Out of all of the magnificent waterfalls in Bali, the Sekumpul Waterfall located in the north is always towards the top of the list! In fact, by many, this is considered to be the “best” waterfall in Bali. Due to its popularity and high praise, this waterfall is actually the hardest to visit and enjoy simply because of all the “scams” surrounding it. On top of that, they’ve also raised the entrance fee over $10 in the last year. In this article, we’ll give you the current information on prices, how to get there and how to not get scammed.
When we went, we managed to park right by the ticket office and only had to walk about 10 minutes to reach the waterfall. On top of that, we were able to avoid paying the high 125,000 Rupiah fee! Keep reading to find out how.
Fun Fact: In Indonesian Bahasa, Air Terjun means Waterfall so you will commonly see this (and other waterfalls) referred to as “Air Terjun Sekumpul”.
Sekumpul Waterfalls (it’s technically considered a group of waterfalls!) is located in North Bali right next to the Sekumpul Village. We went as a day trip from Munduk (about an hour away), but it’s possible to visit as a longer day trip from Ubud (2 hours), Canggu (2 hours), or from nearby Lovina (45 min) or Singaraja (30 min)!
If going as a day trip from Ubud or Canggu, we definitely recommend doing it as a full day trip as there are many other things to do and see nearby and along the way (see Things to do Nearby below).
We drove our scooter there, but if you’re not comfortable driving or prefer to hire a driver, you can do so for about IDR 700,000 for the day. Scooter rentals can be found for 50,000-70,000 Rupiah for the day and fuel costs 10,000 per liter (will last you about 1.5 hours of driving).
Sekumpul Waterfall Entrance Fee (2020)
There’s a lot of misinformation about the fees because of this: in 2019 they raised the price from 20,000 to 125,000 Rupiah, and now require you to take a local guide. (They also increased fees to a few other popular destinations, including a new 25,000 visitor fee to Nusa Penida) HOWEVER, we managed to avoid that hefty fee and guide by getting there before the ticketing office opened.
On the way back, we could’ve easily left without paying anything at all. However, we made it a point to stop at the ticketing office and pay for the “viewpoint” only (20,000 IDR) to support the local community.
There are actually two entrances to Sekumpul Waterfall: the north and the south entrance. The north entrance allows you to choose what you’d like to see giving you three options: 1) Viewpoint Only. 2) Sekumpul Waterfall. 3) Sekumpul + Fiji waterfall. See pricing and more information below.
The South Entrance requires you to pay for both the Sekumpul + Fiji waterfall, but is a bit closer than the north if going by car. You won’t get access to the viewpoint however (but the actual waterfall is epic so it’s okay!). The pricing is as follows:
- “View Only” – IDR 20,000
If you only want to fly your drone this is the place to do it.
- “Medium Trekking Tour” – IDR 125,000
This gets you access to the actual Sekumpul waterfall, along with a very small “hidden waterfall” (not that impressive and you see it on the way really) and a guide along with a donation to the local village.
- “Long Trekking Tour” – IDR 200,000
This includes everything in the medium trekking plus access to the Fiji waterfall only a 10-minute walk away.
- IDR 200,000 to see both waterfalls, however the amount of time spent walking is much shorter if you are traveling by car.
Okay, so this is where it starts to get a little complicated. There are two main entrances, and many many “fake” entrances. Depending on if you are traveling by car or by bike you will want to park at a certain place. Along the way you will see many spots and parking lots saying “Sekumpul registration”. These aren’t legit so just go past them, no matter how convincing the people running them might seem. Parking in these lots will add at least an hour to your adventure (it only takes 10 minutes if you park by the ticket office). Here’s the best way to get there depending on your vehicle type:
By Motorbike or Scooter
If you’re biking there you’re in luck because you can actually drive all the way until the ticket office! The road gets quite narrow towards the end, and you might doubt yourself if you’re going the right way, but just follow the GPS directions we give you below and we promise it’ll lead you there!
The ticket office we recommend parking at is considered to be the “North” Entrance.
To get to the area, we recommend using Google Maps. We came from Munduk and maps.me didn’t recognize the road we took, and wanted us to take a longer way (about 30 minutes longer). Once you are close to the area, you should then use maps.me to get you to the actual entrance.
If going by car, we actually recommend parking at the “South” Entrance, which is technically the entrance for the waterfall next door called the Fiji waterfall.
The car parking for the north entrance if very far from the ticket office, and you’ll have to walk at least an hour. If you type in Fiji Waterfall Entrance on Google Maps, it will bring you to the entrance.
Sekumpul Waterfall Hike Length and Time
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO WALK THERE?!?!
If you go by motorbike/scooter and follow our directions, you will reach the Sekumpul waterfall in about 10 minutes. Getting back took about 15 since it was up the stairs. The path is very straightforward as you can see the waterfall from the viewpoint almost right away. You’ll go down a few metal staircases, and there are two rest stops/wooden canopies along the way. After the stairs you’ll have to cross a mini “river”. The water will reach to about your calves, and there is a rope you can hold onto when crossing.
We recommend wearing water shoes for this reason. It would be very easy to lose a flip flop in this, and going barefoot might not be the best idea because of the rocks!
After you pass this river, you’ll come right to the base of the amazing Sekumpul Waterfalls.
You’ll be able to hear the water from almost the beginning, so if you get lost at any point just follow the sound of the water. When in doubt, go down and to the left! The stairs have a hand rail to hold on to, so if you go during the rainy season like we did, you shouldn’t fall.
Unfortunately, if you take a car the closest you can park to the North entrance is a few kilometers from the ticket office (unlike the motorbikes which have a parking right next to it). This will add an additional hour to the walking time. Your walk will be on road so the terrain isn’t rough, but there will be some hills. Go early or later because it can get HOT during the middle of the day.
BE AWARE OF SCAMS. On the way to the waterfalls there are multiple parking lots and “registrations”. We saw so many tourists going this route and having to do a MULTI HOUR TREK to get to the waterfalls. Don’t park until you turn into the main gates. Or, go through the south entrance next to the Warung Fiji.
Hiking from the south entrance next to Warung Fiji, it will take you about 30-40 minutes to reach the waterfalls and then about an hour heading back up. While this entrance is closer, the walk is a bit steeper and slightly more adventurous.
The distance between Sekumpul Waterfall and Fiji Waterfall is about 5-10 minutes of walking on a flat path. While the Fiji waterfall isn’t as well known, it is definitely worth stopping by if you’re in the area as it is also massive!
Do I need a guide to visit Sekumpul Waterfall?
Technically, no. We went on our own and the path was very well marked and straight forward. However, we arrived before the ticketing office opened so didn’t have to get a guide.
The entrance fees are so high now because as of February 2019, it is mandatory to go with a guide. You won’t really need him, but he’ll be there. It’s good to note though that almost every guide also doubles as a professional photographer (seriously, they’re talented and love it and know all the angles) so if you’re on your own it’s a great way to get a pic!
How we did it – Sekumpul Waterfall Without a Guide 2020
On February 29, 2020, we left Munduk right when the sun rose at about 6:45am. We used Google Maps to get us to the area, and once we were close we switched to maps.me to get to the actual ticket office parking.
We arrived at the ticketing office right at 7:50am and there was no one there. The motorbike parking is literally 5 steps away from the office. The road becomes quite narrow and we doubted if we were driving on a walking path, but just trust maps.me and you’ll get to the right place. We’ve added a photo below to show exactly where we parked.
Since there was no one there, we didn’t have to pay for parking (which is apparently free anyways, but every other place we visited we’ve been charged 2,000 IDR to park). We also avoided having to pay any entrance fees.
We walked down the path and the metal staircases and arrived to the bottom of the waterfall right past 8am. We had the waterfall to ourselves for an ENTIRE HOUR. The light also was great for photos, as around 9:30 it started to get very harsh which is also the time it started to really get busy.
On our way up, we passed a few people coming down with a guide (I’m assuming the ticket office opens around 9am). None of the guides stopped us asking for us to pay or anything. On the way out, we could’ve easily left without paying anything, but we decided to give 20,000 at the entrance (the fee for the viewpoint only) as I felt bad and always like to support the local community.
The saddest part was on our way out, after DRIVING for over 20 minutes we were still seeing people arriving to the unofficial parking lots and STARTING their walk. It would’ve easily taken over 3 hours for them to reach it. I did notice a trend that it seemed like families were being scammed the most.
Things to Know
- WATERPROOF YOURSELF! – wear a rain jacket. Wear water shoes. Don’t bring anything that can’t get wet. The spray of this waterfall is STRONG and you will get WET (along with anything and everything with you).
- If planning on taking photos, make sure your equipment is properly weather sealed and if you have a camera make sure to bring a microfiber clothe to wipe down your camera lens (we had to do this every few seconds).
- IT GETS HOT. Use sun protection for both the scooter ride and the waterfall visit. Bonus points if you use reef-safe sunscreen.
- Bring your own Reuseable Water Bottle! The plastic situation is already bad enough, so make sure you bring enough water! We recently purchased this HUGE 32-ounce water bottle and have found it to be big enough to never need to purchase plastic water bottles on big day trips like this. You can get it on Amazon for just $15.
- You could, technically, swim in Sekumpul. However, be aware that the fall is so powerful that you’ll get wet before even going in the water and it might be a little hard to breathe as you get close to the falls. The water is a bit cold, but it’s definitely possible to take a quick dip. Just be careful! We recommend wearing water shoes as the water can be strong and the rocks can get slippery!
Things to do Nearby
Air Terjun Sekumpul is located near a bunch of other waterfalls as well! As mentioned before, the Fiji waterfall is literally a ten-minute walk away. Within 30 minutes of driving you can also visit:
- Git Git Waterfall
- Aling Aling Waterfall
- Thermal Hot Springs
- Selfie Park
- Bali Gates
- Water Temple
Where to Stay near Sekumpul Waterfall
With so many beautiful things to do and see in North Bali, we absolutely recommend staying close by! The two main areas close-by are Munduk to the south, and Lovina to the north. (There’s also Singaraja, which is just a 15-minute drive away from Lovina).
Munduk is up in the mountains and a great gateway to all the waterfalls. The weather is a bit cooler because of the altitude and is much quieter than other parts of Bali. It also offers some breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and lakes! Personally, we stayed here for a few nights when we visited and think we made a great choice!
- Luxury: Munduk Moding Plantation Nature Resort & Spa – you’ll absolutely recognize this place from its Instagram photos of its infinity pool.
Lovina is located in the northern coast of Bali right on the beach. The beaches in the area are mostly black sand, but it’s a good place to stay if you want that tropical feels, if you like black sand beaches, or if you like scuba diving as there are nearby bio rocks! The town itself is a cute little beach resort and has more families and a slightly older crowd. There are lots of spas in the area, and it’s also a great place to dock so many sailors will stop by as well!
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