Watching the sunrise at Borobudur is one of those things you just have to do on a trip to Indonesia. Yes, the crowds are annoying; yes, you have to get up super early; but yes, it’s totally worth it 🙂
One of the highlights of a visit to Indonesia is watching the sunrise at Mt. Bromo, in eastern Java. This is a view of Bromo and the Sea of Sand, with clouds gathered low above the sand on the right and a light fog gently rolling over the ridge on the left, lit up by the morning light. This image is created from 3 vertical shots, stitched together in Hugin, and post-processed in Lightroom.
A short boat ride from the island of Lombok, lie the three Gili Islands – Meno, Air and Trawangan. We spent a couple of days on Gili Trawangan snorkeling with wild sea turtles and enjoying life on a “secluded island” – in the end Trawangan is the biggest party island of all three, so it’s not at all secluded, but with no motorized transport of any kind it still has a unique atmosphere!
From Gili Trawangan you get a fantastic view of Lombok, including it’s highest peak, the volcano Mount Rinjani. I got up one morning to watch the sunrise; from where I was the sun came up just next to Mount Rinjani. As it came above the horizon, it bathed the landscape in a beautiful golden color.
Another highlight of my trip to Indonesia was watching the sunrise over Borobudur, built in the 9th century and today is the largest Buddhist temple in the world. It’s located just outside of the city of Yogyakarta. Unfortunately a lot of tourists go to see the sunrise, so you’re hardly alone at the top! I found it even worse than Bagan in Myanmar – at least there you have hundreds of temples which you can watch the sunrise from, whereas at Borobudur there is just the one. It means you need to bring your patience with you in order to get shots without people! You also have to search for different angles, as the side where the sun rises is covered in people. Still worth it though when I see this shot!
This is a view of Mt. Bromo, on Java in Indonesia, as the sunlight begins to filter over the horizon. This shot was taken just a few minutes after my previous one (see the comments section below), and the stars are already a lot less visible.
I really liked the contrast between the deep blue sky and the foreground colors – not long after this the sky and clouds developed a lot more pink and orange.
I just got back from a long trip through Indonesia – covering Java, Bali, Lombok and Flores. One of the (many) highlights was watching the sunrise over Mt. Bromo, on the island of Java.
We arrived at the popular viewing point around 3am, and were the first people there, which meant we were able to get the best spots. We just had to wait in the cold wind until 4:30am for the sun to show itself!
While we waited, I took some long exposure shots to catch the vast array of starts visible above the volcanoes. On the plain in front of Mt. Bromo you can see the light trail left behind by the jeeps taking visitors to other viewing points. And then I got lucky – during one of my long exposures, a shooting star suddenly appeared over the volcano!