With divine beaches, the majestic Mt Rinjani, and spectacular marine life to discover, the island of Lombok in West Nusa Tenggara has no shortage of attractions both in and out of the water. It’s no wonder that Lombok become one of the most popular destinations in West Nusa Tenggara.
The Adventurous Trek
Challenge yourself with a trek up steep volcanic peaks. Hire a bike and cycle through lush evergreen rice paddies. Whichever way you choose to spend your time you won’t be disappointed with the spectacular natural beauty on offer here.
Lombok Island is separated by the Lombok strait from Bali Island in the west and by Alas strait in the east from Sumbawa Island.
The Sasak people are the dominant ethnic group living in this island, which also consist of 5 regions: North Lombok, Central Lombok, East Lombok, West Lombok and Mataram city, the capital of West Nusa Tenggara.
North Lombok is where you can embark on the great hike to Mount Rinjani and linger until the sunset at Gili’s beautiful beaches.
Mount Rinjani is one of the highest volcano in Indonesia, with its summit rising to 3,726 meters above sea level. The Segara Anak Crater Lake located on top of the volcano is one of the scenic view you should stop by and marvel at!
Explore the Waters
Among more than 20 gilis – local name that means ”small island” in Sasak language – three stood out to be the hot spot destination: Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno and Gili Air.
Gili Trawangan or Gili T, is where travelers flock to enjoy a laid-back atmosphere during day light and still are up to enjoy moonlit parties all night by the beach. You can also enjoy a great scuba dive and circle the island on a bicycle to catch the most incredible sunset!
Gili Meno is defined by long stretch of pearly white beaches that will give you a secluded feel. Famous for honeymooners’ destination, the island provides accommodation ranging from unique bungalows to luxurious resorts overlooking amazing panorama.
Gili Air is a cheerful mix of the two vibes, where you can still enjoy parties in hip hangouts or succumb at a peaceful nook and just enjoy the ocean breeze. Families love to travel to Gili Air to explore the island on the horse-drawn cart or just swimming in the low tides before sundown.
Central Lombok is where the lovely beaches are situated. Kuta Beach, Tanjung A’an, and Mawun Beach are just a few on the list. Don’t miss out to brush up your wave riding skills in the splendid Selong Belanak Beach, or make way to Merese Hill and enjoy the view.
Blend in with the Locals
Here you can also visit the traditional villages and join the locals of the Sasak tribe to experience their daily life in the weaving village of Sade and Rambitan. You may learn a thing or two from the wonderful women with meticulous weaving skills that produces fine quality textiles.
You can get across the sea to Sumbawa Island from the harbors in East Lombok. If you love exploring something new, you may find the black sand beach of Obel-Obel to be captivating!
In West Lombok, you can linger in Senggigi beach and discover the wildlife at the Monkey Forest in Pusuk Village, right at the border between North and West Lombok. Just be careful with your belongings and keep them out of the monkey’s reach.
Mataram is the center for government and industry. It consists of the old town district of Ampenan, Cakranegara as the commercial district, and Mataram city as office district.
Make time to visit the West Nusa Tenggara Museum, Mayura Garden, and Narmada Park to find more stories about the island.
For the adventurous spirit, you can explore more of its south coast like the famous Tangsi ‘Pink’ Beach in further southeast, with pretty corals making the shore look blushed. Trek the path to find the amazing Senaru Waterfalls and Benang Kelambu Waterfalls for a soothing sight.
There are daily flights between Denpasar, Bali, and the capital of Lombok, Mataram. Lombok International Airport (LOP) in Tanah Awu, Central Lombok District is located about 30 km or an hour drive southeast of Mataram. Airlines which fly to Lombok are Garuda, Lion Air, Silk Air, and Trans Nusa.
The public ferry travels between Padangbai (Bali) and Lembar (Lombok) multiple times a day. The trip takes around 4-5 hours. Motorbikes and cars can be taken on the ferry. If you are prone to sea sickness be warned that the trip can be rough. Ferries travel between Labuhan Lombok and Poto Tano on Sumbawa multiple times a day. The trip takes one and a half hours.
By Fast Boat
Blue Water Safari Express is one of the fast boat companies that will take you from Bali to mainland Lombok. There are 2 convenient departure points from Bali: Serangan (just near the Benoa Harbour) and Padang Bai Harbour. You can also check on Gilibookings.com for more options and information around transport or accommodation in this scenic island.
In mainland Lombok, you can get around by renting motorcycles or cars from trusted providers. Public transportations are a natural-air conditioned minibus called Bemo. It will take you to most tourist attractions, but only operates during the daytime. When night fell, there will be Ojek, a motorcycle transport with no meter that allows you to practice your bargain skills before you hop on. And the most unique will be the Cidomo, found on Senggigi beach or the Gilis. It’s a nickname for Cikar-Dokar-Motor, a cart with literal horse power enough to carry around 4 people.
Article source: Indonesia Travel – Beautiful Lombok island