Mt. Bromo in East Java, Indonesia is a popular destination among travelers in the area for one big reason: a glorious sunrise view of a massive active volcano, along with the surrounding sand sea and crater.
There are two main ways to catch the sunrise above Mt. Bromo. One is to take a guided Jeep tour, which starts before the sun rises, bringing guests up the road to the lookout point for the Bromo volcano and crater. Immediately following, the Jeeps then take guests to the crater itself, driving through the sand sea and arriving at a steep staircase which leads to the crater mouth. Still smoking and very much active, the Bromo volcano is quite an amazing sight from both near and far.
For those with a slightly more adventurous spirit -- and a love for trekking -- there is a trail that leads from the town next to broom (Cemoro Lawang) to the viewpoint. Beginning at 3-3:30am, hikers don heavy jackets, head torches, and sturdy shoes as they make the 2-hour ascent to the viewpoint. Along the way, there are many areas slightly further down that also provide great lookout spots for those who get too tired mid-ascent to keep going. Enterprising locals all along the trail sell hot drinks, snacks, and when the trail joins the road, offer motorcycle rides to the top for rather rich amounts of cash.
Getting to the viewpoint early is advisable, as this is a popular sunrise spot and generally full of photographers and tourists trying to catch a glimpse of the sin as it rises over the horizon. To avoid crowds, stop at one of the viewpoints lower down, or stick around well after the sunrise when most of the Jeeps leave to take guests to the crater.
Though a fair trek from the more popular destinations of Jakarta and Bali, Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park is a must-do for anyone who loves lush green mountains, the excitement of active volcanos, and beautiful sunrises.
Kristin Addis blogs at http://www.bemytravelmuse.com