Just a couple of weeks ago, I was on a trip to Bali. First time there not sure what to expect too. My friend booked a villa for 11 of us on this trip. As you can imagine for 11 people we needed a huge epic villa. The highlight of the trip was the hike up Mount Batur.
Mount Batur is a popular destination for tourist to hike up. It is an active volcano with the highest point of 1717m or 5363ft. There’s three craters to Mount Batur with one facing the caldera. The one to the caldera is a slightly more difficult. But you could tell your guide when you book your trip on which peak to head to for the view you want to look at.
The side which I headed up from was the easier gentler side to hike. When you start the hike up, you will be heading up the forested area of the mountain. Once you come up above the forested area, you are almost at the top. I will detail you the whole climbing experience later on in the post. But let’s start with the accommodation.
Accommodation at Umalas, North Kuta, Villa Lulan (https://www.airbnb.com.sg/rooms/1311317)
Just look at this gorgeous piece of art. Pros for this place, really quiet and peaceful place. The villa management is assisted by two lovely ladies who can provide any help you need, cook meals and change your bedsheets daily.
Now on to the hike!
Before you get to this view, some handwork is needed! The journey typically starts at 1.30am in the morning. You will need a driver to bring you to the starting point of Mount Batur. Though the journey starts at 1.30am, you can have a snooze during a journey there for around two hours. When I got to the foot of the mountain, it was around 3.45am.
The difficulty for this climb I would rate it as easy to moderate difficulty. But of course this is based on my experience from climbing Buck Mountain at the Adirondacks, New York and Dragon’s Back trail in Hong Kong. Dragon’s Back trail is rated as super easy from my experience.
Teepee Tip: You should ask for hiking sticks to help you manoeuvre your way up. The extra hiking sticks help you to ascend and descend. It helps to take the pressure of your knees. Hiking mountain could be straining for your knees. I actually had a bit of a knee pain after the climb. Of course you can do without it if you feel comfortable.
The mountain starts off from with the forested area at the foot of the mountain. As this is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, be respectful and not litter the ground. The mountain which is actually a volcano is sacred to the local people. So do not swear or scold the mountain. There are many local folklore on the deities and spirits surrounding these volcanoes. There’s actually a few temples that are built around the mountain that I would share the images with you later.
You will hike up through the forested area for around an hour. The starting part of it is pretty mild and you might get ahead of yourself and become complacent by rushing your way up. Don’t do that! Keep yourself at a comfortable pace and don’t rush. The journey up becomes increasingly difficult and the path sometimes get narrow and dangerous. Along the way, you will have pitstops or you can tell your guide if you need a break. He will stop at a logical point and motivate you to move on.
Teepee Tip: Bring enough water in your back as you will need to hydrate yourself throughout the trip. Also you might need a jacket as it could be as cold as 14 degrees celcius or lower. But the hike would make you very warm.
5.30am – 6.45am
Once you come out of the forested area, you are almost 45 minutes away from the peak. The grounds here are more gravel and stone. Some areas are quite slippery because of sand. There’s a pitstop almost to the top. While you could rest here, it is best you make it to the peak. The way up to the peak takes around 30 minutes from here. It is very very steep. It is difficult but the view make it so worth the journey up.
We found a landing to seat down while we gaze at the magnificent sunrise from Mount Batur.
Once you are at the top, your guide will prepare a light breakfast for you that includes maybe eggs, bananas, bread or a hot drink. It all depends on your guide. Take your time and enjoy your breakfast. Enjoy the view, and the breakfast. Take a moment and enjoy the view and sunrise.
The journey up is tough but the journey down is even tougher. Heading down was super slippery as it was super steep. Be careful because a couple of my friends got very bad cuts and abrasions coming down from the slopes. He basically fell. This is where it is super important to take it slow and go down the slope comfortably. Take your time.
We are about to enter the cloud layer of the forest. Super magical to see this layer of clouds right above the emergent layer of the tropical rain forest.
Make this part as your aim because once you enter this layer, you will be in a cooler environment. Your descent will be so much easier to the foot of the mountain. It is much gentler and you can actually sprint down the mountain!
As part of our hiking package, the trip includes a buffet breakfast at Lakeview Hotel, Bali near Mount Batur. It faces the beautiful lake Danau Batur.
And with this view, we ended the hike. Returning to the villa at 12pm. The whole trip takes around 11 hours starting from 1.30am.