A complete guide to the Mount Rinjani Crater Rim trek on the island of Lombok, Indonesia.
Lombok is known as Bali’s adventurous little brother— and the Mount Rinjani Crater Rim hike is one of the most adventurous things you can do on Lombok! The hike is accessible to anyone with relatively good fitness and rewards you with some of the best views in Indonesia from the crater overlooking the beautiful volcanic lake below.
I’ve visited Lombok multiple times and have trekked to Rinjani’s Crater. I update this guide yearly to share everything I’ve learned with updates about booking a guide, independent hiking, and what to expect from this epic adventure!
By Olly Gaspar, traveler, travel blogger & photographer for 5+ years with 600+ published travel guides. I visit every place I write about & share real tips from what I learn.
Video from the Rinjani Crater Rim Trek
Here's a quick video that Haylea made with the footage we snapped on our trek to Rinjani's Volcanic rim. This will give you a good idea of what to expect once you reach the crater.
Booking a Rinjani Trekking Tour To the Crater Rim
As of 2024, National Park laws at Rinjani prevent independent trekking. This means you need to hire a trekking guide to climb to the crater rim and the summit.
We are organizing these trips with our local, experienced team based in Lombok for 2.8M IDR per person. This is an affordable 2-day and 1-night crater rim trek reaching the rim by sunset, camping for the night, and descending the following day after an epic volcano sunrise breakfast.
- WhatsApp: +62 815-2923-1971
A 350,000 IDR deposit is required per person to organize and confirm your booking, with the rest payable upon arrival. Contact us today to confirm your dates.
What to Look For When Booking Your Rinjani Climb
Many hikers show up and haggle for a price in Senaru to book a trekking tour for the Crater Rim. While you can find a local who will take you up to the crater or summit cheaply, it can often be hit-and-miss, as you don't really know what to expect.
Therefore, I recommend doing your research.
Some cheaper unlicensed operators skimp out on food and carry very low-quality tents and sleeping gear. Another important factor is whether the tours pick up and carry down plastic waste.
I recommend looking for a quality, licensed operator that offers:
- Experienced trekking guide
- Porters to carry all equipment
- Rinjani National Park Entry Permit
- Food and unlimited water
- Quality tents, sleeping bags, and sleeping mat
- Something to cover your mouth and face with (to protect from dust)
Mount Rinjani Crater Trek Details
Here are the most important things you need to know about the hike.
- Location: Mount Rinjani is located on Lombok Island within the Gunung Rinjani National Park.
- Altitude: The crater rim is at an elevation of approximately around 2,639 m (8,658 feet) above sea level. The summit sits at 3,726 m (12,224 feet).
- Hike Duration: Trips are usually divided into 2 days and 1 night sleeping on the crater. You'll reach the crater after 1 day of trekking. To summit, you can do it in 2D 1N or 3D 2N.
- Difficulty Level: The trek to the crater rim is considered moderately challenging. Expect steep ascents and uneven terrain. You'll want a good physical condition.
- Best Time to Trek: The optimal months for hiking are from April to December. Rinjani National Park is closed for 3 months from the 2nd week of January to 1st of April.
- Permits: A national park entry fee is required for all hikers. It's advisable to arrange this through a registered tour guide or agency. This costs 150,000 IDR.
- Guides and Porters: Hiring a local guide is now compulsory. Porters are not compulsory but is highly recommended to support the local economy.
- Views: The crater rim offers spectacular views of the Segara Anak Lake and the summit of Mount Rinjani. Sunrise and sunset views offer the best views of the trip.
Mount Rinjani Altitude and Elevation
Mount Rinjani's summit reaches 3,726 meters (12,224 feet) above sea level, making it the second-tallest volcano in Indonesia. However, Rinjani's rim is considerably lower at 2,639m (8,658 feet).
The starting point, Senaru, sits at around 650 meters, which means you'll climb nearly 2,000 meters of elevation in one day. It's a leg burner, but the views are worth it!
Related: Pergasingan Hill Hike
Staying in Senaru Before the Trek
Since the best trips to the crater start from Senaru, your best bet is to spend a night here before, and after the trek. Below are my recommended options.
1. Rinjani Lodge Luxury
The perfect option for those wanting a luxurious experience surrounded by mountains. Boasting 2 outdoor swimming pools and breakfast delivered to your room Rinjani Lodge sits at the top of the list.
2. Rinjani Lighthouse Mid-Range
Located within the lush forests of Senaru and a short distance from Sendand Gile and Tiu Kelep Waterfalls. Rooms are traditionally styled bungalows with mosquito nets, warm showers, and seating areas.
3. Dragonfly Senaru Lodge Budget
Offers breathtaking views over the surrounding landscapes and Rinjani Volcano. It's no wonder it got the name as you'll understand how many dragonflies are seen in the gardens when you arrive.
Rinjani Crater Route
Mount Rinjani's trekking routes are organized into various points of interest, commonly referred to as "POS" (short for "Posisi," which means "Position" in Indonesian).
These POS are checkpoints or rest stops for us hikers trekking up to the crater rim within the Mount Rinjani National Park. Here's an overview of the main POS leading to the crater rim:
- POS 1: Often the first rest area after the starting gate, where hikers can catch their breath and prepare for the journey ahead. Facilities are basic, and it's a good spot to adjust any gear as needed.
- POS 2: This is another rest stop, positioned at a higher elevation. Hikers use this point to rest, hydrate, and have snacks. The trail between POS 1 and POS 2 starts to increase in difficulty, with more uphill sections.
- POS 3: Typically the last major rest stop before the crater rim. This POS is usually where trekkers take a longer break and lunch. It's an opportunity to replenish energy stores with a meal and rest before the final ascent.
- Crater Rim (POS Extra): Not officially numbered like the lower POS, the crater rim serves as the ultimate goal for many hikers. It is not designated as a POS but is the point where trekkers can witness breathtaking views of the caldera, Segara Anak Lake, and the summit. The area is suitable for camping, offering a memorable place to spend the night under the stars. It's essential to be well-prepared for cold temperatures and strong winds.
Note: The number of POS and their specific characteristics can vary depending on the route taken to ascend Mount Rinjani. The most common route for the crater rim is starting from Senaru village as we did. The Sembalun route is more popular for those aiming to reach the summit due to the gradual ascent profile.
My Experience on the Mount Rinjani Crater Rim Hike
Below I'll detail my experience climbing to the Mount Rinjani Crater Rim. We stayed in Senaru the night before and explored Tiu Kelep & Sendang Gile Waterfall before retiring for an early night before the big climb.
The day begins nice and early with your trekking guides driving you to the National Park entrance.
Here, you'll sign your names on a register and your guides will pay for your entry permit, which should always be included in your tour. Ahead of you is a steep 7-hour ascent to reach the crater rim.
Along the way, there are three main stops where trekkers can rest their legs. The first stretch is mostly in dense jungle, where you can spot the famous black monkeys. Depending on your pace, your guides and porters will most likely stop at POS 2 to make a cooked lunch, typically rice and vegetables.
After POS 2 and shortly before POS 3, roughly 5 hours into the trek, you'll break out of the jungle and into a savannah-like landscape. It can get pretty hot in this section, and the dust is a killer.
The final section is the steepest, but soon you'll reach the crater rim where you'll get incredible views of Lake Anak and the entire volcanic crater.
Camping on the Mount Rinjani Crater Rim
While you get busy snapping photos, your guides and porters will set up your campsite. Our guides seemed to have claimed the best spot, right on the edge of the Mount Rinjani Crater Rim.
You'll get some of the best views by walking around to the communications antenna just over to the right of the path. Here, there are no trees that block the view.
Sunset is arguably better than sunrise on Mount Rinjani, as the sun positions itself perfectly to light up the volcanic lake and torch the cotton candy clouds below you.
The Descent Back to Senaru
After falling asleep under the galactic night sky, you'll wake up probably a little sore, but undoubtedly still stoked about catching the sunrise. Soon after, we indulged in a banana pancake breakfast before making the tiring descent back to Senaru. Expect about 4 hours for the entire descent.
While not as tiring, the descent is much harder since you'll undoubtedly be slipping and falling on the loose sandy ground. I found it easier to just make an improvised light run down to avoid falling over.
Before you arrive back at the National Park entrance, your guides will cook you another jungle lunch at one of the rest spots. This was the last time we saw our porters, who quickly darted down the mountain eager to see their families.
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How Much Does it Cost to Hike Rinjani's Crater in 2024
Depending on the quality of your trekking tour, prices to the Rinjani Crater Rim from Senaru vary between 2.4 Million to 4.2 million rupiah. Larger groups can also negotiate for a cheaper price.
Note: Those interested in trekking from Tete Batu, expect to pay a little more since this side has less hiking infrastructure.
I have been told that some smaller trekking groups based in Sembalun will charge less to either the summit or the crater. However, this will heavily depend on how experienced they believe you to be, the size of the group, and of course, the trekking company's reputation and professionalism.
How Difficult is the Rinjani Crater Trek?
Trekking to the crater rim requires no technical climbing abilities.
A generally fit person will be able to reach the rim from Senaru in one day of hiking. Although dusty, the path is well-worn and easy to follow. On the way down, however, it can get a little slippery as you sand-skate down the mountain.
Rinajani Packing List
Your guides and porters will carry all necessary supplies for camping and cooking. However, you'll need to be responsible for bringing the following in a small day-size bag.
- Warm clothes for the top
- Good shoes or boots
- Camera or GoPro
- Change of Clothes
Is Mount Rinjani Open For Trekking in 2024?
Mount Rinjani trekking is open. While the trail to Mount Rinjani Peak (summit) was closed for a considerable time, it has now been repaired and is open for hiking.
However, the new track is currently more dangerous than the previous route. This has caused the price to hike to Rinjani's peak to skyrocket. Therefore, most people tend to just book a trekking trip to the crater rim instead from either Tete Batu or Senaru.
Mount Rinjani Trekking After the Earthquake
As you could probably imagine, trekking routes on Mount Rinjani were seriously damaged during the earthquakes.
As a result, the families that had their houses destroyed also lost their income. This, coupled with the devastating pandemic and recent flooding means that the people of Lombok really need your help.
Tourism still hasn't fully recovered but is slowly on the rise again. If you've been planning a trip to Lombok or a trek to Mount Rinjani's volcano rim, then this is definitely the time to do it before the crowds come back!
Can I Hike Mount Rinjani Without a Guide?
t is possible to trek to the crater rim of Mount Rinjani without a guide however the National park rules do forbid it. You'll need to carry your own food, water, tents, and supplies with you. I wouldn't recommend hiking Mount Rinjani without a guide for a few reasons.
- Local families rely on trekking tours for income
- You'll have to pay a 150,000 rupiah National Park Fee per person anyway
- You will miss out on local knowledge and epic mountain-cooked food
- You'll have to carry your own supplies
More Photos from the Mount Rinjani Crater Rim Hike
Here are a few more photos that I snapped during my time on the trek. I sent the drone up and got some of my favorite drone shots of the year so far!
More Lombok Travel Guides
Did you end up doing the Mount Rinjani Crater Rim hike? Have any updates or feedback for this post? Let me know, I reply to very comment below!
Otherwise, check out some of my other useful guides to traveling in Lombok, Indonesia!
- 4-Day Boat Trip to Komodo From Lombok - read about my favorite boat trip in Indonesia
- Lombok Travel Guide - My comprehensive guide of 25+ epic things to do in Lombok
- Lombok Waterfall Guide - Discover all the best waterfalls in Lombok
- Gili Trawangan - Find things to do on Gili T
- Accommodation: Find out where to stay in Lombok and read my guide to where to stay on the Gili Islands.