Jogjakarta Sultan Palace

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Privileges of Jogjakarta in the Wealth of Tradition and Life Philosophy


The beginning of Kasultanan Jogjakarta (Jogjakarta Kingdom) is started when in the year of 1558 AD, Ki Ageng Pamanahan granted some region in Mataram from Sultan Pajang for his services defeat Aryo Penangsang. In the year of 1577, Ki Ageng Pemanahan –who had always been loyal to Sultan Pajang until the rest of his life— built his palace in Kotagede. But the heir, his son Sutawijaya, was different from his father. Sutawijaya didn’t want to obey Sultan Pajang. 

He wanted to have his own kingdom and even wanted to defeat all over Java. After won the battle against Pajang Kingdom in the year of 1588, Mataram became an independence kingdom with Sutawijaya as the Sultan (king) with the royal name Panembahan Senopati. The Mataram Kingdom got through its best development when the 4th Sultan, Sultan Agung Hanyokrokusumo, ruled. After Sultan Agung passed away and substituted by his son Amangkurat I, Mataran Kingdom got through internal/family conflict, which was used by VOC (the Dutch), and ended up with Giyanti Agreement on February 1755 which then divided Mataram into Kasunanan Surakarta (Surakarta Kingdom) and Kasultanan Jogjakarta. On that agreement, Pangeran Mangkubumi stated as the Sultan of Kasultanan Jogjakarta with his royal name Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwana I. Since the year of 1988 until recently, Kasultanan Jogjakarta has been ruled by Sultan Hamengku Buwana X.

Keraton Jogjakarta (Jogjakarta Sultan Palace) was established for the first time by Sultan Hamengku Buwana I, few months after Giyanti Agreement. The keraton location was once the ex-residence called Garjitawati. This residence was used to take a rest for the mourners who brought Mataram kings’ dead body to the cemetery in Imogiri. Another version said that keraton location was a spring called Umbul Pacethokan, which located in the middle of Beringan Wald. Before stayed in Keraton Jogjakarta, Sultan Hamengkubowono I stayed in Ambar Ketawang residence which is now come under Kecamatan Gamping, Kabupaten Sleman. Keraton complex is located between Code River in the east and Winongo River in the west, Krapyak Building (Panggung Krapyak) in the south and Jogja Monument (Tugu Jogja) in the north. This complex also lies on one imaginary line between South Sea and Merapi Volcano.


The word keraton comes from word ka-ratu-an, means the residence of the king/queen. Physically, this Jogjakarta Sultan Palace has seven main complexes, those are Siti Hinggil Ler (North Royal Hall), Kamandhungan Ler (North Kamandhungan), Sri Manganti, Kedhaton, Kamagangan, Kamandhungan Kidul (South Kamandhungan), and Siti Hinggil Kidul (South Royal Hall). Generally, the whole keraton area is extending 5 km to the south until Panggung Krapyak and 2 km to the north end at Tugu Jogja. On this imaginary line, there is a linier line of inverted dualism. We can see by philosophy symbolic, that from Panggung Krapyak to keraton (Kedhaton complex) shows “sangkan”, the origin of human creation from born until become adult. It shows by the name of the villages around Panggung Krapyak which called Mijen village (from the word “wiji” means seed). Along D.I. Panjaitan streets there are asam (tamarind) trees and tanjung trees. Those trees represent the childhood to teen era. The journey from Tugu Jogja to Keraton (Kedhaton complex) show “paran”, the human final destination, that is to meet their creator. Seven gates from Gladhag to Donopratopo represent the seven steps to heaven. While from Keraton to Tugu Jogja represent the full of temptations life journey. Beringharjo market represents women temptations, and power temptations are symbolized by Gedung Kepatihan (Parliament Building). Both lie in the right side. The straight path symbolizes human who are close with their creator (Sankan Paraning Dumadi). In a simple way, Tugu Jogja symbolizes Lingga (men) and Panggung Krapyak symbolizes Yoni (women). While keraton as the physical which origin of the two.   

Tugu Jogja and Bangsal Manguntur Tangkil or Bangsal Kencana (king’s throne) lies in the linier line. This means, when Sultan sit in his king’s throne and see forward to Tugu Jogja, he will always remember his people (Manunggaling Kawula Gusti). Keraton setting looks like the other Mataram Dynasti Palaces in general. Bangsal Kencana, the place where the king governs —unite with Bangsal Prabayeksa as a place to keep Keraton heirloom weapons (there is an always flare Kyai Wiji oil lamp in this room, maintained by abdi dalem (royal servant))— has function as the centre. This throne is surrounded by Kedhaton yard, that’s why to reach the centre, we have to go through layered yards which look like series of bewa (waves) in the ocean. Keraton spatial order really looks like the mountain constellation and Jambu Dwipa flatland which is considered as the centre continent of the universe.   

Those Keraton buildings have Javanese architecture with a bit influenced from foreign cultures like Portuguese, Dutch, and even China in some of its parts. Buildings in each complex usually have Joglo construction or its derivation. Generally, every main complex consists of yard covered by south sea sands, main building, and additional building, sometimes planted with particular trees. One and another complex is divided by a pretty high wall and connected by Regol usually in Semar Tinandu style. The doors are made from thick teak wood. Usually, in the back or in front of every gate, there is a partition wall called Renteng or Baturono. In some Regol, this partition has typical ornament.

Keraton is flanked by two city squares, North City Square and South City Square. Sizes of each square approximately 100 x 100 m. While the whole keraton area built above 1.5 square km land. The keraton main building is square fortified with 3.5 m high double walls (1000 x 1000 m). So if we want to enter it, we have to go through the curved gates called plengkung. There are 5 plengkung gates (we can see two of them until now). Those are Plengkung Tarunasura or Plengkung Wijilan on northeast side, Plengkung Jogosuro or Plengkung Ngasem on southwest side, Plengkung Joyoboyo or Plengkung Tamansari on west side, Plengkung Nirboyo or Plengkung Gading on south side, dan Plengkung Tambakboyo or Plengkung Gondomanan on east side. Inside the fort, especially on south side, there is small path for mobilize the keraton soldiers and their weapons. While as the defense, on those four fort corners, bastion had been made (we still can see three of them now) with a small hole to spy the enemy.

In the keraton area, besides the keraton buildings as sultan residence, there are also villages for people residences around. On the past, only the keraton abdi dalem could live there, but in its development until recently, everybody can live there. The name of the villages in “njeron beteng” (area inside the keraton fort) have their own different history one another. For examples, gamelan, in the past there was the residence of abdi dalem who works as gamel (stableman), siliran (lamp/lighting equipment caretaker), nagan (niyagan/gamelan player), mantrigawen (keraton area security guards), patehan (tea maker/tea server), kenekan (from Dutch word knecht/servant, to called abdi dalem who help the cabby horse), Langenastran (the residence of Langen Astra, soldiers who have job as Sultan bodyguards), Suryaputran (the residence of Prince Suryaputra, the son of Sultan Hamengku Buwana VIII), Kauman (the residence of Kaum/Moslem leaders), rotowijayan (the place to keep and to take care of the keraton carts), tamansari (residence of king wives and nonmarried daughters), and so on.

Location and Facility

The Jogjakarta Sultan Palace complex is located in the centre of Jogjakarta city, exact in the south side of km. 0 point of Jogjakarta city. From Tugu Jogja, we just have to walk straight to the south, pass through Malioboro streets until enter the keraton north gate in Jogjakarta North Square. Because its location in the downtown centre, it has quite complete facilities and accommodations around. Beside all kind of hotels, from stars hotel until inn, all kind of restaurants from luxurious restaurant until angkringan (typical Jogja foods and beverages booth), we can also satisfy our shopping passion with all kind of typical Jogja souvenirs, clothes, arts and crafts, and foods along Malioboro streets, Beringharjo markets, or in all shops and booths around keraton area. It’s all quite close from keraton, so we can just walk there or use becak or andong (local non motorized vehicles). As well as the transportation and communication tools which we can easily get. This Jogjakarta Sultan Palace tourism area opens every day at 08.00 a.m. until 01.30 p.m., except on Friday, it opens at 08.00 a.m. until 11.30 a.m. The ticket price is Rp. 5000, - for locals and Rp. 10.000, - for foreigners

Gamawisata Tour Packages to Jogjakarta Sultan Palace
  • Jogja Express (Tour Code: GW-JE1D)
  • Jogja Rendezvous (Tour Code: GW-JR2D1N)
  • Jogja Kombo (Tour Code: GW-JK3D2N)
  • Yogya plus Merapi Tour (Tour Code: GW3-YM/12)
  • Jogja Highlights (Tour Code: GW4-JH/22)
  • Best of Jogja (Tour Code: GW5-BJ/12)
  • Ancient Yogyakarta (Tour Code: GW12-AY/10)
  •  or based on your question