Bromo or Ijen – Which Volcano Should You Visit?

Author Carina Klein
· 7 min read · 0 comments

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Comprehensive Bromo vs. Ijen guide. Including how to visit – independent and with a tour.

Mount Bromo and Mount Ijen are two of the undisputed highlights of East Java, Indonesia.

We have visited both Mount Bromo and Ijen Crater back to back with a tour and can 100% recommend both volcanoes.

If you don’t have the time to visit both, our comprehensive Ijen or Bromo guide will tell you which one to visit.

The very short answer for Ijen vs. Bromo is:

  • Visit Ijen if you’re physically fit because the experience is more unique.
  • Visit Bromo if you want to visit a picturesque volcano with less of a hike.

Is Mount Bromo Worth a Visit?

Is Kawah Ijen Crater Worth a Visit?

Yes! Yes!

Why is Bromo Famous?

Why is Ijen Famous?

Mount Bromo is Java’s most well-known volcano.
Magnificent views.
Bubbling and smoking crater.
Sulphur which is actively mined.
Largest highly acidic crater lake in the world.

Best Time to Visit Mr Bromo

Best Time to Visit Kawah Ijen Crater

Dry season between April and October. Dry season between April and October.

When to Visit Mt Bromo

When to Visit Kawah Ijen Crater

Sunrise at Bromo is the best but also the most popular time to visit. Make sure to leave in the dark (most tours leave around midnight) to see the blue flame and afterwards see the sunrise on Ijen.

How High is Mt Bromo?

How High is Mount Ijen?

2,329 m (7,641 ft) 2,769 m (9,085 ft)

How Long Does it Take to Climb Mount Bromo?

How Long Does it Take to Climb Mount Ijen?

Around 30 minutes. The hike to the crater rim takes around 2 hours.
The hike down to the crater to see the blue flame takes around another 45 minutes.

Hiking Mt Bromo

Hiking Mt Ijen

You start quite high up so you just have to walk the last stretch. The ground is loose so bring proper shoes. Was one of the hardest treks we’ve ever done.
600 m elevation gain in 10 km (2000 ft in 6 mi).
Ascend in the complete dark.
Descent into the crater with a gas mask.

Is it Safe to Visit Mr Bromo?

Is it Safe to Visit Ijen Crater?

Yes. Yes. You’ll spend a lot of time in the toxic fumes in the actual crater so you really want to make sure to wear a gas mask.

How to Get to Mt Bromo

How to get to Mt Ijen

Best base:
  • Probollingo
  • (Malang)
Best base:
  • Banyuwangi

Visit Mount Bromo Without a Tour

Visit Mount Kawan Ijen Without a Tour

It’s possible but complicated and not necessarily cheaper + you lose time.
  1. Take a shared bus from Probolingo to Cemoro Lawang.
  2. Spend a night here (e.g. Cahyo Homestay Bromo).
  3. Walk for 45 minutes through the Caldera to Mt Bromo.
  4. Pay the entrance fee (around 20$).
If you want to visit one or more sunrise spots, you have to rent a bike (and drive through the sandy Caldera) or hire a car.
Would honestly not recommend. You hike in the dark which might be out of your comfort zone. And you 100% need a gas mask.

Mount Bromo Tours:

Mount Ijen Tours:

Hotels Near Bromo

Hotels Near Ijen

Probollingo: We stayed at Clover Homestay
Cemoro Lawang: Cahyo Homestay Bromo
Banyuwangi: Mango Tree Homestay & Ijen Tour
Luxury: Ijen Resort and Villas - The Hidden Paradise

Other Tips for the Bromo Area

Other Tips for the Kawah Ijen Area

Madakaripura Waterfall! Stay in Banyuwangi for the turtles!

Bromo: Keep in Mind

Ijen: Keep in Mind

You’re going to be at a high altitude so bring warm clothes. Bring warm clothes and a headlamp because you’ll hike in the dark.

Mt Bromo Conclusion

Kawah Ijen Conclusion

  • More accessible.
  • Better for families and less hiking avid travellers.
  • Amazing views.
  • More off the beaten track.
  • You have to be physically fit.
  • Super unique blue flame, sulphur mining, and crater lake.
Picture of Bromo Picture of Ijen

Kawah Ijen or Mount Bromo: Our Personal Conclusion

Our thoughts on Kawah Ijen or Mount Bromo: Personally, if we really could not squeeze both volcanoes in, we would choose Mount Ijen.

The experience with the blue flame, the sulphur mining, and the crater lake is just too unique to give it a pass. Although we are by no means fit, we managed the hike – slowly and with a lot of patience from our tour guide.

On a very personal note: When I was younger, there was a TV show in Germany showcasing unique spots around the world. This is where I first saw Mount Ijen. Back then I never thought I would ever make it to a place so far away. I am incredibly happy and proud that I did.

How Do I Get From Mount Bromo to Mount Ijen?

Trains from Probollingo (Bromo) to Banyuwangi (Ijen) leave several times a day, take around 4 hours, and a the cheapest and most hassle-free form of transport between the two bases.

Visiting Mount Bromo AND Ijen

Have we managed to convince you to visit both Mt Bromo and Ijen Crater? Perfect. The easiest and most time-efficient way to do so is a Mount Bromo and Ijen tour.

Tour Bromo Ijen

Bromo Ijen Tour from Yogyakarta

Bromo Ijen Tour from Surabaya

Bromo Ijen Tour from Bali

Bromo Ijen Tour from Probolinggo

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