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The extraordinary cultural heritage of Central Java

There are no translations available.

A lush tropical landscape dotted with hundreds of archeological temples, including two UNESCO world heritage sites, Borobudur and Prambanan, this is a destination that leaves you spellbound. The grandeur and complexity of the temples has to be seen to be believed, and photography struggles to convey the depth.Traditional craft continues to be a feature of Central Javan life, here a batik cloth is carefully treated by a villager with wax before dying.

At a time when Europe was still in the dark ages, the “Central Javanese Period“ was building religious structures and art, now recognised as being the oldest and highest level of art within South East Asia Central Javanese spirituality and artistic endeavour continues to exist side by side with mundanities of every day life.




A brief history

There are no translations available.

At the time in which these monuments were built, Indian pilgrims had spread Buddhist and Hindu teachings spread across Java, Indonesia. The proud ruling dynasties of Central Java built a seemingly endless number of structures, of all scales. Buddhist and Hindu religions lived harmoniously side by side across Java, and as families of different religions married, even mixed religion temples were built.

The adaption of Indian religion and customs with the local artistry and traditions bred its own unique style; “Hindu-Java Art” .

Around 920 the power shifted from Central Java to West Java and the monuments including Borobudur, Prambanan and Ratu Boko became neglected, exposed to ash from volcanic eruptions, and the ravages of the local vegetation.

Now restoration sees these world relevant sites back on the map with millions of people visiting each year.

Orient Me!

There are no translations available. Java is the most populous island in Indonesia, South East Asia. This is land is densely populated, and the majority of people now practice Islam. Prambanan, Borobudur and Ratu Boko are close to the major centre of Yogyakarta, also referred to by locals as Jogja. Yogyakarta has a population of approximately 4 million people.

Not too far away are two other interesting cities, both with international airports. Solo, and Semarang, where some people also choose to stay.





Access to the area is easy by plane, train, or buses. Once in the region, given the driving conditions, it is recommended you hire one of the many local drivers rather than rent your own vehicle. For to-the-minute information on travel and hiring a driver, our friendly Visitor Assistance Centre can help.

By car from Yogyakarta:

Prambanan is around 30 minutes drive
Borobudur is approximately 40 minutes away
Ratu Boko is close to 35 minutes drive


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