• The Magic Colors of Ijen

    The Magic Colors of Ijen

    The volcano seems ready to erupt, but that has not stopped travelers from exploring its peak. The pull is a caldera that changes colors.

  • Faith Seekers in the Land of Pagodas

    Faith Seekers in the Land of Pagodas

    Increasing numbers of visitors have been pouring into Myanmar in the two years since the country opened up, many of them to pay homage to thousands of centuries-old pagodas. Some are even believed to contain relics of Buddha, whose teachings have become the faith of Myanmar's majority population.

    In the fading sunlight over the golden-domed Shwedagon Pagoda in the middle of Yangon, Myanmar's former capital city, a group of about 20 people sat across from one of the giant Buddha statues, their palms together in prayer. They were Indonesian Buddhists, who had travelled all the way to pay their respects to the stupa which historians and archeologists claim was built sometime between the 6th and 10th centuries. On another side of the complex, a group of Thais, facing another Buddha icon, chanted a litany, led by a maroon-robed monk.

  • The Satanic Sauces
    Eat Street

    The Satanic Sauces

    Jakarta's galloping gourmet goes on another incognito quest for good places to eat, seeking out the rich diverse foods of the Indonesian archipelago. This time, he goes for the cuisine of Central Java.

  • Delicious Diet for Cancer Patients

    Delicious Diet for Cancer Patients

    Food for cancer patients can be prepared in a tasty way. Getting the right nutrients is important to boost the body's capacity for resistance.

  • Beyond the Bird's Nest Soup
    Eat Street

    Beyond the Bird's Nest Soup

    A peddler approaches my table and displays his wares: desiccated crocodile penises, tiger claws and cobra oil. Then comes a large jar containing what at first seem to be decaying dog-like kittens in formalin. These revolting specimens, he informs me, are tiger fetuses. For a fee, he will slice a piece off one and concoct a drink to increase my virility. When I insist I don't require aphrodisiacs, he offers to procure me a junior high school girl.

  • <font face=arial size=1 color=#ff9900>A Peep Behind Royal Curtains:</font><br />ThePalaces of Bali

    A Peep Behind Royal Curtains:ThePalaces of Bali

    The very heart of Bali beats in its stately palaces. These magnificent royal precincts are at the root of Bali's civilization, where all of Bali's high culture and architectural achievements are concentrated. Although Bali's palaces share many physical similarities, the types of buildings, pavilions and decorations, court etiquette and ritual obligations, customs and dress of residents and the relative status and titles among the raja differ to a remarkable degree.

  • Laos the Bad and the Beautiful

    Laos the Bad and the Beautiful

    For someone who remembers when war was raging across Indochina, the country then known as Burma preferred hiding in the closet and China was a brooding malevolence, it is remarkable how easily borders can be crossed these days and how far afield the foreign tourist can wander. Veteran journalist John McBeth reports his impressions down history lane in landlocked Laos.

  • A Taste of Papua
    Eat Street

    A Taste of Papua

    If Jakarta's food scene is a melting pot of the archipelago's various cuisines, then Papua is the missing ingredient, despite being the biggest province. Indigenous Papuans don't leave home to set up restaurants in other provinces. Those who do come to the national capital are often drawn by wealth to be made from political positions and development programs.

  • Game Crazy

    Game Crazy

    The Grogol mental hospital has seen a rise in numbers of young patients addicted to online games. The cooperation of parents is an important key to successful therapy.

  • Give Us This Day
    Eat Street

    Give Us This Day

    As we reach middle age and death advances on the horizon, many of us try to adopt a healthier lifestyle.Taking up exercise, quitting smoking and curbing drinking can aid longevity. Equally good is cutting down on fatty, salty and sugary foods, and finding something healthier to eat.

  • <font face=arial size=1 color=#ff9900>Back to the Country:</font><br />Bali Eco Stay

    Back to the Country:Bali Eco Stay

    How many resorts do youknow have a boulder-strewn river running through themand are totallysurrounded by organic rice fields as far as the eye can see? Have a romping eight-year-old boynamed aftera legendary tree that can live for 4,000 years? Host a martial arts class for local kids? Generateits own hydropower?

  • Efficacy Doubts

    Efficacy Doubts

    A research team from Denmark alleges that clinical trials of Tamiflu are incomplete and have appealed for a boycott. Indonesia is waiting for further developments.

  • A Fresh Approach
    Eat Street

    A Fresh Approach

    The religious and sensual aspects of Sundanese culture are merged as a waitress exclaims ya Allah! and makes obscene references to the male anatomy, while flirting with a co-worker at one of the country's main Sunda restaurant chains.

  • Something Different
    Eat Street

    Something Different

    When it's cooked like that, how can you tell the difference between a bat and a rat?" That was the question posed as I embarked on a bowl of paniki rica ricachunks of fruit bat, complete with rubbery skin and crunchy bones, in spicy chili.

  • The Padang Experience
    Eat Street

    The Padang Experience

    In the 1980s, there was a punk band in Melbourne called 'I Spit On Your Gravy. Its Indonesian equivalent could be 'I Cough On Your Rendang. Dont get me wrong Padang food is delicious but Im not so keen on dining on food that other diners may have sneezed and coughed upon.

    The popularity of West Sumatras Minangkabau cuisine, with its Indian and Middle Eastern influences, is evidenced by the estimated 20,000 Padang restaurants across Jakarta. Some proprietors attribute the high number to the fact that many men have left West Sumatras highlands to escape the matrilineal culture, in which property is generally inherited by women.

  • Enabling Acces To Vaccines

    Enabling Acces To Vaccines

    Spotlighting child mortality rates and efforts to gain access to vaccines were among key topics discussed at the Asia-Pacific Development Summit last week.

  • <font face=arial size=1 color=#ff9900>Kebun Raya Eka Karya:</font><br />The Republic's First Botanical Gardens

    Kebun Raya Eka Karya:The Republic's First Botanical Gardens

    The man noticed me peeking through the wire mesh of the nursery and invited me inside the Orchid House that held pride of place at the top of Bali's famed Kebon Raya Botanic Gardens. Introducing himself as Pak Gede, he showed me the very rarest of orchidsthe green Phapiopedillum javanicum, the Bulbophyllum odoratum with yellow stripes, and the reddish speckled Edindabrium sulawesi.

  • Bali By Bike

    Bali By Bike

    Ever since the eccentric Dutch painter W.O.J. Nieuwenkamp first toured the Island of the Gods by bicycle in 1906immortalized on a stone bas-relief in a temple at Kubutambahan in north Balicycling has been a popular outdoor recreation across the island.

  • Indonesias Classical Era

    Indonesias Classical Era

    I remember a tiny dirt-poor farming village surrounded by wide open spaces dotted with crumbling temples. The year was 1975. In those days the one-story museum was in a sleepy garden where the heat clung heavily to the remains of ancient walls, bases and statuary scattered unattended in the open air as sparrows swooped in and out of the maja trees.

  • Kakara's Near-Perfect Beach

    Kakara's Near-Perfect Beach

    Beautiful vacation sites, like Bali, were first discovered by backpackers. Such a place is Kakara, a beach with powdery sands in eastern Indonesia.

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