Article: A Round Trip from Jambi to Bali by Motorcycle - Part 3

4 extraordinary days in Yogyakarta ended by starting the trip to Bromo in the morning. On January 29, 2015, it was not too crowded on the road, I went to the City of Solo, via Klaten Regency. From Solo I took route to Karanganyar Regency to visit Grojogan Sewu, Cemeru Kandang, and Tawangmangu tourism spots. Karanganyar Regency have border directly to a Jawa Timur Province's regency named Magetan.

I arrived at Grojogan Sewu at 13.30, unfortunately it was only an hour to enjoy the waterfall and its parks, the Park Guards asked me to leave because they had to close the gate at 15.00. Heavy raining forced me to take shelter in a small mosque in a small farming village in Tawangmangu. After Isya prayer time it was only drizzle left. I continued my journey, crossing the border line between Jawa Tengah Province and Jawa Timur Province.

Around the midnight I reached Kediri, rested for a while and continued a non-stop trip to Batu City and then, finally Malang City, at dawn. In this town I made a call to a former coworker, Mas Handoko, to ask if I could make a visit to him and I got welcoming words, "Hell of course!" Then I was at his house in the morning, also met with his mother.

I really used the time at Mas Handoko's house to prepare myself for the trip to Bromo. I gave him lots of questions how to reach Bromo from Malang and things I might find along the route, including the best time to catch sunrise view. After Maghrib prayer time I said goodbye sayings to Mas Handoko and his mother thanked them for the place where I could refresh my body.

Frankly, at that evening time I had no idea to take the best route to Bromo from Malang City because there was too much information from Mas Handoko that I had to remember when driving. It was around 21.00, surroundings were getting more and more quiet made me to run Plan B which meant I would follow the traffic signs to reach Bromo. Unfortunately, I got the situation that I had followed the route based on Mas Handoko's information too far and had not found any direction signs on that small villages roads. I then decided to ask first people I encounter to guide me how to reach  Bromo. Alhamdulillah, I found a group people who gave me precise information kindly that brought me to Wonokitri, Tosari, it is a district of Pasuruan Regency and the gate to enter Bromo tourism spot.

I arrived at Bromo National Park Information Center at 02.30, for me it was very cold, I could not take my helmet off even to open its glass, piercing cold air made my eyes hurt. That was more steps needed to reach the location named Pananjakan to see the sunrise. After paying entrance ticket I rode my motorcycle slowly, my 3 layers of shirts and jackets were unable to prevent cold air from touching my body, slower speed helped me stay warmer.

It took almost an hour to arrive at Pananjakan and it was not finish yet, I needed to take more steps to go to a public balcony if I want to see the sunrise perfectly. I looked at my watch, and found it was still about an hour and half to go catching the sunrise, I then spent my time by looking around and having a cup of coffee in a small coffee shop. More and more people were coming to crowd public balcony, I thought this spot is really a famous place to attract tourists.

It was 10 minutes before 05.00 AM, I could see first light of sun rising and the public balcony was already full of people who hunting this view. There were no seats left for me and standing was the only choice I could make in the crowd. For the next an hour I enjoyed the sunrise at Bromo, sometimes I smiled at myself, I had made it, traveling somewhere after my first trip to the same place years ago.

At 07.00, only a few people were left in the public balcony, I enjoyed smoking my cigarettes in that mountain atmosphere while thinking about my next stop, Bali. I left for Bali from Bromo via Probolinggo route. Probolinggo Regency is a coastal regency in Jawa Timur Province and has a main route to Bali. By January 31, 2015, at 08.30 I really left Bromo, riding my motorcycle again, now to Bali.

Chapter 3: Yogyakarta-Bromo

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Road to Tawangmangu

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At entrance gate of Grojogan Sewu

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Grojogan Sewu Waterfall

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Agricultural area in Tawangmangu

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Border pillars between Jawa Tengah and Jawa Timur

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City Gate of Malang City

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My shelter in Malang City, Mas Handoko and his mother

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Where am I?

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Information Center in Bromo

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Sunrise view of Bromo

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Quiet cold morning in Bromo

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Gate to go to public balcony

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Mount Bromo

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Villages, taken from Pananjakan, so small

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Vegetable farms

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New acquaintance

Route of Part 3 on Google Map

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