Tumpak Sewu (also known as Air Terjun Tumpak Sewu or Coban Sewu) is arguably the BEST waterfall in Indonesia!
If you’re looking for the ultimate adventure when traveling in East Java, then this phenomenal waterfall is not to be missed on your itinerary!
I have put together this complete guide to Tumpak Sewu Waterfall including how to get there, how much it costs, the best time to visit, and what to expect when you arrive.
WHERE IS TUMPAK SEWU WATERFALL?
Tumpak Sewu Waterfall is located at the base of Mount Semeru in Lumajang, East Java. It’s approximately a 2-hour drive from Malang City or a 7-hour drive from Surabaya to reach Lumajang.
HOW TO GET HERE
I highly recommend renting a car as opposed to a motorbike when traveling through Java as it’s a very large island and the must-see locations are very far from one another.
My friend and I rented a car when we arrived in Surabaya for 7 days to visit as many locations as possible. We picked up our car from Setia Abadi Mobil Rental and paid 300,000 Rupiah ($22) per day.
You can contact them via their website or via WhatsApp at +62 857 331 1117. They also offer a good deal for every 10 days rental you will receive one day free.
ARRIVING AT AIR TERJUN TUMPAK SEWU
There are two different entrances to this waterfall, one is located on the east side of the falls and the other is located on the west side.
When you arrive at the west entrance of Tumpak Sewu Lumajang, you will find a car park on the left-hand side of the road and there is a ticket office here where you will have to pay 10,000 Rupiah to park a car and 20,000 Rupiah for the entrance fee.
The trek down to Coban Sewu on the west side is not an easy one. You literally have to climb down bamboo ladders that are built into the cliffside.
I recommend using the east entrance, which is a lot safer if you wish to trek down to the base of the falls.
There is, however, an incredible view of the falls on the west side before you reach the ladders, so this is worth checking out for sure!
When you arrive at the east entrance of the falls, you will find a car park at the end of the road that costs 10,000 Rupiah to park a car and for a motorbike, it’s 2,000 Rupiah.
The entrance to the trail is located next to the car park, you will see a ticket office and the entry fee is 10,000 Rupiah.
Travel Tip: If you visit the east entrance first before the west, hold on to your ticket so you don’t have to pay the entrance fee twice.
Ticket office at the east entrance
THE TRAIL DOWN TO THE FALLS
The hike down to the base of the falls will take you through the lush rainforest in Lumajang. The trail is a bit of a challenge which makes the adventure all the more fun.
It can be very slippery when wet and some parts of the trail are quite steep so make sure to have three points of contact at all times when making the descent. Be sure to wear a good pair of walking shoes for the trek down.
There are bamboo bridges, metal railings, and ropes fixed into the side of the cliffs to aid you along the way down to the waterfall. In one section you will have to get your feet wet as you walk across a running stream that flows down and across the cliff face.
The hike down
A stream on the hike down
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THE BASE OF AIR TERJUN COBAN SEWU
Be prepared to be in absolute awe when you reach the bottom of the valley. The towering cliffs that surround you will make you feel like the size of an ant.
You’ll come across another bamboo hut in the valley where the locals will ask for you to pay for another entrance ticket if you don’t have one, so make sure to hang on to that original entrance ticket.
Follow the river upstream until you reach the base of the Sewu Waterfall.
I am lost for words to describe this incredible creation of mother nature. The 120-meter-high curtain of falls at Tumpak Sewu thunders down into a shallow rock pool below.
There are a number of epic viewpoints, so peruse the area and take in every moment you spend down at the base of the falls for it’s a place you’ll never forget.
Towering cliffs at Tumpak Sewu Lumajang
Drone shot of the falls
Viewpoint at Coban Sewu
GOA TETES WATERFALL
In the same valley, you can find another epic set of falls named Goa Tetes.
A small cave behind this set of falls makes this spot unique and worth a quick visit before making the hike back up the cliffs.
Goa Tetes cave waterfall
SECRET ENTRANCE AT THE TOP OF THE FALLS
After hiking back to the top of the valley, we decided we wanted to try to find a way to get to the very top of Tumpak Sewu where the river flows off the edge of the cliffs.
We perused google maps and found an entrance further upstream at the top of the valley.
We parked the car and followed a dirt track down to the river bed which led us downstream and right to the top of Coban Sewu Waterfall.
Please take care and know your limits if you decide to check out this particular viewpoint.
The secret entrance
Follow this trail down to the falls
The viewpoint from the top
THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE YOU GO
The best time to visit Tumpak Sewu is in the dry season which is the months of May through to November, although be prepared for an unexpected downpour of rain as it’s very unpredictable weather in these mountains.
Be prepared with a rainjacket in the chance of rain when visiting these falls. Thank me later!
As I mentioned, the hike down to Air Terjun Tumpak Sewu Waterfall is challenging and slippery when wet, so wear suitable footwear and take plenty of drinking water with you.
There are small shops in the car park at the top of the falls if you need to stock up on water and snacks for the adventure.
I always recommend getting a reusable water bottle to stay hydrated and it also helps the environment by reducing the use of single-use plastics.
OTHER POINTS OF INTEREST IN EAST JAVA
If you love hiking and love volcanoes then I recommend checking out Mount Ijen and Mount Bromo on your visit to East Java, either before or after visiting these epic falls.
Full Blog Post → Mount Ijen and Mount Bromo Tour
WHERE TO STAY IN LUMAJANG
The only homestay I know of near Tumpak Sewu Lumajang is Edi Travel Home Stay. The rooms are cheap and basic but it is perfect for a one-night stay to explore the Lumajang region.
Alternatively, the closest city to Lumajang that has more homestays and hotels is Malang. Click Here to search for all accommodations in Malang.
WHAT TO PACK FOR JAVA
When visiting Java, here is a list of items I highly recommend bringing with you;
- Sunscreen – the Indonesian sun is very strong, so make sure to pack some high-quality sunscreen.
- Quick-dry travel towel – the most compact and lightweight towel for traveling.
- Reusable water bottle – stay hydrated by bringing along a reusable water bottle.
- Backpack – The Nomatic 30L Travel Pack is the ultimate backpack for everyday adventures.
If you’re interested in taking awesome photos and videos on your travels, this is the camera gear that I use and recommend;
- GoPro HERO10 – the most popular camera on the planet for action-packed adventures.
- Canon EOS R – perfect for traveling, this is the most affordable, compact camera on the market.
- DJI Mini 3 Pro – take your photos and videos to new heights with this user-friendly drone camera.
TRAVEL RESOURCES FOR YOUR NEXT TRIP
Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or it’s your first trip overseas, here are some useful travel resources to help you kick-start your next adventure!
- BOOKING.COM – search and book accommodation worldwide
- SKYSCANNER – compare and book cheap flights to anywhere
- VIATOR – find tickets, tours, and experiences around the world
- BOOKAWAY – book buses, trains, and transfers online in advance
- RENTAL CARS – search all rental cars in your next destination
- GROUP TRIPS – join one of my epic small group trips
- TRAVEL INSURANCE – purchase World Nomads travel insurance
- TRAVEL MONEY CARD – get a Wise card today for free
Looking for more? Check out my Travel Resources page for further help with your trip planning!
I hope you enjoyed reading this article and if you have any questions, please drop me a comment below this post and I will get back to you as soon as I can. For a quicker response, be sure to join Jonny Melon’s Travel Tribe on Facebook and post your questions or recommendations to our awesome community.
THANKS FOR READING
Hey friend, thanks for reading this guide!
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