About Yogyakarta and surroundings
Yogyakarta is the capital city of Yogyakarta Special Region in Java, Indonesia. It is the only region in Indonesia that is still governed by a pre-colonial monarchy, named Yogayakarta Sultanate (Javanese: Kasultanan Ngayogyakarta Hadiningrat). It is currently headed by the Sultan of Yogyakarta — Hamengkubuwono X, who serves as the hereditary governor of the region. Yogyakarta is well-known as a center of education (Kota Pelajar) in Indonesia, as a center of classical Javanese fine art and culture, i.e. batik, ballet, drama, music, poetry, puppet shows, and is well-known for its Javanese cuisine. Yogyakarta was the Indonesian capital during the Indonesian National Revolution from 1945 to 1949, with Gedung Agung as the president’s office. One of the districts in Yogyakarta, Kotagede, was the capital of the Mataram Sultanate between 1575 and 1640. The city is named after the Indian city of Ayodhya from the Ramayana epic.
A large majority of the population are native Javanese. However, as a city with large numbers of schools and universities and relatively low cost of living compared to other Indonesian cities, Yogyakarta has attracted large numbers of students from all over Indonesia. As a result, there are many other Indonesian ethnic groups living in Yogyakarta, especially from eastern parts of Indonesia. Yogyakarta attracts large numbers of foreign visitors. Indeed, because of its proximity to the Borobudur and Prambanan temples, and because of the Javanese court “Kraton”, Yogyakarta has become the most important tourist destination in Indonesia. Furthermore, Yogyakarta also offers many other interesting places in the northern and southern parts of the city. To the north, you can find one of the most active volcanoes in Indonesia, named “Merapi” (2930 m or 9610 ft) above sea level. There, you will be served by lava tour, national park, and museum. To the south, you can enjoy lined beaches i.e. Parangtritis, Depok (in Bantul District), Sundak, Indrayanti, Siung, Baron (in Gunungkidul District).
The natural beauty of Yogyakarta is also completed by its large agricultural land especially in rural areas. Even though it is dominated by paddy field, the agriculture in Yogyakarta is also planted by assorted horticulture plants (maize, sugar cane, cassava, chilli, cabbage, etc.) and fruit plants (salak, guava, mango, dragon fruit, etc.). Yogyakarta is also an ideal basis for further exploration of Java and the rest of Indonesia, with good connections to many other cities and islands, such as Surabaya, Banyuwangi, Bali island, Lombok island (to the east) and Sumatera island, Belitung, Nias island (to the west). Yogyakarta is also not so far from Jakarta, as the capital city of Indonesia (about 530 km), which is easily reached by domestic flight (about 1 hour), or overnight bus or train.