Are you up for an early adventure? Then a morning at Bukit Cinta should be included in your Bali itinerary. It is one of the most beautiful viewpoints in all of Bali and a must in my eyes.
After traveling in Bali since 2010, and even living here, I have visited Bukit Cinta many times over the years. A few times Mount Agung was completely covered in clouds, but I have also been able to si it in all its glory set against a pink sky during sunrise. Which is why getting the timing right is so important.
So let’s take a look at everything you need to know before visiting Bukit Cinta viewpoint.
🔥 Pro tip >> Don’t feel comfortable driving by yourself? I usually book this private driver whenever I’m doing longer trips like this one. You have the driver for up to 10 hours and you can go where you want!
- Where to find Bukit Cinta viewpoint
- Best time to visit Bukit Cinta
- What to expect at Bukit Cinta
- The mighty Mount Agung
- Accommodation close to Bukit Cinta
- Popular East Bali guided tours
- More Bali travel guides
- Let me know if you go to Bukit Cinta!
Where to find Bukit Cinta viewpoint
Bukit Cinta is located in the Karangasem Regency, east on the island. It’s not hard to find when using Google Maps, just search for “Bukit Cinta Pangi” which will show you the location of the upper viewpoint.
If you don’t have mobile internet, remember to download the map before you go.
I managed to drag myself out of bed at 5:45, which is no small feat. I jumped on a scooter, drove 3 minutes down the road from Kubu Carik Bungalows and was met by the most stunning sunrise view of Mount Agung set against a pink sky.
Bukit Cinta from Seminyak & Canggu
Although I recommend spending some time in East Bali, most of you will probably be based out of Seminyak or Canggu. It is still very possible to rent a scooter and drive to Bukit Cinta by yourself.
From Seminyak or Canggu, it will probably take around 2/2.5 hours. So if you want to get there for sunrise you should leave your accommodation around 4.
There won’t be much traffic at that time so driving by yourself shouldn’t be too scary. But please only head out on long journeys like that if you feel confident driving a scooter. It’s not as simple as it may look and the roads in Bali are not always the greatest.
Scooter rental is 75.000 IDR per day in most places or you can get lucky and find a place that still rents them out for 60k like they used to.
You can often get a great deal if you rent it on a monthly basis, anywhere between 800k Rp. – 1.2 mill IDR. ($60 – $85). Don’t be afraid to bargain if you’re renting it for a longer period of time.
You can also get a scooter delivered to your hotel or homestay. That way you don’t run the risk of being told that there are no more scooters available. It doesn’t get more convenient. All of this is included in the rental:
- Helmet for 1 or 2 persons
- full tank of gas (petrol) upon delivery
- 24/7 road-side assistance
- Mobile phone holder
- First-aid kit and rain poncho (for maximum 2 people)
With private driver
If you feel more comfortable going by car, it is possible to hire a driver. Most hotels will be more than happy to organize it for you.
You’ll soon see that everyone in Bali knows either a driver or someone who rents out scooters. Often it is a cousin or a brother so you will always be covered no matter where you’re staying. I usually book this driver in advance.
🌟 Check price and availability >> Bali private driver (with optional guide)
Best time to visit Bukit Cinta
The best time to visit Bukit Cinta is at sunrise, around 6:00 am, from March to October. That’s the dry season in Bali and you will most likely have clear skies and no clouds covering Mount Agung.
We shot the above photos in March, when it was still humid after the rainy season so you are more likely to get that misty look.
We already knew Bukit Cinta would be great for sunrise and since we were staying in East Bali we wanted to go and see it for sunset as well. However, as soon as the sun started going down the volcano disappeared into the clouds.
You can, of course, see the beautiful view all day but for that moody look with fog on the rice fields and a pink sky, you should get there for sunrise. It is more likely that clouds cover the volcano after 9:00 am.
There are no official opening hours at Bukit Cinta, it is open 24/7 so you can visit whenever you want.
There is no entrance fee at Bukit Cinta, just park along the road and enjoy.
What to expect at Bukit Cinta
At Bukit Cinta, there are two great viewpoints where you can shoot photos of typical Balinese scenery with Mount Agung as the backdrop.
Of course, there are a lot of other places where you can view the volcano as well, however, these two are in our eyes where you get the best view, especially for photos. It really is a must on any Bali Bucket List.
If you do decide to stop somewhere else, remember to respect the local farmers and don’t walk in the rice fields without asking for permission.
Bukit Cinta lower viewpoint
The photo above was shot from the lower viewpoint where you can walk down the hill. You’ll see two palm trees, a distant stretch of rice fields and the incredible Mount Agung standing tall on the horizon. There is room to park your motorbike just off the road as you can see below.
I’m not a fan of creepy crawlies so I wore shoes and pants for this one. It was very wet and slippery so be careful and I would suggest making some noise to scare away whatever was hiding in the tall grass.
Bukit Cinta upper viewpoint
Just up the road, about 30 meters, you’ll find the second viewpoint. This is a bit more convenient as you’re able to shoot from the side of the road.
However, if you want to be in the shot your photographer has to stand in the middle of the road, so be careful and listen out for cars and motorbikes.
After you’re done marveling at the impressive sight of Mount Agung, take your time and explore the surrounding area. It’s stunning, so just riding your scooter around on the narrow streets is an experience in itself.
I’m guessing you’re getting up in the middle of the night because you want some good shots of Mount Agung in the morning light, right? The mist over the fields and the glow of sunrise is over in what feels like a second, so I recommend coming prepared.
- If you have a drone, bring it! We got some super cool videos here, though I haven’t posted them anywhere yet.
- And don’t forget a tripod, so you can get a shot of yourself if you’re traveling alone or together with your travel partner. When shooting in morning light a tripod is always good to have to make sure your photos come out crisp and in focus.
- Think about what lens you want, I shot mine on a 25mm because I forgot my zoom lens. When you use a telephoto lens (focal lengths above 100mm) anything in the background will appear larger and compressed closer to the foreground, which would have looked great here.
- Use a high aperture (f-stop) to make sure Mount Agung is clear in your shot, a lower f-stop will make it out of focus.
- Plan your outfit, you want something to pop against the grass. I recommend going white or something with warm colors like red, pink and purple to contrast the green.
- Use the long grass or palm trees to frame your shot and create some depht.
You can read more about my affordable camera gear here.
The mighty Mount Agung
Mount Agung or Gunung Agung is an active volcano in Bali and also the highest point on the island. Standing tall at over 3,000 meters, it dominates the surrounding landscape and influences the climate, especially the rainfall.
Balinese people believe that Mount Agung is a replica of Mount Meru, the sacred five-peaked mountain of Hindu, Jain, and Buddhist cosmology which is believed to be the central axis of the universe.
In 1963, after having been dormant for almost 120 years, Mount Agung erupted. It was one of the largest and most devastating eruptions in Indonesia’s history, with lava flows, toxic gasses and mudslides killing over 1500 people.
It was seen as a miracle and a sign from the gods that Pura Besakih also known as the Mother Temple, located high on the slopes of Mount Agung, somehow managed to survive the explosive eruption.
As many of you might have seen in the news, the volcano woke up once again in 2017 with five major eruptions resulting in the airport closing down and hundreds of thousands of people had to evacuate their homes. Agung has since had several smaller eruptions and is still today considered to be in an active phase.
Just take a look below, it was smoking when I was there.
Accommodation close to Bukit Cinta
If you’re itinerary allows it, I highly recommend spending at least one night in East Bali. It is so calma and relaxing up here and the views are INSANE!
Kubu Carik Bungalows
We decided to spend a few days in East Bali and booked one of the two bungalows at Kubu Carik. All I have to say is wow, what an incredible place. The photos on Agoda do not do this place justice at all! I don’t think I’ve ever experienced a better view from my accommodation anywhere.
I decided prior to our trip that I had to see the stunning view of Mount Agung from Bukit Cinta this time. And to my surprise, it turned out the viewpoint is located only 3 minutes away from Kubu Carik Bungalows which we had already booked. So we got to experience sunrise over Mount Agung two days in a row.
Villa di Bias
Villa di Bias is the place to stay in East Bali for the best views. It’s a little more expensive than Kubu Carik, but you get your own villa (one with a private pool). And not only are you surrounded by miles and miles of rice fields, but you can see Mount Agung from the villas and the infinity pool.
So if you’re traveling with your partner, Instagram friends or celebrating a special occasion, this is the place to be!
🌟 Check price and availability here >> Villa di Bias in East Bali
Popular East Bali guided tours
If you do decide to go to Bukit Cinta, you could make a day of it and also visit some of East Bali’s other highlights such as Taman Ujung Water Palace and Pura Lempuyang. Alternatively, join one of these exciting guided tours!
More Bali travel guides
- Don’t miss Gunung Kawi: My favorite temple in Ubud Bali
- Sunrise over Pinggan Village in Bali: An experience you can’t miss!
- 29 things you should know before going to Bali!
- 17 things NOT to do in Bali: common tourist mistakes to avoid
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- 100+ Bali quotes & captions for Instagram
- Discover the 14 Best Waterfalls in Ubud Bali (including map)
- Tegalalang Rice Terrace Ubud swing & sunrise photo spot
- Pura Lempuyang Temple (Gates of Heaven) in East Bali: A first timer’s guide