Pelaruga Waterfall isn’t a huge waterfall but there is a unique feature that very few waterfalls have. Directly in the middle of the waterfall is a giant tree. It has been there long enough to also be known as Tongkat (stick in Bahasa) Waterfall. There are supposed to be several other waterfalls in the area but we didn’t have time to visit them.
Rating and difficulty – moderate – 5-6 kms (2-3 hrs) round trip
Accessibility – it isn’t that far from Medan but the road is in bad shape. Cars can go all but the last 1-2 kms depending on how wet the farming road is. The hike requires two knee deep river crossings but is otherwise on an old road.
How to get there – Your driver will have to be familiar with the area or you will need a local guide. Google Maps should also be sufficient. The road is paved almost the whole way but there are many rough stretches of the road. The final km of our drive was on a dirt farming road. If it is wet then two wheel struggle to get up and down the hills. There is also a log bridge to go over near the end.
The hike – The old road (don’t drive all the way) goes back almost the entire way to the waterfall. It descends steeply from where we parked until it reaches the river and the first snack shop. Cross the river (marked on the map) and continue following the road on the other side. After awhile there will be a few more snack shops and another river crossing. The waterfall is at the end of the road although you will have to climb around on some rocks and logs to get the best view.
Entrance cost – unsure – We met a random guy (from the local village) at a gas station that showed us back to the waterfall for a fee (30,000 IDR plus a tip) and it was worth it
Guides – not required but it was useful
GPS – parking (location varies) N3.402593 E98.423644 – waterfall N3.391479 E98.424228
Date visited – 2/14/2016
Google maps is a little off regarding several things on this map.