Sembalun Village Walk – Half-Day Trip

Sembalun Village Walk – Half-Day Trip

Invite you to experience the scenic and the culture of Sembalun. Visit the homes of highly women weavers to see their newly designed textiles using traditional techniques recently revived and adapted for today’s fashion.

Led by the local guide, this half -day walk explores a village and countryside in an ancient caldera. Located in the foothills of the spectacular volcano Mt. Rinjani (3.726 m asl), it is the second highest volcano in Indonesia and the sacred mountain of the Sasak people. Sembalun Village is the one of main gateway to Mt. Rinjani National Park. Most the communities are farmers who are a mixture of the indigenous people and new comers from other areas of Lombok.

Our walk starts in the fields where the community’s sytem of farming can be seen. We follow the terraces of the fields and stop for while to talk to the farmers. Along the way your guide explains what farmers are planting such as garlic, onion, carrot, potatoes etc. The walk then through the bamboo gardens leads to the traditional houses at Desa Beleq, which was the original village of Sembalun. The buildings are replicas of those that stood many years ago. The village always consisted of seven houses and never more than that so that the followiing generations had to move away to live. Your guide explains the architecture and other interesting things that are found inside the houses. Next is situated behind Desa Beleq, the hill of Bukit Selong where you can gain a beautiful landscape of the rice and vegetable fields in the valley. Further you can enjoy amazing views of tropical forest, neighboring villages and the sea. Descending from the hill we visit the homes of women hand-loom weavers of Sembalun Lawang and along the way we also see coffee trees. Formerly Sembalun was known as coffee producer and then the community changed to garlic growing because it helped increase their income especially during the garlic boom around 1992.

Women hand-loom weavers in the village of Sembalun Lawang have recently revived their weaving skills. In the past weaving was essential qualification for womanhood and young girls began to learn the basic skills at an early age. Using their traditional back-strap looms and techniques taught to them by their grandmothers, these highly skilled women have begun producing a range of contemporary designs. Although the weavers no longer spin and dye local cotton to make their yarns, the weaving process is nevertheless very labour intensive. The fine yarns must be washed, threaded into the loom and wound into bobbins before weaving can start a process which can take several days. Once the looms are set up it takes about a week to complete a length of this stunning cloth. It may be sold as is or sewn into place mats, bags, cushion covers and belts. all the work is done in the village by local women.