At the end there were too many clouds to see the sunrise – However, I still had two fantastic days, saved money and went on a crazy adventure. It was the best decision to visit Mount Bromo without a tour, but I have to admit I would do some things differently. I’ll tell you how I did it but also directly recommend the better way.
It was not easy to find a way and to gather all the information to start my tour, but after reading some blogs, I felt ready and began my journey. It was an adventure on which I nearly got lost, destroyed my motorbike almost twice and had adrenaline more than once pushed through my body.
Where to start?
I started from the city called Malang, the other and better option would be to start from Probolinggo. Why did I start from Malang? Because someone told me that I could find a rainbow city in Malang and so I thought I could combine both. However, the city of Malang is extremely boring, and except the Rainbow city there is absolutely nothing to do, I even had to go to KFC and McDonald’s because I didn’t find any good food. No tourists can be seen here, and it is further from Bromo then Probolinggo. On the other hand, the adventure wouldn’t have been so adventuring when I would have come from Probolinggo (More on that later).
How to go?
Definitely by motorbike. There is a possibility to take the bus, but then you waste a lot more time, you’re not flexible at all, and you only save about (3 euro). I rented a motorbike for 100.000 INR (6,3 Euro) and fueled up for 23.000 INR. The way to arrive at the village Cemorolawang takes according to google maps about 2 hours. But google maps don’t calculate the breaks to take a photo and calculates the same time to go up then to go down, but you need double the time to drive the hill up then down. In the end, I needed around 3,5 hours to arrive at Bromo. To go back, it was only about 2 hours.
The actual adventure was the road to Bromo
And here is the big difference when you come from Malang instead of Probolinggo. From Probolinggo you’ll have a regular road all the time, and it is easy to drive. From Malang, you arrive at the beginning of the National Park and have to drive through all of the national park to get to Bromo and also the village. But the first challenge is to drive up the mountains, at some parts the road is so steep my motorbike drove with 15 km/h even though I was on full power. And I think I got lucky that it was dry because I believe in wet weather the motorbike wouldn’t be able to drive up that road. If you are planning on doing it with two people, I would recommend taking a better bike with more power and gears to get up the mountain and also especially to drive through the national park. On the way from Malang, there is a checkpoint where it is required to buy a ticket for 220.000 INR as an entrance ticket for Bromo. When you come from Probolinggo, you can save that money by sneaking through a small way and go around the ticket check.
The national park
This part is necessary when you are coming from Malang, and it was at the same time terrifying, dangerous but also amazing and crazy. After I reached to top of the mountain, it went down a little bit and then suddenly there was no road anymore. I thought “Ohh well, I’m in Southeast Asia that’s not so unusual the road will continue soon” – it didn’t. I was in the middle of a national park in a region with a few volcanos, and the way was either sand or mud. To everybody who’s not confident with a motorbike, I strongly recommend starting in Probolinggo! It is possible to drive there but very difficult and dangerous. I don’t know if you ever drove on the sand with a motorbike, but that’s not easy at all. After around 5 km in amazing landscapes, you finally arrive near Bromo from where you can hike up.
I parked my motorbike down and started to hike up. The walk up is not that difficult, and on the top, there are even stairs. I would recommend taking a mask for your mouth with you because the gas coming out of the crater is pretty bad and you get breathing problems without a mask.
Cemorolawang where to sleep and eat
After the hike, I drove to the village and looked for a place to sleep. A man spoke to me, and I ended up paying 200.000 INR for a private room with a shared shower. He told me the shower would be hot – it wasn’t. But for the rest it was ok. I had dinner in the only restaurant in the village called Café Lava Hostel, and the food was pretty good. At 8 I then went to bed and turned my alarm at 2.45 am.
The sunrise hike
After a pretty good night, I started hiking up the hill by foot. There is always the possibility to take the motorbike or even a horse, but I choose to walk. It took me only 1.5 hours to get up. On the top, after some stairs, most of the tourists wait for the sunrise, and it’s pretty crowded. You should definitely go a little bit further. You’ll need your hands and climb a little bit, but it’s worth it because 95 % of the tourist who came with jeeps don’t do it and you can enjoy the sunrise by yourself. In my case, however, I got very unlucky and there where so many thick clouds that I couldn’t see the sunrise.
After being a little bit disappointed, I went down again and had breakfast for 50.000 INR at the Café Lava again. It was a buffet and very delicious. Then I got my things from the Guesthouse and drove all the way back.
Apart from the sunrise which I couldn’t see I had a fantastic 2 days. Without a tour, you are so much more flexible, have more adventures and can stop wherever you want. I had two days and paid the same price as a tour which would only be one day.
- Total countries I visited until now: 33
- Planes: 7
- Busses: 34
- Trains: 17
- Boats: 13
- Km running: 1268