Rinjani is the 2nd highest volcano in Indonesia just after Mt. Kerinci, with its summit is at 3728m above SL. By average, you will need to take around 37km to get there. With 3 popular trekking routes available (via Sembalun, Senaru & Torean), you require at least 3D2N if you wish to have a normal hiking while also visiting its famous attraction points. On this article, I choose to depart via Sembalun then going down to Senaru after accomplishing the summit. This is of course with a reason; during the hike, the view from Sembalun is more exciting and since the village is located at higher altitude, then I can save a few hours of trekking to reach the camping area at Pelawangan. Sweet!
It takes about 4 hours from the airport to reach Sembalun, plus there is no mass transportation that directly heading there. So you may just rent a car + driver from airport to go to Sembalun or you rent a car + driver to Senggigi and rent a car + driver again afterwards to Sembalun ;) [WTF?! R U Kidding?] Yes I'm kidding.
There are 2 shuttle buses (Damri) from airport which are going to Senggigi & Mataram. If you head to Senggigi, there will be a lot of Rinjani tour providers along the area which already include the transportation cost into the package. Basically, they include everything within the package. Good for lazy bastard :D
Or you can either go to Mataram / Senggigi by bus then look for motorbike rental. Sweet & Cheap.
Without anymore vegetation, its summit looked sublime - promising an exciting adventure ahead.
Rinjani Trekking Route
They Who Grow up With The Mountain
Sembalun is not simply a gateway to Rinjani. For me, it is the destination itself
Sasak Traditional House
Sasak Tribe is the original dwellers of Lombok. This house presents as the main character of lombok heritage
Sembalun village is located on relatively flat & fertile land surrounded by green hills - make them look as a natural citadel that shelters the area.
A night before the hike, I was staying with his family, surrounded by a cold breeze of Sembalun. It was so peaceful and quite, while we were chatting when having our dinner. Another thing that I love from Lombok is because the people here tends to make a spicy food for their daily meal. They said that chilli is a must have ingredients in every servings, which I cant agree more. With him, his wive & his 2 children, I really enjoy that dinner together until I can describe it well every detail there.
We ate the dinner that was served on the floor just beside a single bed with an old 14” television which was turned on - accompanied by the voice of praying from the neighborhood mosque and the chuckles of our laugh when we play with his little lovely kids. Somehow, I made a family in one day
Sembalun is a home for men & kids who are living along with the mountain. They rely their lifes solely to the mountain, as its fertile soil produces their food, its springs refill their ponds & the hills provide shelter for their family. Rinjani also becomes their money-maker as most of the local residents are living as a porter or guide. They do expecting that the clear skies are roaming around so the travelers may always come to climb its summit. While during the windy & rainy season, they can only depend their earnings on farming which its results are not promising.
Arriving there around 11AM, I befriended with a local guide who was please to take me around the village. Our initial intention was actually to go to the market, to get some supplies for our next couple of days' trip. Then suddenly it ended up for us to go to the corner of the village for some awesome sights which make 1 day spent in Sembalun is worth to be added into your Rinjani package agenda.
Sembalun promises you a great 1 day before you start your busy hikes. Ask the locals to get you to the hill nearby & you can embrace an awesome view of colorful rice fields. There, you may also find a small Sasak House complex, an old-style shining mosque & a large private flower garden which sometimes open for visitors.