Yogyakarta Sultan’s Palace – Kraton
I am not going to bore you with details of the Keraton, the place was interesting enough and worth the visit for those who has never been. I wouldn’t expect anything “impressive” from this palace, I would say humble palace, compared to your usual palaces or castles in Europe.
What I love about this place is that the Sultan and his family still lives in it, and also that there are these people who are called “Abdi Dalem”, who are special employees of the palace who goes around the place wearing traditional Yogyakartan smart attire. I really like this, and they are still doing tasks from the traditional times. So I would say maybe the most interesting time to go an visit the Kraton would be nearer to a festival, they do a few of this a year. The festivals usually is a combination of Islamic and Javanese Mystical believe.
As I understand, it is an honour for Yogyakartan to be a part of Abdi Dalem and there is a complicated and a lot of different levels of Abdi Dalem. You start of being an apprentice Abdi Dalam with really small salary, and then you can climb up, but there are special positions like the head singer of the gamelan, or the person that is head priest (local beliefs system) of the local mountain. There are so many fascinating rules and tradition in this place you can just listen to them for hours but still not understand.
Indonesian, if you have been to the Keraton can you let me know on the comment below of what 3 things you would say is most interesting about the place – I will add this to the blog accordingly for our friends across the globe.