IO – If you want to feel the imagination of swimming in an outdoor pool with the nuances of being in a fairy tale, you may stop by at the Benang Kelambu Waterfall at the foot of Mount Rinjani, Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara (NTB). Reportedly, the angelic reincarnation figure named Dewi Anjani, who is also Hanoman’s mother, was seen there. It is even said that the waterfall that gushes out through the crevices of the rock, pooling in four levels, is a bathing place of Dewi Anjani.
Residents including Tera, a 25-year-old woman who works daily as a motorcycle-taxi driver in the tourism area of the Geopark Rinjani Waterfall, Lombok, believe that the water flowing out of the rock gap is a curtain for Dewi Anjani while bathing. In the Sasak language, curtains are called “kelambu”; this name is then pinned on the 40-meter high waterfall, said Tera in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara (11/05/2019).
Located in Central Lombok, this place can be reached by car or motorcycle, up to the entrance gate. However, from the gate, visitors must decide whether they want to walk or use a motorcycle taxi service. Due to time constraints, tourists, as well as travel writers, YouTubers, and Indian journalists, decided to use a motorcycle taxi service; it turned out, one of the drivers was a woman.
She led the group of visitors to the Kelambu Waterfall by motorcycle. Even though it is only 1 km away, the track face is quite challenging with steep and only partially paved roads. Along the way, visitors can see plantations cultivated by the local community. Tera explained that some villagers were still actively planting bananas, coffee, and durian. The rest work in tourism, either as guides, managers, or motorcycle-taxi drivers.
“Every day if it’s quiet I can earn IDR 100,000; if it’s crowded, I can get IDR 250,000,” Tera explained. The taxi fare for the round trip is IDR 35,000, while if visitors need a guide the fare is IDR 50,000 per group consisting of a maximum of 7 persons. The entrance fee for this tourist attraction is also very affordable at IDR 10,000 per person. In addition to the Kelambu Waterfall, four other waterfalls can be visited, namely the Stokel, Pengkelep Udang, Sesera, and Kliwun.
Before the waterfall was famous as a tourist attraction, not a few villagers became migrant workers abroad. Tera was one of them; she had worked in Malaysia for several months. “Luckily now there is this tourist attraction, so I can make a living in my village,” said Tera.
The same thing was stated by Lia (26 years). As a mother of one child, she relies on income from her job as a motorcycle-taxi driver, while her husband works as a migrant worker in Malaysia.
“This attraction is very helpful for us villagers; I hope the roads are repaired soon and we find ways to reduce rubbish,” Lia said. According to him, there are still many tourists who do not have a proper awareness of waste disposal.
The government also fully supports advancing the village economy through the tourism sector, as conveyed by the Head of the Central Lombok Regional Promotion and Development Agency (BPPD) Ida Wahyuni Sahabudin.
“We are preparing 37 Mandalika buffer tourism villages. We will also open up residents’ houses as homestays,” said Ida Wahyuni Sahabudin.
Ida explained that development was not only related to infrastructure but also the human resources of Lombok’s tourism community. She hopes that with this initiative, Lombok will be ready to host MotoGP in 2021, as well as becoming a world-class destination. (Pramitha Hendra)