How do they make this coffee taste so good? Why, it’s alimentary.
We landed in Yogyakarta, or Jogja, after an overnight layover in Jakarta. We grabbed some hot Rotiboy bread and waded into a sea of aggressive cab touts and tour guides hustlers. Jogja is a much smaller city than Jakarta but it still took us forty minutes to travel the few miles to our hotel. Cities with this kind of urban sprawl aren’t exactly the most tourist friendly, but it’s the most logical way point between Borobudur and Prambanan, two of the most popular tourist destinations in Java.
We didn’t have a lot planned for our stay here besides the Prambanan temples nearby, so we lounged around hotel and did a little shopping. Mailioboro street, a fifteen minute walk from our hotel, is a shopping hot spot for locals and tourist alike. Scooters, street art and hawkers of all sorts line the street, but for the most part the experience of being (very clearly) tourist was a pleasant one. Locals seem more friendly and less aggressive than in Vietnam, where they can be … unpleasantly insistent, to put it nicely.
I grabbed a few treats to bring back home from the grocery store and we both enjoyed a cup of the “worlds most expensive coffee,” Kopi Luwak. Palm civets are a cat-like animal indigenous to Indonesia with a penchant for the choices coffee cherries. They eat them, partially digest them, then fully pass them, littering the forest floor with brown gold. The stomach enzymes are supposed to imbue the coffee with an ultra-smooth flavor and that taste, combined with the unusual collection methods required, ensure you’ll pay a premium. I’m not sure I have the palate to be able to discern the nuances that are supposed to be present, but it hit all the rights spots in my book. I also felt much less jet-lagged for the first time on the trip, so there’s that also for an endorsement.
Prambanan is a Hindu temple complex about an hour ride outside of Jojga and would be a fantastic destination in its own right, if it weren’t for the much larger Borobudur being so close, stealing it’s thunder. Still, it’s nice to be able to contrast the Hindu sites architecture with the Buddhist style we will see tomorrow. Yogyakarta was just a stop over on the way to the main Borobudur event, but it was a nice one.
Where we stayed: The Phoenix Hotel. A fantastic colonial style hotel in the heart of Yogyakarta.
What we did: Prambanan, shopping on Malioboro.