You are probably asking yourself where should I stay in Yogyakarta? I was in Yogyakarta for almost three years and lived in almost every part of the city (Hahaha yeah, I am a bit weird). Each part of Yogyakarta has a unique atmosphere that will attract different types of people, but before I tell you more about the different areas of Yogyakarta I want to share a fun little fact with you.

If you ask for directions in Yogyakarta people don’t say ‘go straight and turn right at the crossroads.’ Instead they say, ‘go straight and at the crossroads turn east.’ So if you’re asking yourself where you want to stay in the city you need to think about it like a compass. Do you want to stay in the North, South, East or West (Malioboro is at the center)?

Need Help Arranging Your Trip in Yogyakarta? Check Out: 

  1. Shared and Private Yogyakarta Tours: Find Out More
  2. Best Hotels For any Budget Near Malioboro: Find out More
  3. 9 Best Luxury Hotels in Yogyakarta For the Ultimate Vacation: Find Out More

Booked Your Hotel? These are My Favourite:

  1. Luxury Hotel – The Phoenix Hotel
  2. Mid Range Hotel – Greenhost Boutique Hotel
  3. Budget Hotel – Adhishana Hotel Yogyakarta

So now you understand how locals talk about Yogyakarta. Here’s a quick guide to the city so you can choose where to stay in Yogyakarta. You can use the links below to jump to the part of the city you want to visit. Each section covers a short description of the area, the tourist attractions, best places to eat and where to stay. I’ll start with my favorite part of Yogyakarta.

The 5 Parts of Yogyakarta

1 – The South (Jalan Prawirotaman): Find Out More
2 – The Center (Malioboro): Find Out More
3 – The East (Airport): Find Out More
4 – The North (Luxury): Find Out More
5 – The West (Suburbs): Find Out More

where to eat in Yogyakarta nanamia

Photo of the garden at Nanamia Restaurant. It’s a nice place to relax on a hot day.

Jalan Prawirotaman and the South

The South of Yogyakarta is very popular with tourists. It is also known as the part of the city where the artists (you can call it the Bohemian part of the city). The most famous street in the south of Yogyakarta is Jalan Prawirotaman, which is lined with cafes, bars and hotels.

Best Hotels

Mid Range – Gallery Prawirotaman

Gallery Prawirotaman is a modern hotel located on Prawirotaman 2. The hotel has the timeless luxury design of a grand colonial building. All of the rooms are spacious and comfortable and the hotel has the modern facilities, including pool, gym and art gallery, that you would expect from a four star hotel.


Budget/ Mid Range – Adhisthana Hotel

Adhisthana Hotel is a cute boutique hotel located on Prawirotaman 2. The interior of the hotel has a beautifully decorated with a large and comfortable lobby area where you can sit and relax and an inside swimming pool. Adhisthana Hotel has rooms suitable for every budget. Dorms start at Rp 125,000 a night. A full review of the hotel can be found here.


Top Tourist Attractions

The South of Yogyakarta has three main tourist attractions. The first is Alun Alun Selatan Yogyakarta. This is one of the central squares in the city. Although there is not much to do there during the day the area does get busy in the evening. The second tourist attraction is Taman Sari Water Palace (and the Kraton Museum). I’d say that this is really the tourism highlight of the south of Yogyakarta. Finally there is the busy bird market.

To the south of Yogyakarta city is Parangtritis Beach. This is the most famous beach around Yogyakarta, though I think the beaches around Gunung Kidul are actually a lot nicer. If you want to visit Parangtritis Beach then just follow Jalan Parangtritis out of the city. On the way to the beach you pass an area where you can go sand boarding. You can also go paragliding on Parangtritis.

where to eat in yogyakarta Mediterranea

Mediterranea is probably my favourite restaurant in Yogyakarta and looking at the photo makes me realise why 😉

Best Restaurants and Bars

The best street for food in the south of Yogyakarta is Jalan Tirtodipuran. My favorite restaurants on the street are Mediterranea and Nanamia. Both restaurants have Western menus. If you are looking for good Indonesian food I recommend visiting Warung Handayani.

Nightlife in the south of Yogyakarta is based around the bars. The bars are located along Jalan Prawirotaman, Jalan Parangtritis and Jalan Tirtodipuran. The best bars are probably K’Meals Bar & Resto, which normally has a live band playing reggae music, and Asmara Art & Coffee Shop, which normally has a live band playing rock or metal.

shop at Beringharjo market Yogya

Malioboro (and the Center of Yogyakarta)

Malioboro is probably the most famous part of the city for tourists. It is certainly the busiest part of the city for tourists (especially backpackers). Large shops and malls line the main street. Horse and carts wait on the side of the road for tourists and crowds gather around the small street stalls.

Best Hotels

Budget – Wakeup Homestay
I know there are a lot of backpacker hotel/hostel/guesthouse/homestay around Malioboro, especially in Sosrowijayan Street and the alleys around it. My personal recommendation is Wakeup Homestay. The rooms are clean, the place is nice and it is very affordable.
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Mid Range – Neo Malioboro
Neo Malioboro is a relatively new hotel and is quickly becoming one of the stars of the Malioboro area. Besides the friendly staff and the nice location, the swimming pool is one of the reasons this hotel has become so popular. Almost everyone loves the sky lounge of this hotel. It is a nice place to spend the evening.
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Melia Purosani

The Melia Purosani is a 5 star hotel located between Malioboro and the Royal Palace. The hotel has five room types and all of the facilities that you’d expect from a 5 star hotel, including a swimming pool, fitness center and five restaurants. The best way to get to Malioboro is to walk or take a rickshaw ride.
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Top Tourist Attractions

Jalan Malioboro is probably the most famous tourist attraction in Yogyakarta. This is the place to come to if you want to buy batik or souvenirs to give to friends and family back home (however a lot of the stuff sold on the street is mass produced in factories). The best place to buy Batik clothing is Mirota Batik. I recommend coming here because the prices are fixed, so you don’t need to haggle with the shopkeepers (yes, even Indonesian’s have to haggle normally). Beringharjo market is also interesting, but they usually charge quite a high to foreigners. So do bargain 🙂

The city central train station is located at the top of the street. At the bottom of the street, you will see a lot of large buildings dating back to the colonial era. This includes the cities Central Post Office. On the right-hand side of the street is the current residence of the Sultan of Yogyakarta.

Gudeg - Yogyakarta City Tour

This is Gudeg, one of the traditional dishes from Yogyakarta.

Best Restaurants and Bars

There are a lot of street food stalls around Malioboro. Personally, I don’t recommend the street food around here. Though in the evening you will see people sitting down on the side of the road eating.

Some of my personal recommendation are: Angkringan Lik Man at Jl. Wongsodirjan, near the Tugu train station. This place is famous for its coffee with charcoal. There is one eating place that is pretty good, the name is Lesehan Terang Bulan. Their signature is the fried pigeon, they also provide fried chicken and Gudeg.

With so many backpackers it’s no surprise that Malioboro has a busy nightlife. Most of the popular bars and clubs are actually located on streets that come off of Jalan Malioboro. Two bars that I’d recommend visiting are Oxen Free on Jalan Sosrowijayan and Lucifer. Oxen Free is more for flashpackers while Lucifer is a hangout for backpackers.

The East of Yogyakarta

The east of Yogyakarta is one of the most built up areas of Yogyakarta. In the east of Yogyakarta are the campuses for the large universities, luxury shopping malls, multi-story buildings and the cinemas. It is also the part of the city with most upmarket clubs. Yogyakarta airport is also located in the east of Yogyakarta.

Top Tourist Attractions

There are a few tourist attractions in the east of Yogyakarta. The Affandi Museum is definitely the most famous attraction in the east of the city. The museum is located in a funky building on the banks of the Gajah Wong River. The museum is a collection of works of art by the famous Indonesian artist Affandi. It’s a nice place to look around and explore. And also the famous Prambanan temple 🙂

Best Restaurants and Bars

With the mixture of students and professionals the East of Yogyakarta offers a great range of bars and restaurants. For a nice restaurant with a great view I’d recommend Abhayagiri Restaurant, which is based in the Sumberwatu Heritage Resort. My two favorite places to eat in the East of Yogyakarta are Omah Dhuwur Restaurant, which offers a mix of international and Javanese cuisine and Ayam Goreng Ny. Suharti, which does great fried chicken.

There is plenty of nightlife in the east of Yogyakarta. A nice bar to visit is Cubic Kitchen & Bar. It’s a great place to have a drink in the evening and also meet with other expats in Yogyakarta.

the north part of Yogyakarta

The North of Yogyakarta

If you are planning a business trip to Yogyakarta and looking where to stay in the city then I would recommend the North. This part of the city is a mixture of residential housing, luxury hotels and new malls. There is not much to see here as a tourist, but it is very convenient for business travellers.

museum sisa hartaku merapi

Top Tourist Attractions

The most famous tourist attraction in the North of Yogyakarta is Tugu monument, though this is actually more of a landmark. The Tugu is located in the center of a busy road and a lot of teenagers hang around here and take photos in the evening. One of the most popular clubs in the north of the city is Boshe. You can read reviews about the club here. There is also Liquid Cafe that you should check out.

Two main tourist attractions that you can find if you head north out of Yogyakarta are the Merapi Lava Tour and Ulen Sentalu Museum. If you join the Merapi Lava Tour you get taken on an off-road adventure around the area where the last Merapi volcanic eruption occurred. It’s an interesting experience (you can read about it here). The Ullen Sentalu Museum is also a fun place to visit. If you find the history and culture of Java interesting I’d recommend coming here.

the west part of Yogyakarta

The West of Yogyakarta

If you are looking for where to stay in Yogyakarta I’d actually recommend avoiding the west of the city. It’s not that it’s a bad area, it’s actually quite nice, but there’s really not much to see. The west of Yogyakarta is a mixture of residential housing and businesses. There aren’t any tourism destinations inside the city, though there are some great tourism destinations outside of it.

Top Tourist Attractions

There are a few interesting tourist attractions located to the west of Yogyakarta. The attractions are mostly for nature lovers, but they are amazing. Highlights include Kalibiru National Park, Tea plantation Nglinggo and Glagah Beach.

My favourite tourist destination in the west of Yogyakarta is Kalibiru National Park. The park is a photographers dream and very instagrammable. The park offers some great views overlooking the countryside (sometimes pictures are better than words, this is one of those moments).

Kalibiru National Park Kulon Progo

Final Thoughts

I hope this review of where to stay in Yogyakarta gives you some ideas about the city. Picking the right place to stay in a city can really make your holiday special. I hope this guide to Yogyakarta makes it easier for you to decide where to stay.

Best Hotels in Yogya for Every Budget

Luxury Hotel – The Phoenix Hotel
Mid Range Hotel – Greenhost Boutique Hotel
Budget Hotel – Adhishana Hotel Yogyakarta

P.S. Need help arranging your Yogyakarta holidays? Save yourself some time! Here’s a list of Shared and Private tours.

Where did you stay in Yogyakarta? What do you think of the city? Help other travellers by sharing your thoughts in the comments below.