Alun - Alun Kidul (Selatan)

One characteristic and also become the identity of the old city's centers on the Java island is the presence of the square at the center of the cities. These squares are the large field on center of the city which is surrounded by the Banyan tree in its middle. One of them is Alun-alun Selatan (South Square) in the Yogyakarta city.

In the Mataram Palace period, Alun-alun Selatan was functioned to prepare everything in support the relationship maintainance between the palace and the outside world. It also symbolizes the unity of the sacred powers between the king and the nobles who live around Alun-alun Selatan. While the function of Alun-alun Utara (North Square) is to implement everything related to the royal power.

Alun-alun Selatan is the back yard of The Yogyakarta Palace. Historically, it was made to change the atmosphere of The Palace backyard to be seemed like the front one because actually that Mount Merapi, The Yogyakarta Palace, and Pantai Selatan (The South Sea of Java island), is on one straight line if they are withdrawn in an imaginary line. Therefore, Alun-alun Selatan was built in order to the position of Yogyakarta Palace as faces to The South Sea as to Mount Merapi. Within Alun-alun Selatan complex, there is a building called Sasana Hinggil which was used to place for the king watching the human race with a tiger called “rampog macan” in ancient times, but now it changes into a performing arts building.

Alun-alun kidul (Selatan)  at Present Day
Alun-alun Selatan is also commonly called Alkid (abbreviation from Alun-alun Kidul in Javanese or mean Alun-alun Selatan) is a part of Yogyakarta Palace located on southside of Yogyakarta Palace. Nowdays it become a public space for Yogyakarta resident. Everyday at late afternoon until evening, it transformes into an excited public recreational area.

There are numbers of various food vendors overthere. One excited thing is that Alun-alun Selatan becomes a cycling tour area at night. We can find Tandem bicycle and becak (the three wheel traditional vehicle in Indonesia) which have been modified with attracttive decorated lamps lined up there to be rented by some rented bike owners. It also function as a common sports area for those who love excercise. 

There are two old Banyan trees at the center of Alun-alun Selatan. Each of them is surrounded by a solid fence. These Banyan Trees become an interesting object of game. Starting from Yogyakarta society belief that if there is anyone can walk through successfully between two banyan trees with closed eye, so he will achieve his goal easily. Until now many tourists exciting to try this game.

There is an elephant cage at Alun-alun Selatan. It is belong to Yogyakarta Palace. Previously, this elephant is often ridden by children as an entertainment. But now that event has disapperaed although the term of “elephant cage” is still  wellknown by many people.

Because of its location is still in the Yogyakarta Palace area, so tourists will easily to go there. Just need to find the Yogyakarta Palace and follow the road to the southside.

Thanks for reading this article Alun - Alun Kidul (Selatan) and You had already participated to maintain and preserve the ancestral cultural heritage

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