Our trip to Indonesia really settled into a rhythm when we flew into Yogyakarta on our second day in the country. It’s just an hour or two away from Jakarta, on the southern coast of Central Java, but Yogya (pronounced Jog-ja) has a very different feel. Steve has developed a theory over our travels, that the second-largest and slightly lesser well-known city in each country, can usually be a much better value for your money. It’s usually less overwhelming, less populated, and cheaper, but often has much of the same amenities and conveniences. Think Kaohsiung instead of Taipei, Lyon instead of Paris, Split instead of Zagreb (although all of Croatia is convenient!), Osaka and not Tokyo, etc. etc. Yogya proved to be another point in favor of Steve’s second-city theory.
We took a local taxi service from the airport into town, just fifteen minutes to our Airbnb homestay. We had picked one close to the airport because we knew that our flight out would be very early in the morning (another recurring theme for this trip), and it proved to be amazing. Omah Garuda Homestay was very large, clean, and quiet, run by a family business. Tami, the receptionist, had an infectious smile and laugh, and welcomed us by name when we first came in. We first considered rushing off to have lunch downtown and seeing some of the historical sights in the city because they closed around 1 pm and 3 pm, but since we had three nights in the city, Steve and I called an audible, and decided to take a break. Continue reading Indonesia’s second city.
Three weeks ago, Steve and I set sail (I mean, flew over) for the island of Java, also known to the rest of the world as the most populated island in the nation of Indonesia. While we’ve been pretty active in visiting places in East Asia, Indonesia’s actually the first new country in Southeast Asia that we’ve been able to go to. I had been pushing for this for a while, so it was with a lot of excitement that we made our way onto the flight. In the days prior to our flight, there was a lot of wrestling with baggage (stupid 7 KG in-cabin allowance) and trying to pin down last minute details for each of our four destinations. Stella watched us pack with trepidation, and then we packed her off before we went to the airport, dropping her off at our preferred dog hotel near Taipei Main! Despite swearing them off, we took Air Asia on Saturday afternoon from Taipei’s Taoyuan Airport (TPE) to Kuala Lumpur (KUL)’s low-cost airline terminal, KLIA2.
Our first stop was actually KL! We didn’t leave the airport, but after landing in the evening around 9 pm, we headed to another exciting first: a capsule hotel! Capsule Transit is the name of the container-based capsule hotel that is situated in the airport here. It was a fairly cheap way to spend the night (~$50 USD), and as we found, fairly roomy too. We booked a queen-bed two-person capsule, and the entire space was subdivided into different male only or female only or mixed sections. Our capsule was on the ground, but some were on a second level that needed a short climb up the ladder. We spent so much time exploring the airport to find an ATM and a decent place to have dinner that we just collapsed into our capsule and fell asleep for six hours. Continue reading Travels in Java.