Not far from the natural beauty, archaeology and monks of Yogyakarta in Central Java is one of the most impressive temple complexes and magnificent Buddhist monuments in the world, Borobudur. Decorated with 504 stone hewn Buddha statues and resembling a mandala (geometric pattern) from above, this is a must see when visiting Java. Jakarta may be the capital but Yogyakarta is a living example of Javanese heritage away from its addictive bedlam these two cities are where Asia’s most contemporary meets its most soulful.
In Yogyakarta, a more zen atmosphere is complemented with examples of art and heritage all around, traditional dance shows are commonplace and buildings such as the 18th century royal complex is still inhabited.
Eastern Java, nearest Bali, is the least populated of the three regions and provides some of the most surreal landscape in Indonesia. The luna-esque and awe-inspiring panoramas of Mount Bromo are testament to this. For those feeling adventurous, exploring the rocky peaks and smouldering volcano embossed landscape here is unforgettable.