Climbing the ever impressive Mount Batur, an active Volcano looking over Caldera Lake in Bali, just look at these views!! We started the trek at 1 am, which was a 2 hour drive to the summit. We arrived by 3 am to start climbing to see the sunrise by 6 am. I was so excited I couldn’t sleep! I mean, mountains are na top favorite alongside martinis after all 😉
The tours here are guided by local kids (kids as I call them, but they were probably late teens early 20’s) from nearby villages. They choose these jobs to create incomes for themselves and their families as there are not many jobs in their villages. A lot of them opt for a paying job over schooling- I can’t think of a cooler job!
Warning: This hike is NOT for everyone, see further.
This hike was VERY underestimated, it was a lot more difficult than they lead on. Not to be attempted by the unconditioned or people with a fear of heights. The first two hours are spent walking straight up the mountain on loose lava rock in the star lit sky. The air smells of a burning fire which is bothersome to the throat and you will find yourself covered in dust by the end of the trip- in all the wonderfully unusual places.
But you’d never guess what’s at the top……
Not only do you get to see the Sunrise, but you get to do it with a freshly brewed coffee or tea in your hands from the cafe at the top. Just check out that sand-blasted menu! I’ve always said we needed restaurants at the tops of mountains, the Balinese know what they are doing.
Now we start to descend. I think to myself there is no way I am making it DOWN the same way we came up without literally sliding on my butt the whole way down. (And possibly sliding OFF the mountain). Turns out we took a different path around the crater rim which was equally as breath-taking. This is where the fear of heights come in for some of my mountaineers…. but those views though…..
Halfway through we were greeted by some Monkeys. These little guys were a little more shy than the ones at the Monkey Forest in Ubud, but after a few snacks and water they warmed right up.
The hike took overall from 3:30 am to 9:10 am with breaks along the way.
What to bring:
- Water- I brought a liter and that was just enough. They sell coke and water on top of the mountain as well from foot vendors if you don’t feel like carrying it
- Money for the cafe located at the entrance & the cafe above the mountain
- A flashlight (headlamp if you can)
- Dress in layers. Its pretty chilly at the bottom, then you’re sweating walking up, then it’s chilly at the top, then it’s hot again
- Really good hiking shoes with grip. Most of the time is spent sliding down mountains and cruising over loose lava rock so anything helps
- Sunblock/hat/sunglasses if you’re sensitive to the sun after 9 am
- Don’t make any other plans the rest of the day as you will probably be home around noonish and want to nap
- Your A Game