9/06/2015

Yogyakarta 2015 Day 1

As mentioned in my summary post, I planned my trip to Yogyakarta out of kiasu-ness :p I went on 31/8-3/9 with my university mate, we booked Jambuluwuk Malioboro Boutique Hotel with Airasiago. My tour guide, Mr Yoga Pratama was referred by colleagues; he's friendly and knowledgeable of all that Yogya has to offer. 
Hello Yogya!

Yoga was supposed to pick us upon arrival at Adisucipto airport but the hotel shuttle was there and we arrived at the new terminal B, so we ended up taking the shuttle back to the hotel (a costlier mistake). The hotel was nice; it's a 4 start hotel with a swimming pool, spa, and nightly live music. The room was spacious and there were so many TV channels to choose from! My only grumble was the shower case drains slowly so we had to wait a while for the water to subside. 

Interesting decor at the hotel lobby

We rested for a while then contacted Woman & Woman Spa; they provide free pick-up and return service upon purchase of 2 spa packages. The spa is rated by TripAdvisor and it's also very popular among the locals according to Yoga. We both signed up for the Putri of Java package; duration is 2 hours and it was super relaxing. They used home-made body scrub with yogurt base so I smelled delicious! I felt polished and relaxed when we were done and ready for our next activity: the Ramayana ballet.
Waiting lounge at Woman & Woman

We had a simple dinner before the show; the restaurant is usually busy but luckily for us, it was empty so the ambiance was peaceful. We shared a plate of cap cay (mixed vegetables) and lele (catfish); the sambal was amazing so we kept drizzling it over the rice! We tried the es kelapa muda: while the coconut flesh was amazingly tender, the syrup was an overkill, so do request not to add syrup to the drink!
Es kelapa muda
Mixed vegetables & catfish

The Ramayana ballet comprises 4 episodes inspired by the stone murals at the Prambanan temples. Do check with the box office on the showtime; we watched the final episode which lasted about 1.5 hrs and it costs the same as the full program. The Hyatt gives a good summary on options to watch the ballet. We went for the performance organized by the Borobudur park, where it is held at an outdoor theatre and the Prambanan temples were lit up providing the perfect backdrop to the rendition of an ancient story. The ballet employs exquisite Javanese dancing and the mystical music of the gamelan providing the heartbeat of the unraveling saga.

Magnificent Prambanan in the background


Note: we got the special class tickets and it was good value for money, not too far from the stage and not too expensive :)

In the end we couldn't believe we sat enthralled for 1.5 hrs and the music resonated in my dreams even! We headed back to the hotel to get a good night's sleep for Day 2's program: Borobudur and Dieng Plateau :)

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