Gunung Arjuna-Lalijiwo Reserve

Gunung Arjuna-Lalijiwo Reserve

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This reserve includes the dormant volcano Gunung Arjuna (3339m), the semi-active Gunung Welirang (3156m) and the Lalijiwo Plateau on the northern slopes of Arjuna. Experienced and well-equipped hikers can walk from the resort town of Tretes to Selekta in two days, but you need a guide to go all the way. Alternatively, you can climb Welirang from Tretes or Lawang.

A well-used hiking path, popular with students on weekends and holidays, and also with soul-searchers who come to meditate on the mountain, begins in Tretes near the Kakak Bodo Recreation Reserve. Get information from the PHKA post in the northern reaches of the town. Guides can be hired here for 300,000Rp per day; allow two days to climb one mountain and three days for both.

It’s a hard, five-hour, 17km walk to the very basic huts used by the Gunung Welirang sulphur collectors. Hikers usually stay overnight here in order to reach the summit before the clouds roll in around mid-morning. Bring your own camping gear, food and drinking water (or hire it all at the PHKA post for around 140,000Rp per day), and be prepared for freezing conditions. From the huts it’s a 4km climb to the summit. Allow at least six hours in total for the ascent, and 4½ hours for the descent.

The trail passes Lalijiwo Plateau, a superb alpine meadow, from where a trail leads to Gunung Arjuna, the more demanding peak. From Arjuna, a trail leads down the southern side to Junggo, near Selekta and Batu. It’s a five-hour descent from Arjuna this way; a guide is essential.

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