Bromo National Park in eastern Java is the picture perfect postcard of Indonesia; A spectacular view of several volcanic cones erupting from the basin of a dirt red caldera. Its centrepiece is mount Bromo, an active volcano in the heart of this tumultuous landscape which can be climbed and peered into.
This travel treasure is no secret, hoards of people come to view the sun rising over Bromo’s caldera every single day and to get a closer look in its steamy crater. Busy as this spectacle may be, it is still one of Indonesia’s most incredible sights, fortunately we have a few tips so you can make the most out of Bromo National Park and avoid any nasty surprises.
Bromo is a serious contender for bulk tourism so it is crucial to pick your dates and start booking. We would advise you to sort out your accommodation three weeks in advance.
Accommodation websites give misleading information as to their position, many are actually based in Probolinggo which is a 45 minute drive from the caldera. Cemoro Lawang is within walking distance of a sunset viewpoint, clouds permitting, plus you don’t have to rise so early for your sunrise tour.
There is an abundant amount of jeeps that will be more than happy to take you on an early morning tour, plus you’ll score the fixed price by booking through your hotel, without the agency fees. Even your return taxi to Probolinggo/Surabaya can be easily arranged from the mountain top.
Yes that is what everyone else is doing but do not let that bother you because the benefits are plentiful. Those taking a walk cannot possibly reach the ‘classic’ sunrise point, those on a motorcycle will risk their lives and their lungs crossing the sandy desert floor. Spending $50 per jeep is excellent value as it seats up to 6 people and comes with an experienced driver!
Pushing and shoving hundreds of tourists aside to see the best Bromo has to offer is not something you want to be doing at 5:00am in the morning. Push the boundaries a little, escape the confinement of the designated lookout point. You will be greatly rewarded with a hillside viewpoint with the exact same scenery, all to yourself. It is absolute bliss.
Hint* Look for gaps in fences.
The mountainous area around Cemoro Lewaang is a pristine, lush and tranquil haven, once the masses have left. Bromo is often visited on a strict schedule so as soon as the morning tour finishes, the tourists depart by the busload and the area becomes a ghost town. Taking the time to reminisce and appreciate an alternative side to this volcanic area is ideal. There is so much beauty and culture to absorb away from the tourist hot spots, and with the extra day you can experience this unique part of Indonesia without the hustle and bustle.