Mount Bromo: Sunrise Hikes to Indonesia’s Iconic Volcano
Summary Mount Bromo Indonesia - Summary
Mount Bromo: How To Make The Most Of An Indonesian Sunrise
Mount Bromo is a volcano famed for its stunning and immense caldera. Climbing to its edge in time for sunrise is a treat the likes of which even the most amateur of photographers can capture – a symphony of lights and shadow, mists and smokes, greens and browns.
Climbing Mount Bromo Indonesia - Height and Distance
Natural Mount Bromo Indonesia - Natural Height
Natural Mount Bromo Indonesia - Hiking Period
It takes about half a day to complete this trek.
Most tourists spend the night at the nearby village of Cemero Lawang and opt for a jeep ride up the viewing points on Mount Penanjakan and down to the Sea of Sand before arriving at the base of Mount Bromo, from where everyone walks up the stairs to the edge of the crater.
If you are opting for jeep and horse rides to Mount Bromo and back and only scaling the stairs on foot, the entire trip will take you less than half a day.
Difficulty Mount Bromo Indonesia - Hiking Difficulty
Difficulty Mount Bromo Indonesia - Terrain
The trail to the top of Mount Bromo is a non-technical climb with a steep flight of stairs and can be undertaken by anyone with a fair degree of physical fitness.
The trail up Mount Bromo starts with a walk along the Sea of Sand, a large and windy stretch of powdery sand between Mount Penanjakan and Mount Bromo. This stretch is not difficult to navigate on foot but can be tricky in parts owing to the loose sand. It takes about a half hour so to traverse this section.
A flight of stairs follows this – 240 to be exact – at a steep incline, which brings you to the edge of the crater. Constant ash spewing from the crater and the swirling sand can make it slippery in certain parts. For this reason, it is not advisable to try scaling the mountain along any other path.
The constant footsteps of tourists and the bellowing of the volcano above have also taken their toll on the steps, for many have worn down and are often accompanied by broken rails on the sides.
Once you’re at the top of the steps, you can walk up along the edge towards the highest point of the summit. You can walk around the rim and watch the fumes from the crater or look around at the surrounding landscape that has an almost lunar quality.
There is no clear path to the summit, and most tourists do not attempt to go further up since this is still a very active volcano.
Difficulty Mount Bromo Indonesia - Weather
East Java overall enjoys mild weather throughout the year but the best time to plan a trip is during the dry season between May and August.
Daytime temperatures within the Park seldom range over 20˚C (68˚F) and nighttime temperatures can drop to single digits, especially on the mountain tops.
While aiming for the dry season, zero in on June to visit Mount Bromo if you can, to coincide with the Tenggerese festival of Yadnya Kasada. On the 14th day of the month-long festival, the villagers climb up to Mount Bromo and throw offerings into the crater for good health and prosperity.
Difficulty Mount Bromo Indonesia - Equipment
The only gear you really need for this climb is a good pair of hiking shoes.
Make sure to bring a mask or a buff for protection against the sand in the air on the Sea of Sand stretch and the sulphur fumes near the crater rim.
Facilities Mount Bromo Indonesia - Support Facilities
Facilities Mount Bromo Indonesia - Rest Stops & Facilities
This is a short trek, so you shouldn’t have much need for facilities, but some facilities are available.
At the trailhead, there is a registration kiosk, food and potable water.
Along the trail, there are a few rest stops up the steps if you would like to take a break. The stairs are also equipped with handrails to ease the difficulty of the steep incline.
There is no mention of facilities at the summit.
Facilities Mount Bromo Indonesia - Guides and Porters
Guides nor porters are not required or recommended.
Accessibility Mount Bromo Indonesia - Accessibility and Safety
Accessibility Mount Bromo Indonesia - Location
Surabaya is the nearest airport.
Most tour operators will pick you up from Surabaya. The drive to Cemero Lawang where you will spend the night will take approximately 5 hours.
If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also take a train from Surabaya to Probolinggo which is the nearest point to the Park on the train route. The train ride is about 2 hours long and there are several trains during the day. On arrival at Probolinggo, you can take a cab to get to the Bayuangga bus station which is about 7km (4.3 mi) away. The bus ride takes about 2 hours but since the bus services are infrequent, you can also consider the possibility of taking a shared cab or private taxi to Cemero Lawang.
A few years back, shared taxis or vans wouldn’t depart until they were full, which meant one could be waiting for an indeterminate amount of time. We need to confirm whether this is still the case but try to avoid that trap in the meantime by arranging private transport.
For the Sea of Sand stretch of the trek, there are motorbikes offering to take visitors across. If these are not included in your package, you might find the fares a little steep. So, it helps to book the horse or motorbike beforehand if you don’t want to walk the whole way.
Accessibility Mount Bromo Indonesia - Safety
Mount Bromo is a very popular point for visitors so it is unlikely you will ever be alone or isolated.
Volcanic activity: Mount Bromo, with its top almost completely blown off, is still a very active volcano and at times of high activity, it could be shut to visitors. The sand on your way up, or sulphur fumes near the crater rim can lead to breathing difficulties.
Slips and falls: Up at the rim of the crater, there is a one-metre ledge with safety rails to help you peer into the crater safely, but at points, the safety railing may be missing and one needs to be very cautious in walking around.