Gedong Songo Itinerary: A Guide to Java's Hidden Gem

Nine Buildings

On the slopes of Mount Ungaran in the temperate climate of Java’s hilly terrain, perches several small ancient temples amid verdant hills, lush vegetable fields, and pine forest trees. It was a beautiful day, the sky was clear, the sun shone brightly and my horse 'Zen' was calm and steady. Finally, I was at Candi Gedong Songo—the hidden gem of Central Java, Indonesia.

Candi Gedong Songo Java Indonesia
Vegetable terraces

In Javanese, Candi means temple, Gedong means building, and Songo is the number nine. But Although Candi Gedong Songo directly translates to “Nine Temples”, only five temples remain intact and standing today, the rest are merely ruins.

Built between 730 and 780, the temples are one of the oldest in Java. As a matter of fact, the humble Gedong Songo predates and pioneered the way for the bigger and more popular Borobudur and Prambanan temples of Yogyakarta.

Nasi Lemak: The Malaysian National Dish

What is Nasi Lemak?

Origin of the dish

Malaysian cuisine is deeply rooted to the country’s extremely diverse culture and environment. It is a beautiful amalgamation of Malay, Chinese and Indian influence, thus making it a truly unique Asian culinary experience. Obviously, Malaysian cuisine has a deep roster of exceptional dishes--however, if you ask Malaysians to recommend you one dish, 9 out 10 people would most likely say it’s the Nasi Lemak.

Nasi Lemak is a popular dish in Southeast Asia. Malaysians consider it their national dish and everyone else considers it delicious. The word Nasi Lemak literally translates to ‘’rice in cream” which is derived from the way the rice is soaked and cooked in coconut milk and pandan leaves.

Hotel Review: Merbabu Hotel (Yogyakarta)

Merbabu Hotel

JL. Sosrowijayan GT I NO.32, Yogyakarta City Center, Indonesia
Tel: +62 274 551 421
Booking and Rates: click here


Top 5 Places to Visit in Berlin

Berlin, Germany

1. Brandenburg Gate

Brandenburg Gate Berlin Germany
Brandenburg Gate
photo by Raul/ CC by

No trip to Berlin is complete without seeing the historical Brandenburg Gate. It used to be a reminder of the turbulent history of the Cold war that divided Berlin. Today, the Brandenburg Gate is celebrated as a symbol of peace and reunification.

40 Tips Before You Travel Abroad

All the Planning You Need Before You Leave

  1. Some countries are strict with passport expiration. To be safe, make sure that your passport is valid for at least 6 months on the date of your exit.
  2. Know if you must obtain a visa on countries you plan to visit. Allow plenty of time for applying.
  3. Find out what immunizations you may need two months before your departure.
  4. Read about your destination before going there… not while you’re there.

  5. When buying a suitcase, consider getting a 4-wheeled spinner luggage. It's easy to maneuver and it stands upright at all times.
  6. Attempt to pack light. If you don’t believe you will use it…don’t bring it along.