Continuing my half day journey in Yogyakarta about err… two months ago. I got 6 hours only to spend before leaving to Surabaya. After burned my skin on the mid day at Prambanan Temple, I moved to Kraton Yogyakarta. It’s the Sultan’s Palace. The Royals live there and hold sacred ritual ceremonies inside it. Sri Sultan Hamengkubuwono X is the current Sultan of Yogyakarta and serves as the Governor as well.
Kraton Yogyakarta is located near the city center (Alun-alun). It takes about 20 minutes car rides from Malioboro. At the front gate, we have to buy an entrance ticket for IDR 3,000 (USD 0.3). Plus, photo-permit ticket for IDR 1,000 (USD 0.1). Yeah, the last one is very essential haha! :))
Honestly, not much to see inside Kraton. Tips, you shouldn’t visit inside Kraton except there’s a special ceremonial event. Luckily, an Abdi Dalem guides me to another tourism spot around Kraton. Btw, Abdi Dalem is a person who devoted his/her life to serve Sultan and Kraton for the entire life. A reference said that they get only IDR 1,250 (seribu dua ratus lima puluh rupiah!) for their monthly salary, but the prestige to be an Abdi Dalem is an honorable value in the society. Believe it or not. :-B
He took me to Museum Kereta, a separate building from the Kraton. It’s a place where Kraton keep their sacred Royal Chariots. Again, I had to pay for entrance ticket and photo-permit, the same rate as the Kraton’s.
There’re total 22 chariots inside the museum. Some of them are still in good shape and can be used in Royal ceremonies. Those chariots were made in Netherland through 19th and 20th century, under the reign of Hamengkubuwono I to X.
In Museum Kereta, each chariot was named as ‘Kyai’. Well, Kyai is a title for an elder person who experts in religion and/or mysticism. I thought that each Kyai was meant to be a ‘guardian’ for each chariot. I realized that Abdi Dalem prepares daily ‘sesajen’ (offerings for the holy spirits) for every chariot, especially the sacred one. Again, believe it or not :)
Museum Kereta gives different insight about a slice of Indonesian gloriness, from time to time
I noticed some remarkable horse-carriage among the collection of Museum Kereta. Kyai Garuda Yeksa is the most magnificent one. This chariot usually used on an inauguration ceremony of a new king. Eight horses are needed to run this wagon. In the same spot, there’s Kereta Roto Praloyo. It’s a special chariot to carry Sultan’s corpse to his funeral. I can feel a strong mystical atmosphere around this wagon *seyemmm* (muntah)
Kyai Roto Biru were used to carry commander during wars. Kyai Jolodoro is a special chariot to carry women. Each ride has its own story and represents character of each Sultan. We can ask an Abdi Dalem to guide us during our visit in Museum Kereta, they will happily tell us many interesting stories.
Museum Kereta is a must see place when you visit Yogyakarta. Okay, Malioboro is favorite place to hunt delicious food and handicraft but Museum Kereta gives different insight about a slice of Indonesian gloriness, from time to time.
Ps : There’s Gadri Restaurant near the Kraton, they serve Javanese cuisine just like what the Sultan and Royal relatives used to eat. Nice eh? =P~
Location : check Google Maps