Gunung Rinjani climbing: Are you enough strong to do it?

Gunung Rinjani climbing: Are you enough strong to do it?

Location: Indonesia

Gunung rinjani is located in the island of Lombok. 

My Experience

I made Gunung Rinjani climbing with my girlfriend Romina. We have so many things in common, one of them is undoubtedly travelling around the world.
Just to remind you, find out more about my full experience in Southeast Asia, read this Post.
First of all you need to decide how long for and high you want to hike. There are different packages and usually a trek to the crater rim involves two days and one night on the mountain. We’ve chosen the 3 days-2 nights package which brought us to the top. The best and least expensive way to organise a trip is to head to the Rinjani Information Centre that uses a rotation system, so all the local guides get a slice of the trekking purse.
What’s included in the trekking package?

  • Food, drink and equipment.

  • One guide and 2 porters, just if you are min 2 people doing Gunung Rinjani climbing. Don’t forget that hiking independently is prohibited. If you manage to bring all your own gear from home you can book your own guide and porters. The cost is about 13 $AUD per day.

  • Park Fee and transport: Entrance to Gunung Rinjani National Park is 15 $AUD and you register and pay at the Rinjani Information Centre in Sembalun.

So, all of these were included in our package and we paid 150 $AUD each for 3 days, so it was about 50$ per day. Let’s talk about this amazing experience. We started trekking at Senaru and ended in Sembalun, but others did it vice-versa. It doesn’t really matter, it will be hard from both sides.

Gunung rinjani climbing

Itinerary of the Gunung Rinjani Climbing.


Gunung rinjani climbing

The starting point at Pintu Senaru, ready to go! Gunung rinjani climbing

DAY 1: We started in the morning (7:00) from 600 m, in Senaru village, and made the 6 hour ascent to the crater rim before dark. First part of the trek was through tropical rainforest and we looked for and listened to the black monkeys sounds, they were extremely shy, contrarily to  the common macaques. The route passed through POS II at 1,500 m, and continued after the treeline at 2,000 m (POSIII), the best place to camp. The great view was a good sign of what was going to happen during the next 2 days. The climb wasn’t too challenging on the first day, we walked 7 hours in total.

Gunung rinjani climbing

The small volcano into the Lake. Gunung rinjani climbing.


gunung rinjani climbing

What a wonderful view from here. Gunung rinjani climbing.

DAY 2: The second day of Gunung rinjani climbing involved a steep downhill to the crater lake, a visit to the hot springs, and a climb up to the base camp for the summit. Total walking hours: 6. The second day was brilliant and the view of Lake Segara Anak with its small volcano Barujaru was breathtaking. Then the climbing was a bit tiring, mainly on a gravel path until the camp site, just below the crater rim at 2,600 m. Patience is vital, as it can get frustrating watching porter walking past you with their 30 kg load balanced on their shoulders, wearing slippers or even walking barefoot. At the end of the day we were so tired, neither me and Romina knew what was going to happen the next day (one of the physically hardest day of my life).

Gunung rinjani climbing

The Summit and the sunrise. Happy and frozen. Gunung rinjani climbing.

DAY 3: Wake up call at 3:00 in the morning and after a light breakfast we started the last and hard climb to the summit. We made the entire 3-4 hour climb in the dark with our headlamp only, we were wearing very warm clothes because the temperature dropped to 5 Celsius degrees. There is no clear path at the last section until the crater rim and during the last 2 hours walk the land was made by slippery volcanic ash and loose gravel. The 50-degree slope to the summit of the last hour was the most challenging part of the climb. We were climbing 1 step up and sliding 2 steps back the entire time. I couldn’t  see the end and I was full of dust and rocks on my shoes, but the worst part was the freezing cold temperature. This is an incredible experience. When we reached the summit we were rewarded with an impressive 360 degrees view of Lombok island.  We reached the top when it was still dark and we waited for sunrise, which was memorable.
After about 30 minutes of freezing weather we started to walk back to the camp, it took us about 2 hours and we stopped there for a big and full breakfast. From the camp it was a long and really hot 2 hours walk back to the village of Sembalun.

Gunung rinjani climbing

On the way back to the camp. Gunung rinjani climbing.

Conclusion: If you are an amatorial trekker, is better to do the 2 days/1 night option from Senaru to the crater rim. Great view and still very hard job. On the other side if you are experienced person, opt for the longer one up to the summit. The view is simply amazing (especially after sunrise). I stayed on the summit just 20 minutes because it was freeze. The way back was also stunningly beautiful with the view of the small, but still active, Gunung Barujaru in the middle of the lake! Sleeping in the camp and waking up with an astonishing view….oh guys, I can’t explain with simple words… Gunung rinjani climbing became quickly my best trekking experience ever.

How to get there, best time and cost

Most visitors arrive via Senaru village (600 m), on the northern side of the mountain and closer to the main resort area of the west coast, including Senggigi. Rinjani Information Centre now offer 6/7 simple guest houses, I have chosen Sonya Guesthouse in Sengiggi.

Important Information
At 3,726 m, Rinjani is the second highest volcano in Indonesia and it dominates the landscape of the relatively small island of Lombok. This is a very active volcano, there was a spate of activity from 1994 to 1995 which resulted in the further growth of the crater cone of Gunung Baru, since then renamed Gunung Barujari.
The mountain has also climatic importance. Its peak attracts a steady stream of swirling rain clouds, while its ashes bring fertility to the island’s rice fields and tobacco crops. Inside the immense caldera, sitting 600 m below the rim, is a stunning cobalt-blue crescent lake, Danau Segara Anak. All of these information made Gunung Rinjani climbing a must-do for many travellers.


  • Bring a swimming short, short, sweater, hiking shoes, 2/3 pair of socks, headlamp. It gets really cold at night and you need them when you will walk up to the summit. Do not wear a jeans!
  • Your personal backpack (20 L is enough) with your personal stuff, snacks and water, even if the porters will carry a lot of food/drink..
  • Don’t forget to charge your camera/phone.
  • My last tip: Don’t get stuck with the thing that ruins your day, life is too short to be wasted in your crap. Smile and be positive because there are so many beautiful reasons to be happy, one of those is travelling.

Gunung rinjani climbing

Author of this post:  Davide
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my name is Davide and I’m Italian. I’d always loved to explore far away places and someday, planned to travel the world. But like always, it was a case of when and how. I did a lot, and now I am ready to write, to tell and to share the tips I’ve been learning, feelings and emotion of years of travelling.


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