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Mount Semeru facts have fascinated hikers from around the world. Here are five things you must know about the highest volcano on Java Island.

Dubbed the highest volcano on Java Island, Mount Semeru fascinate climbers and adventurers around the world. Standing 3,676m above sea level, Semeru is one of the highest volcanoes in Indonesia. A great place to camp, trek, and see the sunrise, Semeru also demands caution from climbers regarding its volcanic activity.

What interesting Mount Semeru facts this steep-sided mountain is known for?

Facts you must know before exploring it :

#1 Mount Semeru Facts: It’s an active volcano

Mount Semeru, as the 3rd highest volcano in Indonesia, is an active volcano, until now. The first recorded eruption happened in 1818, and it has been ongoing during the 19th and 20th centuries. The volcano produces ash explosions in 10 to 30 minutes intervals, which become the iconic images of Semeru.

The eruptions of Semeru are typically small to moderate, with occasional incandescent bombs, lava flows, and pyroclastic clouds along with the ashes.

#2 Mount Semeru Facts: It Has Three Lakes

Despite the imposing look, Mount Semeru has three beautiful mountain lakes, 2 nearby the last village and 1 on the trekking route. The most famous one is Ranu Kumbolo, a popular basecamp for Semeru hikers – you can have a beautiful sunrise picture here. The other two are Ranu Regulo and Ranu Pani. The distance between lakes is around a 20-minute walk. Hikers may set up camps a maximum of 15 m away from the lake.

Morning by the Lake

You cannot swim in these lakes since the cold temperatures can cause hypothermia. In Ranu Kumbolo it is not only because of the water temperature but also to keep the lake clean since it is also the water resource for hikers, for a drink, and cooking. You are also not allowed to take a bath or wash plates/anything in this lake. RanuKombolo camp area now has a public toilet for hikers to use.

#3 Mount Semeru Facts: A part of National Park

Mount Semeru is a part of Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park, which covers several active volcanoes and the surrounding areas. This national park is the only one in Indonesia that has a sand sea area. It is a home of various endemic and endangered species, such as crab-eating macaques, Javanese deer, Sumatran wild dogs (dhole), and about 137 species of birds.

#4 Mount Semeru Facts: It Has a “Purple Savanna”

During the rainy season and a few months after, you can find the purple savanna just after you pass the “Tanjakan Cinta” after Ranukumbolo. The Oro-Oro Ombo valley will be covered by purple flowers. Many people think that the purple flowers covering a large swath of this savanna are lavenders, but they are a type of verbenas (Verbena brasiliensis vell).

climb semeru oro oro ombo
Oro Oro Ombo valley, covered by purple flowers

Unlike lavenders, these purple verbenas are invasive species. But the spread seems to be controlled by the season because during the dry season the plant will die (or only die on the surface but the roots still alive), so you will only see the purple flower until around August – September, and then all will be brown and dusty during the dry season.

#5 : Locals Consider It Sacred

Mount Semeru is considered sacred by locals and Hindu worshippers. They believe that the volcano is a spiritual “nail” that keeps Java Island attached in its place. There are several signs of worship in various spots in the mountain,. a stone carving near RanuKumbolo Lake that is often adorned with white fabric and offerings.

Adventure Indonesia offers a combined Mount Bromo Semeru Ijen and its surrounding areas. Understand these Mount Semeru facts before making inquiries and arranging for a memorable hiking trip.

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