The highlights of Lombok are the unspoilt villages in the centre of the island, the local handicrafts, virgin white sands beach like the Gili Islands, Kuta and South Lombok, new developed resorts in area of Sekotong and South west Lombok, the superb trekking to Gunung Rinjani, and the more remote parts of the coast. You'll need at least 6 days to appreciate Lombok, plus another day or two if you travel by slow ferry from Padang Bay (Bali).
For those who coming by ferry and plan to go for trekking to Mt Rinjani Lombok, spend your first night at Mataram or Senggigi and make an early start to Senaru or Sembalun the next day, allow two or three or more days for trekking and then back to the beaches for relaxing; Senggigi or Gili Islands.
You can spend two days or more on the gili islands depends on your taste for island life. You can explore Southern beach of Lombok in one full day tour.
Planning When To Go
The dry season is better to travel to remote areas, particularly from June to October. The wet season in Lombok is a little hotter and considerably more humid, but quite OK for traveling; in some ways it's more pleasant than dry, dusty conditions, and the landscape is greener and more attractive.
The newest colourful map of Lombok which includes a good street map of Mataram, Gili islands, senggigi and trekking trails published by Lombok Sumbawa Promo available at Lombok Network Office; Jl. Intermilan 85-87 Puri Meninting tel: +62 370 662 8139, or +62 370 634 162.
Visas & Documents
Visa requirements are the same as for Bali. There's an immigration office in Jalan Udayana Mataram, near the airport, but no consular service at all. You can obtain visa on arrival at Mataram Airport if you coming direct from Singapore by Silk Air. Make sure your passport validity still OK for at least six months.
People are pretty reserved on Lombok and women are generally treated with respect. The sort of harassment which western women often experience in Muslim countries is very unusual here, though totally not unheard of. Respectful dressing is a good idea, beachware should be reserved for the beach and basically the less skin you expose the better. Attitude can be as important as what you wear.
Travel With Children
Lombok is generally quieter than Bali and has much less dangerous traffic. People are fond of kids, though perhaps more reserved about it than Balinese. Major stars hotels has facilities for kids play ground or even interconnecting rooms designed specially for family of 2 adults + two or more kids.
Most beaches are protected by coral reefs and are quite safe for swimming or snorkeling, but there are strong currents at places around Gili Islands and no life guards anywhere.
Public Holidays & Special Events
All other religions in Lombok also have their own holidays and festivals. Other National Holidays are also observed; New Years Day, Independent Day (17 Agustus), Christmas Day, Waisak, Galungan, Kuningan, Chinese New Year, etc.
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