Bucket List: Amazing Places to Visit in Lombok, Indonesia
Lombok, Indonesia, is this little-known island sitting just next to Bali that’s considered Indonesia’s hidden paradise. People looking for a vacation on an island paradise usually head straight to Bali, not knowing that Lombok, just right next door, is an excellent alternative if they want to experience an “unspoiled” Bali the way it was before its commercialization.
Lombok boasts stunning pristine white sand beaches, bright turquoise waters, and beautiful unspoiled natural attractions, all of which people can experience without huge groups of tourists. Lombok is also home to the majestic Mount Rinjani, a volcano mountain acting as Lombok’s signature landmark.
The island is also rich with culture from its local people, the Sasak. Lombok has it all; from its volcano, white sand beaches with waters rich with marine life, and unspoiled nature, travelers have many activities to do to discover this beautiful island paradise.
Hike Mount Rinjani
Mount Rinjani is the most famous landmark that Lombok offers and is one of the main reasons travelers set foot on the island. Experienced hikers, adventurers, and the strong-willed are welcomed to take the challenge of reaching this mighty volcano’s summit.
It’s best to do it with an experienced guide for safety and because it’ll take 3-4 days of hiking to reach the summit, hiking up to 3,700 meters. Then you’ll get to say that you’ve conquered Indonesia’s second-tallest volcano.
Senaru Walking Tour
Take a walking tour at Senaru to glimpse Lombok’s local life and beautiful nature. Senaru at North Western Lombok is this scenic area of the island and is home to several villages.
Most travelers who set foot at Senaru are onward bound to climb up Mount Rinjani. But Senaru offers fantastic sights from the surrounding nature, and the local people are some of the friendliest and welcoming in the world.
Hike Pergasingan Hill
For those looking for a less challenging hike in Lombok, Pergasingan Hill or Butik Pergasingan is the best destination for you.
The trek up the hill’s summit will take up to 1 hour, and the views up the 1,700-meter tall ridge are stunning.
Butik Pergasingan is located in Simbalun Village, and once you’ve reached the top, you’ll be rewarded with the stunning scenery of the surrounding fields and mountains below.
Bukit Selong Rice Field Viewpoint
Bukit Selong or Selong Hill is located in the Southern part of Lombok, and trekking up this hill to reach the aforementioned rice field viewpoint is relatively easy compared to the other two trekking entries on this list. It’ll only take 30 minutes to reach the top of the hill on foot and 10 minutes on a vehicle.
The most stunning sight of the surrounding rice fields is up top, with the Pergasingan Hill as the backdrop. I recommend visiting this attraction during sunrise and sunset.
Pusuk Pass Monkey Forest
To get to this next entry, you’ll have to head over to Senggigi at the western part of Lombok, then take a 30-40 motorbike ride to the inland Lombok foothills. From there, you’ll be driven upward to a mountain pass.
Pusok means peak, and the peak of that pass is where the Pusuk Pass Monkey Forest is located. Going there in and of itself is an adventure.
You’ll get to see beautiful sceneries below as you ascend the mountain road, and when you arrive, you’ll get to feed and interact with friendly wild monkeys.
Explore Kuta, Lombok
Kuta is the beautiful coastal town in the South of Lombok known for its pristine white sandy beaches that’s largely unspoiled by tourists’ overabundance. It’s best to explore this picturesque beach town as there are several ones you can visit throughout the southern Lombok coast.
Soak up the sun or dive in the crystal blue waters. It makes for a peaceful vacation without the constant noise of large crowds, and some beaches also have great consistent waves that are guaranteed to attract surfers.
Go Island Hopping at Sekotong Island Chain
Lombok is a huge island approximately the same size as Bali, but it’s also surrounded by smaller islands and island chains. You can rent a boat or join a tour to explore these small island paradises away from the crowds.
The Gili Island chains are more popular ones, but there are also the least widely known Sekotong Island chains.
It’s easy to explore Sekotong island chains in a day, and all of them are boast amazing white sandy beaches and clear turquoise blue waters.
Surf at Tanjung Aan Beach
Tanjung Aan Beach is probably one of Lombok’s most beautiful beaches, over a 2km stretch of coastline.
The sand on this white beach is some of the most powdery on the island, and there are loads of other activities on this beach. It’s ideal for beginner surfers as the waves here are calm and not too high.
You can get surfing lessons at this beach and during the afternoon is the best time for surfing at Tanjung Aan Beach when the waves are at their highest.
Visit Mataram’s Old Town
For the more historically inclined travelers, the Old Town of Mataram is just the place to visit in Lombok.
Mataram’s Old Town or locally known as Kota Tua (Old Town) Ampenan, preserved its historical buildings and sights that date back to when the Dutch still occupied Indonesia.
Today, it’s a popular spot for cultural and historical tourism because of its preserved structures that act as a time capsule back to the Dutch Colonial Era in Lombok. Explore this historic town to get a glimpse of the island’s past.
Day Trip to Gili Nanggu
Dubbed as the “Paradise Island’ Gili Naggu, located off the western coast of Lombok, is one of the prime destinations for day trips for those who want to experience an unspoiled tropical island destination.
The island is relatively small, and part of the bigger Gili Nanggu chain of islands, but this one special is its unexploited beauty with barely any crowds around.
It’s a popular destination for snorkeling as the coral reefs below its turquoise waters are some of the most healthy in Indonesia.
Surf at Mawi Beach
Mawi Beach is this stunning 150 meters of white fine sandy beach with great waves for surfers to ride.
The beach is about 30 minutes away from Kuta’s town, but reaching the coast would require a confident driver as the roads running the beach are just unpaved gravel. The trip will be well worth it, especially for surfers.
Mawi Beach has turquoise blue waters with almost meter-high waves, so it’s not for beginner surfers to try. Otherwise, the beach is a surfer’s paradise.
Visit Tangsi Pink Sand Beach
Tangsi Beach or Pink Beach is just one of the only 10 beaches with rare pink sand. Although it’s not the bright pink that’s often seen in pictures, the pink sand is only tinted pink and can be more noticeable depending on the time of day.
Millions of red coral fragments washing ashore give the sand its pink tint. But its unique colored sand isn’t its only attraction.
Tangsi beach also has clear turquoise waters along with its powdery pink-tinted sand.
Visit the Traditional Villages of Sasak
Lombok is not only about unspoiled beautiful sandy beaches. It’s also home to the Sasak people, who take up most of the island’s population.
Traditional Sasak villages have been primarily kept preserved in Lombok. Travelers can are welcome to visit their traditional villages with their unique structured houses with their walls made from interwoven bamboo weave, and the roof was made of dried grass.
You’ll get to experience the unique Sasak culture firsthand.
Explore Tiu Kelep and Benang Kelambu Waterfalls
Lombok is a humid tropical island that’s full of relatively undisturbed rainforests. Inside these lush rainforests are magnificent waterfalls that look like something you’ll see in a fantasy movie.
We highly recommend you brave the forested tracks and visit Tiu Kelep and Benang Kelambu Waterfalls, two of Lombok’s most stunning ones.
They’re relatively near settlements, so you don’t have to venture far in the forest. Tiu Kelep is near Senaru, and Benang Kelambu is an hour’s drive from Mataram.
Visit Aik Kalak Hot Springs
The last entry on this list is taking a dip at Aik Kalak Hot Springs at Mount Rinjani’s foot. The hike up the mountain can take up to 3-4 hours long with winding paths that are not physically unfit.
But reaching the Aik Kalak hot springs is well worth it. You can take a dip in the hot springs for a refreshing bath, and it’s believed to have powerful healing properties.
You can also witness locals perform rituals at the hot spring as it’s believed to be a sacred sight.
Our Top Hotel Picks for Lombok
Lombok Travel and Tour Packages
Searching for the best hotels and affordable flights? Check out our complete list of inexpensive hotels and resorts via Agoda, or you may also see available Airbnb properties on the island.