Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Why I Didn't Like Jogjakarta

Jogjakarta is famous for two attractions that begins with the alpahabet "B" - Borobudur and Batik. Apart from these two attractions, there's practically nothing to see and do in Jogjakarta.

Many people use Jogja (that's the short form) as the base to visit Borobudur, the biggest Buddhist temple in the world. They also come here to shop for batik. But apart from that, Jogja has nothing else to offer visitors, at least from my experience lah.

Sure when you research about Jogja you'll read about places like Kraton, Water Castle and Benteng Vredeburg. But all these places are nothing to shout about. Some of it are even in a dilapidated condition.

Let's take a look at a few attractions:

Kraton is the palace of the sultan. I paid IDR3,000 to see a vintage cars, horse carriages, mannequins and exhibits that were dusty and as old as Jogja itself. And if you want to take photos you would have to pay another IDR3,000. Eventhough it's not much after conversion to Malaysian Ringgit, I still think it's daylight robbery.

The Benteng Vredeburg is an old Dutch fort that has been turned into a museum. I was not interested to go in so I can't tell you what's inside.

This monument is situated beside Benteng Vredeburg. I don't remember its name. Must be some monument built to remember those who perished whilst fighting for independence. 

There's also another attraction called Taman Sari or Water Castle. However, the locals told us that all the water in the Water Castle had dried up and the place was closed for renovations. How ironic.

According to a friendly taxi driver, Jogjakarta is known as a university town because there're many universities there. If you ask me,

Many universities = many students = human congestion = pollution

Just take a look at the number of motorcycles parked outside a shopping complex on Jalan Malioboro, the main shopping area in Jogja:

Motorcycles are probably the most economical and practical transportation option for university students. That's why there're lots of them on the road in every nook and cranny.

Everywhere you go you'll see people and more people. Sometimes this can be overwhelming. And when the heat and humidity got to me, I just wanted to return to my room and chill.

If you're planning to visit Jogja, make your trip as short as possible. Trust me, you won't miss much.


aud said...

I didn't go to those palaces/museums when I was there. Just passed by. Guess I didn't miss much!

Anonymous said...

D'accord but if there's a next time, check-out the black sand beach south of the city and Gunung Merapi!

And oh.... don't do just Borobudur, there's also the Parambanan (a Hindu site)

Julie Lim said...


Good choice you made in not going to those places!

Julie Lim said...


I didn't check out Gunung Merapi cause I had already climbed Mt Bromo and Penanjakan a couple of days before I got to Jogjakarta. Too many mountains on one trip would be overwhelming. But nevertheless I'll check it out if there is a next time.

Similarly, I didn't do Prambanan cause I thought seeing Borobudur and Prambanan on the same trip would be seeing one temple too many.

Anonymous said...

That's a shame, coz the Parambana is impressive and is a good way to prepare you for the awe inspiring Angkor.

Maybe you're just not into temple ruins :)

Julie Lim said...


Angkor - Been there, done that, including all the surrounding temples. That's how I know seeing too many temples in the same trip can be overwhelming. I experienced the same too with churches in England.

Jard The Great said...

planning to go here next month and this post helps a lot on accommodation! thanks a mills!

Julie Lim said...

Hi Jard the Great,

Sosrowijayan Road would have many affordable and clean accommodation.

You have a great time in Jogja!

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