The Ijen volcano complex is a group of composite volcanoes in the Banyuwangi Regency of East Java. It is inside a larger caldera Ijen, which is about 20 kilometres wide. Ijen volcano has a one-kilometre-wide turquoise-coloured acidic crater lake. The lake is the site of a labour-intensive sulfur mining operation, in which sulfur-laden baskets are carried by hand from the crater floor. The work is paid well considering the cost of living in the area, but is very onerous. Workers earn around Rp 50,000 - 75,000 ($4-$6) per day and once out of the crater, still need to carry their loads of sulfur chunks about three kilometers to the nearby Paltuding Valley to get paid. Since National Geographic mentioned the electric-blue flame of Ijen, tourist numbers increased. The blue fire is ignited sulphuric gas, which emerges from cracks at temperatures up to 600 degrees Celsius (1,112 degrees Fahrenheit).
The blue flame phenomenon has occurred for a long time, but beforehand there was no midnight hiking. A two-hour hike is required to reach the rim of the crater, followed by a 45-minute hike down to the bank of the crater.
How To Get There
Ijen Crater can be reached either from Malang Airport (MLG) or Juanda airport (SUB) in Surabaya. Flights from major cities in Indonesia regularly fly in and out of Malang airport, or Surabya Airport, continue with 7 hour car drive to Ijen Crater that you can arrane with your hotel/tour operator.
With public bus from Malang, go to 'Arjosari' bus station to get a bus to 'Banyuwangi' bus station in Situbondo. Continue with another bus to 'Bondowoso' bus station and another minibus to 'Sempol' bus station. In Sempol, take a motorbike taxi to 'Paltuding', continue with 2 km walk (hike up) to Ijen Crater.
From Surabaya, go to 'Bungurasih' bus station to get a bus to 'Bondowoso' bus station. Continue with a minibus to 'Sempol' bus station. In Sempol, take a motorbike taxi to 'Paltuding', continue with 2 km walk (hike up) to Ijen Crater.
Ferry (From Gilimanuk, Bali)
Ijen Crater can also be reached by boat from Bali. From Gilimanuk seaport in Bali to Ketapang seaport in Banyuwangi. From Ketapang seaport, take a public bus to 'Bondowoso' bus station and another minibus to 'Sempol' bus station. In Sempol, take a motorbike taxi to 'Paltuding', continue with 2 km walk (hike up) to Ijen Crater.
You can have a private taxi from Surabaya airport/hotel, or share it with other travelers going the same way with you, or arrange a shared/private taxi with your hotel/tour operator.
A wide - pretty basic but clean - selection of accommodation is available around Ijen.
East Javanese people (Malang & Surabaya) are more expressive and spontaneous than central java people who tend to be introvert and gentle.
East Java also hosts a significant population of other ethnic groups, such as Chinese, Indians, and Arabs. In addition to the national language, Indonesian, they also speak Javanese. The major religion in East Java is Islam. The traditional dance known as Reog is a very spectacular dance with several dancers wearing bright colorful costumes accompanied by merry gamelan music. Surabaya is the capital city of east java. While Malang is famous for its dances. Mask dance (tari topeng) has been known by Malang society and this dance is tradition which cannot be left off hand, while Horse trance dancing, or "kuda lumping" is currently the most popular style of folk art being performed regularly in East Java, while bull races (karapan sapi) in the island of Madura, is very famous and also part of the province and has its own traditions, culture and language.
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