The island of Java is the political and economic center of Indonesia. The country's capital of Jakarta is located at the Northwest corner of this long narrow island. A string of volcanoes runs down the island's spine.
Almost at the center of the island is the cultural capital and primary tourist destination of Yogyakarta, generally just called "Yogya" by the locals. The area around Yogya has seen the rise and fall of Hindu, Buddhist and Muslim kingdoms, leaving a rich historical record of temples and palaces.
In the east is the old trading center of Surabaya and Java's most spectacular natural sight, the vast caldera holding Mount Bromo.
The long narrow island is divided politically and geographically into four large provinces: Banten, West, Central and East Java. The nation's capital Jakarta is a special administrative district located between Banten and West Java. The cultural and tourism center of Yogyakarta in Central Java is also a special territory.
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In addition to Jakarta, places of interest in West Java include Bandung, the royal city of Cirebon, the beaches at Pangandaran, and the island of Krakatau off the island's western tip.
Central Java is home to what remains of the great ancient kingdoms that once ruled the island. Scattered around the countryside outside of Yogyakarta are some of the world's most impressive ancient temples.
The mountainous East Java is home to many of the islands best hill resorts, as well as Indonesia's second largest city, Surabaya.