Indonesian Heritage at Risk
On the morning of May 27, 2006, an earthquake registering 6.2 on the Richter Scale and lasting just under a minute rocked Indonesia. Its epicenter was just 20 kilometers southeast of the historic center of Yogyakarta. The famed eighth-century Buddhist temple of Borobudur, a World Heritage Site some 40 kilometers north of Yogyakarta, escaped damage. But the quake—which left more than 5,700 dead and thousands more injured and/or homeless—took its toll on numerous other historic sites. Among them were the tenth-century Hindu temple complex of Prambanan, a World Heritage site 17 kilometers from the city, and the Tamansari Water Castle, an eighteenth-century pleasure garden within the city’s fortified royal precinct, portions of which had only recently been restored following its 2004 Watch listing.