Often overshadowed by Bali, Lombok brings its natural wonders, untouched scenery and unparalleled waves for travellers to experience. Beyond the popular tourist trails, we've compiled ten amazing things to do in Lombok that will shake up your bucket list and create a trip to remember.
1. Bukit Selong Rice Fields Viewpoint
The perspective from the Bukit Selong Rice Fields Viewpoint is made up of lush farms lined up side by side like a patchwork quilt. Here you'll also find a wooden star platform that has been created especially for photos. Arrive before sunrise to make the most of the view, and watch the colours reflect from the sky onto the crops, transforming the landscape.
2. Paragliding from Prabu Hill
Experience the view from above and go paragliding off Prabu Hill. Feel the sensation of the wind lift you up, and once you're floating away, you'll soon realise that paragliding is actually a relaxing activity. Sitting in a harness, you will be attached to a professional guide doing the hard work for you. Float up and down and enjoy the view of the glistening water and elaborate patterns of the coral below.
3. Explore the lesser-known islands
Surrounding Lombok are many beautiful, remote islands made up of the white sandy beaches and intricate coral life. Many boat tours will depart from Lombok to take you to Gili Nanggu, Sudak and Kedis. These islands bring an insight towards what the Gili Islands were initially like, before tourism. The untouched sand and crystal water makes it the perfect place to relax, with not many people in sight. Gili Kedis is merely the size of a tennis court and brings a real taste of solitude.
3. Sendang Gile and Tiu Kelep Waterfall
After you have experienced the sunrise from Bukit Selong rice fields, continue on the trail to Sendang Gile and Tiu Kelep Waterfalls. Both waterfalls follow the same track and are a beautiful way to spend the day.
4. Visit Lombok Handicraft Centre
The choice of shops at the Handicraft Centre will leave you exploring some of Lombok's most exquisite crafts, textiles and ceramics. Wander through for a selection of souvenirs to take home, or collectors items to keep forever. To reach the market, look out for the 'Handy Craft' sign arched over the narrow road.
5. Shop with the locals at Pasar Mandalika
Set to the side of the Mandalika Bus Terminal, the Pasar Mandalika market is home to a delicious array of spices, sugars, fruit and vegetables, fish and handicrafts. It caters mostly to locals, and the prices are the cheapest you'll find in Lombok.
6. Set up camp on Pergasingan Hill
Arrange a tour to set up camp on Pergasingan Hill. It is just a short hike up the hill and depending on the tour you take, porters will bring your tent, food, water and equipment. You will be required to carry your own day bag. There are luxury camping options, and you'll finish the night with a bonfire; a cosy way to end the day.
7. Seger Beach
Close by to the famous Kuta Beach, is Seger Beach; a much quieter alternative and the perfect place to relax and drink coconuts all day. From the beach, you will also have access to a viewpoint looking over the water too.
8. Pasar Cakranegara
A modern take on a traditional style market, Pasar Cakrangara is in Mataram and brings a mix of stalls to enjoy. Wander through the traditional market and after, stop for a bite to eat at the food market there too.
9. Diving and snorkelling
Many parts of Lombok bring gentle currents making it perfect for snorkelling and exploring the excellent visibility in the water. The variety of tropical fish and turtles floating about make Lombok a great diving destination. Around Kuta Beach also presents a choice of snorkelling options, as well as the Gili Islands.
10. Get up close with the underwater sculptures
Surrounding the coast of the Gili Islands are incredible life-size figures; initially placed underwater to grow an artificial reef on. Designed by Jason deCaires Taylor, these sculptures have caused quite the spectacle and are great to snorkel past to experience up close.