Surabaya: Mount Bromo adventures

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Follow me on the two-part Surabaya feature on Mount Bromo and Mount Semeru, the two volcanic monsters that erupt from time to time! Find out if I managed to conquer the highest mountain in Java...


 I haven't been posting much about my Surabaya trip that happened days after I returned from Melbourne, except for a sponsored post (Read: feat. trusty Visondata pocket wifi that gave me Internet connection). This is the post about the trip itself.
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After landing in Juanda International Airport, we were whisked away to our hotel, SM Bromo Hotel, slightly under 3 hours away on the road. It is a fairly new hotel, with superbly friendly service that made us feel very comfortable during our stay. A pity I didn't take a picture of the room - it was very spacious and clean. Throughout the day, fog wafts over the spring onion fields and towering hills right outside our room. It looks like a scene straight out of a wuxia flick.
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Full of spunk and energy, we decided to hike all the way straight to Mount Bromo instead of taking the motorbikes or car. Well, you know how first days are! It was quite a strenuous hike for me because I am terribly unfit, but the sights and sounds on the way distracted me from the slopes.
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Spring onions seemed to be a common theme around this area, and their skies are in an enviable shade of blue... and needless to say, the air is miles fresher than in the cities too. Running right into the arms of nature.
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Mini marts are pretty rare around the towns, so grab all the snacks you want when you do see one. Tourists are very rare around here and we didn't see anyone else along the path, but maybe they took the jeep...
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After a bit more climbing, we finally found the little volcanic monster sitting so innocently in the Sea of Sand (Segara Wedi in Javanese)! We took 1.5 hours from the hotel to the first glimpse of Mount Bromo. It is an active volcano, though it looks really quiet... yet it has been regularly erupting for the past few years and even last month. The temperament of volcanoes can only be described as unpredictable.
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It looks pretty near but it's actually not. Well, it's the journey that matters because... I can finally understand what it feels like to be Imperator Furiosa from Mad Max Fury Road. This caldera floor is actually formed from the volcanic deposits from Mount Bromo, a thick layer of fine dark grey ash. It is fun to play with, but it will stick to your clothes, your shoes and your bags...
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More pictures while climbing towards this mini monster! Reminder to self: I should always bring a camera when (if) I go running because it can be a darn good distraction from my weak stamina. I was huffing and puffing all the way up, seriously, I need exercise (/slumps back onto my bed like a spineless human). There is always an option of riding the little ponies to the foot of Mount Bromo, but we've already come so far by foot... so all the way it'll be.
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I'd better not slip, or I'll be rolling the whole way down...
That's actually not a joke because it's highly possible with a misstep, so hang on to the side railing if you're weak-kneed or scared of heights ;)
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Hey there, how are you, monster.
The feeling of standing right at the mouth of an active volcano is pretty surreal... it feels like dipping a hand into the mouth of a great white shark.
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From the top of Mount Bromo, we could see another unnamed volcano which looks pretty spectacular with the lava scars on the sides of it.
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The girls took the accelerated way back to the nearest town from Mount Bromo - motorbikes - because we were so tired! It was amazing, we could fit all three of us on a single bike.
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We reached back in town to catch the last rays of sunset. Most people visit Mount Bromo for a sunrise tour, but I guess it's a different experience altogether to see Bromo at sunset - with less tourists too.
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We were all starving from all that exercise and couldn't wait for dinner! It was simple but delicious, a glimpse of their homecooked food. We wanted beer, and they didn't have the kind we wanted, and the boys from the restaurant actually ran to somewhere else to get it for us. :') There was also a shop selling jackets, gloves and hats, which we didn't think we'd need... but if you're climbing Mount Semeru in the wee hours of the morning and are not equipped enough, please get enough here for 1-5 degrees Celsius temperatures.
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The good folks at SM Bromo arranged for the health check-up to ensure we are strong enough for the second leg of our journey to Mount Semeru which I will be blogging about soon. Till the next time <3

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