Mystify: A Sunrise Experience at Punthuk Setumbu

“the place where the gods live”

This whole year, I haven’t travelled a lot, only some trips around Yogyakarta, the city I am living in. On the first week of December, I finally got a chance to travel “into the nature”. A friend of mine was coming from Surabaya, and he wanted to visit Punthuk Setumbu, a hill in Karangrejo Village, Magelang.

Located at about 4km from the renowned Borobudur Temple, Setumbu has been popular for its “heavenly” view, especially during the sunrise moments. It offers almost all views one could expect from the nature—mountains (Merapi and Merbabu), layers of mists, and sunrise. If we were lucky enough—means that if the weather is being good and friendly—we might even get a unique view of Borobudur Temple covered by the mystifying morning mists. Such is certainly a precious view any traveler, and photographer, can’t miss. J

So, we departed from Yogyakarta at 2 am, very early before dawn. There were 5 of us, so we drove in a car. Arriving at Borobudur Temple, we were left confused for a few minutes as we didn’t know the exact way to Setumbu. Lucky us, a villager came and offered to guide us, for free. He even invited us to have warm coffee at his house while waiting for the dawn to break.

At about 4 am, we set off to the hill. It took us not more than 30 minutes to the top. Actually the track wasn’t hard, but we had to be careful as it had been raining the day before, leaving the track slippery. We also had to stop several times to get rid of the sticky mud from our feet.

Our main target was to take pictures of Borobudur Temple within the mist, but the rain from the previous day caused the mist to condense quite heavily. Even at almost 8 am, the mist hadn’t faded. Sunrise emerged vaguely, while the temple was totally blocked by the mist.

Still, we felt grateful that we’ve got a chance to enjoy the beautiful dawn there. I took several shots on the mountain, the skyline, and the dews on the grasses. Luckily I brought a DSLR camera with a 18-55mm kit lens.

Here are the pictures from Punthuk Setumbu. Not really good photos they are, but I can assure you that you really need to give Setumbu a visit. 😉

“the skyline”
“(mystic) stairway to heaven”
“(mystic) stairway to heaven”
“heaven on earth”
“one good morning”
“the pearls”
“the pearls”

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