This is a column specially reserved for Yogyakarta Tourist Office (Dinas Pariwisarta-DIPARTA of Yogyakarta)
A government agency professionally taking care of tourist development in Yogyakarta Special Region (Special Region is equal to Province) Yogyakarta is one of the 27 provinces of the country.
The honorable name of special region is granted as an appreciation to the active role of all the people led by their most respected and dignified traditional leaders, the late Sultan Hamengkubuwono IX and Sri Pakualaman VIII during the struggle of Indonesia’s independence.
It is the prime goal of DIPARTA Yogyakarta to lure more and more tourists, local as well as foreign to enjoy the ancient monuments, culture and tradition in this wonderful land, one of the best, specific cultural center of the world.
Yogya is easily accessable from every part of the world. Transportation, communication and accommodation are not a problem and smoothly arranged to meet international demand of efficient Tour and Travel.
Yogya is welcoming everyone, the visiting V.I.Ps, celebrities to backpackers staggering off economic class train.
The tourists coming to Yogya could enjoy the rich attractive collection offered by this region and its surroundings.
- Ancient world-famous temples of Borobudur, Prambanan etc.
- The Royal Palaces of Kraton Yogyakarta and Puro Pakualaman, the center of Javanese culture and civilization. Taman Sari (Remnants of water castle) is also a place of interest.
- Specific ancient arts preserved up to date, such as: Gamelan, Batik, Keris, Wayang Kulit (leather puppets). Visitors could easily see the making-process of the products, or buy as souvenirs in the many shops, art-galleries and markets. They could also listen to the mystical sound of gamelan music and watch the wayang kulit performance.
- Classical Javanese dance, such as in kraton and many other places, and do not miss the Ramayana Ballet in Prambanan temple Complex, especially during moonlight.
- Performance of "People arts" such as Ketoprak, Reog, Jatilan etc.
- Ritual tradition of kraton such as
- Garebeg (in the Javanese months of Mulud, Besar and Sawal)
- Labuhan (offering) procession in South Sea, Mount Merapi etc.
- Ritual ceremonies in the Javanese month of sapar.
- The commemoration of 1st Suro, the Javanese new year.
- Pilgrimage to sacred places related with the history and noted figures of Mataram Kingdom.
- Traditional ceremonies such as: marriage, seventh month pregnancy (Mitoni) etc.
- Grand Mosque (Mesjid Besar) in north square, modern Syuhada mosque in Kotabaru are among the noted mosques in Yogya. The church of Loji Kecil – east of Grand Post Office is the eldest church of the city. Sendang Sono is the Lourdes of Java. Puri, vihara and temples for the Hindus – Buddhist are also available.
- Yogyakarta Art Festival
Organized every year, this year is the Xth . from July 19 to August 10, 1998. Performing and exhibiting various kind of arts, traditional as well as modern ones.
- Kraton festival
Held jointly by Yogyakarta palace and Puro Pakualaman presenting traditional art performance, including Parade of court guards. This year Festival is scheduled on October 01-04, 1998.
- Breath – taking natural beauty.
The peaceful green terrace of rice fields, the challenging active volcano Merapi-the Fire Mountain, the ceaseless and "scaring" waves of south sea- Segara Kidul. The natural caves, with its stalactites and stalagmites.
- Museum of different objects. (see museums in article Yogyakarta and its surroundings)
- Browsing in the down-town.
Malioboro street, the "longest colorful bazaar" in the world.
- Amusing bargaining in traditional markets.
- Modern music for relaxation with local singers and players in several Hotels and Cafes.
- Gembira Loka Zoo is a good show window of Indonesian animals, a.o. The Komodo Dragons, the giant lizards that inhibit only Komodo Island, east of Bali.
Since a long time Diparta Yogyakarta is the back-bone of tourist promotion and development.
In coordination with other related parties, government and private institutions, it has to arrange the smooth flow of more visitors coming to Yogya. In the other hand, within its authorization, it manages a good and convenient tourist tour and stay in Yogya. The preparation of the objects, the well organized transportation, communication and accommodation, the safety and comfort of tourist are its main concern.
The Yogyakarta Tourist Office, in its Head Office opens a tourist information center around the clock. It has its own booths in Adisucipto airport and Tugu Railway stations. The free of charge tourist leaflets featuring places of interest in English, French, Dutch and German are available.
Many vendors of souvenirs in Jalan Malioboro and other touristic spots, Taxi, becak and andong drivers have been taught basic English conversation to improve their service.
Yogyakarta is the birth of Police Tourist Unit with the sole aim to comfort the tourist while staying in Yogya. This unit provides safety and any information needed by tourist.
From traditional leader to Governor of Yogyakarta Special Region
(Suryo S. Negoro)