Gunung Batukaru is the second highest mountain in Bali after Gunung Agung. At 2,271m, this baby is will take a while to get to. Accommodation is at the Eco Lodge, in Sarinbuana. To get there from Kuta, head west to Tabanan. A few kms pass Tabanan, you’ll see a large green highway sign saying Gadungan. Take this road and follow it looking out for signs saying Eco Lodge (don’t be afraid to ask locals). From there you can plan your hike, enjoy a relaxing time in the mountians, eat good food and have Norm the owner, explain the hiking trail. Some people like to camp up there, which would be a wonderful experience. Driving time from Kuta is 90 minutes.
There is a tiny local shop selling drinks and snacks, outside the Eco Lodge, but that’s it. Best time of the year to visit Bali’s mountain is April to October, as the wet season (November to March) can make footing treacherous.
There is another way to hike Gunung Batukaru and that is via the temple, Pura Luhur Batukaru.
According to guide books, a well worn path extends from the outer courtyard of the temple to the summit. A guide may be a good idea for solo hikers, but those in a group may want to head up without one. To get to the summit requires a 4-6 hours hike, plus 3-5 hours coming down. This route is much shorter than that offered from the Eco Lodge. People often prefer to hike up and camp on the densely wooded slopes, hiking down the following day. For people wishing to do the entire hike in 1 day, you have to stay in Wongayagede down the road, starting hiking at 2am. The elevation means cloudy skies and cold weather, which for me is great! Wet weather gear and warm clothes are essential, as well as extra food and plenty of water. At the summit is a small temple, dedicated to the god of Mt. Batukaru. The tree cover makes navigation difficult, but provides shade from the sun.
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The Prana Dewi in Wongayagede can organize a guide for you. Also Warung Kaja in Wongayagede will be able to fix you you up (081 1398052). This is not a stroll in the woods, its a serious hike and camping overnight is an option. I want to get up there myself, just to be able to camp in the woods. Footing is likely to be a bit slippery given that precipitation occurs in the highlands even when its dry at the coast. Hiking boots, good sleeping bag, plastic sack to keep your gear dry etc. are all necessary. This trail is not heavily used or commercial. It is in the last true section of jungle in Bali so should be wonderful.