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Prambanan Temple, the Exotic Temple with Beautiful Relics and History in Yogyakarta

Prambanan Temple is a Hindu temple in Central Java and famous for its beauty. Even, many consider the temple to be the most beautiful Hindu Temple in the world. It was built in the 8th century when two Mataram’s kings, by the name of Rakai Pikatan and Rakai Balitung, ruled Central Java. The height of the temple is 47metres and it symbolizes the historical event where Hindu kingdoms used to dominate Java in the past.

The temple is 17 kilometers from the downtown of Yogyakarta. The exact location is in Kecamatan Prambanan, Kabupaten Klaten, Central Java. To reach the place, you can either go by taxi or by bus. Because it’s quite far from Yogyakarta, be prepared to spend extra money if you decide to go by taxi. Or, you can also rent a car if you are with your family as it’s also a good choice to spend the family holiday. The admission price of Prambanan Temple is twenty five thousand rupiahs (About 2.5 dollars) for local tourist and a hundred and seventeen thousand rupiahs (About 12 dollars) for foreigners. Although the ticket is relatively more expensive than other tourism spots in Yogyakarta, it’s definitely worth every rupiah.
Prambanan temple is also very famous for its mythology. According to the legend, the temple was built upon the request of a beautiful lady named Roro Jonggrang as the requirement for Bandung Bondowoso if he wanted to marry her. Roro Jonggrang asked Bandung Bondowoso to build her a thousand temples overnight and Bandung Bondowoso then asked for the help of genies to help him. When there was only one temple left to build, Roro Jonggrang interrupted the construction as she didn’t really want to marry him in the first place. She made the rooster to crow and caused the genies to stop the construction because they thought that it was dawn already and they only worked in the dark. Knowing that Roro Jonggrang was the one who screwed the construction, Bandung Bondowoso was furious and then cursed Roro Jonggrang to be one of the temples to complete the construction. Thus, the temple is also known as Roro Jonggrang Temple.
The temple itself is divided into three main buildings. They are Siva Temple, Brahma Temple, and Vishnu Temple. Inside the temple, there are also three arca or statues of Siva Mahaguru, Siva Mahadewa, and Siva Ganesha. Since the main chamber of the temple is inhabited by Siva as Mahadewa (the greatest god), Prambanan Temple is also called Siva Temple. The edge of the temple is bordered by balustrade decorated by Ramayana relief that we can see when we pass the temple. The relief is still continued on Brahma Temple balustrade on the left. However, on Vishnu Temple Balustrade on the right, the relief is about the childhood of Kresnadipayana who was thought as the reincarnation of Vishnu.
Just like any other temple, most people enjoy sightseeing while in Prambanan Temple. Since the place is taken care by the government, the beauty is still well-maintained. Besides, you can also join a tour to enjoy the scenery of Prambanan Temple as there are many travel agencies that offer their service to ensure that you’re enjoying your trip. However, if you want to go there by yourself, it is also okay because the local people are mostly nice and will be more than happy to give a hand to you. The admission price is also reasonable, for local tourist is twenty-five thousand rupiahs (About 3 dollars) and for foreigner is a hundred and seventeen thousand (About 12 dollars). It is open all week from 6AM to 5PM.
In Prambanan Temple, there is also a very famous dance performance called Sendatari Ramayana. It is held all year round but the location of the performance is different according to the month. In May to October, the dance is held at Ramayana open stage and in November to April it is held at Trimurti Close Stage. The reason is in those month are rainy season. The dance is also known as Ramayana Ballet and it combines drama and traditional dance that tells the story of Ramayana. The story itself is also carved on the wall of Siva Temple which can be seen if you go around the temple in clockwise.
The main theme of the dance is to portray the attempt of Rama to save Shinta who is kidnapped by the King of Alengka named Rahwana. It is a long play divided into four parts: the abduction of Shinta, Anoman’s mission to Alengka, the death of Kumbakarna and Rahwana, and the reunification of Rama and Shinta. The play is performed by hundreds of talented dancers which will provide us with a world-class show. There is no dialogue as the story is told by the Javanese singer called sinden through Javanese traditional way of singing or nembang. However, because the show is aimed to reach both local and foreign tourists, there you see the narration in Bahasa and English. The ticket prices for the show range from fifty thousand rupiahs (about 6 dollars) to a hundred and twenty five thousand rupiahs (about 13 dollars).
As the conclusion, Prambanan temple should be on the top of your list to visit while in Yogyakarta. The historical values and the beauty of the temple surely will make your holiday more meaningful and memorable. All in all, be sure to spare some time visiting Prambanan Temple as the scenery is amazing and there are many activities that you can enjoy doing while in there.
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