For decades tourists have only known Lombok as Bali’s sister island, outshined by the reputation of Bali. While there are many reasons that make Bali worth visiting, there are irresistible things that may make Lombok more interesting than Bali. A trip to Lombok is definitely worthwhile! No matter if for backpackers and adventure-seekers, luxury travelers, couples and honeymooners or families – there is something for everyone.
It is easily accessible from Bali
Whether you want to charter a private helicopter, stick to the seas in a speedboat or take a quick 30-minute flight, you’re not likely to be overwhelmed by the journey from Bali to Lombok. In fact, if you find yourself sailing across the Lombok Strait on a calm day, it’s quite a lovely trip.
Due to the abundance of tourists in Bali, a lot of traditional villages now have a very touristy feel and most of the mainstream destinations can get very busy and crowded. Tourists who prefer tranquil, intimate moments, less tourists and a more local experience should consider Lombok over Bali.
Crowded streets and traffic jams have been a huge turn-off for locals and tourists visiting Bali. Lombok on the other hand, has more space than it needs for tourists to roam around.
Lombok is particularly favored by honeymooners and those who would like an intimate, laidback holiday. Less crowded, fewer parties, and fewer mass events, enable tourists to enjoy their own company. Lombok also has a much smaller amount of hawkers who often distract tourists from the calm natural beauty in Bali.
Indonesia’s Second-Highest Volcano is in Lombok!
Matching Mount Rinjani’s impressive height is its various natural charms, featuring the majestic Segara Anak Lake at the summit. Bali also has many amazing hiking tracks and mountains, but Indonesia only has one second-highest volcano with all its beauty, and it’s perched in Lombok!
Interesting Sasak Culture
Even though Lombok and Bali are located relatively close to each other (considering Indonesia’s massive area), the cultures are very different. Lombok’s indigenous people are the Sasak ethnic tribe, who speak their own language and hold Islam as their dominant religion, while most Balinese are Hindus. Visiting Lombok offers tourists a glimpse of the distinctive culture that can’t be found elsewhere. In Indonesia almost every island has its own culture and even language. The inhabitants of Lombok are called Sasak and there is much to explore: Sasak wedding parades with traditional “Gendang Beleq” music, traditional dances, handicrafts and the typical Sasak architecture, as well as amazing festivals (e.g. the Bau Nyale Festival). Sooner or later, you will for sure encounter the huge wedding parades since they take place almost every week at the main road of each town. There are also many mosques to see – this is why Lombok is being called “the island of 1000 mosques” In the west of the island you can also see some small Balinese temples. Well, it’s not that kind of culture highlight like for example Ubud on Bali, but if you want to see some culture on Lombok too, you certainly won’t get disappointed.
It’s covered in stunning mosques
Again highlighting its differences to Bali, Lombok is named ‘The Land of A Thousand Mosques,’ housing many of Indonesia’s 600,000 structures for Islamic worship. Many of them have incredible architecture and are symbolic of the island’s cultural past.
There are more than enough gorgeous beaches in Lombok. And the best thing is that many of Lombok’s beaches have very few tourists or locals. There are many lonely, secluded bays where you can have the beach almost to yourself. Even the well-known beaches in Lombok are not that busy at all. The little island of Gili Trawangan is the exception because of its extreme popularity with tourists.