A trip to Yogyakarta, Indonesia, means for most tourists visiting the Prambanan and Borobudur temples. The city is located between these two highlights, so it is an obvious thing to do. But Jogja (as the city is often called) has a lot to offer. It is known as an art and culture hub, attracting artists from all over the country. These artists create not only art for galleries but also for the streets. I have to admit, there is a lot of graffiti and tags, but you can also find some excellent work. In this article, I will show you a few places in Yogyakarta where you can find good street art.
Click here to see more great street art places I visited.
Taman Sari murals
One of the main attractions in Jogja is Taman Sari, the former bathhouse of the sultans of Yogyakarta. You can easily combine this visit with street art because the surrounding neighborhood, Kampung Taman (Garden Village), has plenty. Go to Jalan Kampung Taman Sari and turn left before the entrance of Taman Sari. Walk a bit further, and you’ll find an alley full of street art on your left. The area around it also has a few works so take your time and walk around.
Bits and pieces around Sumur Gumuling
After Taman Sari, I went looking for Sumur Gumuling, the underground mosque I had seen so many lovely photos of online. I did manage to find the tunnel that serves as the entrance, but not the mosque. After asking around I learned that the underground mosque has been closed since the COVID-19 pandemic. How unfortunate! However, during my walk in the area, I did come across street art along the way. Pinpointing the exact locations is difficult since it is all in alleys, so I recommend just wandering around and taking your time.
Looking for lunch or dinner, or a place to have a drink? Head to Jalan Prawirotaman, the backpacker street in Jogja. This place is also great for street art. One of the artists you’ll see here and in many other places in Jogja is Anagard. He creates colorful stencil works (similar to Banksy) where people and animals seem to merge. Through his art, Anagard reflects on the sometimes challenging relationship between humans, nature, and government.
From Prawirotaman, you can continue to Jalan Tirtodipuran, Jalan Sartono, and Jalan DI Panjaitan. Hope Hotel on the corner of Gg. Batik Wahyu Tumurun is also worth a look. I also read that there is street art around the Minggiran football field.
Alley next to Viavia Jogja
A special mention goes to the alley between Jalan Prawirotaman and Jalan Gerilya. It does not have a street name as far as I could find. Just go to Viavia, next to it is the alley. Here, I saw the best works during my street art. Anagard is, of course, represented, but there are also other interesting pieces.
Street art outside Yogyakarta’s center
Jogja is a big city with more to explore outside the city center. Take a Grab taxi and go to one of these places:
Cosmos studio: said to be the “village of Anagard”
A little street art map
Personally, I found it quite challenging to find street art in Yogyakarta. It’s a big city and not always very convenient for pedestrians. Randomly wandering around in the hope of finding something can therefore quickly exhaust you. I also didn’t come across many online maps showing where to find street art. That’s why I made one myself. Hopefully, it helps you during your trip! Just remember, street art comes and goes. So the pieces I saw can be gone in a couple of years and new works can be added. That’s the game.
Prefer a guided street art tour? The awesome people of ViaViaJogja organize a street art tour. Their restaurant is amazing (definitely eat here!), so I have full confidence that this tour is also good.
Have you been to Yogyakarta and do you have any tips for where to find street art in this city?