After another early start (4:30 departure) we headed off to the Borobudur Buddhist temple to watch the sunrise. When we reached the top we waited, taking in the view of the surrounding village and mountain range. Our guide Pak Imam explained the importance and history of the temple to the Buddhist people. Although the sunrise was not as we hoped due to the cloudy conditions, as it got lighter it revealed the detail in the stone carvings.
From there we went to desa (village) Candi Rejo, a local village in central Java. We travelled the village in Dokars (traditional horse and cart transport) from which we could interact with the locals who were extremely inviting and excited to see us. Candi Rejo, widely spread with a population of about 4,000 people has set up an income-generating ecotourism program which shows guests the many home-industries the people are involved in. Our presence and involvement here was giving back to the small community, we were not just passive visitors. We stopped at a small place where we were shown the process of how to make ‘krupuk’ (a crispy cracker-like snack) out of cassava roots, which are then sold to local restaurants. We also got the chance to play the traditional instrument ‘Gamelan’. It started out being difficult to learn, but after a while we gained our confidence and were able to play the music seamlessly. The people and children of the village were very supportive of us trying to learn about their culture and speaking their language. We then settled into our hotel in Yogyakarta, with a dip in the pool to finish the successful day.
By Lucas Schey (Year 10) and Darcy Crettenden (2017 Graduate)