Bromo Volcano

I arrived in Surabaya in the afternoon.  The first order of business was to have some lunch and then head off to the Bromo Volcano.  We would arrive at the volcano in the evening and find a place to stay for the night.  If you’re looking for luxury accommodations, there is a very nice hotel near the volcano called the Java Banana.  We stayed with a local who rented out some space in his house for us.  This was a lot of fun as it was a chance to really get to know some Indonesian culture.  The evening was uneventful.  We got some dinner at a nearby warung (small cafe) and then spent the evening talking with our hosts (well, they talked, I listened).

The next morning… early in the morning… we left for the volcano in a Landcruiser.  We hired the driver and Landcruiser the night before from the Bromo Jeep club (Almost all Landcruisers).  He picked us up at 3:30 am and we first drove up to the trailhead where you hike to a lookout point to see the sunrise.  Beautiful view and a great way to start the day.

This is actually a very popular thing to do – there were quite a lot of people and many Landcruisers going up to the lookout point.  In addition, there were some small snackshops setup along the hike up.  I can only imagine how early they had to get up to get to their spot with all the stuff they would have to sell.  If you’re feeling a bit lazy, out of shape, or just don’t want to hike, there are several people with horses waiting to give you a ride up to the lookout point.  These, by the way, are very small horses.  An average American would stand much taller…

After the lookout point, we hiked back down and got in the Landcruiser to go to our next point of interest, the volcano itself.  Once we got to the volcano and parked, we got out to hike the rest of the way.  The hike to the volcano is across an expanse of very fine sand that was dark gray and very cool to the touch (after all, it was still quite early in the morning).  As you hike across the desert, there, again, are several people with horses ready to take you to the foot of the volcano.  There is also a Hindu temple half way to the foot of the volcano called Pura Luhur Poten.  We didn’t go in to take a look, but instead continued hiking to the food of the volcano, and once there, had to climb a flight of stairs to the lip of the volcano.  At the lip, you can look down into the volcano and see the hot, sulfery water down below.

You do have to be careful at Boromo – the staircase is covered with fine sand and I’m sure it doesn’t take long for the stairs to be covered again after a cleaning.  So walk carefully.  At the top of the volcano, I have to admit to being a little bit nervous as there were quite a few people up there, not a lot of room, and the hand rail wasn’t as much a safety device as it is a illusion of safety.  Still, beautiful and worth the hike!

View full photo album.

More info from Wikitravel.

The biggest shock was that after all this activity, it wasn’t even noon yet, so the Landcruiser took us back to town, we got in to the car and headed off to the Madakaripura waterfalls.

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