Route details for Probolinggo to Cemoro Lawang (Mt Bromo)
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We had not planned to end up in Probolingo, but we were and it was 4am. We had been dumped by our bus driver at the door of the local travel agent, Mr Tony. After lengthy negotiations we finally agreed a price with Mr Tony to take us to Mt Bromo. We knew we were getting a bad price but we were tired, hungry at it was still dark! We were given two options, the first was to get a private taxi for about $20 the second was to take a bus shared with locals for about $6 each. We stuck with the public transport, unknown to us the bus was not due to start its round until 6.30am so we had to hang around. At the time we just wanted to get to Me Bromo, but now I look back on it with fond memories because as we sat waiting for the bus to go we watch the town come to life as the sun rose on the dusty horizon.
The bus was more like a converted truck but they did give us the best seats seeing that we were the only westerners! Or maybe that’s why it cost us so much more than the locals! As the bus headed up the steep road to Cemoro Lawang it struggled to get out of second gear. Why is it that so often the slowest journeys are the most intriguing, the ones that open your eyes to your life and others lives? As we trundled up the hill passages hopped on and off, old ladies, young women and school children all starting their day, while most of the men clambered up onto the roof. After an hour the bus started to empty again as we climbed the endless mountain road. Unknown to us there had been some big landslides earlier in the week closings the road until our day of travel. The road was will not fully cleared which meant that the driver has to navigate around and over a number of partially cleared landslides. After about 2hrs we finally made it to Cemoro Lawang and got taken the drivers mates hotel after a bit of discussion they reluctantly took us to our hotel of choice.
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