Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Bromo & Ijen

We booked a 3 day tour to 2 volcanoes. It's much cheaper than going on our own, and much less headache, no need to change 5 buses and taking twice as long to get there. We got picked up by a big minivan with 12 spaces, and there were only the 2 of us. We put the seats down to sleeping position, we slept, watched pictures, listened to music, I even managed to exercise in there. 11 hours went unnoticeably. When we arrived at an agency, we met 4 more people who came also by a big minivan from the same place as us. Why couldn't they unite? It seems like such a waste of effort, money and gas. Up on the mountain it's so cold, in the evening it was +15, in the morning it would be +5. Went to sleep at 12:30, wake up at 2:50. Too bad, cause it was the most comfortable bed ever with a very high quality of sheets.
Arrived at a lower view point at 4:30, it's dark, it's freezing, and I was dancing to warm up. Our driver suggested the lower view point, and we were only about 20 people, where as on top there were about 1000. The view was beautiful, Bromo volcano is located inside a much larger crater, it's shape and clouds floating around it gives it a magical feeling. We then went to the cater itself, but there were too many tourists, and I wasn't that impressed.
7 more hours in a jeep till the next volcano. In these 7 hours we passed through volcanic landscape, sea, rain forest, jungle, pine forest, views, I can sit in this jeep forever. Arrived at a sweet little village in the middle of a coffee plantation, went to a waterfall and hot springs in the evening. People are so friendly everywhere, in fact I think Indonesia is one of the most interesting countries with the friendliest people, everyone's smiling, laughing, talking to us, and I feel like my soul is flying.
We relaxed in a jacuzzi under a heavy rain. There was another couple in it with a child who kept on playing, mainly diving in and out of water, while they constantly telling him to stop otherwise he'll go sit in the room. Despite many attempts from our side to convince them that he doesn't bother us, he ended up in the room. I don't get it. What's the point of being a child then? I've noticed many parents give unreasonable reasons for their children to behave in public, and I'm not talking when they're lying on the floor, kicking their legs and screaming their lungs out. A child is only a child once, let them be.
Today we actually get to sleep in, the wake up knock on the door came at 3:40! We had breakfast, and drove to the volcano. 1.5 hours up the hill is a good dawn exercise. The views were beautiful again, nearby are 2 active volcanoes blowing smoke into the sky, and to the left is a vast valley ending in an ocean. The crater was very beautiful as well, with a green lake at the bottom, some sort of smoke coming out and hundreds of miners picking yellow sulfur stones, the place looks like an ant farm. They take about 60+ kilos of stones up the crater and down the whole path, making 5 cents/kilo. (60kgs = $3). They work through the night, young and old, breaking their backs, indeed their backs and necks are in weird positions, with probing bones. But they're all smiling and saying hello, I wish I brought cookies to give them. We went down to the lake, and walked around the sulfur fumes. The "all correct" German couple stayed at the top because they've decided that they don't have enough time. ???! Going to the lake and walking along the fumes with all the workers was the best part of all!! Down there, thank god the wind blew in the right direction. The fumes would blow up, and you could literary stand right beside it and breath fresh air in. Half way up, the wind has changed and all the smoke started blowing everywhere. It's an almost vertical 40 minute ascend and we were running up. 3/4 way up, the smoke was all around us, my lungs started to burn and my eyes started to tear up. Lets say it wasn't pleasant. Somebody gave me his hat so that I could breath through it. I have no idea how they work in these conditions. On the way down the path, it got cloudy and all the views have disappeared. Good thing that I took pictures on my way up!
Long way to Bali. Sat at a local bus with no leg space and smashed to the person next to you, people are smoking, there are no windows and I feel like I'm doing a hot yoga class with no benefits. we crossed the waters to Bali on a ferry, and on the other side half of the tourists got off the bus to take a taxi, whole 100kms! That's how hot it was! But when it started moving, it was actually bearable. We got a surprise... the bus stopped 30 kms from the town, although it said the town name on the front! And then it left with my luggage in it cause we didn't know what's going on. It was funny as both of us were looking at the leaving bus and none of us got stressed out. Well ... what can we do now? We found security who contacted the security at the exit gate who stopped the bus. My luggage is safe, and I'm happy that Kostya is not a stressed out maniac. In fact we never, not even once got stressed due to any circumstances. Always thought things through, reacted appropriately and reached a solution calmly.


  1. Серный рудник полный кошмар, хорошо что тебе не пришло в голову искупаться в озере

  2. Yana

    Great pictures
    The sulfur mine is most interesting.
    It's a smell you will never forget. :+)


  3. Твой блог хотя и короткий, но классный и просто дышит оптимизмом:) фотографии обалденные!!!