Gunung Batur sunrise volcano climb
Gunung Batur, the craggy volcano that defines Bali’s northern skyline, is delightfully trekkable, with well marked trails leading up its green flanks to the gently steaming crater at its peak. From the top, you can enjoy superb views of the surrounding landscape - miles of mist-filled caldera and glassy crater lake. On this pre-dawn volcano experience, you’ll enjoy breakfast on the summit while you feast your eyes, and a soak in natural hot springs on the way back down.
What to expect on the Gunung Batur trek...
You’ll begin this experience within driving distance of Gunung Batur, normally at a hotel in Ubud or Batur village, which sits on the edge of the volcano’s caldera, with its full skirts of thick forest and patchwork of peaceful Balinese farmland.
Get an early night, because the next morning you’ll be up well before the crack of dawn to drive to the foot of the Mount Batur trail, where you’ll meet your experienced local guide.
You’ll be given a torch (if you own a head torch, bring it!) and a safety briefing before setting off for the reasonably straightforward trek, which twists up the volcano through ash, sand, small rocks and sparse vegetation. There will be plenty of chances to take a breather en route, but we find that the promise of breakfast normally keeps us motivated.
After about two hours, you’ll find yourself in the windswept, desolate landscape of the crater. It’s a strange, otherworldly setting. On reaching the top, it’s time to get comfy and wait for the magic to unfurl. You’ll be treated to a stunning sunrise, as the dawn breaks over Gunungs Abang and Agung and low wisps of cloud roll through the valley below you. On clear days it’s even possible to see Mount Rinjani on Lombok, in the distant east.
Stop for breakfast and a very scenic cuppa at the summit before beginning your descent. On the way down, you’ll pass another crater rim with sweeping views over the countryside, so be sure keep your camera on hand.
Before you continue onwards, you’ll also take a well-earned break at some picturesque thermal springs, soaking your weary limbs in the volcano-heated mineral water as you gaze out over Lake Batur. LIfe rarely gets much better than this - it really is the perfect way to end your active morning. Well - that and a good lunch!
Location: Mount Batur, Bali
Duration: 1 night
Accommodation: Your choice of Bali or Batur accommodation
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'You don’t need to be super fit or have any climbing experience to conquer Mt Batur. Despite being reluctant to get up before dawn while I was on holiday, seeing the sun rise above the clouds was a truly magical moment that made it all worthwhile.'
Things to note...
This is an active experience, so a reasonable level of fitness is required. Nights around Batur can be chilly, so bring a jumper.