Situated in the Bangli region on the island of Bali, Mount Batur has for years been the most popular amongst Tourists, compared to Mount Agung and Mount Agang (very active volcanoes). If you are an adventure lover and love hiking, be ready for a good sunrise treat at 1,717 meters above sea level. This Trekking Tour is available with all Tour Operators, online and can be found in all ‘Bali Experience’ brochures found even at the airport.
Only early birds will catch this train
The hardest pill to swallow was the fact that we had to wake u before 02:00 to make it to the hike. And boy did we try to get out of it, but unfortunately all the guides echoed the same sentiments. “We need to leave at 02 00, start the hike at 04:00 to be able to catch the sunrise from the top”. As if that was not enough, imagine finding that out only four and a half hours before you go…someone cry with me. I was so worried about not making it so I set two alarms, just incase I did not hear the first one, but we made it 😉.
Guide or no Guide?
To tell you the truth, you do not really need one but by law you are required to have one, to be allowed to trek. One thing about Bali people, when they are not trying to scam you of all your money by over charging you for every little thing, they are very good people. We experienced such contrast in all the cities we visited. Almost every young person is a guide in Bali (this is no joke). When we got to the starting point we were met by a group of guides (both males and females) looking to score a gig. Our guide’s name was Nyoman, he was very friendly and familiar with the place. He was very helpful and from time to time would help us up and down the mountain when he anticipated that we would struggle. Overall having a guide is not such a bad idea. If you get one that speaks English, even better because you will get to hear about the history of the area and what he had been up to before and the stories of other hikers he has led up Mount Batur.
The hike intensity and duration
This is a moderate hike and when I say moderate I am running away from the mistake that has been made but other people of classifying it as easy. All you need to do is get there in a fairly fit body and you are good to go and conquer Mount Batur. In fact I will let you be the judge and share your experience too. It will take you up to two hours to summit, do hydrate and take your breaks as your body requires. One thing I have learned about hiking is that you do not need to be brave, what is important is summiting and get down in good health .
What to wear?
Like any other hike, you will need to wear all the comfortable stuff you would wear for any day hike. What I can empathize on is that you will need proper hiking boots/ sneakers with good grip, as going down and some patches going up is a bit tricky with the lose stones. When you get to the starting point there will be people trying to hire you some sweaters because apparently “it is very cold up there”. If you come during the right (warm and dry) season, do not do it! I went up wearing my short sleeves Tee and I was OK, though I had my sweater with me.
What to bring on the hike
Don’t be fooled by the number of hours it will take you to Summit, you will still need all the day hike necessities. Most importantly, hydrate, hydrate, hydrate; water is life. If you make a mistake of not carrying any or less, you will learn the hard way. Though there will be a lot of vendors trying to sell you stuff, it is always advisable to bring your own snacks to cut costs.
This is a hike like no other, it is magical. The moment you start hiking you know you have to finish it and once the sun starts rising you have no choice but to stop whatever you were doing and admire it. It took me longer to climb the last 2km because I was busy taking endless videos and photos. When at the top of Mount Batur you get to see the beautiful Mount Agung that is said to be a very active volcano, with the last eruption having been just 2 years ago. However, you can witness the smoke almost every passing minute.
When I asked my Travel Buddy, Slindi Mhlongo about her experience, this is what she had to say; ” I think it’s one of those moments that no one can really make u understand or comprehend …you have to be there to get the whole package!”
Would I recommend it?
Hell yeah! This is an experience of a lifetime. The beauty that I saw on top of the mountain was just amazing. When you go crazy about the sunrise you will think you have seen it all, however the transition from darkness to light is just amazing. You get to see everything in a different but still beautiful light.
I hope it inspires you to take that trip and explore – #khenkethamzansi