Indonesia

Singosari Temple – Remnants of a Forgotten Kingdom

Posted on February 3, 2012

The Singosari Temple in Malang, East Java is an unfinished remnant of the Singhasari kingdom (1222-1292). The city of Malang in East Java was our unconventional southern jump-off point to the Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park, which is popularly accessed from the north via Surabaya and Probolinggo. Once the center of a lesser-known Hindu-Buddhist empire – the pre-cursor of the Majapahit – in East Java, Malang has a few archaeological sites worth dropping by. You may have heard of the Srivijava andRead More

Java’s Cultural Heart: Yogyakarta & Borobudur Temple

Posted on February 2, 2012

Borobudur Temple offers 360-degree views of Central Java’s countryside It’s been almost a year since my adventure traveling across Java, Indonesia and I have a handful of stories yet to share. Though accessible by train, Yogyakarta (often pronounced jog-ja-kar-ta) – the cultural heart of Java – was a short, dirt-cheap hop by plane for us from the urban madness of Jakarta. Of course, a visit to Indonesia would not be complete without visiting Borobudur, one of the most celebrated landmarksRead More

Jakarta Jaunt

Posted on August 19, 2011

Schooners moored at Sunda Kelapa, as they have since colonial times Like Manila, Jakarta suffers from an image problem. Tourists would rather skip this polluted, poverty-ridden and “dangerous” Southeast Asian megacity and scoot off to the cultural heart of Yogyakarta or the resort island of Bali, just as Philippine visitors would rather spend more time frolicking in Cordillera, Boracay, or Palawan. Nonetheless, Jakarta, like most Asian megacities, is an exciting primer to the country’s diverse culture, food and everyday life.Read More

Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park (East Java, Indonesia)

Posted on February 28, 2011

A Tenggerese horseman rides across the Lautan Pasir (Sea of Sand) Since January, Gunung Bromo has been continuously belching lava and ash. During our visit to the park last week, the volcano periodically explodes, sending shock waves that ripple throughout the Tengger Caldera. At Cemoro Lawang – a village on the caldera rim where tourists stay, windows and ceilings would rattle with every thunderous explosion day and night. Colorful traditional houses at Cemoro Lawang village The powerful eruption last JanuaryRead More

Singapore Sidetrips: Tanjung Pinang, Johor Bahru & Pulau Ubin

Posted on November 9, 2010

The following article is a commissioned article I wrote for this month’s issue (November 2010) of SMILE, the in-flight magazine of Cebu Pacific Air. You may browse the magazine online at http://www.cebusmile.com With its central location, Singapore is a great jump-off point to other destinations. Why not take quick visits to some of the city’s outlying attractions? TEXT EDGAR ALAN ZETA-YAPPHOTOS LESTER LEDESMA (TANJUNG PINANG), EDGAR ALAN ZETA-YAP (JOHOR BAHRU AND PULAU UBIN) Tanjung Pinang The neighboring Indonesian island ofRead More