tiu-kelep-waterfall-lombok

Tiu Kelep Waterfall and Sendang Gile Waterfall are two of the most spectacular waterfalls in Lombok. Located in the small mountain village Senaru in North Lombok at the base of Mount Rinjani and amongst some of Lombok’s luscious jungle, visiting Tiu Kelep waterfall and the smaller Sendang Gile waterfall, must be on your Lombok itinerary. In this complete guide you’ll find all the information about Tiu Kelep and Sending Gile, how to get there, what to prepare and what to expect! One of the most common things to be aware of are the ‘waterfall guide scams’. It’s absolutely NOT necessary to have a guide during this hike. Of course the locals want to earn some extra money to walk with you as your “guide”. But it’s not necessary and for some people even annoying. Read here about the right navigation to get to both waterfalls.   

How to get to Tiu Kelep waterfall

Located in Senaru, a small mountain village in North Lombok, is where most trekkers base themselves before and after their Mount Rinjani trekking adventures. This little town has one straight street leading up the mountain where you can see the entrance of Tiu Kelep waterfall clearly signposted. It’s very easy to find, but if you have any trouble the locals are happy to point you in the right direction as it is a popular attraction in Senaru. (But remember, you don’t need a guide!!)

You either arrive in Lombok at the airport or one of the harbours. The airport of Lombok is located in the south of the island while the harbours are located on the west coast (Mataram or Bangsal harbour). So it depends where you’re traveling from what’s most easy for you. A taxi will coast you around 400,000 – 500,000 IDR to bring you from south Lombok (Kuta area) to Senaru. But you can also rent a motorbike for 60,000 IDR per day and drive around the island yourself.

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tiu-kelep-waterfall-path

Entrance fee

The entrance fee for both waterfalls is 20,000 IDR per person

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Best time to explore Tiu Kelep waterfall

There are a few reasons why you should go as early as possible to Tiu Kelep waterfall. Most important is to beat the crowds and for the best light. Although both waterfalls are tucked away in the jungle and far from sunlight, there will be sunlight shining through the trees later during the day, especially on Sendang Gile. And direct sunlight on a white surface, like a flowing waterfall, results in a blown out and overexposed fall which is not desirable for pictures.

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What to expect at Tiu Kelep Waterfall  

Once you’ve found the entrance, you pay the entrance fee and head down on the concrete path. It’s a 10 minute walk until you reach the first waterfall, Sendang Gile. This cascading waterfall has two levels that spits high out of the cliff face. We were so early (before 7 AM), that we only had to share this waterfall with the local monkeys! If you want to, you can go swimming in the rock pools and get right beneath the falls of Air Terjun Sendang Gile.

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To continue your hike to Tiu Kelep Waterfall, head back up the track and turn to the left on a concrete path, see picture below. It is a moderate 20-30-minute walk through the jungle and manageable without the use of a local guide. You just have to follow the path and river below.

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path-to-tiu-kelep-waterfall

When you’re getting closer you have to cross the river which is no more than knee-deep. Keep following the muddy jungle trail until you reach the jaw-dropping sight of the 42 meters high Air Terjun Tiu Kelep. The whole back wall of the forest is taken over by the falls, and there’s one other stream of the waterfall even more powerful that pours diagonally across the falls. Vines have taken over the walls where the water flows out from into a shallow pool below. It’s a true jungle feeling here! There is a strong vortex-like current directly under the main water flow at the waterfall, so be careful not to get sucked in! Also be careful for slippery rocks, so watch your step.

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Things to know before you go to Tiu Kelep Waterfall

  • Wear water shoes which gives you good grip. The stones might be very slippery, so watch your step!
  • The power of Tiu Kelep waterfall creates a cloud of mist that will instantly wet your lens. So bring a lens cloth with you to dry your lens.
  • There is not much food or water available once you hit the trail to Sendang Gile and Tiu Kelep Waterfall, so be sure to pack some before you make the trek.
  • The weather patterns around the base of Mt. Rinjani are very unpredictable. So be prepared for a sudden downpour of rain.
tiu-kelep-waterfall-long-exposure

Be aware for typical scams in Lombok

During our time in Lombok we had a few encounters with potential scammers, and we heard stories about tourists being scammed. I absolutely don’t want to discourage you to travel to Lombok, because the island is beautiful and has lots of things to offer. But I do want to warn you for a few potential scams to make your trip to Lombok a beautiful memory!

Motorbike rental

Please be alert when renting a motorbike. There are a few potential scams possible with renting motorbikes.
1. Paying for damage you didn’t make. How to avoid?
Always check AND photograph scratches or other damage to the motorbike you rent together with the person you rent from. In this way you have prove that certain scratches were already on the motorbike. Otherwise you have the chance that these people want to scam you by paying for the damage on the motorbike you didn’t make.
2. Your motorbike got stolen but surprisingly found back by other locals (or not!) who insist and sometimes even threaten you to pay. How to avoid?
Make sure to check reviews of the party you want to rent from or rent from the hotel or hostel you’re staying. Mostly these people work together with a group, and they share their proceeds with each other. If you want more information about this, read this article on Lonely Planet about someones experience being scammed in Lombok with a stolen motorbike.  

Surfboard damage

Same as what happens with motorbike rental. When you bring the surfboard back to the surf school, they tell you you made a scratch and insist you to pay for the damage. How to avoid? Same as with the motorbike rental. Always check AND photograph scratches or other damage to the surfboard together with the person you’re renting from. 

“You need a guide” waterfalls scam

How to avoid? Either go very, very early (before the ticket office opens), or make sure you’re very steadfast in negotiating. The locals want to earn some extra money by walking with you to the waterfalls “as your guide”, because “you need a guide to go to the waterfalls”. That’s just nonsense, because the paths to the waterfalls are very straight forward. You can’t get lost, it’s not a tricky hike or whatsoever. 

Mount Rinjani trekking scam

How to avoid? Go to either Senaru or Sembalun directly and talk to the companies there. Always read reviews before booking a tour with a company! Trekking Mount Rinjani is a serious thing and requires a serious company to guide you! Don’t book in Kuta because they add up a lot of costs.

More Lombok travel inspiration

We hope you enjoyed this blog post about Tiu Kelep waterfall in Lombok.

For more inspiration about Lombok, read these guides:

Best 15 things to do in Lombok – The Ultimate Guide

Best things to do in Kuta, Lombok – The Complete Guide

12 best waterfalls in Lombok 

Pink beach Lombok 

Planning to go to Bali? Find your inspiration here:

Bali best things to do

12 most beautiful waterfalls in Bali