1. Borobudur Sunrise

Borobodur Sunrise Tour - No 1 best things to do in Yogyakarta

Photo Credit : satunusanews.com 

Take a look at the greatness of the 9th century Mahayana Buddhist temple, see the beautiful sunrise from the top of Borobudur or watch the celebration of Waisak filled with light lanterns in Borobudur. Candi Borobudur decorated with 2672 relief panels and 504 Buddha Statues, unfortunately, some of these panels and statues were damaged by natural disasters. However the government decided not to have reconstruction the damage because it could harm the historical value of Candi Borobudur. Check out our Borobodur Sunrise Tour for the best way to see the temples!

  1. Javanese Archery Experience

Javanese Archery by Backstreet Academy

Jemparingan or traditional archery is a valued heritage of Java. This is a sport you cannot miss while in Yogyakarta because Jemparingan is not only known as a physical exercise but also a practice for the soul. Unlike other archery sports you do in a standing position, you will perform Jemparingan in a sitting position. In the past, Jemparingan can only be performed by Abdi Dalem (Keraton employees and guard), but now it can be performed by anyone including foreign tourists. Quoted from Abdi Dalem, “Jemparingan to me is not a sign of victory, but it is to subdue the enemy within ourselves, that is lust.” Jemparingan will help you to control yourself; to concentrate and focus. Book your Javanese Archery Experience in advance here to avoid disappointment!


  1. Prambanan

Prambanan Temple Tour

Photo credit : wikipedia.com 

Urban legend says Prambanan temple is the monument of Badung Bondowoso, the man who built this temple with supernatural powers because of his ambition to marry Roro Jonggrang. However, in the end, he changed Roro Jonggrang into a statue and placed it in one of the temples because of her betrayal. During the night, ​​Prambanan Temple is also often held Jazz Music Performance and cultural event. With over 200 individual buildings within the Prambana complex, this is one of the best things to do in Yogyakarta. Get a local guide on Backstreet Academy to see the beauty of Prambanan Temple right now!

  1. Yogyakarta Evening Street Food Tour

Evening Street Food Tour Yogyakarta Backstreet Academy

While there are a million things to do in Yogyakarta, there are also a million things to eat in Yogyakarta! The street food in Yogyakarta is really amazing and you won’t want to miss them! Lesehan and Angkringan are some of the unique places to eat in Yogyakarta that you can find along Malioboro Street. Ready to taste something new like nasi kucing (Cat Rice, but not made with real cats! It’s name means the small portion that is more like it is for cats) or coffee with burning charcoal that is put right into your glass? Come and feel for yourself the sensation of eating at the side of Yogyakarta’s busy roads accompanied by street music and the crowds from Keraton to Malioboro. Get Backstreet guide at our Malioboro Street Food Tour to enjoy the best of the markets with insider knowledge of the best stalls right now!


  1. Mount Merapi and Mount Merbabu

Summiting Mount Merapi

The twin volcanoes of Merapi and Merbabu towers over the city of Yogyakarta like guardians, with a little town called Selo in between them. Both volcanoes are climbable with Merapi being a shorter but steeper climb and Merbabu a more manageable incline but longer hike. The views at the top are amazing, with sunlight streaming through a sea of clouds. You will also get a peek over the edge to see the smoking crater! Make sure you go with local guides as some parts are not as easily traversed and volcanoes always have a few surprises to offer where a guide comes in handy. Book the Merapi Sunrise Hike and the Merbabu trekking trip and you’ll have an adventure to remember from your Yogyakarta trip!

  1. Merapi Lava Tour and Mbah Marijan Monument

Merapi Jeep Tour

Photo credit : tempo.co

One of the best things to do in Yogyakarta might be a nature adventure because this city have lots of nature surrounding it. Don’t want to hike but want to enjoy the challenging rocky mountain area? Worry not! You can do the tour along the track of Merapi rocks by renting a jeep. They will take you around the foot of Mount Merapi and stop at the famous monument of Mbah Marijan. Mbah Marijan is a Mount Merapi gatekeeper who did not leave when Mount Merapi erupted in 2010. His dedication to Mount Merapi and the safety of the people led to the government designating his house as a monument commemorating his efforts in the last eruption of Merapi.


  1. Silver and Copper Workshop

Silver Crafting Workshop in Kotagede

Kotagede is often called the Jewelry of Yogyakarta. This is because you will find a lot of traditional craftsmen who produce jewelry with high selling value. You can also order your own customized jewelry with your initials on it in any shape you like, or why not learn to make it yourself? Create your own jewelry right with a master artisan in Backstreet’s Silver and Copper Workshop .


  1. Sunset at Candi Boko

Sunset at Boko Temple

Photo Credit : slemanonline.net


Some people claim there is no more romantic place to watch the sunset than at Boko Temple. These ruins are so popular that they are often used as a location for famous Indonesian films. Furthermore, there is a camping area to enjoy the stars and feel the silence in this temple area.

  1. Handmade Batik Class

Batik Workshop Backstreet Academy

Batik, the symbol of Indonesian heritage. Celebrated all over the world and worn by the nation’s leaders at the most formal events, there is a ton of history and heritage behind this age old craft. Visit the Batik master in our Batik Class and learn the art of diligence and discipline to produce fabrics with intricate patterns. In addition, you can also see the exhibition of batik cloth with high historical value. Why not try to channel your artistic soul onto a piece of cloth?

  1. Ullen Sentalu Museum

Ullen Sentalu Museum Yogyakarta

Photo Credit : matta-tour.com

Ullen Sentallu Museum is a museum that represents the art and the culture of Java. Located in the mountains area of ​​Kaliurang, a cool and calm atmosphere will take you to the halls of the museum filled with the history of Kraton. This museum has a collections of paintings and photographs of historical figures of Mataram Islam culture, vorstenlanden batik, literature, statues of Hindu Buddhist cultures, and ethnographic collections of the Mataram era of Islam.

  1. Traditional Dance workshop at Kraton

Javanese Dance Workshop Backstreet Academy

Javanese dance is a grand, sacred, and religious performance unique to the area of Yogyakarta. Almost all the dances that are held in the Kraton (Palace) of Yogyakarta are the sacred dance of Kraton, which has a variety of philosophical and spiritual meanings as well as philosophical background that is rooted in the tradition of Kraton. Learn Traditional Dance at Kraton  from a traditional Javanese dance teacher to get the most local dance experience!


  1. Javanese Cooking Workshop

Javanese Cooking Class by Backstreet Academy

Learn to be a master in making Javanese cuisine from local hosts around. From the process of buying food from traditional markets, processing raw materials to serving them, enjoy the Javanese hospitality through the most basic activity in Human civilization – Cooking and eating. This is the identity of Javanese society culture and family, and you can be one of them by joining this Javanese Cooking Workshop with welcoming Backstreet host Mimi.

  1. Luwak Coffee Appreciation

Kopi Luwak Appreciation Backstreet Academy

Luwak coffee is one of the most rare and expensive type of coffee in the world. Why? Because The Luwak (Civet Cat) need to eat the coffee seed first and digest it before ejecting them from their digestive system. After that, the farmers will collect the faeces from the Luwak and clean it up, process it before roasting them like normal coffee beans. It is rumoured that that the Luwak’s digestive systems apparently imbue the coffee beans with a very special aroma and taste you can’t get anywhere else. Indonesia is famous for this so make sure you Check out how Luwak coffee is made in Backstreet Academy’s  Luwak Coffee Appreciation tour!

  1. Karambit Crafting Workshop

Karambit crafting Workshop Backstreet Academ

Karambit is a traditional weapon where the process of making is also very traditional. The myth says this weapon is very difficult to use because of its shape and only few blessed people who have the talent of using the karambit. Traditionally used by the Javanese warriors, its use has now been relegated to ceremonial functions and being a collector’s item, like most blades around the world. Learn to craft one for yourself at Backstreet’s Karambit Crafting Workshop to craft one for yourself!

  1. Ukulele Workshop

If you love music, you will love the activity of producing a very popular musical instrument in Yogyakarta – The Ukulele. An instrument used by lots of communities in Yogyakarta, including students, street musicians, and even traditional musicians, it’s famed for its portability and upbeat tunes. If you’re a music enthusiast, you’ll appreciate the ability to craft your own Ukulele with a master artisan at Backstreet Academy’s  Ukulele Crafting Workshop!Ukulele Making Workshop Backstreet Academy

Backstreet Editorial Team

We're a clumsy bunch of foodies, techies and travellers. We rock out to the tunes of Rick Ross, and Flamenco on weekends for fun.