Ijen’s crater is home to the largest crater-lake in Indonesia with its magical blue color. At 2,300 meters above sea level, this landscape was formed some 300,000 years ago by volcanic activity that left the area highly acidic. The combination of yellowish rocky surfaces and a mineral lake is best enjoyed around 7-9 am, while the blue fire caldera can only be witnessed in the very early hours of the morning.
This early morning, you will venture out to Ijen National Park to visit its iconic volcanic crater, Kawah Ijen. To view Ijen’s majestic turquoise sulfur lake, you must first ascend to the top of Mount Ijen, which will take over an hour of trekking.
By 4 WD jeep, drive through the rural villages, coffee and clove plantations, and then into one of Java’s last rainforests. Humidity, wildlife, giant ferns, and big trees cover the slope of the mountain. We arrive at the Park Ranger’s post and begin the 90-minute hike to Ijen Crater, along a shady track with spectacular views.
The stunning view is unveiled at 2883 meters altitude. The lake’s eerie color and smoke wafting from bright yellow sulfur deposits create the landscape desolate, barren, and vibrantly alive. Watching miners descend into the crater and re-emerge carrying up to 80 kilos of ore on bamboo baskets on the treacherous path.
Afterward back down to the ranger’s post and a drive to Banyupait Waterfall. Here’s something you don’t see every day: a waterfall of acid. Enjoy the greenish waters of the Banyu Pahit drain from the acid lake and groundwater of Kawah Ijen volcano. The waters are saturated with minerals such as gypsum and alum. Concentrated sulphuric acid is more viscous than normal water, causing the water to move more slowly than a typical creek.
Back to the hotel for lunch and check out and transfer to the airport for your flight to Jakarta and onwards, home.