Aling Aling Waterfall is arguably the most famous of all the waterfalls located in the Sambangan Secret Garden and, standing at 35 metres, it is also the tallest. Sitting at the end of the valley, the waterfall is enclosed by imposing rock faces covered in thick jungle foliage, making for a striking first impression. A powerful gush of water plummets down the rocks, landing in a bright blue pool below, and the resulting spray creates a dramatic mist effect against the lush foliage.
The locals consider the waterfall to be a sacred spot so you’re not allowed to swim, although that’s probably for the best due to the power of the water. It is, however, the perfect photo opportunity and a great start to your visit to the Sambangan Secret Garden.
Aling Aling Waterfall: Entry ticket
In order to visit Aling Aling Waterfall, you need to buy an entry ticket to Sambangan Secret Garden. You can either book just an entry ticket, which costs 20,000 rupiah, or you can book onto a trekking tour. If you just want to visit Aling Aling Waterfall and none of the others (I wouldn’t recommend skipping them), then you’d be better off just buying the entrance ticket because Aling Aling Waterfall is a short walk from the entrance so you do not need a guide. Additionally, one of the biggest advantages of buying a trekking ticket is that it allows you to swim in the waterfalls but seeing as you can’t swim in Aling Aling anyway it is not applicable.
If you do book a trekking ticket, these are the options:
This trek costs 125,000 rupiah per person and includes a stop at Aling Aling Waterfall, Kroya Waterfall, Kembar Waterfall and Pucuk Waterfall. You’ll be able to jump into the pool at Kroya Waterfall and then slide down the waterfall itself as well as another small waterfall located nearby. You can then tackle a 10-metre jump at Kembar Waterfall and, if you’re brave enough, a 15-metre jump and Pucuk Waterfall. They suggest allowing between one and two hours for this trek.
The medium trek costs 250,000 rupiah per person and takes between three and four hours. The trek begins with a walk through the beautiful rice paddies that surround Sambangan Secret Garden, stopping at a local’s house for a fresh coconut drink and some cacao beans along the way. You’ll then make your way to the Blue Lagoon, where you can go for a swim and venture inside the cavern, where another hidden waterfall can be found. After this, you’ll be able to see Aling Aling Waterfall from the top before venturing down to experience everything that’s included in the short trek.
The long trek costs 500,000 rupiah per person and includes everything mentioned above as well as three more waterfalls: Cemara Waterfall, Dedari Waterfall and Canging Waterfall. I did not do this trek so I’m unable to provide any further information or photos on these waterfalls. They recommend five to six hours for this trek.
Aling Aling Waterfall: Where to stay
I highly recommend staying at Shanti Natural Panorama Hotel, which is just a five-minute walk down the road. Sitting high in the mountains, the hotel boasts amazing views from the rooms, swimming pool and the restaurant. The rooms are in fact more like mini jungle houses with the bedroom on the first floor and an al fresco lounge area on the ground floor, creating the perfect spot for an evening tipple or two. A beautiful infinity swimming pool overlooks the jungle and the restaurant serves an incredibly generous breakfast and a tasty menu of local dishes – the chicken satay is a highlight.
Staying at Shanti Natural Panorama Hotel meant that we could visit the Sambangan Secret Garden twice and it also meant we were well-placed to drive to the other famous waterfalls located in the north of Bali, notably Sekumpul Waterfall and Banyumala Twin Waterfall. Gitgit Waterfall is also located within 20 minutes of the hotel.
Aling Aling Waterfall: How to get there
If you aren’t staying at the Shanti Natural Panorama Hotel, you can either book onto a tour to visit Aling Aling Waterfall and Sambangan Secret Garden, which will include a transfer from your accommodation, or you can hire a scooter. These are available to rent from most hotels and cost between 70,000 and 100,000 rupiah a day. The drive from Seminyak takes about three hours.
The entrance to Aling Aling Waterfall is clearly marked on Google Maps – see the point on the map below. There is also a fairly big car park at the entrance where you can park your scooter for a small fee.