Travel from the palm-tree oasis stretching across Bali to the impressive, fantasy-like, blue-fire breathing Mount Ijen. The tremendous, bright blue gas illuminating the night sky will, for a moment, remind you of a fairy-tale storybook, where dragons, princesses, and princes fight evil and come out triumphant. When daylight breaks, you’ll enter the pages of a new storybook, one that takes you to a view of the blue sulfur lake that mirrors the azure color of the sky.
Most day trips will take you from your hotel in Bali directly to Mount Ijen, while other excursions—some lasting over 2 or 3 days—will introduce you to more off-the-beaten-path natural destinations as well as authentic Indonesian-culture.
What will you see during your Mount Ijen trip?
It depends on which you tour you decide to take! Some tours can span across 3 days while others may have you back in Bali within a day. However, every expedition will take you to a panoply of spectacular sights that will enchant and mesmerize you due to their out-of-world, elements that will have you feeling like you've slipped back into your childhood imagination. What will you see? Let’s take a look:
- The stark blue gas jetting out of Mount Ijien while the night sky acts as the perfect backdrop
- Vibrant sulfur lake nestled among towering rocks
- A beautiful crater
- Witness miners harvesting sulfur via iron rods
- Travel through a rainforest, which consists of an array of ferns and various trees
Your trek to Mount Ijen will introduce you to out-of-this-world scenery, the way of life of some miners, and if you opt for a longer journey, you will get to see more natural sights surrounding the blue fire-breathing volcano.
What can you do on Mount Ijen?
The obvious answer: hike and marvel at the unbelievable landscapes! Most excursions will have you hiking the volcano at night, but it won’t take you long to reach the summit from the drop-off point. Thankfully, the 1-mile (3 km) trek consists of both uphill and flat terrain—giving you a chance to catch your breath every so often!
Once you reach the rim, you will walk down to the bottom of the crater where blue sulfur flames will enrapture, enchant, and envelop you. When the sun replaces the dark sky with yellow, orange, and red hues, you will get the chance to marvel at Mount Ijen’s soft-blue acid lake nestled amidst the crater.
The descent from the rim to the floor of the crater may be rather difficult for some due to the rocky, loose terrain. Don’t rush down to the bottom—you may risk hurting yourself.
Once you reach both the blue flames and the acid lake, you can snap photos, catch your breath, converse with other tourists, and marvel at the views!
Other excursions may include different activities too, like swimming in waterfalls or hot springs or meandering through local villages and stunning temples.
How much does a tour to Mount Ijen from Bali cost?
The price of your journey will depend on which tour you decide to take. Some excursions will take you to see a plethora of sights surrounding Mount Ijen, while others only include an overnight trek.
Most overnight hikes cost between 60 USD to 150 USD (54 to 136 EUR). In general, these tours include a guide, driver, hotel pick-up and drop-off, and breakfast. Some tours, depending on the departure time, include lunch and dinner as well.
If you want to visit other areas surrounding Mount Ijen, a 2-day or 3-day tour may suit you best. On average, these tours can cost between 220 to 400 USD (200 to 360 EUR). Most of the 2-day or 3-day excursions include accommodation, a local guide, transportation, and they may or may not include food.
How to get from Bali to Mount Ijen?
Your designated driver will pick you up from your hotel in Bali and take you to Gilimanuk Harbor, the western seaport. Once you arrive at the harbor, you will hop on a short ferry ride to Ketapang Harbor, East Java. From here, you will drive to the bottom of Mount Ijen, where you’ll begin your life-changing, aesthetically pleasing adventure.
How long does it take to get to Mount Ijen from Bali?
Get ready for a long journey! The drive from your hotel to the ferry port may take around 3.5 hours, while the ferry ride will take around 30 minutes. Once you arrive, you will have a 1-hour car ride to mentally prepare for the strenuous (but worthy) trek ahead!
The hike itself won’t take too long! On average, most people can reach the summit within 1.5 to 2 hours.
When is the best time to visit Mount Ijen?
The rainy season may increase the difficulty of the hike. It’s never fun to hike on wet, slippery slopes, is it? Therefore, it’s best to visit Mount Ijen during the dry season—April to October.
- Before you depart for your journey, it’s essential to make your trip includes a gas mask for when you visit the blue sulfur jetting out of Mount Ijen. If not, be sure to purchase one before going. You need to make sure you have one before you go.
- It can be cold on the top! Remember to bring warm clothes—sometimes your guide may have extra, but be sure to enquire about this beforehand.
- Be prepared for a strenuous hike! The ascent and descent may be difficult for some. Come prepared with appropriate hiking shoes.
- Most guides provide flashlights, but you may want to bring one along just in case or confirm that one will be provided before departing.
- Mount Ijen is 1 hour behind Bali, so don’t be alarmed when the time goes back an hour.