Great Sultan's Palace - Keraton
It is located in the center of the city of Yogyakarta or just Yogya as the local people call it. Karaton means a place where the Ratu-king lives, other word is Kedaton, with the same meaning. In the Javanese teachings, it has a deep philosophical meaning. The architect designer of this palace was Sultan Hamengkubuwono I himself, who was also the founder of the kingdom of NGAYOGYAKARTA HADININGRAT. His skill in architecture was appreciated by the dutch scientist - DR. Pigeund and DR. Adam who adored him as " the architect of his brother-Pakubuwono II of Surakarta".
The first king moved to his huge and magnificent Karaton on October 7, 1756. Although there are some European style of some parts of the building, structurally this is the vivid example of Javanese palace architecture. The 14.000 sq. m of the Karaton Yogya has deep philosophical meaning with all its building, courts, carving, trees, and location. This is a Karaton full of significant symbols of human life.
The mystical line of South Sea-Karaton-Mt. Merapi is believed to give strong protection to the Karaton, to the city and the region.
The populist king of Yogyakarta-the late Sultan Hamengku Buwono IX was the first king of Java who opened the palace to public. He was a fighter of the countrys independence, the Governor of Yogyakarta Special Region, the second Vice President of the Republic of Indonesia. One of his famous words was "Throne for the People" showing his progressive standpoint.
The policy of the late Sultan Hamengku Buwono IX is continued by his son and successor Sultan Hamengku Buwono X, who said during his coronation What for the throne and the tittle of Sultan (for me), if they are not beneficial to the society.
For the Javanese, a name has a meaning. The name of Hamengku Buwono means:
Hamangku : pleased to serve peopleHamengku : protect the people in a just way.Hamengkoni : ready to take responsibility of a leader.
Furthermore he says that a great and powerful King (Ratu Gung Binatoro) is not an absolute power and feudalism but is a leader who has capability to protect the people in a just, prosperous and safe country where the people has the right to evaluate the work of the leader.
The present Sultan is also the Governor of Yogyakarta Special Region (Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwono X, from traditional leader to Governor of Yogyakarta Special Region).
The Karaton and its highly valuable culture are well preserved, welcome to be visited and admired by local and International visitors.