Tuesday, 15 October 2013


We caught a train to Yogya (pronounced jogja) which took about 7 hours. The train tracks are really old and basic with just one carriage at the front that has electricity pulling the rest of the train so was reallllly bumpy! But there were pretty views of the country side to make up for it. We also went in a slightly downgraded class: Bisniss not Eksecutif. Basically it was a padded bench chair, lots of leg room not much bum room. Swings and roundabouts.
Jogja is a much smaller city with a more noticeable tourist presence compared to Bandung and jakarta which had very few. We stayed just off Malioboro street which is basically the main road through central Jogja: station one end, Kraton, the Sultans walled city come Palace at the other. We stayed just off this in the awesome Sosrowijyan area, complete with endless backpacker jaunts, one pal I met from Holland (unsurprisingly as every tourist here seemed to be Dutch) compared it to Khao San road 20 years ago. Loved it.This was the view from our room. We stayed in a losmen called Bladok, a losmen is a family run guest house, like a b&b. It had a small pool which was great to cool off in as the temperature in the day has not gone below 32 degrees so far!
Some street food we tried, sweet and coconutty. A taste of the street food culture that is evident throughout Java. You basically can't walk on pavements, because that's the community kitchen. Different but awesome.
A gaudi-esque statue on Malioboro street. We were sitting down having a rest while we took this photo and at the same time some locals were taking photos of us and laughing because we were so red and dripping with sweat, they found it hilarious that we looked all pathetic in the heat!
Down one of the tiny Souk like Gangs that characterise the backpacker area, we experienced the brutal side of the celebrations for the Muslim festival of Haj. Several cows and goats, that had been in a small grassy square had there throats slit and were bled out ritually as crowds of locals, prepared the meat and skinned the animals around. I ( Olly) also hung around with another tourist long enough to see the horrific sight and sounds of a cow having its throat slit, and then the blood thrown around after. It was unforgettable and to be honest sickening. Made me think...
I have even more gruesome photos but these two show the scene and I think that's enough really.
Here are some photos from inside the Kraton. Considering it was the first and top attraction to see in jogja in the lonely planet, it was pretty underwhelming in a city that had so much more to offer.
Men singing and playing traditional Indonesian instruments (sorry not a very good photo) I (Josie) wasn't a big fan of the music to be honest and the singing is in a very whiney style. Some other instrumental Indonesian music we have heard has been better and makes good background music and is quite relaxing, Olly thought some of it sounded like film music.
Olly: bird whisperer
one of the sultans of Jogja/Elf of Rivendell.

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