10 Most Popular Tourist Attractions in Lombok

Lombok Island Located just east of Bali, Lombok in many ways lives up to or exceeds the promotional term, “an unspoiled Bali”. With beautiful beaches, enchanting waterfalls, the large, looming volcano of Mount Rinjani combined with relatively few tourists, Lombok is indeed the paradisaical tropical island that many people still mistakenly imagine Bali to be know.

Lombok and Bali are separated by the Lombok Strait. It is also part of the bio-geographical boundary between the fauna of Indo-Malaysia and the distinctly different fauna of Australasia. The boundary is known as the Wallacean Line, after Alfred Russell Wallace who first remarked upon the striking difference between animals of Indo-Malaysia and those of Australasia and how abrupt the boundary was between the two biomes.

Calling Lombok paradise does not mean it is all things for all people. With a few exceptions, the natural landscape and the traditional way of life have remained unchanged for hundreds of years. Virtually all small to medium size businesses are run by local families. Many of these businesses sell a wide variety of merchandise, where villagers can find food, hardware, and toys all in a single small store. While it is possible to find five-star hotels run by global corporations this is the exception not the rule. The ubiquitous global fast food franchises are restricted to two outlets in the precincts of Mataram Mall in the main City of Lombok and are well sign-posted.

In the Indigenous language of the Sasak people of Lombok the word lombok “”(luum-book) which literally translates into Bahasa Indonesian as as lurus (Enstraight ahead).
A common misunderstanding is that the name of the island Lombok is derived from the Bahasa Indonesian meaning of lombok which is chilli or (cabe in Bahasa Indonesian) as is thought by many visitors and some Indonesians from other parts of the archipelago. More : Lombok Indonesia.

THE MOST POPULAR TOURIST DESTINATION IN LOMBOK ISLAND

The dominant Sasak culture in Lombok and the very restrained and quiet nature of its people may help explain why Lombok is less popular in terms of shopping, cuisine, and nightlife than Bali. Lombok is however becoming increasingly popular with tourists and honeymooners who want to relax in an inexpensive, tropical, un-crowded atmosphere, with many natural treasures and majestic scenery. Nothing happens quickly in Lombok and visitors who are stressed from their daily lives find Lombok a delightful place to unwind.

The anticipated tourism boom has been halted on several occasions. In 2000, mobs of the ethnic Sasak people, ostensibly provoked by fundamentalist Muslim agitators, diverted from a trip to Maluku, looted and burned churches as well as homes and businesses owned by Hindus and ethnic Chinese. These actions were actively resisted by many of the Sasak people and brought on a swift response from the authorities to protect the tourism precincts of the island. The bombing of nightclubs in Bali in 2002 and the further explosions in 2005 further exacerbated the fears held by foreign tourists. For many years the embassies of several countries have issued stern travel advisory warnings against travel to Indonesia. The ensuing years have remained very peaceful in Lombok. In the years 2010-2011 tourists appear to have regained some confidence that travel to the island is safe. 

The fears and apprehension amongst many international tourists concerning travel to Lombok appear to be entirely unsupported. Aside from minor and very isolated incidents of petty theft and the normal dangers of travelling on the roads in Indonesia the island remains a quiet, peaceful and safe destination for visitors. Lombok is a relaxing place, the warm tropical sun can normally slowly melt a sense of urgency and a hurried pace off most visitors

A new international airport the Bandar Udara Internasional Lombok and associated infrastructure is currently being built in central southern Lombok. The new airport is expected to be in operation sometime in 2011.

peta tempat wisata di lombok
Peta Pulau Lombok (c) google.com

1. THREE GILI ISLAND (GILI TRAWANGAN, MENO & AIR)

Gili Trawangan is one of the most popular Gili or islands in Lombok. Not only is the island served stunning beach and great nature, but also nightlife. From early in the morning to later afternoon, we can enjoy various outdoor activities and tan your skin on the beach and at night, we can join some beach parties.

Lombok island is a small island in Indonesia, but the island itself is surrounded by other smaller islands called Gili, and Gili Trawangan is the favorite one. Some other Gili islands lombok are Gili Meno and Gili Air. Most of the tourists that visit Gili Trawangan are international tourists, so there are so many great attractions that are adjusted by international tourists’ needs. Gili Trawangan is also the smallest island in the world that has an Ireland bar. The island is as small as 3 km stretching from north to south and 2 km from west to east. No fuel-powered vehicles are allowed in the area, so we can take cidomo (traditional carriage in Lombok island) and bike.

The south east side of Gili Trawangan is having magnificent Lombok beach with soft white sand. On the other side, the west side of this island is more tranquil. It is so perfect for tanning or even yoga because the area is very silent and peaceful. The beach in west side is also white, but is a little bit rougher when compared to the sand on east side because it is mixes with coral fragments.

Various activities can be done on the beaches and if we want to explore this Gili islands lombok, we are recommended to rent a bike. It only takes an hour to explore all parts of Gili Trawangan. If we love nightlife, then there are so many cafes in Gili Trawangan. Beach party is one thing that we should not miss. Unlike the beach party or event in Kuta, Bali that holds the events all together, in Gili Trawangan, there is a scheduling for all events, so we won’t miss all great events.

Gili Trawangan beach Lombok Indonesia
Gili Trawangan beach (c) www.paketliburanlombok.com

2. RINJANI MOUNTAIN

Lombok is home to many natural attractions, including the world famous volcano, Gunung Rinjani, located on the north of the island. Visitors from all around the world come to lombok every year to Climb Gunung Rinjani, either to its awe-inspiring crater lake or to the demanding summit with panoramic views across the water to Gunung Agung, Bali’s famous sister volcano. “Gunung” is Bahasa Indonesia for mountain.

Historical and culturally, Gunung Rinjani has important significance to both Sasak and Baliness, Muslim and Hindu alike, and is considered a “home of the gods”. Pilgrimages are made to the mountain, offerings placed, and many people visit the volcano to pray and bathe in the pools and hot springs, which are said to have healing powers. Each year, around the full moon in October or November, a sacred pilgrimage called “pekelem” takes place, when gold and other gifts are thrown into the lake near the summit as offerings to the gods.

Nearby Senaru, the gateway to the Rinjani National Park, is a pretty village set in lovely scenery with fantastic views of the volcanic mountain range. The Rinjani National Park is a nature reserve of 41 330 hectares surrounding the volcano that provides many opportunities for eco-tourism. The whole area is a picturesque haven, featuring magnificent waterfalls, lush and accessible jungle trekking, traditional village, and plantations of tobacco and cashew nuts, grown alongside verdant rice terraces. Senaru is the usual starting point for climbing Lombok’s famous volcano, Gunung Rinjani.

Other options, for a slightly shorter route to the summit, are Sembalun Lawang and Sembalun Bumbung to the northeast.

Rinjani soars 3726m above sea level and is the second highest volcano in Indonesia, attracting thousand of trekkers and climbers annually. The huge caldera near the top is around 4 kms wide and is almost filled by a beautiful crescent-shaped lake, Danau Segara Anak (Child of the Sea). The lake is around 230m deep and contains plentiful fish, as well as being home to birds and other wildlife. A smaller volcanic cone, Gunung Baru Jari, was formed a couple of hundred years ago and just from the crater’s interior at the edge of the lake. It’s been estimated that the force needed to create the new cone and the lake would have been equal to around 300 hiroshima-type atomic bombs.
There are a springs located around the volcano, most importantly “Aik Kalak” on the northeast of the crater, where the volcanically heated waters are said to cure illnesses, particularly skin diseases.

In 2004 the Rinjani Trek won the world Legacy Award for Destination Stewardship and the volcano is recognized internationally as an important eco-tourism destination. The Rinjani Trek, funded by the New Zealand government, has set up a series of programs that involve the local communities and guides, for climbing the volcano and for trekking in the National Park-ensuring better management and safety for trekkers. However, it is always prudent to use an authorized guide, deal with a reputable trekking business and carry as few valuables as possible with you.

There are a variety of different options for climbing Gunung Rinjani, two days one night treks are the shortest available , taking visitors to the crater rim, to view the wide crater and the emerald green lake within. However, the most popular is the three days two nights treks which allows trekkers to climb to the very summit of the volcano, with magnificent views from the highest point on Lombok – taking in the vista of the surrounding mountain range, the lush green landscape below, and the ocean to the west studded with Gili islands and Bali floating in the distance.

The best time to climb Gunung Rinajni is in the dry season from around April to October ,or before the rains start. The sunny days and cooler temperatures make this time of the year the most comfortable for climbing, and enable the clearest views of the stunning scenery both on and around the mountain. It is cold on the mountain at night, so make sure you take warm clothing. Gunung Rinjani National Park in the East and North Side of Lombok Island The park covers an area of 41,330 ha on the northern part of Lombok and locates the three administrative district of West, East and Central Lombok. The area covers 12,357.67 ha in the west, 22,152.88 ha in the east and 6,819.45 ha in central Lombok. Rinjani dominates the National Park of Lombok, an island east of Bali on the Indonesian archipelago. At 3726m it is the second highest volcano in Indonesia, part of the infamous ring of fire that encircles the basin of the Pacific. Within the crater is the spectacular Segara Anak lake and the still – active volcano Gunung Baru (2,363m).

It is surrounded by further 66,000 ha of Protection Forest also covers the three administrative districts. The park ecosystem is in the transitional zone between Asia and Australia (Walaceae zone). Average rainfall is about 3,000mm annually.

Gunung Rinjani is rich in variety of flora and fauna and vegetation types. There are 114 families and more than 500 several of floras found and about 50 species of plant that can be used for traditional medicine. While fauna in Gunung Rinjani is about 12 mammal and reptile species, more than 50 birds species and more 50 several of butterflies which some are protected and has limited area of spread. On the South Western side of mountain is the most eastern extent of primary rainforest in Nusa Tenggara. This gives way to monsoon forest and drier climate in the east, and savannah in the north east. Notable flora includes the everlasting edelweiss flower (Anaphalis viscida), tiger orchid (Vanda sp) alang-alang grass (Imperata cylindrical), cemara tress (Casuarina trifolia and Casuarina ocidentale).

Gunung Rinjani, one of the over 50 National Parks through out Indonesia and 21 become National Park model included Gunung Rinjani National Park, it was established in 1997. It is valued and protected for its spiritual as well natural values, and is worshipped by thousands of Balinese as well as Sasak pilgrims. Hot springs near the crater lake are sought after for their healing powers.

Over 38 villages spread out in 12 sub-districts surround Rinjani and there are many routes up to the mountain, but the main access is from Sembalun Lawang to the East. The challenging three-day Rinjani Trek route from Senaru to crater rim (Pelawangan), down to the stunning crater lake then on to Sembalun Lawang, is considered one of the best treks in South East Asia. Those heading for the summit usually prefer to start in Sembalun Lawang.

The village of Senaru is the main gateway to Mt. Rinjani National Park, the most popular start point for the three day Rinjani Trek up Indonesia’s second highest volcanic peak (3,762 m). For the people of Lombok, Sasak and Balinese alike, the volcano is revered as a sacred place and the abode of Gods. Within the spectacular crater, the Segara Anak Lake is destination of many pilgrims who place offerings in nearby hot spring.

A model for ecotourism in Indonesia, the community-based activities are focused on the Rinjani Trek Centre in Senaru and Rinjani Information Centre in Sembalun Lawang, the most popular starting points for the tough trek. Developed with New Zealand Government assistance since 1999, the Rinjani Trek Centre and Rinjani Information Centre embody under one roof (satu atap) the unique partnership of the National Park, tourism industry and local communities that has been forged to manage and protect the Rinjani mountain environment. The programme has been successful and in 2004, the Rinjani Trek won the 2004 Destination Stewardship Award for “the tourism destination that best demonstrates effective protection its natural and cultural environment.”
pendakian Taman nasional gunung rinjani lombok
Taman Nasional Gunung Rinjani Lombok (c) theeverydaymagic.com

3. KUTA LOMBOK BEACH

The best-known place on the south coast is Lombok's Kuta Beach (Sometime spelt Kute Beach) a magnificent stretch of white sand and blue sea with rugged hills rising around it, famous for its surfing spots. Kuta Beach Lombok attract visitors for its beautiful virgin beaches and surfing spots. Surfers from all over the world find Kuta Lombok as a surfer paradise.

South coast of Lombok is famous for the high waves and Kuta Lombok is a good base for the surfers. Many visitors come back year after year to surf the famous Kuta waves. Whether you are an experienced surfer or a beginner you will find the surf spot for you. Surf boards & boogie boards are available to rent or bring your own.

You will need transport to the waves from Kuta, most guests choose to rent motorcycles which come with a special surf rack attached.

The new International Airport is now being developed and big plans to develop a whole stretch of the superb south coast with luxury hotels. After many years of speculation there are signs something is happening, with the road from Praya completely remade and big new road running to as yet undeveloped beaches.

Meanwhile, Kuta and South Lombok is now getting famous and raise visitor's curiosity.
Pantai Kuta Lombok
Pantai Kuta Lombok (c) google.com

4. SELONG BELANAK BEACH

When you are talking about beach, then Lombok is serving the same beauty as Bali. Many tourists find Lombok more interesting because each of the beaches that can be found in Lombok tourism is having its own character and uniqueness. One of them is Selong Belanak Beach, it is quite a beautiful long beach with white sand.

Selong Belanak Beach can be said as one of the most prestigious beaches on Lombok tourism, especially when we are talking about the beauty and cleanliness of the beach. One of the best things about this beach is the shape of the shore that looks like a crescent. The beach is having a curvy shape with hills on each point. This beach is the part of Selong Belanak Bay that faces Indian Ocean. The length of the coastline is not less than 1 km. About a quarter part of the south side of the beach is used by local people as village. There are about 40 families who work as fishermen there. Of course, the area is not recommended for swimming because there are so many fishing boats rest there. If you want to do water sport, it is recommended to do the activities from the central to the north side of the beach. The area is free from local people’s activities. Local and international tourists are able to use the area for beach and water activities. Selong Belanak Beach has the glittering soft white sand and sloping contour. The wave is not so high and the water is perfectly clean.

With such beach condition, you are able to do various activities. You can just relax on the white sand, exploring the beach, sunbathing, swimming and many others. You can also go fishing by renting a small fishing boat from the local fishermen or if you are interested in the local people’s life, you can simply observe they way they live like how the children taking up water for the every day need, fishermen fixing their boats, the fishermen’s wives making sate from their husbands’ catch and many others.

Keindahan pantai Selong Belanak Lombok Tengah
Pantai Selong Belanak Lombok (c) mutiara-travel.com

5. SENGGIGI BEACH

Senggigi is the main tourist center in Lombok and the most developed tourist area. The resort area about 10 Kilometers north of Ampenan, and about 20 minutes drive from the Lombok international Airport. Now here near as large or as busy as its Bali conterparts, Senggigi is a great base for exploring the rest of the island. Senggigi Beach - Senggigi, the renowned and the oldest resort area of Lombok and is the most sought after destination in Lombok. This beach is dotted with bars, restaurants that offer continental as well as local cuisine, cafes, souvenir shops from where you can pick up clothes/handicrafts, paintings and other sorts of gift items. The marine life is well protected by the reef. At this beach you can indulge yourself with activities, such as swimming, surfing, and snorkeling. Make a trip to this beach to have a gala time with your friends or family or spouse. The pace is very laid back, with activities centered around the beaches and day trips to places of interest, which are all with in few hours drive from the town.

At night dine in the many restaurants catering to all tastest and budgets, listen the live music at the cafes or Bars or dance the night away at the night clubs.

Senggigi is the large bay that forms the center of Senggigi, with the main road running parrarel to the beach, and large resorts occupying the space between. 

The beach provides picturesque views of Bali's Agung Mountain to the west and stunning sunsets with the volacano silhouetted on the horizon.

The main road in Senggigi is lined with small shops, Restaurants, Bars, Travel agencies and Night Clubs. There are couple of supermarkets, numerous ATM's and Money Changers, Post office and all as ussual tourist facilities. Senggigi is a relaxing place to stay, with a good range of luxury hotels and resorts, as well as mid range and budget accommodations.
Wisata Pantai Senggigi di Lombok barat
Pesisir Pantai Senggigi (c) travellia.net

6. TANJUNG BLOAM BEACH

Have you read our post about Tanjung Ringgit? this Well, the beach we’re going to share about on this post is near to Tanjung Ringgit beach, named Tanjung Bloam.Some people told us that Tanjung Bloam is a perfect beach for the surfers because of its challenging wave. Other than swimming or surfing, you can choose to do fishing.

anjung Bloam is also located in East Lombok, Jerowaru. To get there we we just have to go straight ahead from Tanjung Ringgit. It is a natural hidden paradise beach, thus we better call it exotic beach.
Rute wisata ke Pantai Tanjung Bloam Lombok Timur
Pantai Tanjung Bloam Lombok Timur (c) google.com

7. GILI NANGGU THE PRIVATE ISLAND

The island of 12,5 Ha area in Western Lombok is managed with Forest/Virgin Island concepts of unexploited nature. The serenity and beauty of this island makes Gili Nanggu a routine destination for many foreign tourists. They call Gili Nanggu: “The Paradise Island”

On the white sandy beach with calm wave, you are guaranteed privacy- no beach traders or unwelcome visitors. This island is private and only occupied by the management and staff of the resort. The enchanting sea casts a strong spell on many visitors. It’s pristine beauty is a magnet to come and play at the beach everyday. Only by going a few meters down to the shallow seabed, crystal clear waters will reveal multi-colored tame marine fishes. And a wide variety of other sea animals can also be seen. Sing-song twitter of birds will accompany you to embrace the sunrise; and natural silence during sunset- creating a romantic atmosphere, making Gili Nanggu a suitable place for couples to enjoy their honeymoon. Enjoy the birds, the view and the beach of Gili Nanggu with someone dear to your heart.
Gili Nanggu Private Island Lombok
Gili Nanggu (c) lombokindonesia.asia

8. TANJUNG AAN BEACH

Tanjung Aan beach Located to the south coast of Lombok Kuta Beach. Tanjung Aan, a paradise for beach lovers is a very nice area near Kuta Beach. Tanjung Aan beach has sand that resembles pepper. This beach provides an ample opportunity to get together and have fun with your friends or beloved family.

Tanjung Aan bay stretches along a mile and a giant wave breaking on the beach. Turquoise sea water, stir a desire to unlock the hidden secrets of this beach.

Tanjung A’an, (about 7 km east of Kuta Beach). Tanjung A’an comprises of two white sand bays, A’an to the west and Pedau to the east, separated by a rocky outcrop. Smooth turquoise waters offer safe swimming and snorkeling. There can be a strong current on the eastern bay at times. There are some drink and snack stalls at the center of the beach and at the western end two restaurants with tables and sunbeds on the sand. * Mawun, (about 8km west of Kuta Beach). Mawun beach is a secluded half-moon bay with crystal clear water and pristine sand. There’s one big tree where people congregate in the shade. An awesome place for relaxing, safe swimming and surfing. The only facilities are a few drinks stalls.
keindahan Pantai Tanjung Aan Lombok
Pantai Tanjung Aan (c) paketliburanlombok.com

9. SADE SASAK TRADITIONAL VILLAGE

The Sasak are the indigenous people of the island of Lombok. Like many ethnic groups in Indonesia, they belong to the Austronesians who migrated from mainland Asia some 5,000 years BC to populate South East Asia all the way to the South Pacific Islands. Today 85% of the Lombok population is Sasak. Although Bali has greatly influenced Lombok, yet unlike in Hindu Bali, most Sasak embrace Islam. 

A distinct feature of religion here is what is known as Wektu Telu, a syncretic belief of Islam intertwined with elements of Hinduism, Buddhism, and ancient traditional beliefs, unique to Lombok. Many Sasak have, nonetheless, also come to embrace the Wektu Lima, or the mainstream Islamic obligatory five time prayers in a day.

There is also a small minority whose faith is called Bodha, a syncretic belief of animism and Buddhism. Nonetheless, despite differences in religious beliefs, the Sasak live in harmony among themselves.

The most ancient Sasak village is the village of Bayan, near the foot of Mt. Rinjani, which is the stronghold of the Wektu Telu, but most frequented by visitors are the villages of Sade and Rembitan, close to Mataram. Here villagers disregard their modernising surroundings and continue to live in the old tradition.

Houses in Sade are built in rows. But most prominent and typical to Lombok is the rice barn or “lumbung”, which stands raised on four wooden piles with a bonnet-shaped roof made of alang-alang or elephant grass. Rice is stored through a raised window. The beruga or the ceremonial hall stands on six pillars, its roof is also covered with elephant grass, providing coolness in hot weather and warmth during cooler nights.

Houses or bale are divided into 3 sections, the kitchen, sleeping quarters and the living room.

Dance and Drama on Lombok are intricately tied to cultural identity. Although the Sasak are deeply influenced by Bali and Java, yet the blend of cultures remain uniquely Lombok’s.

Among the dances performed during ceremonies, the kendang belek is most popular, where two musicians play on single large drums while taking dramatic poses confronting each other. Another is the batek baris, displaying a military procession usually performed in the town of Lingsar, wearing old Dutch army constumes and carrying wooden rifles.
Rumah adat Kampung Sade, rumah Tradisional suku Sasak
Rumah Tradisional Suku Sasak Sade (c) paketliburalombok.com

10. DESERT POINT BANGKO-BANGKO

Lombok is also known for its best secret surf point, The Desert Point. Still very isolated but for most Australian surfers they named it as "Desert Point", located in South West cost of Lombok. Desert Point also known as Bangko bangko beach.

A long walled and incredibly hollow left hander that on its day can break up to 300 meters, growing in size from takeoff to end. Best between 3-8 ft. Surfing in Lombok is much less hassle than in Kuta Beach Bali.

Located on the South West Coast of Lombok, 3 hours drive from Kuta. On its day Desert Point is regarded as one of the best waves on the planet. Barrels of 20 seconds have been filmed there and 10 second tubes are common. Full or new moon low tides, a south east wind and a big swell are needed, most consistent from May to October. It can go weeks without waves, but just one Desert Point bomb will make the wait worth it. Experienced surfer only. Bring your booties an a good tube riding board.
Pantai Desert Point Bangko Bangko
Pantai Bangko Bangko di Sekotong (c) deddydsfotografie.blogspot.com

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