"Prambanan: temples and more temples" Top 5 Page for this destination Prambanan by theo1006
Prambanan Travel Guide: 122 reviews and 421 photos
The Prambanan temples - located in Prambanan Archaeological park, a World Heritage site - are six slender structures, the central one being 47 m high, dedicated to the Hindu trinity Shiva, Brahma and Vishnu. But when you have come from abroad as far as Prambanan, is it really worth your trouble to make the round of these temples in half an hour or so?
To really appreciate the devotion of the people who built these temples in the eighth and ninth centuries A.D., one can easily spend a few days seeking out all temples on the Prambanan plain. Within a radius of 5 km from the Archaeological Park are at least ten other sites, both of Hindu and of Buddhist temples, some restored, some only recently discovered. (See our OTBP tips.) Most were built in the same era, proof of peaceful coexistence of both religions.
And to experience the magic of Prambanan, let your visit coincide with a full performance of the Ramayana Ballet on four consecutive nights, while spending the days visiting temple sites.
For a change, you can also visit Kaliadem on the slope of Merapi volcano, which is as easily reached from Prambanan as it is from Yogyakarta. Close by are also the Merapi volcano forest at Deles and the Sugar Museum in Klaten city. Prambanan does not lie in Yogyakarta Special Region, but just over the border in Klaten regency. Therefore our tips also include other things to do and OTBP in Klaten regency.
The picture shows a schematic of the Prambanan and Borobudur plains, from the museum in the Archaeological Park. It does not even show all temple sites!
If you do not have the time to spend four days in Prambanan, you can make it a Tuesday or a Thursday (or Saturday's when there is no episodic version), when a condensed version of the Ballet is performed, see below. One day will suffice for strolling around the World Heritage compound as well as the Kraton Boko Historic site. See our Things To Do tips.
The main Prambanan temple complex consists of six bigger structures arranged in a rectangle. Surrounding them were up to 234 smaller structures, most of which now are just rubble, only a few have been rebuilt. How impressive the site will be when they have resurrected them all!
If the World Heritage compound is too large for you, hop on the free minitrain. The Kraton Boko site is more demanding though!
Admission fees: As a foreign visitor you have to pay USD 18 for admission to either park, children and students half price. For Indonesian residents (including expats) the fee is Rp 30,000; children and students Rp 12,000 (July 2012).
Also available are combined tickets for Prambanan and Borobudur (USD 30), and for Prambanan and Ratu Boko (USD 25); students half price. These combined tickets are valid one day only, you have to visit both sites on the same day.
From August 17th, 2012, one is also obliged to wear a batik sarung and soft footwear when one climbs the temples. As for the sarungs, these are provided for free - of course you have to return them at the end of your visit.
Details of the Ramayana Ballet are available at the Borobudur Park website, including the dates when there is a performance. A full version of the ballet is performed only six times a year, on four consecutive nights, Friday through Monday. A condensed version - full story on one night - is staged on Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout the year and also on Saturdays when there is no episodic performance in the months May through October .
Prices of the seats in the open air theatre range from Rp 75,000 to Rp 250,000 per evening. The view from all of them is good, but the more you pay the softer your seat. With the Rp 250,000 VIP seats you sit closest to the dancers, but the Rp 175,000 'Khusus' seats slightly higher up give a better view of the temples in the background.
In the rainy season (November through April) the condensed version is performed indoors, at Trimurti Stage. Seats at this stage are priced from Rp 75,000 to Rp 175,000.
(All prices valid for 2010.)
You can order your seats by telephone: +62.274.496408 or 497771.
For a synopsis of the story see our travelogues below.
- Pros:Java's foremost cultural heritage
- Cons:Takes some stamina walking around in the heat of day
- In a nutshell:I prefer Prambanan over Borobudur
We realized a long-coveted plan and attended all four episodes of the Ramayana ballet in May 2010. The dry season was... more travel advice
A hidden gem! We saw the small signboards and decided to see where they led: through bamboo groves into a small hamlet... more travel advice
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