Remember that first time you enjoyed the sunrise in Indonesia? Sarah @thefivefoottraveler enjoyed the sunrise in the world's largest Buddhist temple and highly recommend putting “Sunrise at Borobudur” on your bucket list on her Trip of Wonders travel blog. Besides being super famous for sunrise moments, Borobudur is also one of the sport destinations favored by those who love running. If you are one of them or on your way to pursue your dream of having an enjoyable fit-cation here, check out our ideas below!
Why should you try fit-cation?
A healthy lifestyle can be achieved in fun and adventurous ways, and one of them is by doing fit-cation; a vacation trend that is done for maintaining the wellness of the body through light and/or adventurous sport activities. If you haven’t tried it already, it’s a new kind of vacation that will not only bring a new holiday experience but also a stronger body and refreshed mind. Furthermore, this kind of holiday enables you to discover more hidden gems in a destination by exploring every inch of it while doing any kind of sport activities you choose. Therefore, you can share the stories about new things you find on the destination through your blog and social media. Sounds like a great kind of holiday, isn’t it?
The amazing Borobudur Temple and its surrounding
Borobudur Temple is located in Magelang, a neighboring city of Yogyakarta. It is no secret that Borobudur has been one of Indonesia's most famous tourism destinations thanks to the collaboration of the national government and UNESCO for the 8-year restoration project. Built in the 9th century during the reign of the Syailendra dynasty, Borobudur Temple combines the element of India’s architecture with the indigenous local design to tell the history of the ancient times through approximately 2,672 relief panels and 504 Buddha statues in a structure area of 123 meters square.
There are several smaller temples around the larger area of Borobudur Temple Complex, such as Mendut Temple (3,2 km east of Borobudur), Selogriyo Temple (28,5 km north of Borobudur), and Prambanan Temple (52,0 km southeast of Borobudur). Moreover, there is an interestingly peculiar site called Rhema Hill. This site is more popular to locals and tourists as ‘Gereja Ayam’ or Chicken Church, because on top of the hill, there is a church-like construction that looks like a giant chicken.
The construction was built in 1992 by Daniel Alamsjah, who was blessed by a revelation to build a church for all nations and religions after doing overnight prayers. Now, the construction has 7 floors, where each floor tells a different story which revolves around the spiritual journey of man, the meaning of prayer, God's goodness, miracles, and local wisdoms. Furthermore, Daniel also built a Drug and Mental Rehabilitation Center not far from the hill, called Betesda Rehabilitation Center.
Aside from the charm of the temple, the surroundings also offer an incredibly scenic green and lush environment. Tourist villages such as Wanurejo Village and Majaksingi Village are also available if you want to get closer to the local’s way of living and learn their cultures. You can jog for 5,2 kilometers northwest from Borobudur Temple and take some cool pictures there. It’s going to be worth it.
How to get here
You can fly to Yogyakarta International Airport directly from your country. Once you arrive, it will be relatively easy to get to Borobudur because the place is only one-hour drive from Yogyakarta.
Most tourists usually get there by joining a tour operated by a travel agent, riding a DAMRI (Motor Transport Enterprise of the Republic of Indonesia) bus, or simply by renting a car. If you’re planning to ride a DAMRI bus, you can purchase the ticket at a counter in the arrival area.
Things to do around Borobudur
It might sound like a place that is only appealing to those who seek cultural trips, but one that has been there knows that there are plenty of wonders that can be enjoyed, especially for fit-cation travelers. Those who are planning for a bike ride and want to explore two destinations at a time can take an adventurous tour from Kaliurang (Yogyakarta) to Borobudur (Magelang) via Joyodiningrat/Salam Babadan with approximately 43,6 kilometers distance.
If you prefer to stay close to the temple complex and jog or bike around the area later, we suggest you stay at a hotel around. There are plenty of choices ranging from low budget homestays like Tingal Laras Art House Homestay to luxurious resorts like Amanjiwo Resort or Plataran Borobudur Resort & Spa. You can choose one that is suitable for your needs.
There are plenty of things you can do if you’re looking for a fit-cation experience, but our best recommendation is: take a bike or running route from Borobudur at sunrise to Prambanan Temple at sunset. Wake up early from your hotel and embrace the stunning sunrise in Borobudur, then proceed to take your planned route and make sure to get to Prambanan Temple right when the sun goes down to savor its truly magnificent scenery.
Another thing you can do, if you’re looking for a lighter fit-cation plan, is to roam around the area of Borobudur by running or biking while visiting the tourist villagse to learn their local wisdoms, such as making your own Batik, cooking some “tempe mendoan” (breaded deep-fried tempeh), playing Gamelan music, and many more. A friendly reminder from us: make sure to always comply with Cleanliness, Health, Safety, and Environmental Sustainability (CHSE) protocol in order to protect yourself from unwanted risk. Be a responsible traveler and make sure to wash your hands frequently, do social distancing, and wear face masks in public places.
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