The Instagenic Brown Canyon, the Mini Grand Canyon in Semarang


There are lots of ‘accidental’ tourist attractions in Indonesia. Many of those are mining sites like Blue Lake Bintan, Tebing Breksi Yogyakarta, and of course Brown Canyon in Semarang. They commonly create unusual view, contrasting with their environment.

Sunset at the canyon. via Instagram/adi_mrizal

Brown Canyon Semarang is often compared to the Grand Canyon in the USA, mostly because there are similarly towering cliffs on both places. Although not comparable in size, Brown Canyon has its own charm. Here is what you need to know about Brown Canyon Semarang.


The massive cliffs. via Instagram/lonardika

Brown Canyon is located at the southeastern part of Semarang City. It is roughly five kilometers away from downtown Semarang, with easy access. Administratively, Brown Canyon is located at Rowosari Village, Tembalang District, Semarang City. However, the road in the Brown Canyon area is not well-developed and can be terrible during the rainy season.


The canyon at dusk. via Instagram/wahyu.kurniaji

Originally, the location is just a normal hill with common vegetation. However, the hill is mined extensively over the last decade or so. There are some parts that are too hard to mine so the miners just let them be. This ‘leftovers’ are becoming the backbone of the Brown Canyon. Since the beginning, this place was never intended to be a tourist attraction, so there are not many improvements you can find here.

Photo Spots

The two towers. via Instagram/anuakbar_

The most popular photo spot in Brown Canyon is definitely the two towering cliffs. Locals call it the two pillars. They both look very beautiful, especially with a seasonal pond below them. Almost all visitors take pictures in this place, some of them even patiently wait for the sunset where the place is at its most beautiful. There are several other spots, including the big cliff and the natural road that dissects this area.


The many colors in the canyon. via Instagram/anan_adhe

For the best photos, you’d want to come here at the start of the dry season, in May or June. The puddle is still there while the road is no longer wet and muddy. Going there during the dry season also giving you a bigger chance to see clear sunset, without being covered by clouds.

The mining activity. via Instagram/joeluluk

However, Brown Canyon is mainly photo tourism. You will not find many other things apart from a somewhat otherworldly background for your pictures. The road within the area is not well developed, so there are lots of dust. There aren’t any improvement related to tourism whatsoever here, so bring your own provision here, especially water.

The canyon at dusk. via Instagram/faizalrahmannn

Semarang is one of the biggest city in Indonesia and yet, not too far from the city center, you can find this strange-looking valley. Even though Brown Canyon doesn’t offer much, it is still providing wonderful photos for anyone who comes there.

Brown Canyon Indonesia semarang