Exploring Temples in Yogyakarta.

Buddhism Statue in Borobudur Temple.
Probably not many aware that DIY (Special Region) Yogyakarta has so many religious buildings  in the form of temples or candi, either Hinduism or Buddhism, apart from Mosques and churches. Yet,historically, Javanese in Yogyakarta in the pre-islam era were predominantly Hindus with minority believed in Buddhism.
The existence of a large number of temples in Yogyakarta and its neighboring region beckons the travelers, from other provinces in Indonesia as well as foreign countries to visit this tourism destination that is tolerant, spiritual and most of all diverse yet united.

Let us together get acquainted to a different side of the region and learn about these fascinating religious tourism places in Yogyakarta.  The famous of all temples here is Borobudur Temple. Although administratively no longer in Yogyakarta but In Magelang regency, Central Java province, most visitors prefer to get access into the temple from Yogyakarta since its location is conveniently situated close to Yogyakarta. Together with Prambanan Temple and Ratu Boko Temple, in order to better manage this World heritage site, Borobudur Temple is now under management of PT Taman Wisata Borobudur Prambanan & Ratu Boko. visit http://corporate.borobudurpark.com/for more information.

Borobudur was built around 800 AD or 9th century. Borobudur was built by the followers of Mahayana Buddhism during the reign of the Sailendra dynasty. The temple was built in the heyday of the Sailendra dynasty. The founder of the Borobudur Temple, King Samaratungga derived from the dynasty or the Sailendra dynasty. Likelihood of this temple was built around 824 AD and was completed around the year 900 AD during the reign of Queen Pramudawardhani who is the daughter of Samaratungga. While the architects who contributed to build this temple according to stories passed down through generations named Gunadharma.

Borobudur has 10 levels consisting of six levels of a square, circular level 3 circular and a main stupa as a peak. At every level there are several stupas. Altogether there are 72 stupas in addition to the main stupa. In  every stupa there are statues of Buddha. Ten levels of Buddhist philosophy which ten levels of Bodhisattva who must pass to reach the perfection of the Buddha in nirvana. This perfection is symbolized by the main stupa at the top level. Borobudur structure when viewed from above form a mandala structure depicting Buddhist cosmology and human thinking.

Borobudur is one of the wonders of the world that should be preserved. Borobudur is currently designated as one of the UNESCO World Heritage.Borobudur has become a tourist attraction which attracts many tourists both local and foreign. Additionally, Borobudur has become a holy place for Buddhists in Indonesia and an annual celebration of the most important centers of Buddhist namely Vesak.

The next after Borobudur Temple is Prambanan Temple. Prambanan Temple, or Roro Jonggrang Temple, is the masterpiece of Hindu culture in the 10th century. Candi Prambanan or Candi Roro Jonggrang is the largest Hindu temple complex in Indonesia and dedicated to Trimurti, the three main Hindu gods Brahma as the creator god, the god Vishnu as the preserver, and Shiva the god of destruction.

This temple is also UNESCO World Heritage Site, and one of the most beautiful temples in Southeast Asia. The architecture is tall and slender shape in accordance with Hindu architecture in general with the Shiva temple as the main temple has a height reached 47 meters towering in the middle of the complex cluster of temples are smaller. As one of the grandest temples in Southeast Asia, Prambanan Temples attract tourists visiting from all over the world.

The temple complex is located in the district of Prambanan, Sleman and sub Prambanan, Klaten, approximately 17 kilometers northeast of Yogyakarta, 50 kilometers southwest of Surakarta and 120 kilometers south of Semarang, just on the border between the provinces of Central Java and Yogyakarta. It is very unique, Prambanan temple is located in the administrative area Bokoharjo village, Prambanan, Sleman, while the entrance to the Prambanan temple complex is located in the administrative region Tlogo village, Prambanan, Klaten.

Other temple under the same management is Ratu Boko Temple.Ratu Boko or Boko temple (Javanese: Candhi Ratu Baka) is an archaeological site which is a complex number of the rest of the building which is located approximately 3 km south of the Prambanan complex, 18 km east of Yogyakarta or 50 km southwest of the City Surakarta, Central Java, Indonesia. 

The View of Sunset in Ratu Boko Temple.
Ratu Boko is an archaeological site in the form of royal palace of Mataram Kingdom from the 8th Century. Ratu Boko is situated on a hill, about three kilometer south of Prambanan Temple at an altitude of 196 meters above sea level. The area of the whole complex is about 25 ha. Administratively, the site is located in the region of two of Hamlet, namely Hamlet Dawung, Bokoharjo Village and Hamlet Sumberwatu, Sambireja village, Prambanan subdistrict, Sleman, Yogyakarta, Indonesia. 

Other temples in the Special Province of Yogyakarta, you can explore are :
  • Candi Mendut
  • Candi Sambisar;
  • Candi Tara or Candi Kalasan;
  • Candi Sari;
  • Candi Barong;
  • Candi Ijo;
  • Candi Gebang;
  • Candi Sewu;
  • Candi Sojiwan;
  • Candi Bubrah;
  • Candi Plaosan;
  • Candi Lumbung;
  • Candi Pawon;
  • Candi Pringapus. 
Visit http://candi.perpusnas.go.id/temples/deskripsi-yogyakarta-candi_sari  for more on some of these temples.

Sources: Wisata Candi di Jogjakarta by Bellavaria Ariestia Dofi, Spsi.


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