Purely Exotic and Pristine Waterfalls in Sumba


Sumba is a rugged island in the middle part of East Nusa Tenggara Province. Located at the southern part of the province, Sumba is a rather mysterious island filled many curiosities. You can still find many villages that still practice the ancient way on this island.

The cauldron. via Instagram/chokyuirunnisa

Sumba is also the place for exotic waterfalls and many other beautiful places. Sumba is dominated by limestone hills with no notable high mountains like in other parts of Indonesia. As a result, the waterfalls here are also relatively low, even though no less remarkable. Here are some of the best waterfalls you can find in Sumba.

Waikelo Sawah

The small waterfalls. via Instagram/ilhamarch

Waikelo Sawah is actually a part of man-made dam and hydropower plant, so it’s strictly only for your viewing pleasure, no swimming allowed even though the blue water is extremely inviting. However, if you just trek the following stream, you can find many wonderful spots.

One of them is a small multi-tiered waterfall with a huge tree and rice field nearby. This is an ideal place if you want to swim. This waterfall is located at Tema Tana Village, East Wewewa District, Sumba Regency.


Waimarang Waterfall and pond. via Instagram/dwiriyantoo

This is probably the most suitable one if you want to swim in full privacy. To get to this waterfall, you need to brave a stream and enter a rocky cauldron. The waterfall in the opposite of the entrance is only a few meter high, however, the pond it falls into is mesmerizing.

You can swim in its sky blue water. The great thing is that you will mostly have the place for yourself as there are not many tourists venture here. This waterfall is located near Melolo Town.


Tanggedu Waterfall. via Instagram/chairulanamrl

This is probably the most spectacular place on this list. There are three streams that meet in this spot, creating a three-way, multi-tiered waterfalls that can be a bit overwhelming. There are limestone cliffs nearby, creating an even more amazing atmosphere.

You will feel like you are in a canyon, full of unique rock formations and refreshing water. This waterfall is located some 45 kilometers to the north of Waingapu.


Matayangu waterfall. via Instagram/faisal_sumba

Matayangu is another unique waterfall as it has a very strong horizontal thrust apart from the traditional vertical fall. The stream falls into a lovely pond that is swimmable. All round this pond is massive stone cliffs that will humble you with its size.

Indeed, Matayangu means ‘stop here’ in the local language. They believe their ancestral spirits dwell in this magnificent waterfall. This waterfall is located at Waimanu Village, Central Sumba.


Koalat waterfall. via Instagram/rekamata

Like many other waterfalls on this island, Koalat is not too high. However, this one is special with its many small pools. You might want to walk a little bit downstream where you will find many small water pools that you can use as your personal Jacuzzi. Koalat Waterfall is approximately 70 kilometers away from Waingapu.

Kanabu Wai

Kanabu Wai Waterfall. via Instagram/umbustevie

This is probably the highest waterfall on the island. The current is not too big but the panorama in the waterfall is impressive. This waterfall is a great spot to take photos. Unfortunately, you have to venture deep into the island without a proper road to get there.

The waterfall is immense, with many tiers that will look extremely good from above. You have to trek from Waikanabu Village to find this hidden gem.

The picturesque waterfall. via Instagram/ibnukf

Most of Sumba is still in a pristine condition, including its waterfalls. That means that you can enjoy the places as naturally as possible. Alas, some of the places are so difficult to find because the infrastructure isn’t there yet.

sumba island waterfall