Indonesia (Republic of Indonesia)

Languages: Indonesian

Currencies: IDR · Indonesian rupiah (Rp)

Capitol: Jakarta

Continents: Asia

Borders: Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste

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Area: 1,904,569km2

Population: 273,523,621

Traffic/driving side: left

Landlocked country: No

Independent country: Yes

United Nations member: Yes

IDD Prefix: +62

Timezones: UTC+07:00, UTC+08:00, UTC+09:00

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Last updated on February 23, 2024

Hiking Mount Bromo active volcano in East Java.

Hiking Mount Bromo – an active volcano Gunung Bromo (2300 meters), is a very popular activity in this part of Indonesia and a unique adventure promising breathtaking volcano views.

Indonesia is a country known for its natural beauty, Bromo active volcano with its smoking crater is one of its most iconic landmarks. The volcano is located in East Java and it’s a part of the Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park, which attracts thousands of visitors every year. Bromo volcano is the only active crater in the Tengger caldera containing seven eruptive centers.

While most of travel blogs would describe this adventure as highly unique with rewarding volcano views, my experience shows the mother nature might shutter your plans 😉 The sulphur from the volcanic activity can cause some breathing problems and eyes burning, so get well prepared! Here’s everything you need to know to accomplish this journey safely and without any disruptions. 

Hiking Mount Bromo

How to get to Mount Bromo?

To get to the base of Bromo volcano, it’s best to stay in the town of Cemoro Lawang, which is the starting point for most hikers. It’s a small village but getting a room is not a problem, you can get exceptional dorms for only $6-$7 and comfy double rooms for approx. $20 on Some cosy places I would recommend:

Cemoro Lawang town is accessible by car or motorbike from the nearby city of Probolinggo, which is well-connected by train and bus to other parts of Java. Once you reach Cemoro Lawang, you’ll need to pay an entrance fee to the national park and hire a jeep or motorbike to take you to the viewpoint from where the hike begins.

Best places to stay in Probolinggo:

How hard is hiking Mount Bromo?

Cemoro Lawang village was a base for me before hiking Bromo. The crater is easily accessible from the village. It’s only 45 minute walk through the sand desert, passing a beautiful Hindu temple. Then you just need to take the stairs and you are in the top of the smoking crater. Honestly – it is one of the easiest hikes with incredibly rewarding views of an active volcano! It all seems very easy but… 

Staying in the nearest village was a difficult time. Make sure you check the volcanic activity before you get there. The wind was very strong, which means no visibility and a lot of choking volcanic ash from the crater was covering the whole desert and Cemoro Lawang area. I could barely sleep at nigh with two scarfs tide up around my face.

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Mount Bromo volcanic activity.

The volcanic activity can heavily affect visibility in the surrounding areas. When the volcano erupts or releases ash and gases, it can reduce visibility due to the presence of ash clouds and volcanic fog, also known as “vog.” These conditions can have various impacts on the region, including reduced visibility for aviation, disruption of local transportation, and potential health hazards due to the release of harmful gases and particles into the atmosphere. Once we arrived to the village we were making jokes of people wearing respiratory masks. It was a good lesson to remain humble when it comes to weather conditions especially in volcanic highlands.

The white ash shaded all the view of the crater. But once we reached the top of the crater the ‘vog’ started to lift up, weather improved, unveiling dramatic Bromo crater and unreal surrounding landscape.

I was traveling from Probolingo (Probolingo and Malang are two nearby towns to reach Bromo Volcano). On the way I met a lot of wonderful people, we had amazing time together and they made the Bromo adventure even more special. We spent overnight in Cemoro Lawang, which was our base for the Mount Penanjakan (stunning sunrise viewing point) and hiking Mount Bromo active crater. We were aiming for hiking Ijen Crater lake (Kawah Ijen) – which is a phenomenon out of this world. 

The seismic activity of Bromo Volcano increased in 2010 and 2011 when the earthquakes were detected. Bromo errupted in 2015. In 2011 ash emissions from this volcano caused the cancellation of some international flights to Bali. And in 2004 some people were killed because of the Bromo eruption.

Horse and a girl on a road to Bromo

Hiking Mount Bromo - the active volcano.

Hiking Mount Bromo is not particularly challenging, but it can be strenuous due to the high altitude and the steep incline. The trail is well-marked and easy to follow, but it can get crowded during peak hours, so it’s best to start early in the morning or late in the afternoon to avoid the crowds. Along the way you’ll be treated to stunning views of the surrounding landscape, which includes other volcanoes, hills and valleys. You’ll also encounter local villagers who live in the area and who may offer you refreshments or souvenirs.

Getting to the top of the volcano, you’ll start to feel the heat and the smell of sulphur. The terrain becomes rocky and dusty, and you’ll need to be careful with your footing. There are stairs at the very last stage to bring you to the top of the crater. The view of smoking caldera, emitting steam and ash is breathtaking. You can take a walk around the crater but be careful – the path is narrow, be prepared for the strong winds and occasional ash clouds.

The Mount Bromo sunrise hike.

The Mount Bromo sunrise hike is said to be a magical experience. Two days earlier we did a night hike to Mount Penanjakan (2700m) to admire Bromo sunrise and the landscape of Tengger Semeru National Park. It was SPECTACULAR! One of the most unbelievable landscapes of my life! IT’S A MUST HIKE.

Bromo is stunning for a sunrise hike, however don’t take things for granted! I’ve been on few hiking trails, aiming for spectacular views and sunrises.. but the nature sometimes has its own plans. Bromo was highly active during our stay in the village. Remember to bring your mask /you can also buy one in Cemoro Lawang/. It was very hard to get to the top of Bromo volcano the next morning, not only because of the horrific volcanic ash but extremely poor visibility.

If you are hiking Mount Bromo I highly recommend to combine it with two other stunning adventures – Hiking Ijen Crater and Sunrise from Mount Penanjakan. Both are epic hikes – check below for a detailed travel guide.

Mount Bromo unique experience.

As someone who hiked up Bromo volcano and most of the Tengger Semeru National Park, I can say it’s truly a unique experience, the feeling at the crater is both exhilarating and humbling. I was struck by the resilience of the local people who live in the shadow of the volcano and who have adapted to its eruptions over the years.

Hiking Mount Bromo active volcano in Indonesia.

Tips for hiking Mount Bromo.

If you’re planning hiking Mount Bromo volcano, here are some good tips to keep in mind:

  • Start early in the morning or late in the afternoon to avoid the crowds and the heat.
  • Wear comfortable Hiking Boots. 
  • If you are aiming for a spectacular sunrise – check the volcano activity before you go and make sure you have PROPER 4 LAYER face masks,
  • Wear comfortable clothes that can withstand dust and wind,
  • Bring a hat and sunscreen to protect yourself from the sun.
  • Carry enough water and snacks to keep yourself hydrated and energized.
  • Always carry with you a HEADLIGHT. 
  • Consider hiring a local guide who can provide insights and ensure your safety. (However the hike is doable alone).
  • Be respectful of the local culture and customs, and avoid littering or damaging the environment.

Hiking up to the Bromo volcano is an unforgettable experience but it requires some effort and preparation. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or a first-time adventurer, the Bromo volcano is a must-see destination that will leave you in awe of the power and majesty of nature.

Sassari Sardinia

Hey - I'm Eva!

Hiker, adventurous traveler and the author of this blog. My biggest joy is mountaineering and writing reportage travel stories here on this blog, to help you create a unique travel experience. Traveling is freedom, allows you seeing the world truly, meet communities, grow. Taste it!

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