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BOROBUDUR Sunrise Experience (The Largest Buddhist Temple in the World)

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html

BOROBUDUR is the largest Buddhist temple in the world, located in the Borobudur village, Magelang Regency, Central Java Province, Indonesia. It was renovated from 1973-1983 to preserve the temple for the next 1,000 years and was subsequently listed in 1991 as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

BOROBUDUR is an ancient temple inherited by Buddhism after the fall of the Hindu Kingdoms in Java in the 14th century and the Javanese conversion to Islam. It's a world pilgrimage site during the Buddhists' holy day of Vesak (like Christmas) based on the lunar calendar, which falls in the month of April or May.

Its name means Monastery on a High Place -- was derived from two words: Boro means temple from the Sanskrit word "Byara" and budur means above the hill from the Balinese word "Beduhur".

The best time to go is during sunrise when the temple is beautifully lighted by the sun, the environment is cool and there are relatively less number of tourists.

Let me share with you our BOROBUDUR Sunrise Experience...

Travel to Wonderful Indonesia Blog Series:

borobudor
Borobudur Temple is located in the center of the Java Island of Indonesia. If you are coming from Jakarta, the nearest airport to Borobudur is the city of Yogyakarta, and Borobudur is about an hour away by land. If you are coming from Pangkalun Bun in Central Kalimantan, there are flights going to Semarang, and Borobudur is three hours' drive by bus.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The temple is open from 6am until 5pm. There is a special process and permit if you want to go during sunrise, and you have to pass through the special gate at the Manohara, the Center of Borobudur Study.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The Borobudur Sunrise Package (Rp 380/person for tourists, Rp 250/person for locals) consists of the special sunrise access, a flashlight, rental of sarong, and morning tea/coffee with a light meal.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
It is recommended you wake up at 4am. You should be at the gate before 5am to catch the sunrise.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
To give respect to the holy place, visitors are mandated to wear a sarong to cover their legs.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
From the Manohara gate to the Borobudur temple takes a short, five-minute walk.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
You'll be amazed at the view of the temple from afar -- and it's even more magnificent up close.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
You enter via the east gate security checkpoint. Food and drinks are not allowed to preserve the temple's cleanliness.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
Architectural Model of the Borobudur Temple at Manohara Hotel.

To give you a better perspective, the Borobudur Temple consists of two distinct structures: the stepped quadratical pyramid with six levels of enlightment and the three concentric terraces with 72 stupas and the main dome.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
As a pilgrim, you walk around the temple through three sections of enlightment according to Buddhism:

  • Kāmadhātu (the world of desire) represented by the base level,
  • Rupadhatu (the world of forms) represented by the five square platforms, and
  • Arupadhatu (the world of formlessness) represented by the three circular platforms with the main stupa, which describes Nirwana and Sunyata World (the complete voidness or the nonexistence of the self)

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
As a tourist visiting during sunrise, you can ascend directly to the top through the "stairways of Nirvana" and view the sunrise.

Arupadhatu (the world of formlessness) - Nirvana Level

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
It is best to wait in silence for the sunrise and respect the space of the pilgrims and people around you.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
But what is a Stupa? Most people mistake it to be a bell. It is recommended that you get a guide to appreciate the symbolism of the Borobudur temple.

Guide Tip: We recommend our guide Tis Lingga (+62 812-295-6349, tiscrb@yahoo.com, FB: Tis Crb)

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The stupa represents the outer symbols of the monk -- the walking stick (center) they carry, the cup (inverted) and the plate they use to ask for alms, and the clothes of the monk (lotus blossom).

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The inside of the stupa represents the holiness of the spirit of the monk.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
Some of the stupas are open to showcase the Buddha inside.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
Up close, you can see the Buddha in their different meditating arm positions called mudra.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The biggest stupa in the center has a lighting arrester to protect it from violent weather.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The main stupa also has the lotus blossom design on its base.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide
There are 32 stupa in the lowest circle terrace, 24 stupas in the middle circle, and 16 stupas in the highest circle level, for a total of 72 stupas + the main stupa.

Photographer's Tip #1: A favorite angle of the photographers is the shot from one of the corners to capture the most number of stupas, with the main stupa in the middle.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
Photographer's Tip #2: You should be able to capture six stupas in one shot if you have a wide angle lens.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
Photographer's Tip #3: Look for an angle where you cannot see the tourists (unlike this shot).

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
It was a cloudy day when we arrived, and we patiently waited for the sun to just peek through the clouds.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
But, thankfully, the sun showed its rays and lighted the temple even for a moment.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
It was beautiful seeing the temple and Buddha in the sunlight, showcasing the different colors of the volcanic stone.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
Nirvana. Borobudur temple is located on top of the hill, and its top section with the stupa represents Nirvana. In Buddhism, Nirvana is the state of perfect peace, nothingness, and being content and not wanting more.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
After an hour and 30 minutes, we descended the temple via the North gate to see the bas-relief in the lower sections.

Rupadhatu (the world of forms) Level

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The Borobudur temple has a total of 1,460 reliefs that depict a story and 1,212 panels for decoration.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The bas-relief in the Rupadhatu (the world of forms) tells the story of Buddha called "Lalitavistara".

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
It tells the story of Prince Siddhartha -- from his birth, to the time he became a hermit,

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
...to when he became "Buddha Gautama".

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
To view the story in sequence, you have to enter the temple through the Eastern gate and turn left, going around the different levels.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
However, some sections are still under construction, and you can really only see a portion of the relief.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The stone floor level is like a big stone puzzle that locks into place, and you have to find the keystone to be able to dismantle it.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The northern side of the temple is called "Amogasidha" with the Buddhas in Abhaya mudra pose, which means no fear of danger.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
I'm amazed by the intricacy of the stone carvings around the temple!

Kāmadhātu (the world of desire) Level

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
After 30 minutes of appreciating the bas-relief with our tour guide, we went back to the ground level.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
Here's a perfect spot to take a photo of you posing at the foot of Borobudur temple.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide
There are a total of 32 lion statues that guard the Borobudur temple. 

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
In the Kamadhatu level, there are 160 relief panels that are mysteriously covered by stones.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
In one corner, they removed the stone cover to reveal the bas-relief of the foundation.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The relief shows the lustful life of humans as depicted in the story of "Maha Karma Wibanga".

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
Like in other tourist spots, you'll be accosted by sellers offering Borobudur souvenirs.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
The Borobudur three-hour Sunrise Experience ends with a morning tea/coffee with a light meal in the Manohara Pavilion.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
It's lovely to hear live gamelan traditional Indonesian music during breakfast.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
Don't expect too much from the light morning meal, though.

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html
Borobudur is certainly one of the must-visit places in Indonesia. The best time to go is at dawn on a weekday to get a more relaxed experienced. Book your stay in Manohara Hotel way in advance so that it would be more convenient for you to visit this UNESCO World Heritage site.

BOROBUDUR SUNRISE
Borobudur is best seen at dawn, when the air is fresh and full of birdsong. As the mist begins to lift, the sun scales the surrounding volcanoes and terraced fields, and highlights the stone reliefs and the many faces of Buddha. Glimpsing Borobudur for the first time is often a deeply felt emotional experience.

This tour offers a different experience where participants were given a special pass to enter the monument early in the morning at approximately 04.30 am before public visitors, and visitors have to walk from the hotel to Borobudur with a pre-dawn stroll through the dewy grass of a lush tropical garden. A panoramic scenary and a very beautiful morning at Borobudur especially those moments when the sun would appear from the horizon. A truly enlightening experience!

Package Price :
Foreigner Visitor : Rp 380.000 per person
Domestic Visitor : Rp 250.000 per person
In-house guest (those staying at Manohara): Rp 230.000 per person

Manohara Hotel
Komp. Taman Wisata Candi Borobudur
Magelang - Jawa Tengah
Telephone: +62 293 788-131 or 788-680
Email: sales@manoharaborobudur.com, manohara@yogyes.com 
Websitehttp://manoharaborobudur.com/

Travel to Wonderful Indonesia Blog Series:

Live an Awesome Life,

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Founder, www.OurAwesomePlanet.com
Follow @antondiaz and Like our Official Facebook Page: Our Awesome Planet :) 
If you have tips on awesome food and travel destinations, please email me at anton@diaz.ph.

Full Disclosure: I wrote this blog post myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I have no business relationship with any company mentioned in this post or any organization promoting it. As a policy, I don't accept advertising from food and travel places we feature in the blog. Our trip was courtesy of the Ministry of Tourism of Indonesia to promote travel to Indonesia. 

P.S. There was a debate in our travel bloggers group if Borobudur Temple is better than Angkor Wat. In terms of size, Angkor Wat is definitely bigger. But you can't really compare the two because they have a different purpose and offer a different experience. What do you think?

BOROBUDOR - The Biggest Buddhist Temple in the World Guide Read More: http://www.ourawesomeplanet.com/awesome/2012/10/borobudor-buddhist-temple.html

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Wonderful reportage, thanks :)

Hi:)

Been reading your blog and love this post!.
I’m an Indonesian college student and now I’m currently doing a mini research for one of the College final assignments here. I read your blog about the trip to Candi Borobudur :)…
And your writing makes me even interested to ask you about some of your experience from the Candi Borobudur trip further more. If you allow me to do a short interview, would you mind to share any media that possible to have a short conversation? :) Such as yahoo messenger, email, or any chat media? Or can I interview you via email?
If you don't mind to reply my comment, it would be such a honor for me. :)
Thankyou...


YES, You can email me anton@diaz.ph or antondiaz@gmail.com and Ill be happy to answer the email :)


Anton

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