8 must-do things to do in Lombok

Visit Lombok: What are the best things to see and do in this jewel of the Indonesian archipelago?

Lombok (meaning « chilli pepper » in Javanese) is a volcanic island in Indonesia, located in the Bali Sea in the Lesser Sunda Islands, between the islands of Bali and Sumbawa. Recognized by Unesco as a biosphere reserve, the island is famous for its exceptional fauna and lush flora. Renowned for its surf spots, crystal-clear waters and coral reefs, it has attracted a clientele with a taste for the exotic and the authentic: for the time being, it is far less overrun by tourist crowds than its sister island Bali, and will win you over with its typically Indonesian character.

Wondering what to do in Lombok during your stay? Here are the 8 must-sees to make the most of this volcanic island’s treasures!

1. Pura Batu Bolong

This Hindu temple is located in the midst of an idyllic setting: overlooking the rocky coastline, you can come and admire the splendid sunset over the seafront while enjoying the peaceful atmosphere and spirituality emanating from the place. Its many pagodas and statues impose silence and contribute to the tranquillity of the place. A must for anyone wishing to visit Lombok and get away from the frenetic atmosphere of its beach bars!

2. Senggigi beach

If you don’t yet know what to do in Lombok, Senggigi is the dream seaside resort: coconut palms, fine sandy beaches, ideal for idleness and relaxation! Senggigi beach is a 13 km stretch of crystal-clear turquoise water: a benchmark known throughout Asia. The large size of the beach gives you the chance to get away from it all and enjoy a few hours of peace and quiet, between sky and sand.

3. Kuta Lombok

Kuta Lombok is an internationally renowned surf spot, and many people come to try their luck in the heart of this exotic landscape. But where there’s surfing, there’s nightlife: while it’s easy to have a party in Kuta, it’s impossible to have a relaxing family vacation here, as the various nightlife establishments clearly cater to the young, party-going public visiting Lombok.

4. Belongas Bay

Plongée à Belongas Bay, Lombok

Photo credit: Flickr – Sitoo

What to do in Lombok if you’re a diving fan? Go to Belongas Bay, a small cove where numerous dive centers make it possible to twirl among a rich fauna and colors galore! Hammerhead sharks may be encountered by the more adventurous, but rest assured: they present no danger! Easily accessible by car or scooter, it would be a shame to visit Lombok without enjoying this exceptional activity.

5. Benang Kelambu

Cascades Benang Kelambu, Lomobok

Photo credit: Flickr – Sitoo

Inland, in the midst of Mahogany (a mahogany forest), a renowned trekking trail winds its way to the 30 m waterfalls of Benang Kelambu. The icing on the cake: you can bathe under the water, filtered by Lombok’s volcanic rock! A soothing spot offering magnificent views over the island’s lush landscapes.

Just 1 km away, the Benag Setokol waterfalls collapse into a 20 m-high cavity, the starting point of a river flowing down into a steep valley… where you can cool off and enjoy braised suckling pig, a local speciality!

6. Pura Lingsar

Temple de Pura Lingsar, Lombok

Photo credit: Flickr – Hansel and Regrettal

If you still don’t know what to do in Lombok, we recommend this jewel, built in 1714 by the Hindus of Bali, the most important religious site on the island: Pura Lingsar is the perfect manifestation of the religious syncretism reigning in the Indonesian archipelago, the fruit of the age-old blend of different religions. The temple is a symbol of the religious syncretism typical of the Indonesian archipelago, known as a model of tolerance, and one of the island’s must-see monuments!

7. The Gili Islands

Îles Gili, Lombok

Photo credit: Flickr – Christopher Harriot

The Gili Islands are Lombok’s three pearls, three heavenly islets where you can find all the activities you’d expect to find on these little pieces of paradise: snorkeling among the coral reefs, workshops to discover the lush jungle, or simply… lazing on the white sandy beaches, sipping an iced coconut juice or mixed fruit cocktail.

8. Mount Rinjani

Mont Rinjani, Lombok

Photo credit: Flickr – Tim Stelzer

To climb Mount Rinjani is to embark on a total adventure: it’s reserved for the well-informed and the physically fit, because it’s long – no matter which trail you choose – and strenuous – the hundreds of meters of ascent go on and on. What’s more, the paths we take plunge into a wild and luxuriant jungle, damp and sometimes oppressively dense! All in all, it’s a thrill to behold, but one that will leave you with lasting memories once you’ve reached the summit: well-deserved considering the effort involved, the view is quite simply one of the most beautiful in the Indonesian archipelago.

The little extra? You can take a dip in the crescent-moon-shaped lake that was created in the volcano’s crater!

How to get to Lombok

Lombok has its own international airport, opened in 2011, which provides the island with regular connections to all of Asia. Air travel is still the best way to get to the island, and our partner Ulysse will help you get there by finding you a flight at the best price.

There are also ferries on the west coast linking Lombok with the surrounding islands (although please note that motor vehicles are not allowed on the Gili Islands), and using this means of transport is ideal for those looking for something to do in Lombok while enjoying a nice boat trip. For example, if you’re staying in Bali, you can visit Lombok on a speedboat (one every 30 minutes) departing from the port of Serangan.

For full information on the various routes, please visit the DirectFerries website.

And because wandering around the different parts of the island is definitely one of the best things to do in Lombok, many car and scooter rental agencies (we particularly recommend it) allow you to use a vehicle to wander around freely.

Where to stay in Lombok?

On the island of Lombok, you’ll find several types of accommodation to choose from, according to your desires and your budget. With several hundred hotels on the island, this is obviously the easiest and most flexible solution for the occasional traveler looking to visit Lombok; you’ll find your ideal establishment by consulting the offers on this hotel comparator.

Young backpackers will appreciate the large number ofguest houses in Mataram and Senggigi, where they can enjoy surfing without breaking the budget! Finally, for the more adventurous, it’s possible to camp on Lombok during a trekking tour, for example, provided you check with a local guide to avoid potentially dangerous areas.

Now you know exactly what to do in Lombok and the best activities to enjoy on the island. But which ones will you be tempted by?

Map of hotels and accommodation – Mataram, Indonesia