Chasing volcanoes…

Although we had prior plans for a little trip to Gunung Putri (Princess mountain), the eruption of Gunung Tangkuban Perahu next door was enough to get my volcano-loving ass excited. Was I about to finally witness a volcanic eruption?

We drove from Jakarta, which inevitably involves some mental traffic and stopped off in Lembung. Here we found loads of different, cheap, food stalls; even I had tonnes of options as a vegetarian, loads of tofu and tempe!

Putri itself is a very easy climb, a little steep in parts but very clear, loads of camping areas and a few other groups dotted about. From the entrance to the highest camp site you could easily make it in half an hour if you’re a speedy walker.

We set up camp in a wooded area. There were a few other campers about but it was very quiet for such a small walk. I attribute this to the fact that Tangkuban Perahu had erupted the day before so most people were staying clear!

Of course, we were up for the sunrise at 5am, which was a pretty good one.

And Putri had another little treat to explore in the form of a small fort nestled in the woods. It’s kind of hidden underground and there are loads of little parts to explore, if that’s your kind of thing.

I personally enjoyed the forested areas here as well. The forest in this area is a little less like the rainforest you would expect around the equator and more pine forest, with lovely tall trees and needle covered forest floor (which smells wonderful in comparison to the smells you experience in the city!).

So, did I get to see any of the eruption of Tangkuban Perahu? No. Although still in an eruption phase, there wasn’t any more activity while we were there, to my disappointment (yes, I do realise it’s a bit weird to chase a volcanic eruption: but how cool would it be to see from a safe distance?!).

I’d say this is one of the easiest, beginner trips out there. If you are new to the country, nervous about camping or your level of fitness, this is the place to come test it out. This one is also good if you are the type that fancies a nice trail run in the morning due to the cooler temperature and easy terrian!


  • Tent
  • Roll mat
  • Portable stove and cooking kit
  • We always take instant noodles because they’re light and easy to cook
  • 2-4 litres of water
  • A couple of layers- it is still fairly high up, despite being a small climb, so can be quite cold!
  • Sleeping bag
  • Trainers or boots will be fine
  • A waterproof coat, just to be on the safe side

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