Lombok Island is the rising star in Indonesian tourism. While it’s true that it is growing in popularity, it’s still nowhere near as popular as its neighbor – Bali. Lombok has a lot to offer to visitors. In fact, in some ways, Lombok is a better holiday destination than Bali. Less traffic and nicer beaches are a few quick examples.
If you are thinking about visiting Lombok, here are the important things you need to know about this Indonesian Island:
1. It has better beaches than Bali.
This may be a bold statement but it’s true regardless of what the travel agents will tell you. I’m not saying that Bali is not a worthy destination, but don’t visit Bali thinking you are going to find empty, pristine white sand beaches. Lombok Island’s beaches have powdery white sand and clear turquoise water. Some of nicest ones have very little infrastructure and few visitors particularly along the Southern coast of the island.
2. Lombok is home to Mount Rinjani, the second highest volcano in Indonesia.
Lombok is a perfect destination for outdoor enthusiasts and avid mountain climbers. Aside from Rinjani, North and Central Lombok are magnificent with their rice terraces, forests and lush valleys.
The towns of Senaru and Sembalun located along the foothills of Mount Rinjani are absolutely stunning. They are both used as gateway towns for trekking Rinjani. You can book a Rinjani trekking trip online, but you can also visit Senaru and Sembalun on your own and arrange the mountain climbing yourself when you’re there. Not into trekking peaks? Me neither. But I still enjoyed my time in these northern areas of Lombok because of their incredible beauty.
The mighty Mount Rinjani can easily be viewed from Senaru, Lombok
3. It is near Bali.
Lombok and Bali are both located in the Lombok Strait. You can easily take a public ferry to Lombok’s Lembar Port from Bali’s Padang Bai Harbor. The journey time is around 4 to 5 hours. If this trip is too long for you, take a 30-minute flight from Bali’s Denpasar Airport to Lombok International Airport in Praya. Thus, if you are already going to Bali, taking a side trip to Lombok is not really hard to arrange.
4. Lombok Island is Even More Accessible Now
All commercial flights to Lombok now land at the new Lombok International Airport (Bandara Internasional Lombok). The airport is big enough to facilitate frequent flights not only from Indonesian cities like Surabaya, Makassar, and Jakarta but also from Kuala Lumpur and Singapore.
5. South Lombok is the most rapidly developing region of the Island
Lombok International Airport is located in South Lombok, so it’s expected that this part of the island will have more development in terms of roads and infrastructure over the years to come. South Lombok is also home to some of the most beautiful beaches on the island. The coastal town of Kuta is popular among visitors because of its proximity to the airport, beaches, and its decent tourist infrastructure.
If you are thinking of visiting Lombok, we definitely recommend that you stay in this area even for a couple of days.