Harau Valley, the Surprising Beautiful Place in West Sumatera, Indonesia

If you are around Bukittinggi, spend another day or two to visit Harau Valley located in Payakumbuh regency. I never knew about this place before until I saw the information on Ling’s board. But I never regret I went there, it is in fact, one of the astonishing place I ever seen. I really amazed with the view I’d seen there.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (6)The solitude view of Harau valley.

 

You know what is the fun fact from traveling? You make new friends along the way. Really. That’s why I never be worried to travel alone, because in the end, there is always new people who will travel with you for good. Now, we have another people to go with. Icak is a former worker who decided to quit his job in Bandung and travel the world, and another one is Barbara, an Austria fearless traveler that already on the road for 9 months. Indonesia is her last stop before she’s back to her chilly country, Austria.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (5)Later on, this is the cool people on the group united by the passion of travel 😉

 

Together we decided to go to Harau Valley (Lembah Harau). Ling suggested to us to stay in Abdi’s Home stay, a good place in the middle of rice field. While we wanna go there, suddenly a luck just passing our way. One of “angkot” (public car) stopped and offer to bring us to Abdi’s homestay for around 200k rupiah. It wasn’t really a big deal for us because it’s mean that we paid 50k/each, rather than we need to change many public car to arrive to Harau Valley.

 

In the middle of our journey, suddenly Icak gave us an idea to visit Kelok 9. Kelok 9 is a new road made by the local government that quite famous lately because the track seems like one in racing car. Especially if you look from the top of the road. We need to pay 100k more because it’s mean crossing the way to Harau and takes more time to go there. Since it’s like an experience for one in our life time (well, we don’t know yet when will we come back to West Sumatera again) so we persuaded Barbara, that it might be nice thing to see. She was agreed.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (2)Kelok 9. The racing car track looks a like.

 

Once we arrived in Kelok 9, we stopped on the top and enjoying the view. Indeed it is look like racing car street. Icak promised himself to go back again in the evening to take a good portrait. For Barbara, it doesn’t really look so impressive, since it just a road with some food seller now surrounding. Yeah, the thing that I don’t understand with Indonesian is why “new place” should be taken into something touristic, later on, some food sellers come, people come, rubbish everywhere. I am sad to see it, but the government should really strict enough about environment and where people can sell something. A confused law only makes our tourism places become bad and dirty.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (3)Me, Ika and Barbara take a pose in Kelok 9.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (4)When there is a tourism spot, there will be an “instant food seller.”

 

Finally we arrived in Harau village. Good thing that we can finally found Abdi’s homestay. Actually Harau is a small village, but we need to ask people rather than we got lost. You can see their information in black board once we go inside of Harau. Only a bit strange that we need to pay to go inside of Harau Village. To a village, I mean. It doesn’t cost much, but really make me confused (?).

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (7)Children playing in Harau village. It’s a daily view.

 

But being in Abdi’s homestay really erased all the question in my head and make me really happy! Of course we are. We got a really cheap place, only 150k/night for the three of us (me, Ika and Icak), while Barbara in another house for 100k/night. The view in front of our place is really soothing and beautiful. A green vast of rice field with some farmer doing their jobs. What a perfect place!

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (21)Abdi’s homestay! So cute and beautiful.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (20)This is where we stayed that night! Pretty!

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (22)Relaxing after a long journey from Bukittinggi to Harau.

 

In the evening, we did the bon fire with another guest (a couple from Netherlands) and their tour guide.Oh yes, this is a real vacation!

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (30)Bon fire! Yayyy yayyy yaayyy…

 

Once the morning comes, we prepared ourselves to walk far today. There is 6 waterfalls (sarasah in Minang’s language) that we wanted to visit. That six sarasah are ; Sarasah Aka Barayun, Sarasah Harau, Sarasah Aia Luluih, Sarasah Bunta, Sarasah Murai and Sarasah Aia Angek.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (19) Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (18)Our morning view in front of the homestay. What a blessed life.

 

Sarasah Aka Barayun

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (24)

This is the first waterfall we found. It is located not too far from Abdi homestay. Only by walking straight from main road and go to the left after we found a tourism board information, we will find this waterfall. It’s not so impressive since it’s too shallow and some kids are playing around. In front of Sarasah, there is a local park with some kiddos stuff.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (9)We continued the way to go to Sarasah Harau. The furthest one on our list.

 

Sarasah Harau

To go to sarasah Harau really such a long walk for us. It is around 4 hours by walking. But it was worth it! Especially during the walk, we can see the beautiful view of Harau valley. Yes, it is called valley, because there are so many cliff facing to each other makes the area look like a valley.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (10)

 

On our way, we can see the “echo” cliff. It is a place where we can scream that loud and let our word echoing through the valley. It was so fun to try!

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (8)Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (23)

Honestly, the 4 hours walking was the awesome part. We enjoyed each land we step. We saw the clear blue sky, the vast green rice field, the local people with their humble house. Local fruit tress wildly growing everywhere. Cows and buffaloes enjoying the hot mid day. Everything was perfectly gathered in one of harmony. So beautiful.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (12) Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (13) Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (11)

When we finally arrived in Sarasah Harau, I just can’t wait to play with the water. First, it is looks so cold. Ohh yes it is! In the beginning, my body shaking because of the cold water but later on, it is adapting the weather and I am so enjoying playing in the waterfalls so much.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (14)Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (17)

Because of the time, we need to continue to walk. It’s gonna be 3 hours walking. But we are fine with it and happy.

 

Sarasah Aia Luluih, Bunta dan Murai

 

Only, our legs can not compromise anymore. Haha. Once we passed the Sarasah Aka Barayun, our tour guide, Fikri (the one from Abdi’s homestay) told us to take the rickshaw. What kind of rickshaw that able to take 5 person? I think. Later on, I knew, how the rickshaw looks like.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (25)We screamed a lot when we sitting inside of the rickshaw. Because sometimes it feels like going too much left or going too much right. Not balance. Especially when we need to face to face with a bus that bringing some domestic tourist. Ohh mama!

 

But it was fun and we all safely arrived in Sarasah Aia Luluih. It is a place where so many domestic tourist come here and have fun. I am not recommend you to come here since the place is already crowded, too many food stall and rubbish everywhere. Sarasah Aia Luluih, Bunta and Murai is like in one same row, you can go to this 3 waterfalls because it is next to each other.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (27) Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (26)

This is what I don’t like when a place being too touristic. Does the problem happened because of the tourist themselves or because there is no proper place for rubbish or the tourism law is so weak?

 

Sarasah Aia Angek

Sarasah Aia Angek is the latest waterfall we visited that day. It is located slightly indented into the woods. We need to pass the small river to reaching the waterfalls. I love the feeling when all around us only big trees and some of bird or animal sound. It felt so mysterious! Time almost night so we need to be hurry otherwise we will walk in the dark and yeah, it won’t be so nice.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (29)This is how the path we need to passed…

To find this!

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (28)

Finally we arrived in Sarasah Aia Angek. This is impressive one! I love the solitude atmosphere in area because no one here except us. Plus the thick forest makes the waterfall looks more magical. No one speak nor playing with the water when we arrived here. We only enjoying the view and conditions until we heard some noises came nearby. Oh no, another tourist coming. When I see them, they are a group of foreign young people. No wonder. I am not sure domestic tourist wanna go to the river only to reaching the waterfall.

Harau-Valley-Dea-Sihotang (1)Ohh we are the happy birds… lalalallaaaa 🙂

 

PS : Because it’s quite far away from city, you better bring your own food/snack if you want to stay in Abdi’s homestay.

Contact Abdi’s homestay : Ikbal & Noni (couple) : Phone +62085263781842.

 

Cheers,

Dea Sihotang

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