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We hiked Mount Batur, Bali, when we were staying in Ubud – and we loved every moment. Subsequently, we’ve received a lot of questions from other would-be hikers wanting to know about the Mount Batur sunrise hike difficulty, and what they need to bring to be prepared.

With this in mind, we’ve gathered a team of travel bloggers who have also done a Mount Batur tour with the aim of answering the question: ‘How hard is the Mount Batur hike?’.

We’ve purposefully selected a range of abilities and hiking levels to include here, to give you a better idea of what to expect regardless of who you are.

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Mount Batur Sunrise Hike Difficulty

Mount Batur is located about an hour and a half’s drive from Ubud. Tours do run from pick up locations like Canggu and Kuta, so no matter where you are staying in Bali, chances are you can still do the hike.

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The Mount Batur sunrise hike is widely advertised as suitable for all levels of fitness and hiking ability – but how true is this? When we completed it, we were amongst the ‘fittest’ in our group. One couple had to be driven up the volcano on the back of a scooter because they found it too challenging. But then again, a group of friends who were self-confessed non-hikers completed it just fine.

Mount Batur last erupted in 2000 and is still an active volcano today. Rising 1,717m up into the skies, it isn’t a small hill by any means. It is a climb, and this is important to remember when considering whether to book your own Mt Batur excursion.

Mount Batur Sunrise Hike Difficulty

How cold is it up Mount Batur?

You will begin the trek in the middle of the night. We arranged our Mount Batur sunrise trek from Ubud, which meant we got picked up last. This meant we had a little bit more sleep than others coming from further south, but we still were awake and waiting for the minibus at 2 am.

Because of this, it’s dark. And cold. You will want a layer that you can strip off as you get hot from the climb and the rising sun. We wore shorts and a hoody each, and that was fine.

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Is Mount Batur dangerous?

As with all physical activity, there is always some risk involved. As we’ve said, you begin the ascent in darkness with a torch to guide you, so there is a slight chance that you may trip up. This is especially true as you get closer to the top, and have to scramble up loose scree to reach the summit.

In addition to this, there are monkeys near the crater. As with all monkeys in Bali, they want your food. If you have no food, chances are they will leave you alone.

Then there is the risk of falling into the crater itself. As you can imagine, it isn’t fenced off. However, as long as you are careful and sure-footed when you are near the edge, you’ll be fine.

Essentially, just be sensible guys!

Sunrise in Bali, Mount Batur Sunrise Hike Difficulty

What do you wear to Mount Batur?

We’ve pulled together a handy table below of items we wore or took with us when we were doing the sunrise hike. You don’t need a lot, and remember that whatever you do bring, you will have to carry.

We’ve also included items recommended by other travel bloggers who have completed the Mt Batur sunrise hike, so you can be sure that this is a pretty comprehensive list!

Item

Name

Why You Need It

Where To Buy

The climb is slippery and full of loose scree. Trainers may be adequate but hiking boots are always better!

Same as above, but just for women!

For the moments before the sun comes up and you feel the chill of the night!

The fact that this is packable means you won't have to tie it awkwardly around your waist when you take it off.

If a hoody is more your thing, as it was ours, this one is perfect for travelling with.

Just like the men's version above (but better).

You will need a small backpack to carry water, snacks, and your provided breakfast.

We each got one of these before we set off to Southeast Asia, and it was a total lifesaver. No more trying to pack awkward bottles into your already full luggage!

It's a long day in all, and if your phones are like ours, you will need to connect to a power supply after taking all the photos and videos at the top!

This is the upgrade from the model of camera we have. It's lightweight so won't weigh you down on the hike.

It may not be the most glamourous item here, but if it's rainy or misty it will be the best thing you bring!

How can I book my own sunrise hike?

You can book a range of tours, from overnight camping trips to group hikes like the one we did. Take a look at the options below and click through to see the best deals.

The most popular option for the Mt Batur sunrise trek is a small group, however you can also book a private hike.

If hiking really isn’t your thing, or if you’re a bit more of an adrenaline junkie, why not take a Jeep ride up in time for sunrise instead? Check prices and availability here.

If you can’t bear the thought of getting up before dawn for the hike, why not sign up for a sunset one instead? Details here.

For a rewarding soak in a natural hot spring after the hike, book a 2-in-1 activity here.

To include a visit to Tegallalang Rice Terraces after the hike, and private transport, check out this popular tour.

View of sunrise hike Mt Batur - Mount Batur Sunrise Hike Difficulty

Is Mt Batur worth it?

Here, we will pass you over to our fellow travel bloggers! Take a look at their stories and learn more about hiking Mount Batur.

A blissful morning hike with stunning views, active wildlife, plus a lake AND a volcano!

Photo Credit: Your Best Life Company

Name: Tim Skells
Travel Blog: Your Best Life Company
What time of year did you complete the Mt Batur Sunrise Hike? Wet Season
Would you describe yourself as a hiker? No
How hard is the Mt Batur Trek? Moderate

“Hiking Mt Batur is a must-do in my book while you are in Bali. It takes about 2 days of energy out of you; one day of waking up early (or maybe not even going to sleep that night) and doing the hike. And then another day of catching up on sleep.

I wouldn’t say the hike is TOO hard, as I did it with my 67-year-old mother, on my 30th birthday! However, it is not an easy feat either. My mother took multiple rest stops and at some points seemed like she may not finish it. But once you get to the top, it is totally worth it!

The sunrise over the adjacent active volcano, the light shimming off of the lake between you and another volcano, and the clouds that roll in beneath you, all make for a magical morning. Pair that with a light breakfast and, if you’re lucky, a bunch of wild monkeys, and I don’t think you can ask for much more. You also get to see the active steam vents from the volcano – which are hot enough to cook an egg!”

“Outstanding. I loved walking up to see the sunset and then waking up to see the sunrise over the lake and the mountains. It was ethereal.”

Photo Credit: Smita Bhattacharya

Name: Smita Bhattacharya
Travel Blog: smitabhattacharya
What time of year did you complete the Mt Batur Sunrise Hike? Dry Season
Would you describe yourself as a hiker? No
How hard is the Mt Batur Trek? Moderate

“I was seeking a unique experience in Bali, and boy, oh boy, did it blow my mind.

We opted for a private overnight tour because we didn’t have the equipment and were also afraid of getting lost. Our experience of watching the sunset, eating freshly cooked fish and soup at 1,717 meters and waking up at 5:30 am the next day to sip hot coffee and watch the sky change colour was quite something else.

The climb up Mount Batur is easy enough and takes around 2 hours. You might be the only ones on top and hopefully, you will come across Comrade Tibor, the shaggy dog who just wants to play! But while the climb up will be quiet and peaceful, sunrise is a noisy time. Scores of morning trekkers will join you in oohing and ahhing at the sun when it shows up.

My suggestion is to take it easy and slow and savour the walk up at night, and wake up lazily in the morning to enjoy the experience more.”

“Incredibly safe, worthwhile, and breathtaking, but overall pretty crowded and fairly commercialised.”

Photo Credit: Rachel Off Duty

Name: Rachel-Jean Firchau
Travel Blog: Rachel Off Duty
What time of year did you complete the Mt Batur Sunrise Hike? Wet Season
Would you describe yourself as a hiker? Yes
How hard is the Mt Batur Trek? Moderate

“I was traveling through Bali on a solo trip, and one of the things that was high on my list to experience was the infamous Mount Batur hike. I had seen photos from friends who had done it before, and the hike came highly recommended.

In order to get to the summit, you are supposed to have a local guide with you, so I booked myself on a small group tour with 2 other women. Every morning at 2 am, a couple of hundred travellers from all over Bali begin making their way to Mount Batur to start hiking, all in an effort to reach the summit before sunrise.

The other women in my group had a packed breakfast provided by their hotel, which they graciously shared with me (learn from my mistake – bring snacks!). We all started hiking at the same time, but if you are in good shape or an avid hiker, it will be easier for you to keep a steady pace once the incline begins. Otherwise, you might need more time.

All in all, it took me about 1 hour and 15 minutes to get to the top, right as the sun was beginning to rise behind Mount Agung in the distance. Absolutely surreal. But, keep in mind, this isn’t the leisurely relaxing hike you’d typically expect. There are dozens of groups hiking at the same time, and motorcycles patrolling the trail, too.

Would I do it again? Probably not. But was it worth doing once? 100%.”

“The Mount Batur sunrise hike is a must-do in Bali for an adventurous experience, and to see a beautiful sunrise.”

Photo Credit: Digital Travel Couple

Name: Ilse
Travel Blog: Digital Travel Couple
What time of year did you complete the Mt Batur Sunrise Hike? Wet Season
Would you describe yourself as a hiker? Yes
How hard is the Mt Batur Trek? Moderate

“We went with a group of 15 people to join a trash clean up on Mount Batur. We hiked with a guide to the summit, which took about 2 hours. You will walk in darkness on the way up, so if it’s a clear night, you can see the Milky Way and maybe even a shooting star!

There are a few kind-of flat parts, but most of the hike is obviously an incline. You’ll feel your legs burning, but there are also enough spots to sit down and catch your breath.

The last part to the summit is a real climb over uneven rocks and slippery ground, but it’s all worth it when you see the first light rays peeking through the clouds! An amazing view of Mount Agung and the Kintamani region unfolds before you.

On the way back you can walk all the way around the crater to descend alongside the hot springs and crater lake. This part is super slippery because of loose gravel, so be prepared to slip down and get a lot of volcano sand in your shoes. You’ll also have the possibility of encountering monkeys, so keep all your valuables in your backpack!”

“Breathtaking experience and unmissable views in Bali.”

Photo Credit: Golden Undertones

Name: Peyton
Travel Blog: Golden Undertones
What time of year did you complete the Mt Batur Sunrise Hike? Dry Season
Would you describe yourself as a hiker? No
How hard is the Mt Batur Trek? Moderate

“Climbing Mt Batur was an experience of a lifetime. At first, I wasn’t sure about climbing a volcano, but I decided to do it because I didn’t want to leave Bali with any regrets.

I can DEFINITELY say that I have no regrets about climbing Mt Batur! I am not a hiker, but I have been an athlete for my whole life. For me, the hike was moderately difficult – it definitely was not a walk in the park. Let’s just say the entire sole of my shoe had ripped off by the end of the hike!

It began a little bit chilly because the journey started at 4 am but by the end of the hike, I was sweaty and hot. Now, normally hills, stairs etc., are easier going down BUT I actually found the hike down Mt Batur to be more difficult because it was slippery with the volcanic rock.

Taking all this into consideration, seeing the sunrise at the top of the volcano was breathtaking! I can truly say this was one of my most rewarding experiences in Bali. Another factor that I enjoyed was supporting our guide who lived in small village nearby – this was the main source of his family’s income. Overall, climbing Mt Batur was an amazing experience!”

“I never realised how memorable the view of a plain, white cloud could be!”

Name: Cassie Bailey
Travel Blog: Cassiethehag
What time of year did you complete the Mt Batur Sunrise Hike? Dry Season
Would you describe yourself as a hiker? Yes
How hard is the Mt Batur Trek? Moderate

“At the time I hiked Mt Batur, I’d spent a week half-trapped in a 2-euro a night, 12-bed dorm after all my bank cards got blocked. The host felt sorry for me and organised a seat in a car driving to the hike, so I was excited… although she warned the weather might be very cloudy.

Hiking up Mt Batur wasn’t too difficult. However, since the path was very crowded I started to get motion sickness from all the torches; it was very dark and I could just see the lights flashing around everywhere which made me dizzy.

One woman had to turn back because she found it too steep, but most moderately healthy people will manage just fine. At the top, I was the envy of other backpackers since I had a warm jacket as we waited in anticipation for sunrise… but alas… the sunrise never came!

My hostel host was right; it was hella cloudy. We gazed at a view of nothing, watching a white sky get ever-so-slowly brighter. It was so funny – at one point, a tiny speck of sun peaked through the clouds for about 5-seconds while everyone cheered.

Some looked a bit disappointed about the whole thing so I asked them to take a photo of me in front of the PLAIN WHITE CLOUD and everyone started laughing and joining in. So, maybe this isn’t the best review for the Mount Batur hike, but it’s a good example of how activities can be fun, even when they don’t go to plan!”

“The view of the sunrise from the top of Mount Batur is not exactly worth the effort involved!”

Photo Credit: Couple of Journeys

Name: Vrushali
Travel Blog: Couple of Journeys
What time of year did you complete the Mt Batur Sunrise Hike? Dry Season
Would you describe yourself as a hiker? No
How hard is the Mt Batur Trek? Difficult

“My husband and I did the Mount Batur hike on our second trip to Bali. We booked a guide for the trip and we were picked up from our hotel at 1:30 am. We reached the base at around 3:15 am and immediately started climbing. A guide accompanied us throughout to lead us and show us the way.

However, given that neither of us is a seasoned hiker, we found the hike quite difficult. We did take extra breaks at several points on the way up and the two hours spent climbing seemed like an eternity. The fact that it is pitch dark when you climb makes the hike seem longer and more challenging.

While we didn’t really come across many huge groups on our way up, when we did reach the top, the place was pretty crowded. Finding an empty spot from where we could click good photos of the sunrise was a struggle.

Additionally, even though we climbed during the dry season, a number of clouds covered the view of the actual sunrise making the hike not really worth all the effort.

After the sunrise, we explored the area. However, we didn’t want to get our cameras out because of the monkeys around trying to snatch things out our hands. The way down was also pretty tiring because of the humid weather.

Finally, when we reached our hotel again, we were dead tired, our feet ached and we didn’t even feel like moving out of our beds. Honestly, we have seen so many beautiful sunrises from various parts of the world that the sunrise from the top of Mount Batur did not seem worth the pain of staying up all night, climbing to the top through the dark and coming back with our bodies totally sore!”

“An easy volcano hike in the darkness with a stunning reveal (if you’re lucky) at the end.”

Photo Credit: LivingOutLau

Name: Sean Lau
Travel Blog: LivingOutLau
What time of year did you complete the Mt Batur Sunrise Hike? Dry Season
Would you describe yourself as a hiker? Yes
How hard is the Mt Batur Trek? Easy

“The Mount Batur sunrise tours start with a 2:30 am pick up at your accommodation in Ubud. Yes, 2:30 AM. Many of you might decide to pull an all-nighter, just like the group of American college kids that were on the same transport van as me.

After a 45-minute journey of listening to them blasting Drake and singing in the car, we arrived at our breakfast location, where we were given a light breakfast and some coffee. By 4:00 AM, we had arrived at the parking lot (or what seemed like one in the dark) of Mount Batur. In the darkness, all I could see were the multitude of flashlights given out by the tour guides. There had to be over 100 people doing this hike.

By 4:15 am, we were already on the move. Many hikers consider this trail moderately difficult (and the lack of sleep definitely didn’t help), but I actually found it quite nice. In the absolute darkness, all you could hear was your own breathing and the footsteps, and in a way it was meditative. In my half-awakened state, we slowly made our way to the top.

The dampness and the cool temperature in the early morning made it a lot more comfortable than hiking in the day. It took us about 2 hours to arrive at the top. When we did, we sat down for 30 minutes, only to realise that part of the total darkness we had experienced throughout the morning was due to thick fog.

There wasn’t a sunrise to our disappointment; the surroundings just got a little brighter. When it was bright enough, we could see the monkeys that inhabited the mountain and were probably stalking us on the way up. After seeing close to nothing, we were led back down to the bottom of the mountain!”

“Hiking Mount Batur and seeing the sunrise from the top was one of the most memorable experiences from our Bali trip, I can absolutely recommend it to everyone!”

Photo Credit: She Wanders Abroad

Name: Krisztina Harsányi
Travel Blog: She Wanders Abroad
What time of year did you complete the Mt Batur Sunrise Hike? Dry Season
Would you describe yourself as a hiker? No
How hard is the Mt Batur Trek? Moderate

“We completed the Mount Batur sunrise hike during our first visit to Bali and it was one of the most memorable experiences from our trip.

We stayed in Ubud, so in order to get to Mount Batur in time, we needed to wake up around 1 am. Our driver picked us up at our hotel and we arrived at Mount Batur around 3 am.

Although many companies offer group tours, we opted for a private tour which was organised by our local driver. We met our guide at the foot of the volcano, where the trek starts. First, we had a coffee and a few bites to eat, then we started the climb.

Luckily, we had a clear night without any clouds, so we could see the stars above our heads while we were climbing up to the volcano. Since it was pitch black, we needed to use the flashlights he provided us and I was really glad we packed a sweater and a jacket as well because it was surprisingly cold.

It took us around 2 hours to reach the top, and although I’m not much of a hiker, it was not that hard to complete. Some parts are steeper than the others but all in all, it was a moderate hike.

We reached the top just before the sun started to rise so we sat down to watch the sunrise while our guide made us some boiled eggs for breakfast. It was an unforgettable experience!”

“An adventure in the dark that leads to the most beautiful sunrise views in Bali.”

Photo Credit: Dream Big, Travel Far

Name: Cazzy Magennis
Travel Blog: Dream Big, Travel Far
What time of year did you complete the Mt Batur Sunrise Hike? Dry Season
Would you describe yourself as a hiker? No
How hard is the Mt Batur Trek? Moderate

“Climbing Mt Batur had been high on my Bali bucket list, and I was super excited to witness an active volcano.

I’ve never had much hiking experience, and hiking with type 1 diabetes typically involves some form of preparation or know-how, so I was both excited and a little bit nervous. Thankfully, the hike was worth every minute of struggle.

The walk itself isn’t too bad, and if you’re with friends or a guide, you can take it as slow or as quickly as you want. They all leave with plenty of time for rest breaks. The hike starts quite early and I remember not getting too much sleep the night before due to excitement, but there are places to grab a Balinese coffee before you go to give yourself an extra drop of energy.

As you hike up the volcano, you’re hiking in complete darkness, and when you witness that sunrise, you’ll be impressed with how far you actually climbed – at least I was!

The sunrise here was one of the most beautiful I’ve ever witnessed in my travel adventures so far, and I’ll never forget eating breakfast with friends with that beautiful sunrise view.”

“I’d describe my experience of hiking Mount Batur as having an intimate romantic date with nature – an absolutely memorable travel memory.”

Photo Credit: The Wandering Vegetable

Name: Vaibhav Mehta
Travel Blog: The Wandering Vegetable
What time of year did you complete the Mt Batur Sunrise Hike? Wet Season
Would you describe yourself as a hiker? Yes
How hard is the Mt Batur Trek? Moderate

“Hiking Mt. Batur is like getting ready to walk on a carpet for a prestigious film festival. The only difference being, here the activity involves good physical fitness and mental toughness, and the carpet ain’t red but a paradisiacal white thanks to the clouds flirting with the mountains.

I remember waking up at 2 in the morning and getting ready along with my travel partner, who was sleepwalking and had no idea that she was about to have her first real hiking experience.

Our driver picked us up at around 2:30 am and after a journey of an hour and 15 minutes, we reached the starting point of the hike. The climb is about 1,717 metres or 5,633 feet above sea-level and takes around 2 hours to complete.

We made a couple of stops in between to gather our breath and recharge our batteries by hydrating ourselves. Why, you ask? Well, the hiking path can get really steep, slippery and difficult at several places. After all, as much of a fitness freak I am, climbing a mountain isn’t the same as doing a gym session!

I could see the darkness disappearing as we were about to reach the top. And then at around 6 am, the sun made a heroic blockbuster entry, pushing the curtain of clouds behind it and creating a breathtaking visual that is still imprinted in my memory.

The sun rising over the volcano looked be-you-tiful and I couldn’t help but marvel at nature’s magnificence! The prize was indeed worth the effort!”

Mount Batur Trekking Review

As you can see, we’ve included a wide range of travel bloggers with all types of hiking experience. It can be hard to second-guess what the weather is going to be doing, and if you’re unlucky enough to hike it on a cloudy day, the views aren’t guaranteed.

However, those of us who got lucky and had clear skies witnessed a beautiful sunrise from atop an active volcano – a pretty cool claim to fame if we say so ourselves.

Our advice? If you really are NOT active, in any way, shape, or form, sit it out. We can imagine it would be pretty disappointing to struggle with the climb itself, only to be let down by a cloudy view. However, if you’re up for an early start and are comfortable with physical exertion, it’s one of the best things you can do in Bali.

Have you done the Mount Batur hike? What did you think? Let us know in the comments!

Take a look at our other Indonesia travel blog posts below:

Paradise Found? The Best Infinity Pool in Bali: Munduk Moding Plantation Hotel Review

The Best Luxury Hotels on Nusa Lembongan: The Tamarind Resort, Nusa Lembongan Review

Cheers, all the best.

Sam & Kez x

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10 Comments

  1. Shelley August 23, 2020 at 3:59 am

    Love all the perspectives you have here… I did this hike & honestly, I’d never do it again, but that was just me. I’m going to save + pin your blog though, to forward to anyone considering the Batur hike. It’s definitely an experience.

    Reply
  2. Loise August 23, 2020 at 12:35 am

    I should visit Bali soon! I’ve been wanting to have a hiking experience in other country.
    Views are incredibly great! <3

    Reply
  3. Josy A August 22, 2020 at 6:47 pm

    I would probably love most of this! We hike most weekends and regularly walk for 8hours+ so waking up early and the hiking part doesn’t sound too bad…

    The only thing I’d be less keen on is the crowded areas. I like to hike to get away from crowds…so I guess I might prefer to find a less well known alternative.

    Reply
  4. Nicola Lavin August 22, 2020 at 6:12 pm

    Wow! Your photos are just incredible. I want to do this hike and see these views for myself some day.

    Reply
  5. Lyne August 21, 2020 at 1:10 pm

    That sounds like a pretty intense and epic hike! I didn’t think you’d have to leave so early, but the photo and experience makes it worth it! I’d love to this myself one day.

    Reply
  6. Chelsea August 20, 2020 at 10:57 pm

    OMGGGG 2:00am?? Haha!! Looks and sounds so worth it though!!!! This is definitely on my list for next time that I go to Bali!

    Reply
    1. So Today We Found August 20, 2020 at 11:11 pm

      Hahaha yep! We were like walking zombies at first, it was a tough start to the day 😂 but definitely worth it in our eyes!

      Reply
  7. MacKenzie - Rainbow Travel Life August 19, 2020 at 10:17 pm

    I’m not going to lie, my favorite tip from this post is “just be sensible!” I feel like that sums up so much, haha. Thank you for putting this together!

    Reply
  8. Diane August 19, 2020 at 10:00 pm

    There is SO much incredible information here! And the photos are stunning. It definitely makes me want to pack my bags…and my hiking boots 😊

    Reply
  9. Sarah August 19, 2020 at 9:41 pm

    Whaaaat!!! This is so crazy! I was shocked at the 2 am part haha but this sounds so epic. Probably something I would have to do my own since my husband would NEVER get up this early to do but the photos look incredible! Two hours doesn’t seem that bad to do. Totally marking this down!

    Reply

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