11Jul 2012 BROMO MIDNIGHT TOUR – SEMPOL

Day 5 plan
At 01.30 a.m we will start the tour to Bromo Volcano. We will drive for about two hours to go to Wonokitri, the closest village from Bromo. In Wonokitri, we have to change the car to the Jeep and drive to Penanjakan Mountain (viewpoint) to see the sunrise. After watching the sunrise, we will drive to Bromo Volcano. After you visit Bromo, we will drive back to Wonokitri then continue driving to Sempol, the closest village to Mount Ijen. It takes approximately 7 hours drive
Overnight : CATIMOR HOMESTAY
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Bromo Bromo, another active volcano….Call time was at, believe it or not, 1:30 am. We were informed that we had to drive for two bumpy hours to the base of Mt Bromo’s viewpoint. First hour was a smooth drive, then the other hour was indeed bumpy, but of course, I was like a baby being pat to sleep with all the bumps. I was still sleeping soundly, waking up every now and then, but still able to go back to sleep despite the road condition.

Viewpoint’s base was full of numerous 4×4 land cruisers, jeep as they call it there. People from there made a regulation that only these rented jeeps and motorcycles can go up to the viewpoint. By the way, it was freezing cold…..felt like winter. Some people there make money by renting out thick jackets to unprepared tourists.

We rode our jeep and drove for 30-45mins to the viewpoint. There were so many tourist expecting for the most awaited and famous sunrise. Since Borobudur, I’ve been amazed with Indonesia’s tourist programs because every site’s crowded with local and foreign tourists.
Our guide brought us to the best position to see the sunrise.(left side post from the entrance) we arrived at about 4:30am, and normally sun rises at 530. As we await, more and more tourists came. I stepped up the post but as the sun rises, I felt so guilty to be selfishly blocking other people’s view. So I decided to step down and share this amazing view of the sunrise to people behind me.
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After sunrise, our guide brought us to the hidden viewpoint (with less tourists) wherein we were able to get the best view of Mt. Bromo and the massif surrounding it, minus all the crowding tourists. (This viewpoint’s located at; if you’re coming out from the main viewpoint, at the end of the street, after the motorcycle parking, to the right, there’s a small passage to the BEST VIEW of Mount Bromo) I was enthralled, the view was surreal, ethereal……Beautiful! OMG!
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We then drove down to the sea of sand, Bromo’s caldera. According to our guide, long time ago, this entire massif and mountains were just one standing huge mountain but after many eruptions, multiple mountains emerged. One of them’s Mt. Bromo, named after the Hindu god, Brahma. There’s a Hindu temple below Bromo’s crater.
temple at bromo
temple at the foot of bromo

bromo
we're going up there

sea of sand 2

sea of sand 3

sea of sand 4

OMG! Ascent was a torture. There was supposed to be a stair case to the crater but since it was already covered with sand, it came with no use. It actually made the climb more slippery. Woohh..We got free face powder! Sand from human and horses’ foot movements were irritating! It was hot and sandy, like in the deserts! One guy helped me from behind. He pushed me up every time I’d slip. I reached Bromo’s crater, took numerous shots and then headed down.
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Bromo's crater

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even the poor horse got exhausted

We had to drive for another 5-6 hours including another hour of a hell-bumpy ride to go to our next accommodation. Sempol. Our next accommodation would be inside a coffee plantation. It was said that there are only two accommodation near Ijen Crater, one is Catimor, which was 45mins away to Ijen another’s the Arabika which was 1.5hrs away.
Despite bad reviews we had no choice but to stay in Catimor. I didn’t really mind because I can sleep anywhere. Unlimited coffee and the home stay’s hot spring were, for me, the highlights of our stay there.

sempol

coffee bean

catimor

Catimor is government owned home stay. It’s at the center of the government-owned coffee plantation. It’s actually the plantation’s workers village. It’s accessible by private vehicles and vans from the terminal. Government provides temporary accommodation to those who work there then takes it back when they stop working there.

pool
hotspring

We soaked for another hour in the hot spring just before we went to bed. The next day would be another day to meet up with a beautiful site…Ijen Crater!

About Miss_Pia

Neurotic Health-care Professional who enjoys sleeping, running, reading, introspecting, pole art and exploring new things and sometimes, places!
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