Planning to visit Mount Bromo? With this explanation you can easily do it yourself and save yourself some money and a lot of hassle.

Mostly Bromo is visited by guided tours from Surabaya, Malang or Probolingo. These tours almost always contain transport to the foot of Bromo and then a Jeep ride that will take you up to the viewpoint on mount bromo. For people that don’t like to hike or have difficulties walking this would be the best option to choose from.

However, you can also easily do Mount Bromo without a tour if you are up for a hike and an adventure. This is exactly how we did it and it was one of the most fullfilling experiences of our travel through Java, Indonesia.

Accomodation

First things first, try to find yourself an accomodation in Cemorro Lawan. This is a small town at the foot of the Mount Bromo sunrise lookout Point. There are a few guest houses and hotels you can book via Airbnb or Booking.com. Although do note they will all be more expensive then your average place in Java. We booked this villa on Airbnb which cost us 15 euro per person (with 3 people) for one night. However the place did have 4 double beds so could have easily slept more. Do note though, you won’t get much sleep in your accomodation after all as you’ll have to get up bright and early to see that sunrise.

Getting there

From Yogyakarta take a train (read our article about transport in Indonesia) to Probolingo which will take about 8 hours (so bring a book!). You can choose between economy or excecutive class. We highly recommend you to go for the executive class because 8 hours in economy will most definitely wear out your body (and your booty).

After arriving in Probolingo walk out of the station for few hundred meters. As Grab drivers can’t pick you up right at the station. Also, Grab drivers will not want to bring you to Cemoro for the normal Grab price (140K IDR) which is kind of understandable because of the long steep uphill drive. We managed to order a Grab from Probolinggo train station to the bus station and asked the Grab driver, when safe and sound in his car, what his price would be to take us to Cemorro Lawang. He told us he would take us there for 400k IDR (24 euro). As we were three people at that time and it was already late, we decided to take the offer. Also we wrote down his number so he could pick us up for the way back.

Another option is to go to the bus station get in a yellow van and wait for it to be full until it leaves. But you might have to wait for a long time as they won’t leave till the van is full.

The hike

Download offline google maps or Maps.me on your phone to always keep you right on track. Trust us you don’t want get of the beaten track on your hike (which totally happened to us in pitch black darkness).

Set your alarm around 2.30 a.m. and leave your accomodation at 3 in the morning. You will most probably already have been woken up by the noise of gargling jeeps and screeching motorcycles that pass by every minute.

Start your ascent to the lookout point where you can basically just follow the main road or use your map app. Be prepared though, because this hike contains many steep hills. It will take you about 1,5 to 2 hours to get to the first and second lookout point. This will be right in time to see the sun rise over the beautifull foggy Bromo area.

When the sun is up and you have enjoyed the lookout point walk back down to the entrance of mount Bromo national park. You will walk passed a ticket counter and will most probably have to pay an entrance fee of IDR 217.500 per person on working days and IDR 317.500 on weekends and peak season.

Walk down to the Bromo sea of sand which by now is slowly clearing up from all the fog. The walk through this sandy desert is breathtaking and you will most likely be the only person walking it. This will probably take another hour. Another tip is to take a scarf with you for all that dust in the air.

Walk up all the way to the foot of the crater and have little rest. Start your walk up the mountain via the stairs untill you get up to the ridge. From there, it is best to go left so you can walk away from the very crowded part.

Walk back the same way you came from to your accomodation, have a nice shower, relax and text your driver or get another yellow van back to Probolingo from where you can take a train further to Banyuwangi for example.

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