Surakarta Hadiningrat, popularly named as Solo is one of famous city in Central Java after Yogyakarta and Semarang. In fact, Solo is located in 65KM northeast of Jogjakarta and 100KM southeast of Semarang.
Solo is lying along the longest and the most fertile river in Java, Bengawan Solo or Solo River and set aside between hugest mountain volcanoes Merapi and Merbabu in the north, and mount Lawu in the southeast border.
Solo is approximately with the Javanese culture and tradition after Jogjakarta.
The ancient history of Solo dates back to the time series of events, started when the first “Java Man” was found in Sangiran, Sragen Regency. Then, a research that mentioned that Surakarta was established in a village called Village Sala, on the edge of the River Solo. This research was based on Charter Trowulan I in 1358, in English called Ferry Charter. Other history remain on Independent war 1945-1949 related with the assignment of Special Territory of Surakarta by first president of Soekarno and the rebellion of Tan Malaka regarding the constitution.
From 1945 to 1948 The Dutch Colonial was again successfully conquering Indonesia area, Including Java Island, except Yogyakarta, Surakarta and surrounding areas.
In 1948, The Dutch was invaded the remaining areas of Indonesia and declaring that Indonesia was already gone disappeared. As matter of that, the great General of Soedirman was refuse to surrender and he was start to made an attack, popularly known as “General Attack of August 7 1949”. This attack was lead by colonel Slamet Riyadi that finally killed on that battle. That is why, at present time Slamet Riyadi Street become a main street in Solo, memorizing the struggle of Slamet Riyadi.
Surakarta is known as one of the core of Javanese culture that traditionally is one of the political center and the development of Javanese tradition. The prosperity of this region since the 19th century, encouraging the development of Java-language literature, dance, culinary arts, fashion, architecture, and various other cultural expressions. Otherwise, People know about “competition” between the cultural of Surakarta and Yogyakarta, which gave birth to what is known as “Surakarta style” and “Yogyakarta style” in the field of fashion, dance movement, art leather chisel (puppet), processing of batik, gamelan instrumental, and so on.
The language used in Surakarta is a dialect of Javanese Mataraman (Middle Javanese) with a variant of Surakarta. Dialect Mataraman or Middle Javanese is also spoken in the region of Yogyakarta, east Magelang, Semarang, Pati, Madiun, until most of Kediri. However, the local variant of Surakarta is known as “soft variant” because the use of words in the widespread conduct everyday conversation, more extensive than in other places.
The tourism destination in Solo mostly coming from the tourist who want to visit the sultanate palace or some tourism object like Tawangmangu and Selo tourism object. Solo also has the most complete Batik Museum, The House of Danar Hadi. Out of those things, tourist just passing by to Solo for just enjoy the culinary or go to Klewer Traditional market to buy some souvenir and Batik.
For me, Solo is wonderful city. Such a peaceful place to acknowledge the culture itself.