- Elevation: 3,150 m (10,335 ft)
- Prominence: 1,761 m
- Ribu category: Sangat Tinggi
- Province: Jawa Tengah (Central Java)
- Google Earth: kml
- Other names: Sundoro, Sendoro
- Eruptions: 1971, 2011-14
Mount Sindoro is separated from its similarly conical but slightly higher neighbour, Gunung Sumbing, by the Kledung Pass (1,404m). Together, they dominate the Dieng plateau area and can both be climbed from Kledung village where there is a decent hotel. There is another straightforward and slightly shorter ascent from the north at Sigedang (1,700m) and a couple of less popular routes from the west and east respectively.
For its size, Sindoro is an easy hike and would make a great introduction to hiking in Indonesia. From the top there are great views to Sumbing, Merapi, Merbabu, Ungaran, Slamet, Dieng plateau’s high ridge Gunung Prau and the north coast of Java. Sunrise is usually magnificent so it is worth climbing overnight. Camping is not advised at present (2014) due to poisonous gases at the top (since 2011 – one hiker died camping by the crater in 2013). Though there is a small lake at the top, there is no water source on the actual route so make sure you take plenty with you.
Route from Kledung (SOUTH-EAST): From Kledung it takes 5 – 6 hours to the top. From the main road at Kledung, take the cobbled road leading north opposite the Kledung Rest Area. It is difficult to miss because it’s the first turning east of the Kledung Pass hotel. The cobbled road leads gently up the hillside for about one mile and it is recommended you get an ojek (motorcycle taxi) to take you up as far as possible. The end of the road is at 1,654m. The well-defined and occasionally slippery trail leads up through pine woodland past the remains of Pos 1 (1,761m), Pos Payungan (1,857m), across some very small wooden bridges and on to the remains of the shelter at Pos 2 (1,978m). There are a few good places to admire the views of Sumbing across on the other side of the Kledung Pass but it is not until you are beyond Batu Longko and at the first major camping area (Pos 3 at 2,320m) that the vegetation becomes sparse. If you are going to camp anywhere other than at the summit (not advised at present), Pos 3 is recommended because the views south and east are spectacular and there is plenty of room for tents. However, there are many places suitable for just one or two tents all the way up.
The trail climbs more steeply and passes scattered rocks, notably ‘batu tatah’ (at 2,843m). There is little shade here so for the light-skinned it is essential to use sun cream during the day. Finally the top is reached and you are on the edge of Sindoro’s crater. There are actually two craters next to each other: a deeper, water-filled one (2010, no longer any water by 2014, but lots of fumarole activity) and a smaller swampy one higher up. If you follow the crater rim round to the right (east), it descends to a large, flat grassy area which sometimes has a small lake in it. This would appear to be the remains of a very old third crater. It would make a great place to camp. Further round, is the alun-alun, an even larger area, perfect for camping. However, given the present fumarole activity it is not recommended at present (2014) to camp near the top. Check with guides or local people regarding the situation in future.
Much of the crater rim is of a very similar height. It takes only 30 minutes to circuit the crater rim so baggers don’t need to worry too much about missing the very highest point if they’ve had a wander around the crater edge! The highest reading I got on my GPS was on the edge of the crater just above the small depression where there is often a small pool of water. In clear weather you can see the north coast of Java. The edelweiss-covered summit area is very large and flat and the mountain apparently takes its name from the fragrant scent of the edelweiss flowers.
Fast hikers can be back down at the Kledung Pass hotel in less than 4 hours. You may even be able to arrange an ojek from a local farmer when you reach the cobbled road.
Note there is another, newer and less popular route up from Anggrunggondok (also known as Alang-Alang Sewu route) which is just a kilometre or so further west from Kledung Pass and main Kledung Basecamp (and not far from the turning for the Garung basecamp for Gunung Sumbing). You might consider combining the two as it is easy to find transport between them. The Anggrunggondok route leads via Pos 1 Lembah Kesunyian (1,755m), Pos 2 Lembah Katresnan (2,062m), Pos 3 Alang-Alang Sewu (2,370m) and Pos 4 Jalu Mulyo / Labirin Stone (2,850m). There is a water source between Pos 1 and 2.
Route from Sigedang / Sikatok (NORTH): The basecamp is at an elevation of around 1,700m. The trail leads via Pos Bayangan (1,865m), Pos 1 (1,900m), and Pos 2 (2,127m). These first Pos are actually tea-weighing shelters. From there the trail continues via Pos 3 – Watu Tulis (2,470m), Ladang Batu 1, Pos 4 (2,773m), Ladang Batu 2 (Batu Tangga, 3,031m) and Sabana (3,132m). The higher parts of the trail offer views to Batu Susu (‘milk rock’).
Route from Ndoro Arum, Banaran, Wonosobo (WEST): This new route leads via Pos 1 Ngrata which is an area of pine woodland, Pos 2 Kayu Sawa, Pos 3 Watu Putih and Pos 4 Uci-uci.
Route from Bansari (EAST): This route takes a little longer as the basecamp is further down at 1,070m although you can usually get an ojek up to Pos 1 (Rp20,000 per person in 2019). It leads via Pos Bayangan, Pos 1 Sidempul (1,576m), Pos 2 Turunan (1,886m), Pos 3 Tunggangan (2,171m), Pos 4 Bukit Soma (2,315m), Pos 5 Mlelan (2,715m) and Pos 6 Centong (3,050m).
Route from Katekan (NORTH-EAST): Just a few kilometres north of the Bansari basecamp is another trail up from Katekan. According to online maps, it leads via Pos 1 (1,650m), Pos 2 (1,930m), Pos 3 (2,260m), and Pos 4 (2,590m).
Bagging information by Daniel Quinn, 2010 (most recent updates in October 2019)
Gunung Kembang / Kembangan (2,340m)
To the south-west of Gunung Sindoro is a peak called Gunung Kembang (Kembangan on the Bakosurtanal map) which in 2019 is becoming a popular hike in its own right, having been officially opened as a new route in April 2018. It can be clearly seen just to the right of Gunung Sindoro from peaks in the Dieng area and it is no surprise that it is known as ‘Anak Sindoro’ (Child of Sindoro) as it nestles beneath Sindoro’s higher summit. There are two main routes, both starting at similar altitudes and requiring about 3 hours up and a little less back down. Gunung Kembang makes a great half-day out, although many local hikers choose to camp at the top.
It is most commonly hiked from the south at Tambi tea plantation (1,360m) in Blembem near Wonosobo. The Pos enroute include Pos 1 Istana Katak (1,585m), Pos 2 Kandang Celeng / Gerbang (1,710m, at the end of the tea plantation), Pos 3 Liliput (1,870m), Pos 4 Simpang Tiga (1,860m), Pos 5 Akar (2,000m) and Pos 6 Tanjakan Mesra (2,250m) which is just 15 minutes before the top.
The other route leads up from the west at Lengkong (1,385m) and it also takes around 3 hours to reach the top. This trail is much more open than the Blembem route so if you are keen on seeing the views over to the Dieng hills then Lengkong is the one to choose. The first part of the trail follows a wide cement track steeply up to an elevation of around 1,610m. Shortly afterwards is Camp Area Lembah Sirebut which is a grassy spot just after a junction on the right for a paragliding (‘paralayang’) take-off spot (1,690m). There are great views from here across to the whole Dieng range with Gunung Bisma, Gunung Pakuwaja and Gunung Prau from left to right.
The trail continues through pleasant, fairly flat terrain and the next important spot on the trail is Pos 1 – Gerbang Ndeles (1,705m) where you take a right. After this point the trail is steep once again, and quite dusty towards the end of the dry season. The next Pos is Pos Bayangan or Pakes Suri (1,914m) according to the trail map at the basecamp. Pos 2 – Sawa Gede (2,057m) is next followed by Pos 3 – Ndima / Bima Pengkok (2,270m).
The trail then passes through a flatter area of old trees, many of which were damaged in very strong winds in late September 2019. You then find yourself at the summit of Gunung Kembang (2,340m on the Bako map and 2,348m on a GPS device) overlooking an old grassy crater no longer active (known to locals as Bimo / Bima Pengkok) beneath the much taller Gunung Sindoro behind. You can do a quick circuit of this crater in ten minutes or so if you wish. To the right (south-east) you should in clear weather be able to see the huge Gunung Sumbing, and perhaps Gunung Merbabu between the two in the distance. Looking back to the west, the whole Dieng range should clearly visible.
If yu follow the crater rim anti-clockwise (towards Sumbing), you will find a couple of summit signs and meet the trail up from Blembem.
For a Lengkong guide, give Mas Faturahman a call on +6283145554198.
- Getting there: Buses between Purwokerto and Semarang run through Kledung. From Yogyakarta, take a bus to Magelang and a second bus to Wonosobo. Kledung is just under 3 hours from both Yogyakarta or Semarang by car. The Sigedang trailhead is around 2.5 hours from both Pekalongan and Semarang where there are train stations. Weleri, which lies in between the two cities, is only 1.5 hours from the trailhead but currently (2019) very few executive class trains stop here.
- Accommodation: The Kledung Pass Hotel is the obvious place to stay if hiking from Kledung.
- Guides and GPS Tracks: Looking for a guide? Need GPS tracks and waypoints? Join Gunung Bagging Premium here.
- Permits: Your guide will arrange it for you or you can simply pay at the basecamp – typically around Rp20,000 per person in 2019 plus Rp5,000-Rp10,000 to leave your motorbike or car there while you hike. Take a photocopy of your passport photo page if climbing without local help. Be sure to check with local people about the volcanic activity near the crater as it may not be safe to climb.
- Water sources: Unreliable on the ascent from Kledung – take sufficient supplies with you. Usually available between Pos 1 and 2 on the Anggrunggondok route. Available at Pos 1 and near Pos 3 during the rainy season on the Bansari route. Usually a limited amount at the top but not recommended to use for health concerns.
- Travel insurance: We recommend World Nomads insurance, which is designed for adventurous travellers with cover for overseas medical, evacuation, baggage and a range of adventure sports and activities including mountain hiking.
Local Average Monthly Rainfall (mm):
Origins and Meaning
Lordly Mountain. Sindoro probably comes from the Javanese si (a kind of “title” or “person marker”) and ndara (pronounced /ndoro/) or bandara (pronounced /b’n.doro/) meaning “lord, master”. (George Quinn, 2011)