The south coast of central Java consists of a series of attractive sandy coves punctuated by volcanic headlands and pounded by the full force of the Indian Ocean. The coastline was once an isolated corner of Java with few facilities, but now that electricity finally extends along the shore, it is becoming a popular weekend destination for those escaping the traffic of cities such as Yogyakarta and Solo. Midweek, however, Java's southern seaside remains a quiet and peaceful spot.
The main coast road winds through rolling hills, past fields of peanuts and cassava, and through fields of flowers grown solely as selfie backdrops (2000Rp per pose!). Small lanes lead off this road to exposed bays, where the open sea is rough and angry, and swimming is only advisable in selected, sheltered spots.
Inland, the ancient tombs of Imogiri make for a fascinating side-trip.