Borobudur: 5 Celeb Recommendations For Your Next Trip There

Borobudur: 5 Celeb Recommendations For Your Next Trip There

Embark on a spiritual journey in the heart of Java’s culture capital, Borobudur

Borobudur is no stranger to travelers around the world. The ancient Buddhist temple complex and its vicinity is the homeground for the origins of Javanese culture, filled with a charm unlike any other. 

While Borobudur is only an hour’s drive away from Yogyakarta, many tend to visit for just a short amount of time. Let your favorite personalities convince you otherwise, with this Best Ever Destination guide to Borobudur.

VISIT THIS: Borobudur Temple, an ancient majestic temple built in the 7th century

Spend the afternoon wandering the relief panels which narrate a tale of Buddha’s life on earth. 

Celebrity thumbs up: Award-winning singer Isyana Sarasvati, recommends strolling around the temple complex as a fun date idea

It’s hard to not be in awe once you’ve reached Borobudur Temple. With nine stacked platforms, over 2 million volcanic rocks were used to create this ancient wonder. In the temple you can find over 500 stone statues of Buddha inside the iconic perforated stupas, and legend says that if you touch a statue, you will be blessed with luck. No matter your luck, you’ll be sure to leave Borobudur Temple feeling inspired by its greatness.

DO THIS: Explore the peaks of Punthuk Setumbu and Dagi Hill for stunning temple views

Take in the fresh air and connect with your spirituality, as the sun rises over Borobudur Temple at Dagi Hill.

Celebrity thumbs up: Actor Mike Lewis recommends venturing to the neighboring Chicken Church at Punthuk Setumbu for panoramic 360 degree views of Borobudur

For more dramatic views of the temple, a 15-minute sunrise trek to Punthuk Setumbu is not one to miss out on. Watch as the rays of sunlight slowly touch the stones as you breathe in the fresh air surrounded by rolling hills of green. If morning stretches are your thing, roll out your yoga mat and join a class at Dagi Hill for a surreal spiritual experience with an incredible view of Borobudur Temple.

RIDE THIS: Traditional andong dokar horse carriages at Tilik Ndeso

Find decorated andong dokar carriages traveling around the villages, with their trusted batik-wearing riders, or kusir 

Celebrity thumbs up: Actor and adventurer Hamish Daud recommends riding an andong dokar for a (literal) travel back in time

Back when the Mataram Kingdom reigned over the lands of Borobudur, the royal king would travel to places with andong dokar horse-drawn carriages. Nowadays, anyone can take one to ride around the surrounding villages of Borobudur from Wanurejo cultural village. The village is also the perfect place to peek into the humble, slow country life.

WATCH THIS: The eccentric Memedi Sawah Festival at Wanurejo Village 

Memedi are made from rice straw and donned with farmer-like clothes to resemble people, or demons.

Celebrity thumbs up: Travel influencer Marischka Prudence recommends coming here at the start of the rice field planting season to catch the festival

Memedi Sawah Festival is a lively harvest festival that celebrates the memedi, the Javanese spinoff of a scarecrow. During the ritual, farmers will march these rice straw ghosts through the village with local residents cheering them on, and then placing them at the rice fields to scare away potential bird hunters and evil spirits.

BUY THIS: Batik, the Javanese fabric and a cultural pride and glory

Dewi Manu patterned batik, a beautifully complex motif that was born in Wanurejo village

Celebrity thumbs up: Award-winning singer Isyana Sarasvati recommends watching the artisans work their magic to fill your heart with joy

Before leaving Wanurejo village, make sure you take home a piece of batik with you. This UNESCO intangible cultural heritage art form is an ancient practice where every pattern, stroke and color tell a different story. At Wanurejo village, the artists produce Dewi Manu batik patterns which are heavily inspired by the intricate reliefs and architecture of Borobudur. As different regions have their own unique styles and patterns, you can only find the Dewi Manu pattern here. Other than the fashionable batik, take home some handmade ornaments to promote and support the local community. 

Health & safety protocols to note

When you’re traveling around Indonesia, don’t forget that health and safety protocols are still strictly enforced. Major tourist destinations will have temperature checks and won’t let you enter without your masks. Vaccine certificates are also required upon entry across all establishments, so have it ready from your PeduliLindungi app. 

Certain international travelers are allowed to enter Indonesia with strict regulations, so be sure to keep checking before you book your tickets and start packing. Domestic travel across the archipelago is open for vaccinated travelers, but remember to remain safe and be responsible for yourself and others. 

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