Day 3: Borobudur Sunrise Tour, Indonesia
Unlike Parambanan temple, Borobudur is less accessible using public transportation. Fortunately the guesthouse offers a packaged tour that caused 370.000 IDR, which includes; van transfer from hotel to temple and back, it includes the temple entrance fee and breakfast (pancake/toast + coffee). You have two options, a sunrise at Borobudur tour or a sunset tour. I chose the former since there would be less tourists and I prefer sunrise over sunsets. The downside, you have to wake up really early, the pickup time is around 4:30 am or depends on the location of the hotel/inn.
At around 5:30 am, we arrived at the foot of the hill and paid 3.000 IDR entrance.We trekked up the hill for about 10-15 minutes to reach the view-point; you can get a great view of the sunrise over Merapi and Merbabu volcano and Borobudur temple. I brought some snacks while waiting for the sunrise, the view was spectacular but unfortunately the sunrise was short so better enjoy every second of it. The mist and clouds covered Mt. Merapi, but fortunately the temple’s silhouette and sun was visible. We traveled for about 1-2 hours to reach the main temple ground. It is required to wear a sarong provided at the entrance just like at Parambanan temple, we were allotted to explore the area for about 2-3 hours. The Walls are adorned with reliefs, the craftsmanship is impeccable. At the top of the temple there are stupas containing a statue of Buddha, this UNESCO heritage site is definitely a must-see.
Tour guides are available at the entrance , but there are also useful boards with information scattered at the temple grounds. The below Info-graphic provides a great information on the architecture of the structure.
This famous Buddhist temple, dating from the 8th and 9th centuries, is located in central Java. It was built in three tiers: a pyramidal base with five concentric square terraces, the trunk of a cone with three circular platforms and, at the top, a monumental stupa. The walls and balustrades are decorated with fine low reliefs, covering a total surface area of 2,500 m2. Around the circular platforms are 72 openwork stupas, each containing a statue of the Buddha. The monument was restored with UNESCO’s help in the 1970s.(source http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/592)
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