After a sustainable hiking adventure off the beaten path? Join Green Rinjani

view of mt rinjani from green rinjani guesthouse

This article may contain links to products and services we use and recommend. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For more information, see our Disclosure Policy.

Want to hike Mt Rinjani in Indonesia, but don’t know how to choose among the plethora of trekking companies? Want to avoid the crowds and trek a route not everyone does? You’ve come to the right place. We chose Green Rinjani for a private hike away from the popular Sembalun Summit route and can highly recommend not only the route but the company as well. Here is our detailed review.

If you want to learn more about the route we chose (or another far less busy route on the southern slopes of Mt Rinjani) head here first.

And just in case you’re wondering: We paid for this experience ourselves (and we did not disclose at any point that we might be writing about the experience). So you can be sure that the experience we had is what anyone else is likely to experience too. 

Download your Sustainable Travel Checklist and show the world you care

As travellers, we should all be aware of our travel behaviour and its environmental, economic and social impact; and make conscious decisions about it. Too often, we hear negative stories in the media about tourists behaving badly.

Here is your chance to tick some boxes and check out what it really takes to travel with a sustainable mindset.

Subscription Form - Sustainable Travel Checklist

waterfall in torean canyon2

Choosing the right trekking route and company on Mt Rinjani can make our break your experience

What is it like hiking Mt Rinjani?

Mt Rinjani was hands-down the hardest hike I’ve ever done (and I’ve done some pretty hairy ones). Not for the steepness of the trail, the climate, temperature or my lack of fitness (though there was a bit of the latter), but for the difficulty of the trail itself:

  • Loose sand on hard-packed soil made some sections incredibly slippery (and dangerous).
  • Many parts of the trail were very narrow with steep drop-offs on one side, requiring an enormous amount of willpower (and thus energy) from someone with a fear of heights (that’s me) to just keep going.
  • There is hardly any safety equipment on the trail itself. The very few ropes, ladders and steel steps that are in place were mostly along the almost vertical crater rim wall, where it would have been impossible to traverse the terrain otherwise.
guide helping hiker on mt rinjani trail

Hiking Mt Rinjani is one of the hardest things I've ever done - the trails are steep and slippery, with near vertical drops

All the struggles though were absolutely worthwhile:

  • The scenery was mind-blowing every step of the way: from stunning waterfalls and otherworldly landscapes in the Torean Canyon to beautiful panoramic views from the Senaru crater rim of Segara Anak Lake and Mt Rinjani’s summit and a dazzling sunset over the Lombok Strait with the Gilis and Bali’s Mt Agung.
  • After an arduous first day of hiking, a cleansing hot spring bath on a sunny plateau above the Torean Canyon helped re-energise our tired bodies and made for a refreshing start to day 2 of our hike. Who would have thought that a simple bath could make such a difference?
  • On the trail, we were lucky to observe not only several groups of feisty long-tailed grey macaques, and a variety of birds and butterflies but also (much rarer) black ebony leaf monkeys and even a palm civet.
senaru crater rim campsite

All the struggles are worthwhile though when you get to enjoy views like this

How was our trekking experience with Green Rinjani?

The route we chose took us from the village of Torean on the northern slopes of Mt Rinjani (at about 600 metres above sea level) to Lake Segara Anak (2,000 metres) and the Senaru Crater Rim (2,640 metres) before finishing at Senaru village (800 metres).

Review Green Rinjani Trek: Torean/Senaru Route
Overall
4.7
  • Pre-Tour Communication and Booking Process
    (4)
  • Accommodation
    (4.75)
  • Food/Drinks
    (5)
  • Safety
    (4.75)
  • Sustainability
    (5)

Summary

Pre-Tour Communication and Booking Process

Our experience with Green Rinjani started well, thanks to the company’s professional website, and their prompt and detailed response to our initial inquiry.

Unfortunately, Green Rinjani staff then went on to book us onto the wrong tour (the summit tour we so desperately tried to avoid), and when advised of the mistake, ignored our emails. Only when reaching out to the owner via WhatsApp, we finally received a response and a few days later, the (correct) booking confirmation – again very detailed and provided all the information we needed.

Upon check-in, all guests also receive a briefing that recaps all the key things to know in front of a large map that shows the different trails and rest stops – a great opportunity to ask any last-minute questions.

Accommodation

Pre-trip accommodation is provided in Green Rinjani’s own guesthouse – with modern, clean and comfortable rooms providing a good night’s rest before the start of the hike.

The two nights during the hike are spent in tents (carried by the porters). Our tents (one to sleep in and one to provide privacy when going to the toilet) were a little older, and we had some issues with the zipper closures during the trek (on both tents). Thankfully, our guide and porters were able to repair them, ensuring that the tents remained usable. The mattresses provided with the tents were comfortable. The sleeping bags were graded for temperatures down to 10 degrees Celsius (50 degrees Fahrenheit), requiring additional layers to stay warm during the chilly nights.

Food/Drinks

The one-night stay at the Green Rinjani guesthouse included dinner and breakfast. We also received a welcome drink and snack upon check-in.

The meals provided during the hike – all freshly prepared by the porters – were delicious and substantial (initially even too much for us to finish). The variety of drinks on offer was impressive – ranging from tea, coffee and water to soft drinks and even beer. If you don’t require certain drinks, make sure to let them know the night before your hike commences, so that the porters don’t carry items unnecessarily (they carry enough as it is).

Safety

The booking confirmation provided by Green Rinjani included essential gear required for a safe hike (and a great template to build our own packing list – more on that below). We were able to rent hiking poles from Green Rinjani, which helped us immensely when traversing steeper sections. Our guide also helped me navigate the most difficult parts of the trail – at one point literally holding my hand as we slowly descended an especially slippery slope – which was greatly appreciated.

While safety was always a top priority for our guide, the owner suggested during the briefing that we do our chosen route in reverse (starting in Senaru and finishing in Torean). We are glad we stuck to our original plan. Starting in Torean and finishing in Senaru is definitely the safer direction – don’t let them tell you otherwise. The incline is less steep as the ascent is split over two days. During the dry season, the trail between Torean and the crater rim is very dusty and slippery – going up such slopes is much easier (and safer) than going down.

Sustainability

Green Rinjani has a “leave only footprints” policy, with our guide and porters not only bringing our own rubbish back down but also collecting rubbish left behind by others, and the company planting a tree for every guest who joined their treks (though for people hiking in the dry season, the tree planting is postponed until the wet season).

We did our hike as a private trek, as the route we had chosen was not (yet) available as a group tour. That said, with a maximum of 6 participants, Green Rinjani’s groups are still small, making not only for a more personal experience but also lowering the group’s impact on the mountain.

Our guide and porters were all locals from the surrounding villages.

CONCLUSION

Experienced and hard-working, our guide (Fahmi) and porters (Joko, Buddhes and Leo) took great care of us, and their personalized attention made the experience even more special. If you’re thinking of hiking Mt Rinjani off the beaten path, we highly recommend doing the 3 Day/2 Night Torean/Senaru trek with Green Rinjani.

green rinjani guide

We did the 3D/2N Torean/Senaru trek with Green Rinjani and have only good things to say about our experience

Is the 3D/2N Torean/Senaru trek with Green Rinjani good value for money?

We paid USD$620 for our private trek (USD$310 per person). This price included:

  • Pick-up from Mataram (2h15min), transfer to the starting point of our trek in Torean (30minutes) and post-hike drop-off in Tetebatu (2h15min) – each time in an air-conditioned vehicle
  • Private guided hike to Sendang Gile and Tiu Kelep waterfalls on the day of arrival (entry fees of IDR20,000 per person were extra)
  • Pre-trek accommodation at the Green Rinjani Guesthouse in Senaru (1 night)
  • Welcome drink and snack, dinner and breakfast before the trek at the Green Rinjani Guesthouse
  • Luggage storage during the hike at the Green Rinjani Office
bedroom at green rinjani guesthouse

Among many other features, the price of our trek included a comfortable night's accommodation at the Green Rinjani Guesthouse in Senaru

  • National Park entrance fees (IDR150,000 per person)
  • Experienced English-speaking trekking guide and three porters
  • All camping equipment (sleeping tent, privacy tent, mattresses, sleeping bags, foldable dining table, chairs and first aid kit)
  • All food and drinks during the hike
  • One small tree per person (planted on our behalf during the wet season).
lunch during mt rinjani hike

During the trek, our porters prepared delicious, varied and substantial breakfasts, lunches and dinners - giving us the energy needed for the trek

While it may seem like a lot (if compared with the cheapest prices you can find for 2-Day/1-Night Summit Group treks by other companies), we believe it’s fair: The trekking guides and porters need to earn a living wage as do guesthouse, restaurant and office staff as well as drivers. Equipment needs to be bought, maintained and replaced. Food, drinks and fuel need to be bought. All of that adds up.

That said, the prices charged by Green Rinjani are higher than those charged by other companies for the same trek. We communicated with all three companies offering the route we wanted to do and decided to go with Green Rinjani (and pay more) due to their focus on sustainability and safety.

safety briefing at green rinjani guesthouse

We chose Green Rinjani (over other companies offering the same trek for a lower price) for their focus on sustainability and safety

How to book the 3-Day/2-Night Torean/Senaru trek with Green Rinjani?

Make sure you book well in advance, especially if you want to hike in peak season (June to August) as visitor numbers on the mountain are restricted, and experienced trekking companies like Green Rinjani are very busy during that time.

Booking the trek via the Green Rinjani website is straightforward: just complete the booking form at the end of the page. Make sure you select the correct route from the drop-down menu (3-Days Torean Senaru Trekking).

Also note: This route is not (yet) offered as a group trek, which means you’ll only be able to do it as a private trek (3 Days Trekking Deluxe Service). Select the number of people making up your group from the respective drop-down menu.

Once your booking is confirmed via email (make sure you check all the details, including the route and dates), you’ll be required to send a digital passport copy to everyone in your private group. This is to get the required National Park entry permits. A deposit (equivalent to 16.67% of the tour price) is also payable at that point. The remainder is charged upon check-in at the Green Rinjani Guesthouse. Payments via PayPal attract a 5% surcharge, and credit card payments a 3% surcharge.

If at any point you have trouble reaching Green Rinjani via email, contact the owner (Ariee) via WhatsApp (+62 819 1603 0327).

What is not included in the tour price?

The following items are not included in any of the tours conducted by Green Rinjani:

How much should you tip your guides and porters?

The price for your trek does not include tips for your guide/s and porters. If you are happy with their service, expect to pay a minimum of IDR50,000 per person/day (recommendation of the National Park) and up to 10% of the overall price of your trek (found in other sources) – divided equally between the guide/s and porters. If unsure, err on the side of paying more rather than less (we hadn’t done our research and with the benefit of hindsight, wished we had given more).

Also worth knowing: The guides and porters are employed by the National Park and (sub)contracted to the trekking companies. While many work mostly for one trekking company, you may encounter the same guide or porter working for different companies throughout the year.

green rinjani guide and porters

Your guide/s and porters are working hard to give you the experience of a lifetime - Tips are customary (and in addition to your tour price)

SafetyWing

What to pack for your Mt Rinjani hike

Carrying appropriate gear, including warm clothing and rain gear, is important for any hike. No matter which trail you choose, the temperature range on your hike will be immense: from 30-35 degrees Celsius (86-95 degrees Fahrenheit) in the sun during the day to 5-10 degrees Celsius (41-50 degrees Fahrenheit) on the crater rim at night (and even lower at the summit). Layers are therefore essential (our sleeping bags were not warm enough on their own). Make sure your backpack can accommodate a 1.5-litre water bottle (or two).

Below is my recommendation based on our experience.

QuantityItemRecommendation for menComments
1Hiking PackMatador Beast28 Ultralight Technical Backpack
2-3T-ShirtUnbound Merino Mens Crew Neck T-ShirtOne per day
Wear the clean one overnight
23/4 Pants / ShortsColumbia Mens Silver Ridge Utility Cargo ShortsTo wear during the day
1Comfortable Long PantsPatagonia Mens Quandary PantsTo wear in the evening/overnight
3UnderwearUnbound Merino Mens Boxer Briefs
1Bra
1Long-sleeve T-shirtUnbound Merino Long Sleeve CrewTo wear in the evening/overnight
1Jumper or CardiganUnbound Merino Mens Compact Travel HoodieTo wear in the evening/overnight and early morning
1Leggings or Long JohnsIcebreaker Mens 200 Oasis 3/4 Thermal LeggingsTo wear under your pants overnight
1Rain JacketPatagonia Mens Torrentshell 3L Rain Jacket
1Hat / BeanieUnbound Merino BeanieWear hat during the day and beanie at night
1BuffBuff Merino Lightweight NeckwearOptional - to protect against the sun, dust and cold
1GlovesSmartwool Liner GlovesOptional - to wear at night
1TowelPackTowl Personal TowelIf your trek includes a stop at a hot spring
1Bathing SuitPatagonia Mens Hydropeak BoardshortsIf your trek includes a stop at a hot spring
1 pairHiking ShoesXero Shoes Mesa Trail WPGood profile/grip - DO NOT wear road running shoes
3 pairsHiking SocksFox River Basecamp 2.0 Lightweight Quarter Crew Hiking Sock
1 pairSandalsXero Shoes Z-TrekOptional, but recommended to wear around the campsite
1 pairSunglassesRudy Project Rydon Sunglasses
1HeadlampNitecore NU25 headlamp
1 setHiking PolesHighly recommended - we hired ours from Green Rinjani
Trail SnacksFor example: muesli bars, dates and nuts
1Small Garbage BagTo collect own rubbish (tissues, wraps etc) during the hike
Basic toiletries and wet tissuesYou won't be able to shower for a few days
1Basic First Aid KitInclude at least pain killers and adhesive bandages
1 bottleMagnesium Chloride Spray and/or Diclofenac GelOptional
1 bottleSun ScreenApply daily prior to commencing your hike (and reapply during the day as needed)
1 bottleInsect Repellent
At the time of our hike, Paul used his original Tortuga V2 Travel Pack while Sandra used the Matador Freerain24 2.0, both have since been retired at the end of 2023.

Oh, and before you go: If you found this article helpful: Please share it with others who might benefit, using the Share buttons below or by linking to it from your personal blog / social media platforms.

Still on the fence about hiking Mt Rinjani with Green Rinjani?

Got any questions I haven’t answered? Please let me know. I’m happy to help.

After a sustainable hiking adventure off the beaten path? Join Green Rinjani
Author: <a href="https://www.linkedin.com/in/sandrarosenau/" target="_blank">Sandra Rosenau</a>

Author: Sandra Rosenau

Sandra Rosenau is a Gen X gal from Germany, born and raised behind the Iron Curtain, with an unquenchable thirst to learn. Self-starter. Multi-lingual. Minimalist. Environmentally conscious. Financially and location independent. Energised by connecting with others and helping people succeed.