Yogya is one of the tourist destination in Indonesia. The city is full with cultural ambient, because Yogya is the only kingdom province in Indonesia. The king of Yogya is Sultan. And, Sultan is also the governor of the province. The Sultan kingdom is one of the popular tourist destination in Yogya. The Sultan kingdom is in the city center. Near to it is the Taman Sari (water castle). It was the bathing place for princess. In the front of Taman Sari, there was a Ngasem market. People was selling mostly bird in Ngasem market. So then, it was famous that Ngasem was a bird market in Yogya.
History of Ngasem Bird Market
The area of Sultan kingdom in Yogya is very wide. Almost all area in Yogya is Sultan’s land. Surrounding of Sultan’s kingdom, there was a small lake. There, the Sultan spent his spare time looking at his kingdom. Because of the population growth, the lake was changed. Slowly, the lake became a market. However, this market is different with the other market. It is because of the the market activists who was mostly men. Nevertheless, the commodity of this market was mostly birds.
According to the Javanese philosophy, that men’s wealth was comprised of five possession: house, wife/woman, horse (vehicle), weapon, and birds as a pet. To accommodate this, then men in surrounding of the kraton (Sultan’s kingdom) they established a market which selling birds. The location of the market was in the area with a lot of tamarind trees. Tamarind in Javanese language is asem. Because of the location with a lot of asem tree (tamarind), then they called the market as Ngasem market (pasar Ngasem).
Current condition of Ngasem
As a name of village, the Ngasem village is still there. But, the government of Yogyakarta has moved the bird market to a new location. It is now in Pasar Satwa dan Tanaman Hias Yogyakarta (flora and fauna market of Yogyakarta). The short name of it is PASTY. The location is about 2.5 km to the south from its original location in Ngasem village. We can take a taxi which cost us about 2 – 3 dollar one-way.