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Home » Borobudur » Samudera Raksa: A Trip Back in Time

Samudera Raksa: A Trip Back in Time

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  1. Budha Statue on Borobudur

    Borobudur, the great Buddhist stupa on Java (Indonesia), built and decorated perhaps before 800AD
  2. Part of Statue at Borobudur

    Borobudur was rediscovered in the 19th century, rescued from the surrounding jungles, and today is a major Buddhist pilgrimage site.
  3. Vesakh Festival At Borobudur

    Many Buddhists visit Borobudur during Waisak (the Buddhist day of enlightenment). On Waisak, hundreds of Buddhist monks from Indonesia and further afield begin at 2am to make a procession from nearby Candi Mendut, walking the 1.5 miles to Borobudur.
  4. Ruins from Borobudur

    Borobudur is built on a stupendous scale - it couldn't be otherwise, as it is nothing less than a representation of the cosmos as Buddhist theology understands it.
  5. Sunset Scenery at Borobudur

    Once you enter Borobudur, you find yourself being led into an intricate cosmology immortalized in stone, which is a magnificent trip for amateur archaeologists, albeit one that will require an experienced guide to decipher.
  6. Stupa of Borobudur

    The monument is shaped like a mandala, forming a series of platforms - five square platforms below, four circular platforms above - riddled with a pathway that takes pilgrims through three levels of Buddhist cosmology
  7. Amanjiwo Resort near the Borobudur

    Amanresorts offers a guest experience that is intimate and discreet while providing the highest level of service. www.amanresorts.com
  8. Waisak



Imagine being a merchant centuries ago, sailing between Africa and Indonesia, facing the treacherous ocean on your way to a new and exotic land. That’s exactly what the crew of the Samudra Raksa got to experience when they sailed to Madagascar and West Africa in 2003-2004 as part of the Borobudur Ship Expedition.

The expedition on the Samudera Raksa was designed to recreate the ancient trading routes between Indonesia and Africa. The crew’s epic voyage took place on a traditionally built double outrigger, a replica of the ship depicted in one of the reliefs of the Borobudur in the 8th century.  By sailing this route on a traditional vessel, the crew showed that it was this type of ship that was most likely responsible for the spread of trade and culture between Indonesia and Africa centuries ago.

Indonesia and Africa have longstanding cultural and trade ties. It’s believed that trade between the two regions could have begun as long ago as Roman times.   

The building of the ship was the idea of Phillip Beale, a former British Navyman who was inspired by the beauty of the ship engraved of the wall of Borobudur when he first visited the temple decades ago. Working with a team of engineers and traditional boat builders, the Samudera Raksa was built, modeled on the exact ship depicted on the relief at Borobudur.    

Today, the Samudra Raksa is housed at the Borobudur Ship Museum in the grounds of the Borobudur temple. On reaching Ghana in 2004, the boat was dismantled and shipped back to Indonesia where it has been reconstructed in the museum.

This museum is a tribute to the crew and all who worked and supported the Borobudur Ship Exhibition. If you like to learn about exciting adventures, this is the place to come. At this small museum you can see photographs of the voyage, the audio visual equipment used by the crew as well as books, kitchen tools and clothing that was used on board.

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Oct 2014

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Samudera Raksa: A Trip Back in Time

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