Kawah Ijen Trek
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What you should know
The closest town to Ijen to Banyuwangi. Depending on which option you choose, the guide will provide transport to Ijen from Banyuwangi or Bali. Ijen is about one hours' drive from Banyuwangi and 4-5 hours' drive from Bali.
If you are going to Banyuwangi on your own, there are a couple of ways to get there. If you are starting out in West Java, make your way to Banyuwangi by train (from Surabaya, Probolinggo or Jogyakarta). If you are coming from Bali, you can take a public bus or arrange private transportation to take you to the ferry terminal at Gilimanuk and across to Java by ferry. There are a few comfortable buses that run from Denpasar all the way to Banyuwangi Ferry Terminal (meaning you take the ferry while remaining on the bus). From the ferry terminal, you can catch a taxi to town.
It is not mandatory to have a guide, but it is advisable to have one. Ijen has become increasingly popular with travellers in recent years, and there is an increase in the number of people who will try to get you to buy tickets and knick-knacks on the ground that aren't necessary. A guide can help bring colour to the wonderful trek, arrange logistics and transport ahead of time and help you avoid the hassle when you get on the ground.
The terrain isn't difficult so only moderate fitness levels will be required - i.e. you should be comfortable with a hike down and up that will last about 2.5 hours each way.
The best months to visit are April, May, June, July, August, September, October
We recommend the above period because you would have:
- Good weather
- More activities available
The trek itself is only 5 hours but the return journey (inclusive of trekking time) will take approx 14 hours from Bali and approx 9.5 hours from Banyuwangi.
One of the options starts from Bali and the other starts from Banyuwangi so it depends on where you are coming from.