Taman Sari water castle offers different and unique tourist attractions in Yogyakarta. With beautiful European architecture, the castle mark 260 years of its existence. Build during the reign of Sultan Hamengkubuwono I, the first king of Yogyakarta. Taman Sari stashes the history of Mataram’s reign in every part of the building.
Taman Sari is not only a magnificent building. Each side of the area is built with perceptivity and is full of philosophy. Lies in the 10-hectare area, Taman Sari dwells by 57 buildings inside. The construction of the water castle is based on the order of the first king itself.
The water castle is his resting place. Designed to be his last destination when he retired after years of war. Surround by a water garden with an extensive pavilion. The meditation chamber, mosque, and excessively rooms. Taman Sari is finally used for 47 years as a residence.
Taman Sari is a heritage site of Mataram Palace located in the neighborhood of the Kraton area. To get a better photoshoot, make sure to come as early as possible. Some of the spots left abandoned will be the perfect frame for photo hunters.
Water Castle From Time To Time
The water castle construction begins in 1758, back during the first King of Yogyakarta’s rules. The entire construction was completed during the reign of the next King, his son. Afterward, the castle was properly used between 1765 to 1812. So long as the first King rules until 20 years after his retirement.
Part of the water castle shattered during the British invasion back in 1812. And due to severe damage during the war, after the first King died, the water castle is left to abandon.
The rest of the water castle Taman Sari shattered in 1867 after the massive earthquake in Yogyakarta. In short, Taman Sari’s first restoration works begin in 1970. The restoration succeeded in putting the bathing pool back in a complete piece. However, by that time the water castle nearby area has become local residential.
Attraction in Taman Sari
There is 4 main area in the water castle. The artificial lake in the west area, Umbul Binangun Pool on the south side of the artificial lake. Then, Pasarean Ledok Sari and Garjiwati Pool in the south of Umbul Binangun. And in the east side of the artificial lake, there is an island with a suspension bridge
The Umbul Binangun Pool is the best conservation area in the water castle. While the others and some areas had been changed into the settlements of former Abdi Dalem of Keraton Yogyakarta.
Pulo in Javanese means island. Formerly, the island location is in the middle of an artificial lake. And there is a building called Gedhong Kenanga. Gedhong is the highest place in the Taman Sari area. In fact, Gedhong Kenanga was once used for monitoring the whole area of Yogyakarta Palace.
There is also another building in Gedhong Kenanga that was once an evacuation spot that headed toward the tunnel. Even there is no artificial lake anymore. Pulo Kenanga still offers city views from the top and a beautiful sunset spot.
Meditation Spot & Mosque
Next, Pulo Cemethi is a place for meditation. The spot is located in the quietest area of the castle. The spot once also was a hiding place for the royal family in the event of an attack. To get into the Pulo Cemethi area, walk along the underground tunnel. The locals also believe that there is a secret tunnel that connects the water castle to the Indian Ocean.
The third spot to explore in the water castle is Sumur Gumuling. The area is an underground mosque. Located on the west side of Pulo Kenanga, Sumur Gumuling is different from other mosques. Guests will see a two-floor building with a circular-shaped form.
The praying hall for men is on the first floor. And women pray on the second floor of the mosque. Walk along in the building, there are five stars representing the 5 pillars of Islam. This room is an echo room. So the conversation made in the room will be heard by others.
Gedhong Lopak-Lopak or Gopok-Gopok, formerly this building is a tower with two floors. But now has been replaced by an eight side square garden. Gedhong Gapura Hageng is the main gate in the west area.
Today, the main gate is directed to the east side of the water castle. Visitors are not allowed to enter from this gate anymore. Gapura Hageng is a two floors building full of ornament called Ssengkalan. From the ornament, people will know about the beginning story during the construction of the castle.
Umbul Pasiraman or Umbul Binangun
Next spot is Umbul Pasiraman or called as Umbul Binangun. This area once was a bathing pool for the Royal Keraton member. The bathing pool is an outdoor space covered by a solid high structure around it. It consist of three pools, called Umbul Muncar, Blumbang Kuras and Umbul Binangun.
There are two buildings and a central tower in the bathing pool. One building once was the King’s leisure spot, the changing room for the daughter and King’s mistresses.
The central tower in the pool area is also an interesting part of the building. The tower once was used by the King to observe his daughter and his mistresses bathing. From the tower, the King will throw a flower at one of the mistresses. The chosen one will have to serve and spend the night with King.
The entrance from Gedhong Gapura Panggung on the east side has a history beneath it. The snake ornament on the east side tells a story of the completion of the water castle. The last spot is Gedhong Temanten. This is where the guard station is. It is also a place where the off-duty guard rest.
Taman Sari Water Castle Opening Hours
The water castle welcomes guests from Monday to Sunday including on National holidays. It opens from 9 AM and closes at 3 PM. To sum up, just like other tourists spot in Yogyakarta, Taman Sari water castle will almost always pack with local tourists and students on weekends.
|Taman Sari Water Castle Opening Hours|
|Monday – Sunday||09:00 AM – 03:00 PM|
Taman Sari Water Palace Entrance Fee
The entrance fee for an international tourists visitor is different than the local. However, the entrance fee is still cheap Rp15.000. In addition, there is an extra charge for a camera.
|Taman Sari Water Castle Entrance Fee|
|Children & Adult||Rp15.000,-|
The water castle is lack facilities. Parking space is there but limited. A few food vendors are available and lining up near the entrance gate. Guides are available on the spot at the entrance gate and will try to offer their service. Most guides will offer as you wish to price. But the average price for less than an hour tour starts from Rp25.000,- per person and negotiable.
There is a souvenirs store and handicraft seller around the area. Walk along the street in front of Taman Sari street or slip into the alley. Visitors will find home industry handicrafts and small houses selling shirts, batik, and souvenir around the area.
|Water Castle – Guide Range Price|
|Price per person||Rp25.000,- to Rp50.000,-|
How To Get To Taman Sari Yogyakarta
Taman Sari water castle is easy to spot. Especially since its location is only 1.4 km from Alun-Alun Yogyakarta. It is a 15 minutes walk from the center of the city. To get here tourists can certainly walk from Alun-Alun Utara street and head to Yogyakarta Palace.
Turn right at the T-junction Suryoputran street, continue and turn left at the T-junction. The sign of Taman Sari water castle will be easy to spot from Polowijan street.
For public transportation, tourists could catch Transjogja bus line 3A. Line 3A will stop at the Taman Sari shelter. Other transportation options include pedicab, motorcycle taxi, or Andong (horse passenger carriage).
Address & Location
The water castle location in Jl. Kompleks Wisata Taman Sari, Patehan, Kraton, Special Region Yogyakarta.