I was somewhat disappointed with Yogyakarta nightlife. As a city famous for attracting students and tourists, I was expecting a fun party atmosphere with busy bars and nightclubs.

On the contrary, Yogyakarta is quite conservative and provincial. There aren't so many venues to go out in the city, and most of them lack sophistication.

I still had fun, but it took me a while before figuring out where to go out at night.

The objective of this guide is to save you some time and give you the best tips to enjoy Yogyakarta nightlife as a foreigner. If new bars and clubs open, please mention them in the comments to help me keep this review up-to-date.

Hotels in Yogyakarta Near the Nightlife:
This is a map of the main nightlife spots in Yogyakarta and the recommended hotels nearby. Click on the image to enlarge it.

I guess you won't be going to Yogyakarta for the nightlife only and you are also interested in visiting attractions like Borobudur, the beaches in the South, the Keraton, etc.

If you want to do all that, plus go to bars and clubs in the evening, the best place to stay in Yogyakarta is near Jalan Malioboro, the most famous street in the city. It is lively, especially at night, and it is also walking distance to the main train station.

If you are on a budget, or a young backpacker who wants to meet other travelers, an alternative is to find a guest house near Jalan Prawirotaman, about a kilometer south of Jalan Malioboro. The price range goes from 10$ to 50$ a night. Be careful with small, family-run hostels though as they may not accept unmarried couples. To avoid any issues, it is better to book in larger, chain hotels such as the ones below:

Amaris Hotel

Best Bars and Clubs in Yogyakarta:
There are not that many venues for partying in Yogyakarta. My favorite spots are listed below, starting with the most recommended.

Dress codes are generally not enforced. I saw people wearing flip-flops, short pants and t-shirts almost everywhere except in Boshe and Dragon.

The best days to go out are Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. You can check Instagram pages of the venues below for special events during the week (for instance Student Campus Nights or Ladies' nights).

Bars on Jalan Prawirotaman
If you are a young backpacker or a student who wants to meet other travelers, I recommend you to go to Jalan Prawirotaman and find a busy café or bar there to hangout. There are at least a dozen in the area, usually cheap and friendly. They are especially busy during the high season in July and August, when Europeans are on holiday.

You can start at the corner of Jalan Prawirotaman and Jalan Parangtritis, and walk from there. Some of the popular cafés are Warung Heru, Till Drop, Boogie Down, and Asmara.

This busy restaurant, bar, and nightclub, built on 3 floors, is the best place for partying in Yogyakarta at the moment. It is large, crowded almost every night, and it features the best DJs. The crowd is mostly Indonesian, including students from the nearby UGM. Few tourists can be spotted as well.

Busy beer garden with a young expat and Indonesian crowd. Owned by a mixed couple from Indonesian and Belgian nationalities, it is relaxed, friendly and reasonably-priced. You can get a local beer for just Rp40,000. Nicely designed. Service can be clumsy. 

It is in a residential neighborhood, 10 minutes away from Jalan Malioboro. They have DJs and live bands occasionally.

Part of the Gold Dragon chain, the Jogja branch consists of a large main room with a high ceiling. It actually looks more like an upscale restaurant than a club. Recommended for groups, avoid it if you are alone. Indonesian live music followed by DJs (EDM).

Large, modern, trendy complex a bit far away from the city center. It is an open-air restaurant and café with a club inside. Busy on weekends (IDR 100,000 entrance fee with one drink included, free for girls). Live music with DJ.

I had been there more than 10 years ago, and they've changed the layout quite a bit since. I'm not sure it's very popular anymore. Local crowd. EDM music. You can get a bottle of Jack Daniels for IDR1.5 million. Walking distance to Bosche and Gold Dragon.

Boshe VVIP Jogja
Boshe VVIP is just in front of City Mall. If you have been to the one in Bali, you will notice it looks almost the same. There is a Rp150,000 entrance fee with one drink included (free for ladies). You generally have a local live band or sexy dancers before midnight, and then a DJ.

Since the prices are higher than the average for Yogyakarta (small local beer is Rp60,000), it attracts an older crowd, mostly male. The sound system and the lighting are great. It is famous for its karaoke where pretty lady companions (LC) are available. Many girls but most of them are working there and they are only looking for money.

Terrace Café and Karaoke
Terrace is located in Jalan Raya Seturan, an interesting street with many cafes and restaurants that stay open until late. Terrace is the busiest venue in the area. It is a small club on two floors with either live music, a DJ or dancers on stage. It wasn't so crowded when I visited and most of the guests were guys. The entrance fee was Rp75, 000, a large Bintang costs Rp95,000. They play EDM, Hip Hop and Top 40 music.

Sugar KTV
There used to be a club here, but now there is only a karaoke (similar to the one in Boshe). It is within the hotel Indoluxe, about 15 minutes from the center. 

Lucifer is a small bar/café/restaurant in the backpacker street Jalan Sosrowijayan. They have live rock and reggae music, cheap food and a crowd made of mostly Indonesian men in their 20s.

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