Cultural immersion

ADMIT it. You, independent traveller, yearn to experience something different, to visit cool places few have been, and then gloat about larger-than-life experiences in exotic cities.

Yogyakarta, Jakarta’s cultured sibling in central Java, will provide you with plenty of conversation starters.

I nominate the following as my favourite Yogyakarta experiences, in no particular order:

Kraton Palace

A visit to an already popular tourist attraction like the Kraton, a walled city-within-a-city, that serves as home to the Yogyakarta sultans since mid-18th century, might not sound terribly cool or imaginative, but it reveals essential clues about the deep mysticism that pervades Yogyakarta’s cultural ethos and living philosophy.

Past glory: One of the elegant pavilions in Kraton Palace that once hosted small-scale concerts for Javanese royalty.

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