Rising above desolate and barren flats from a sea of fine volcanic sand, Mount Bromo, at 2,329 m (7,641 ft), is the most famous and visited of the peaks and volcanoes in the Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park in East Java, Indonesia. Although it is neither the highest nor the most active peak in the park, it is distinctive with its collapsed caldera and plumes of white sulphurous smoke.
The indigenous people are the Tenggerese. Mount Bromo is central to their culture. During the festival of Yadnya Kasada, offerings of rice, vegetables, flowers and even livestock are thrown into the caldera to appease mountain deities. Men compete to scramble down the sides of the caldera to throw in their offerings.
As well as the bleak and rugged landscape of the mountain areas the park boasts lush green forests in which leopards and other cats, deer and wild pigs roam.
A good place to view Mount Bromo is from Mount Penanjakan. It is also possible to climb to the caldera and admire views of the Sea of Sand – especially spectacular at sunrise. The breath-taking Madakaripura waterfalls are a popular beauty spot to visit, with many natives vying for tourists to buy umbrellas to protect them from the spray.
The whole park is a mecca for hiking and there are many walking routes within the park. There are also roads for jeeps connecting the various places of interest.
The easiest place to access the mountain is from the village of Cemoro Hawang and from here it is possible to hike, take a horse or jeep ride to the top.
Although nearby Mount Semeru is much more active and dangerous, Mount Bromo did erupt in 2004, 2010 and 2011 so occasional warnings are issued to keep tourists away from the mountain during its more active periods.