Who can deny that Jogja is one of the best destinations in Java Island to spend your holiday time? Everyone agrees that the Special Region of Yogyakarta is indeed a special place. Since a few decades ago, Jogja has become one of the most popular tourist destinations in Indonesia. If you like Indonesian culture, get ready to be awed by the beauty and cultural uniqueness of the city, as one of the most-visited places by local and international tourists.
There are myriad things that will make you fall in love with Jogja. People even believe that one time visit to this city isn’t enough. From the famous Malioboro Street to a cup of hot coffee at angkringan (a traditional food stall from Java), will surely be missed by anyone. Don’t also forget the White Pal Monument which is one of the most popular icons in Jogja.
Yogyakarta is a city in Central Java, Indonesia, which is famous for its bustling and lively city center, beautiful natural charm around it, and a number of historical relics. You can visit Benteng Vredeburg, Yogyakarta Palace, and Prambanan Temples for historical tours. As for nature tourism, visit Punthuk Setumbu, Suroloyo Peak, and Bukit Parangendog.
Because of the comfort of the city and the many tourist attractions in Jogja that are suitable for all ages, this city is suitable as a family tourist destination. In addition, local and international tourists also enjoy exploring the city itself (solo traveling).
The best time to visit Yogyakarta is in the middle of the year, which is the dry season. This is because there are many activities and tourist attractions in Yogya that you cannot visit during the rainy season.
Because Yogyakarta is part of a tropical country that only experiences two seasons, there is no drastic change in temperature. Throughout the year, the average temperature here is around 27 degrees Celcius (80.6 degrees Fahrenheit).
Yogyakarta is home to a variety of exciting annual festivals. One of them is the Annual Jogja Sekatenan Festival which is a tradition to commemorate the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. Usually, there will be a procession of soldiers and palace servants who bring mountains of crops. This event takes place from the 5th and ends on the 12th of the Javanese calendar Mulud.
Then there is the Yogyakarta Art Festival or Festival Kesenian Yogyakarta (FKY) which is held between July and September each year. You can enjoy art performances, both traditional and contemporary, performed by local and foreign artists.
Still in July, there is also the Yogyakarta Gamelan Festival. This event will feature local gamelan performances that are presented in a more modern style.
During the Chinese New Year (beginning of the year), there is the Chinese Culture Jogja Festival (Festival Jogja Budaya Tionghoa). You will see a variety of Chinese cultural attractions ranging from Wayang Po Tay Hee, Liang Liong, to the Lion Dance.
For you music lovers, don’t miss the Jogja Jazz Music Festival – Ngayogjazz. This is a jazz concert combined with the local culture. Usually held every November.
The easiest and fastest way to get to Yogyakarta is by:
If you are departing from abroad or outside Java, this is the best way to reach Yogyakarta. The main airport in this city is Adisutjipto International Airport.
Yogyakarta’s main bus terminal is Giwangan, which is about 4 km southeast of the city center. There are regular services from all major cities in Java, including Jakarta (12 hours drive), Bandung (10 hours drive), and Surabaya (8 hours drive).
The inter-city train system on the island of Java is quite good with complete routes. For that, if you depart from another city on the island of Java, you can travel by train for a more affordable rate. If you depart from Jakarta, the travel time is around 7-12 hours to Yogyakarta’s main station, Tugu Station. Argo Lawu and Argo Dwipangga trains are the best, the fastest of the other trains, and also the most comfortable. You can also take the Taksaka Pagi or Malam (Morning or Night) Train, which costs around IDR 235,000 to IDR 265,000. All of these trains are express trains that connect Yogyakarta and Jakarta in 7-8 hours, both during the day or night.
Public transportations with specified routes here are TransJogja buses, city buses, and angkot. Regular buses usually operate from 6 AM to 5 PM. For some long routes, this bus can operate until 9 PM. The cost for a one-way trip is IDR 2,500 regardless of distance (inside the city) whereas TransJogja buses operate from 6 AM to 10 PM and only stop at the stops that have been provided. Tickets can be purchased directly at the shelter and the cost for one way is IDR 3,000.
For more traditional public transportation, you can try pedicab and dokar (horse-drawn carriage). Pedicabs can be found easily in most areas of Yogyakarta. Bid before boarding the pedicabs and make sure whether the fare you get is for one-way or round trip. While dokar is usually available in crowded places, such as Keraton and Malioboro. The cost for a single trip is around IDR 20,000.
Local and international tourists who come with the group usually rent a car or motorcycle to travel more freely. You can rent a car with or without a driver. To rent a car in Yogyakarta without the hassle and affordable prices, you can go directly to the tiket.com Car Rental page.
The last choice you can rely on is taxis. This mode of transportation is less popular because the price is quite expensive. However, you can find it easily and use it if you are leaving or returning too late.
The national and official language here is Indonesian, but local people still often use their daily vernacular, Javanese.