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JL. Mentigi, Pamenang Mataram Indonesia

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  • Mosques to Visit in Yogyakarta, Indonesia

    Yogyakarta is popular as it is the centre of art and culture in Indonesia. Additionally, it is the center of development of Islam in the country. It is home to historical mosques that capture interesting stories of the past. Here are four mosques I would recommend you to visit in Yogyakarta if you are looking for a great place to pray:   1. Kauman Great Mosque Credit: Masjid Gedhe Kauman Kauman Great Mosque, or popularly known as Yogyakarta Great Mosque, is located in the downtown of Yogyakarta. Locals like to call it 'Kauman Mosque' because it nestles in Kauman village, which is 140 meters away from the city's major tourist destination: The Palace of Yogyakarta or the Kraton Ngayogyakarta Hadiningrat.Established in 1773, Kauman Great Mosque is one of the oldest mosques in Indonesia. It was founded by Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwono I, the first king of Yogyakarta Palace. Yogyakarta Sultanate itself was founded in 1755 after Treaty of Giyanti was signed by the Dutch East India Company and Prince Mangkubumi, who later became Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwono I.If you visit this mosque, you will be amazed by the majesty of its beautiful Javanese classic architecture in every corner of the building. The architects of this mosque are clerics Faqih Ibrahim Diponingrat and Wiryokusumo.Kauman Great Mosque has a special room, called maksurah, exclusively for the Sultan of Yogyakarta to worship. This space is designed to protect him from any danger while he is praying. If the palace does not hold special occasion at the mosque, ordinary people, including tourists, are allowed to pray in this room.In Kauman Great Mosque, you can see a number of unique ornaments, such as king’s throne-like minbar, triple-tiered roof and mustaka, an ornament on top of the mosque.   2.Kotagede Mosque Credit: @faulannisa on InstagramKotagede Mosque or Mataram Great Mosque is the oldest mosque in Yogyakarta. Having existed since 1640, this building is the symbol of glory of Islam in the era of Mataram Kingdom.Located in Jagalan district, Bantul regency, Kotagede Mosque was built by Sultan Agung, the third Sultan of Mataram Kingdom who was in power from 1613 to 1645. Born in 1593, he was a skilled soldier who managed to conquer neighboring states and expand his kingdom to Lasem in 1616, Pasuruan in 1617, and Tuban in 1619. According to Dutch literature, he was called Agung the Great.What makes this mosque even more interesting is that it is near Mataram royal graveyard. On certain nights of the Javanese lunar calendar, many people will dress in traditional Javanese costumes and visit the graveyard and the mosque to pay their respects and pray.Within the compound of Kotagede Mosque, there is a 100-year old banyan tree named Waringin Sepuh, which translates to 'old banyan tree'. Locals believe that anyone who prays under the tree will receive good luck.   3.Syuhada Mosque Credit: @MasjidSyuhada on FacebookSyuhada Mosque is a gift from Indonesia’s first president Sukarno to the Yogyakarta people. This gift was intended as a way to recall those who had sacrificed their lives for Yogyakarta when it gained independence from the Dutch ruler. The word syuhada is 'shahid' in Arabic, which is a title of honor accorded to those who have embraced death in the way of Allah.This mosque was established in 1952, seven years after Indonesia's Independence Day on Aug. 17, 1945.As it is celebrated every Aug. 17, this mosque has 17 stairs and eight pillars. It also has 20 windows which symbolises the 20 characteristics of Allah.Syuhada Mosque is located on Jl. I Dewa Nyoman Oka No. 13, Kotabaru, Gondokusuman. At a glance, it looks like a rumah panggung (stilt house). It has three floors - the first floor is used for learning activities, the second is for women to pray, and the third is for men to pray.   4.Pakualaman Great Mosque Credit: Masjid Agung Puro PakualamanLocated on Jl. Masjid in Pakualaman district, Pakualaman Great Mosque is one of Yogyakarta's cultural heritages. It was built by Sri Paku Alam II, a ruler of the principality of Pakualaman who was serving from 1829 to 1858. Pakualaman was a small hereditary within the Sultanate of Yogyakarta.This mosque was constructed by Paku Alam II under the instruction of Paku Alam I, the son of Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwono I. Paku Alam II was also a renowned artist. He not only liked to produce work of art during his time, but also introduce music and drama to his people.Like Kauman Great Mosque, Pakualaman Mosque also has beautiful Javanese classic architecture. At the entrance gate, you will be welcomed by a writing that reads, “terus luhur terusto raharjo", which means 'straight way to welfare'.It is not clear when Paku Alam II built Pakualaman Great Mosque. Inside the building, there were two beautiful inscriptions in Javanese and Arabic writing. One inscription said that it was built in 1839. However, the other one said that it was built in 1855.The 144-meter-square Pakualaman Great Mosque, which is able to accommodate almost 500 people, has been renovated several times by Yogyakarta administration.So don't waste anymore time. Head over to these 4 Yogyakarta mosques today!...

  • 7 Beautiful & Affordable Muslim-Friendly Villas in Gili Islands, Indonesia, You Can't Miss

    Want to enjoy a perfect family gateway or a romantic short escape but can’t decide where to go? Then, look no further than Lombok, an island full of adventures and beautiful destinations located in Indonesia. One of the best things to be found in Lombok are the incredibly luxurious Muslim-friendly villas and hotels that are complete with spectacular ocean views. You could see the beautiful view of the great Lombok oceans and the magnificent sunrise right from your room’s balcony. Do not worry about the facilities, they provide A to Z amenities including prayer mats and halal food places and also a sports center for some crazy sports activities. Here are some excellent oceanfront choices we’ve researched for you! 1. Puri Mas Boutique Resort & Spa Credit: Puri Mas Traveling can be a solution to inhale your energy and exhale your stress especially when you're in comfortable and affordable accommodation with beautiful scenery. Puri Mas Boutique Resort & Spa is one of the iconic resorts in Lombok that provides you a place to enjoy the sunset from your room’s balcony. Within just a few minutes walk, you will find the Senggigi Beach, Klui Beach and other touristic areas. When you come to this resort, you will see its rich heritage stand strong through its architecture, sculpted archways, and manicured tropical gardens. Puri Mas Boutique Resort & Spa is located in Senggigi City which is just an hour drive from International Lombok Airport. To offer the perfect mix of romantic luxurious living and stylish, Puri Mas Boutique Resort & Spa provides you a cool and refreshing outdoor pool, a fitness center, a luxurious spa with a wonderful menu of treatments, free Wi-Fi, car rental services, restaurant with a halal food menu and dry cleaning. Address: Jalan Raya Pantai Mangsit, Senggigi, Batu Layar, Mataram City, West Nusa Tenggara 83355, IndonesiaContact No.: +62 370 693831Room Rates: Prices start from SGD 90 Website | Facebook | Instagram | Email 2. Desa Dunia Beda Beach Credit: Desa Dunia Beda on Facebook If you need a short gateway with your partner where you can fill your eyes, heart, and soul with amazing sights and immerse yourself in cultural activities, then check in to Desa Dunia Beda Beach Resort would be the best choice! This resort opted for traditional constructions from Java named Joglo and Rumah Kampung, old teak houses renovated and their mission is to give full privacy and comfort to the guests. You will have access to a range of amenities for an enjoyable stay, such as garden and pool pavilions, saltwater swimming pool, Wifi, minibar, mini library, leisure corner with chess and backgammon, beach bar and grill corner, bike rental, traditional massage and many more. For those who really want to experience the crystal blue water, you can go scuba diving, snorkeling or fishing trips. And if you want to celebrate an anniversary or your partner's birthday or just want to have a private gateway then a romantic dinner on the beach side or garden area is a must! From its restaurant and bar, enjoy the fantastic view of the beach and the sunset in a natural environment, while digging into the delicious local cuisine and BBQ prepared by Indonesian chefs. Address: Gili Trawangan, Gili Indah, North Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, 83355Contact No.: +62 811-390-676Villa Rates: Prices start from SGD 109 Website | Facebook | Instagram | Email 3. Katamaran Hotel & Resort Credit: Katamaran Resort Need an unforgettable journey to rejuvenate with the balance of body and soul? Then, let’s try to spend a night or two in Katamaran Resort when you visit Lombok. It is located right on the beachfront of the exquisite Mangsit Beach in Senggigi, Lombok, Indonesia. There is a myriad of activities that you can do in Katamaran Resort. First, pamper yourself to an intimate dining experience in ocean beachfront. Indulge in a private butler service and enjoy delicious halal food such as Tagliolini Pasta sauteed with Crab and Tomato Sauce or Wrapped and Baked Seafood Cartoccio with Potato and Mushrooms. Second, if you have a family trip why don’t you arrange a surprise afternoon tea for your family? There is a great spot to enjoy high tea with the family in this resort and enjoy the delectable menu, featuring the Tuna Croissant, Sweet Roll Cake, and Macaroons. Moreover, if you are someone who enjoys diving, fishing, snorkeling, or sunbathing by the beach or just relaxing at a place to witness beauty of nature, you should visit Gili Nanggu, Gili Sudak and Gili Kedis. This resort makes it really simple for you by preparing a special package that is approximately SGD 191 (Rp1815,000) per pax. You can also get your boost of adrenaline in the Rinjani Trekking package which requires two days to conquer the mountain, the package price is around SGD 522 (Rp4961,000) for 2 pax. Address: Jalan Raya Senggigi, Senggigi, Batu Layar, West Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, 83355Contact No.: +62 370 6197 888Room Rates: Prices start from SGD 106 Website | Facebook | Instagram  4. Kila Senggigi Beach Hotel Credit: Kila Hotels on Facebook For those who love shopping, this hotel would be the perfect option! Killa Senggigi Beach Hotel is surrounded by shopping malls and markets. They offer plenty of facilities and service such as a fitness center, badminton area, tennis court, swimming pool, a whole menu of spa treatments and rooms that feature a view of the ocean. Here at Kila Senggigi Beach Hotel, your vacation will be a perfect experience! One that is filled with exquisite food, exciting activities, a retreat for the body and soul, and an atmosphere of tranquility and romance. Surely, the perfect ingredients for the best getaway! Address: Jalan Pantai Senggigi, Senggigi, Batu Layar, West Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, 83355Contact No.: +62 370 693210Prices: Prices start from SGD 59 Website | Facebook | Instagram | Email 5. SunsetHouse-Lombok Spend your night in this boutique hotel to catch the mountain and sea view! Just 5 minutes away from the Senggigi Beach, in front of Batu Bolong Beach and just 10 minutes walk from Senggigi Centre or 1 hour 15 minutes drive from Selaparang Airport. This hotel provides free tickets to a traditional dance that performs every Wednesday and Saturday after sunset, so you can enjoy the local experience! In the afternoon, take your time and relax in its large outdoor pool and take some time off and lounge by the pool. Then, enjoy a stroll in the hotel’s tropical garden. Surrounded by a fish pond, dine at the hotel's restaurant, serving you an international menu with Italian and Asian specialties. Address: Jalan Raya Senggigi No.66, Batu Layar, West Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, 83355Contact No.: +62 370 692020Room Rates: Prices start from SGD 55 Website | Facebook | Instagram | Email 6. Qunci Villas Credit: Qunci Villas Qunci Villas will make your visit to Lombok truly memorable with providing excellent accommodation and personal service. Its rooms are all located on the beautifully landscaped beachfront property and boast either ocean, partial ocean or garden views. If you just want to pleasure yourself, it has a swimming pool to make you chill out. The chic and sophisticated decoration of this hotel provides a mix of modern architecture and traditional decoration. Forget your job for a while, take a deep breath and enjoy the beautiful green mountain and palm treed, and the Lombok sea views. It has also spa treatments, bar and lounge, library and foreign exchange services. Address: Jalan Raya Mangsit, Senggigi, Mangsit, Batu Layar, West Lombok, West Nusa TenggaraContact No.: +62 (0) 370 693 800Villa Rates: Prices start from SGD 113 Website | Facebook | Email 7. Jeeva Santai Villas Credit: Jeeva Santai Villas This villa is known as the “Peaceful Spirit’ homestay offering an intimate and luxurious selection of 14 villas and suites that will surely have you relaxed in no time. It is also known as a peaceful oasis due to its simple and elegant concept, channeling a calming and blissful atmosphere. This villa offers plenty of facilities, such as a private pool, restaurant, library, and free transport to all the amenities at Jeeva Klui, located only 2 kilometers away. Want to enjoy some of the best sunsets in the world? Don't you worry! You can enjoy it from the Sunset Terrace at Pearl’s! Surrounded by Mangsit Beach, the coast of Lombok, and further across the Indian Ocean to the islands of Bali, the Sunset Terrace at Pearl’s is a popular spot for guests. Address: Jalan Raya Senggigi, Batu Layar, West Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, 83355Contact No.: +62 (0)  370 619 7123Villa Rates: Prices start from SGD 140  Website | Facebook | Instagram | Email We’ve done all the recommending the best Muslim-friendly with beautiful views, so all you need to worry about is booking your flight, preparing your pre-vacation glow and jet-setting off for a short escape of a lifetime!...

  • Hopping By Semarang For A Quick Getaway? Explore Semarang's Fascinating Historical Hot Spots

    History never really says goodbye. History says, ‘See you later.’ - Eduardo Galeano I strongly agree with Eduardo Galeano. How could I say goodbye to my hometown in Semarang in Central Java? I would never say goodbye to my lovely city of Semarang. This city offers so many historical and adventurous places. I would like to introduce you to a Muslim-friendly tour to Semarang. Trust me, these places are fun and you can learn about their endless history. So fasten your seat belt and let the journey begin! Semarang Old City The first destination you need to visit upon arriving in Semarang is the Semarang Old City. This place will transport you back in time. Years ago, in the 19th-20th centuries, this area was the trade center and a place where the government officials are. In this area, there are around 50 old buildings carrying the European architectural style of the 1700s. During the Dutch colonialization, this area was built according to the agreement with the Mataram Kingdom. In the beginning, it seemed like it was just a fort, however, as time goes by, the city grew and the fort expanded rapidly. The settlement also grew, calling it the De Europeesche Buurt or just like how the locals call it - the Little Netherland. After Indonesia got its independence in 1945, the government began to take over all Dutch Offices and buildings. Some of these buildings are still operating and functioning until today. You can still visit Blenduk Church, Tawang Rain Station, Praoe Layar Cigarette Factory and many more. Semarang Old City is now a public space and a safe destination for you and your family. Lots of young couples put Little Netherland the main location for their pre-wedding photos. Good place for photo-hunting to bring the old vintage look to your Instagram, isn’t it? Address: Jalan Letjen Suprapto Number 22, Tanjung Emas, North Semarang.  Synod of Protestant Churches in Western Indonesia (Blenduk Church) Located within the Semarang Old City area, the church was built in 1753. Everyone in Semarang may know about this church. However, locals might not be familiar with the complete name of this church, so if you are looking for this church, be sure to call it the ‘Blenduk Church’, then they will understand. It is also the oldest church in Central Java province. The original name was Nederlandsche Indische Kerk or Synod of Protestant Churches in Western Indonesia. At that time, the shape of the building was like Joglo, a traditional Javanese house, then it was renovated in 1787. A convex shaped dome (in Javanese called Mblenduk) and two towers were added to the church. Since then, locals would always call it the Blenduk church instead of calling its original name. Today, Christians are still using this place for praying and worshipping. Times where there are no masses going on, tourists are allowed to enter with an entrance fee of IDR 10,000. Address: Jalan Letjen Suprapto Number 32, Tanjung Emas, North SemarangOpening Hours: 9AM to 4PM (Mon-Sat)                          1PM to 4PM (Sun) Lawang Sewu Building Let’s go to another Netherland historical village in Semarang! Move to the center of Semarang City, we will see the Lawang Sewu building. Lawang Sewu is a Javanese term which translates to 'thousand doors' as there are so many doors inside the building. In fact, the total amount of the doors is 928. Locals use the term ‘thousand doors’ in order to simplify the conversation. Years ago, Lawang Sewu was used as an Indonesian railway center, owned by the railway operator PT. Kereta Api Indonesia used this building as their headquarter. Today, the Lawang Sewu building has evolved into a train museum. There is an endless amount of knowledge that you can gain about the train history in Indonesia when you're at this museum. In the museum, you are able to witness locomotive miniatures including the carriages. This building is so unique and full of art. No wonder tourists and even the locals come to Lawang Sewu. The perfect location for a pre-wedding photo session is in the Main Hall area since it is surrounded with numerous glasses. You can visit Lawang Sewu building on any day and the tentrance fee is pocket-friendly too. Address: Jalan Pemuda, Sekayu, Central Semarang.Opening hours: 7AM to 9PM (Monday to Sunday)Ticket fare: Adult (IDR 10,000).                   Children under 12 years old and students (IDR 5,000) Sam Poo Kong Temple We’ve done with Netherland’s heritage, now let’s move to the Asian part of Semarang. Yeap! You are right. We are going to the Sam Poo Kong temple. A historical site in the middle of the town. Sam Poo Kong temple was built to remember Admiral Cheng Ho when anchored in the North Coast of Java centuries ago. Red and yellow are dominant colors in the Sam Poo Kong Temple complex. Chinese people, particularly the people who hold onto the Buddhist religion, still use this temple until today. There are at least 4 temples inside the complex and they are the God of Earth Temple, the Quartermasters Temple, the Sam Po Tay Djien Temple, and the Kyai Jangkar Temple. Surely, there are many picturesque spots here. The temple management has even put up some signs to show you the best photo spots. In addition, you can rent Traditional Chinese costumes near the main entrance, and choose from adult to children size. Don't worry about the price, you only need to pay IDR 100,000 to rent the Chinese clothes during the opening hours. There is no time limit when it comes to renting the clothes. Psst... A suggestion from the management, please be quiet when entering the temple, may you find people praying inside. Address: Jalan Simongan Number 129, Bongsari, West Semarang.Opening hours: 8AM to 9PM (Monday to Sunday)Ticket Fare: Normal day (Adult: IDR 5,000. Children: IDR 3,000).                    Weekend & Holiday (Adult: IDR 8,000. Children: IDR 5,000). Great Mosque of Central Java Last but not least, let's not forget to pray in the Great Mosque of Central Java. The Great Mosque of Central Java was a work in progress in 2001 and was finally opened by 2006. The mosque can accommodate around 15,000 jamaah. This mosque is not only dedicated for prayers but it is also one of the top religious attractions in Semarang. In the mosque area, you can visit the museum and library, providing you with the historical story of this religious spot. As you can see, the architecture of the Great Mosque of Central Java is a blend of local and Arabic culture. There are six giant hydraulic umbrellas just like the Nabawi Mosque in Medina. The giant umbrella will open up during Friday Prayers, Eid al-Fitr or Eid al-Adha as long as the wind does not go over 200 knots. Wanna try to challenge yourself a bit more? You can come inside to Asmaul Husna with 99 meters height. From this place, you'll see the entire Semarang city and also the coastal using some binoculars. Another best spot in the complex is the giant Koran and the giant drum. Address: Jalan Gajah Raya, Sambirejo, Gayamsari, East Semarang. One day is not enough for traveling in Semarang as the best historical destination spot in Indonesia. There are still so many Halal destinations in this town. I promise I will share them on HalalTrip App!...

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