The Diversity of Bogor
Indonesia is not very well known in the world, and the small city of Bogor, an hour away from the capital city, Jakarta, on the best of days when there is no traffic, is much lesser known.
Perhaps, the most famous location of the city lies in its center, eighty seven hectares large: Kebun Raya Bogor and Istana Bogor, translated into the Botanical Gardens of Bogor and the Palace of Bogor, which are situated next to each other, the Palace connected to the Gardens. Nearly two centuries old, the Botanical Gardens has monuments from the time when the Dutch colonised Indonesia, the memorial of Sir Raffles’ wife, and hosts 13, 983 different species of plants.
However, my favorite part of the city lies elsewhere. High in the mountains, away from the lights, the bustle, the traffic of Bogor, are paddy fields in villages unknown by tourists and many locals. With the fresh mountain air, green expanse, and absence of people, the villages give you a sense of serenity as you gaze down upon the city.
Diverse is Bogor which puts together palaces and paddy fields, people of all races and religion, the modern and the old, the areas of loudness and of quiet. Hidden away, surrounded by mountains, Bogor is a mix between shopping malls and traditional markets, amusement parks and secluded waterfalls, with temples, churches and mosques standing next to each other. Rain falls often, cooling the air, yet the sun shines brightly, its rays burning the city, or gently caressing it in a beautiful painting.