The jeep ride to the "base" of Mt Merapi was better then expected and quite interesting.
Our driver/guide took us to this jeep hire place- it was a good choice. Our jeep driver was knowledgeable, had good sense of humor and did not rush us. At the end he drove up an incline ramp(?) and parked close to the edgy. (this really scared our friend's wife!) and took lots of photos of us and the jeep with Merapi in background. They provide masks for the dusty journey.
The trip was well planned- though very bumpy the duration of each leg was ok. We stopped at mini museum to view a home that was heavily damaged by 2010 eruption. Final stop was to the site of the bunker made to protect from ash and hot gases. Unfortunately lava also flowed down to the bunker and two died- one can only imagine. After viewing Mt Merapi in the far distance we had tea/coffee/crackers at the vendors.
Timing the occurrences of pass eruptions the next one is scheduled for 2018.
Near the bunker is a kiosk with 4 large very tamed owls and for small fee one can get your photo taken with them. If you are into raptors you can have them perched on your arm/shoulder and with a gesture they fly back to their roost.
Worth a trip as introduction to Merapi. But if bumpy rides don't agree with you better skip.
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