Merbabu in javanese language mean “Mount of Ash”. It’s a stratovolcano located in Central Java, in the district of Magelang, Boyolali, and Salatiga. around 70km from Yogyakarta – famous tourist basecamp for Mount Merapi and temples – Borobudur and Prambanan. Merbabu is active volcano but the last observed eruption was in 1797. It is located near Merapi , which is more famous volcano among the international tourist, even though is 234m lower than Merbabu and have less spectacular panorama.
Best place to start trekking to Merbabu is Selo village which is located on the mountain bridge between Merbabu and Merapi at around 1500m height. Selo is around 2 hours drive from Yogyakarta. Since Merbabu is mostly a destination for domestic climbers, there is no official tour packages available to book in Yogyakarta or any other city around. If you are a group of more than 3 people you can try to go to one of tourist office and ask them to organize a trip for Merbabu. You can take taxi for around RP 1,000,000. Much cheaper option which I recommend is to rent a motorbike in Yogyakarta (around RP 50 000) and go to Selo basecamp by yourself. You need to get to Jl. Magelang and drive for around 45-60 minutes north. When you reach Mungkid ask local people where to turn to reach Selo village ( you can ask- “dimana jalan ke Selo?” or just use GPS. Than continue the road to Selo. Please notice that in some parts, the road condition, especially during rain season, can be very bad, so if you don’t have to much experience in driving motorbike I would not recommend you to go there alone.
Ticket for national park: Rp.150 000 (normal day) Rp.225.000 (for weekend and holiday) for international tourist Rp. 20 000 for domesti
In Selo there is possible to take rent ojek (motorbike taxi). But all vehicles you met there is a possible transportation, but you will be probably asked for money since in Indonesia, especially in rural area, the idea of hitchhiking is not well known.
Climbing Mount Merbabu Sunrise Trekking, With good (normal) physical condition the walk of 14 km up and down will take you around 14 hours. Usually people start at 11.00pm and finish at 11.00am. To make the trip more enjoyable it is good to decide for camping in camp 4( most popular, crowded in high season) or in camp 5. Indonesian tourists usually start around 1pm, reach camp 4 or 5 ( around 3.5-4.5hours trek) and than spend the night in a tent and start trekking on the next day to see the sunrise. From camp 4 is around 1.5 hours trek to the top, from camp 5 it is one hour.