The Water Palace

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The palace grounds are quite large, and this 18th century complex is known as the kraton. We walked through the back streets from the palace, then upstairs to look over the old palace grounds.

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Much of this area, and the Water Castle, were damaged or destroyed by Stamford Raffles when the British invaded Java in 1811. Locals were allowed to home homes within the walls of the kraton, provided they considered them temporary. So, should the sultan want the land back for himself, all these smaller buildings would have to be demolished.

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The round roofed building in the photo on the left was a sauna complex. Remember, some of these buildings date back to the early 18th century.

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What was remarkable was the underground tunnel, which allowed the sultan and his family to move around the kraton in safety. Of course there is no electrical lighting here, but light holes were strategically placed so you could easlity see where you were going.

From inside the Water Castle, you can get a good view of the surrounding area. The long red-tiled pavilion is used by the Sultan’s family.

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Looking inside the grounds, you will see so much ornate detail on the buildings.

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© Helen Gray 2021