carved out of dark stone. Each block of the pyramid has pictures sculpted into it. Hundreds of Buddha statues line the terraces of the temple. Some of the statues are missing heads, but many are intact. Closer to the top of the pyramid, there are many large bell-shaped figures. Each has a small Buddha inside the bell. We took many pictures before departing. Upon departure, we were inundated with merchants trying to sell us souvenirs. It was comical to watch them flock at us after there had
been a brief gap in tourists preceding us.
The drive to Prambanan was a little over an hour (Brad napped) and broken up by a quick lunch stop. Prambanan is a Hindu temple with several statues dedicated to separate gods. The main structures of the temple where very tall spires reaching up towards the sky. Each edifice had stairs leading up to it and small statue room inside. We toured for a bit then started our walk out.
Along the path out of the temple, Brad spotted an archery range. Upon closer inspection, tourists could shoot 12 arrows for about a buck. We did not pass up the opportunity and Kristy proved to be a natural. Adjacent, though unfortunately not attached, was an enclosure with many deer. The species maintained their spots through adulthood and had large antlers with fewer points than whitetails.
Our final stop was the Pinus Pennegar
at sunset. The area is a national park with photo platforms that overlook Jogja below. We took some pictures with the sun setting in the background at various vantage points. As the sunset, we sat in a less crowded area and ate some snakeskin fruit
previously purchased at Prambanan.
Tono drove us back to the hotel after nightfall. Back at Duta, we looked for a place to get dinner. We selected the Sate Bar 81
which had numerous five-star reviews. The restaurant was a short walk from Duta. We each got the Rijsttafel which was a sampling of most of the sate available. The meal included lamb, beef, chicken, shrimp, fishballs, cauliflower, mixed veggies, and mushrooms. The sate was great and the owner was very friendly, even alerting us to an upgraded seat that had become available.
After dinner, we headed back to get some rest before an early morning train to Surabaya.
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