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Address: Desa Hargobinangun, Pakem, Sleman, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
GPS Coordinate: S7°35'48.8" E110°25'34.4" (view map)
To enjoy the enchanting natural view in the north end of Yogyakarta. To touch the cool air and feel romantic atmosphere a la Dutch madam and meneer of the past time in Kaliurang that is located at the foot of Merapi Mountain.
In the early of the nineteenth century, some Dutch geologists living in Yogyakarta intended to find a place for their family to spend their vacation. They went along the edge of the north area as the high land. Arriving at Kaliurang that is located on 900 meter above sea level, the "meneers" were enchanted by the nature beauty and coolness in that foot of the mountain. They finally built bungalows and decided to make the area their place for vacation.
The trip from Yogyakarta to Kaliurang reminds us of the scenery picture we (=Indonesian people) made in the kindergarten. A mountain with the street lying in the middle and the green spread on both sides ornamented with people's houses will release tiredness in the frame of nature painting.
Covered with the breeze, even when the sun is over our head, the coolness is still felt. The air dancing through the trees and slowly going down hill gives fresh feeling to our body.
The view of Merapi Mountain gives special sensation in this area. Just like village girls who will cover their face when we look at them, this mountain will also be covered with fog when we come to see it.
Going along the west side of Plawangan Hill as long as 1,100 meters, traveling cross country, through soil path framed with trees and green slopes, and series of 22 caves as the inheritance of the Japanese colonial are some uniqueness of Kaliurang natural tourism.
In addition to its natural beauty, Kaliurang also has some historical buildings. Some of them are Wisma Kaliurang and Pesanggrahan Dalem Ngeksigondo that is owned by the Sultan Palace that used to be functioned as the meeting place of the Three Nation Commission, and Ullen Sentalu museum which part of the building is under ground. This museum reveals the mystery of the culture and values of Javanese history, especially those related to the princess of Yogyakarta and Surakarta kingdoms in the nineteenth century.
Located 28 kilometers from the center of Yogyakarta city, Kaliurang now has an enchanting cultural and natural tourism area that becomes en enjoyable place for family recreation.
Parents may relax while keeping their children playing in the Play Ground. In an area of 10,000 meter square width, children can play swing, sliding, or swimming in a mini pool. Besides, in the play ground that is ornamented with the statue of a genie a la 1001 night stories and some kinds of animal, children can play mini cars or pass through a dragon statue by entering from its mouth and exiting from its tail.
About 300 meters to the north east of the recreation garden, there is Plawangan Turgo garden. There is Tlogo Putri swimming pool of which water originates from a spring at the slope of Plawangan Hill. Playing swing or behaving playfully with the family in the garden will release tiredness among the green forest of the forestry department.
Walking along the east side, seeing some monkeys jumping and swinging on the branches, enjoying the chirp of birds in the sloping up path of layered stones and stairs as long as 900 meters can be a little tiring, but the top of Merapi Mountain viewed on a bright day from Pronojiwo Hill will replace the tiredness with admiration. On the way to the top of Pronojiwo Hill, YogYES had the opportunity to run race with Nick (47 years old), an English tourist. I won the race, but the feeling of being united with nature was more pleasant. Mineral water sold by the drink sellers will quench your thirst while seeing Merapi that stands amidst the green spread of the forest. Binocular is rent for IDR 3,000 per 30 minutes to see the Merapi Mountain more clearly.
Arriving back to the garden, have relax at Tlogo Muncar to enjoy the waterfall. During rainy season, water will flow down swiftly.
To enjoy the Kaliurang scenery, visitors may go around by a rabbit carriage that is most popularly called sepoer. This vehicle usually stands by in the parking lot in front of the food shops. The route is going around from the east to the west to encircle Kaliurang tourism area, passing through the viewing post on the west side where Merapi can be seen clearly on bright days. For minimum of seven people, each person will be charged IDR 3,000. For exclusive trip, the charge is IDR 20,000 per person with services like those for a nobleman.
If you want to enjoy the coolness of the air and the quietness of the night at Kaliurang, there are many choices of villas, bungalows, and inns. The tariffs vary from IDR 25,000 to IDR 300,000. Some lodgings where you can stay are: Bukit Surya (most recommended), Puri Indah Inn (3-stars), and Wisma Sejahtera.
Before leaving, make sure that you buy gifts ranging from local fruits to special food namely tahu and tempe bacem (sweet, fried tofu and tempeh) and jadah (made from sticky rice and grated coconut).
The green spread at the foot of Merapi Mountain, cool air and all natural, luxurious packages will release your tiredness and refresh you from the noise of the city. (YogYES.COM)
Text & Photo: R. Syah
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