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 My Lombok (and Bali :-)) travel report

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Lombok Virgin

Number of posts : 3
Location : Singapore
Registration date : 2011-01-13

PostSubject: My Lombok (and Bali :-)) travel report   Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:01 pm

Hello guys,

I just got back from my whirlwind holiday to Lombok and Bali. I got a lot of useful tips from the site and I would just like to share my experience and hopefully future travellers may find it useful as well.

My leave was only from 3rd to 8th February so I have to pack as much actions and visit as much places as I can in that short time. Although, I won't recommend this to anyone. Next time, spend a minimum of 2 or 3 days in each place. My holiday felt like a business meeting rather than a relaxing holiday but here goes:

3rd Feb- Arrived from Singapore via SilkAir (they only have 3 flights per week) at around 6.30pm. You can walk the short distance out of the airport to hail a metered taxi instead of the pre-paid ones inside the airport. Stayed the night in Santai Inn. I booked the room online around 3 days before. They serve communal dinner so this will be good chance to mingle with other guests. Inform Pearl also beforehand if you want them to save some dinner for you.

4th Feb- Santai Inn is lovely. It has a nice view of Mt Agung (If I am not mistaken) by its beachfront. After breakfast, I negotiated with a Bemo driver to take me to Pura Batu Bolong (A temple by the beach, nice but not impressive) then to Bangsal.
In Bangsal, cidomo drivers will try to tell you that it is going to be a long walk to the ticket office, which is by the beach. It is around 600 m from the main road to the ticket office so if you don't mind walking, just WALK.
Proceed directly to the official ticket office and do not mind the locals who will try to convince you that there are no more boats and you should take a charter boat. Public boat to Gili A and M is Rp8000 while to Gili T is Rp10,000. After 12nn, there will be no more public boats to Gili A. I took the boat to Gili T, stayed there till 4pm and took the boat to Gili A. Cost is Rp23,000.
I wanted to go to Kuta, Lombok the next day and I decided to take the shuttle for convenience. There are a lot of ticket offices which offer shuttle boats and buses to Kuta and anywhere else in Lombok or Bali from the Gilis. NEGOTIATE! I was able to get a shuttle boat and bus to Kuta, Lombok for Rp150,000 when some are paying Rp200,000. This even included the cidomo ride to the meeting place!
I stayed in Nina Inn (Rp80,000) but for that price I think you can get a better accomodation. You know what I mean Evil or Very Mad

5th Feb- Arrived in Kuta. Stayed in Mimpi Manis. Thank you Gemma and Made for making my short stay comfortable and pleasurable. I even get to watch DVDs in my room to my heart's content! Very Happy I'm glad I stayed far from the beach. The crowd in the beach can get really aggressive. They wouldn't let up until you buy something from them. It is about 2km from Mimpi Manis to the beach so you can either cycle or rent a motorbike, which of course Mimpi Manis offers.

6th Feb- Negotiated with an ojek (motorbike) driver to send me to Lembar from Kuta. I contemplated between taking the plane or the ferry to Bali but decided on the latter for experience.
The official ticket office is by the toll gate. Some locals would try to stop your vehicle before the toll gate and try to sell you ferry tickets, which they would claim to be official. Someone I met in the ferry showed me the ticket which he bought before the toll gate and it looked like recycled tickets pasted together with different serial numbers. It never got him in trouble and he was able to board the ferry without difficulty. Then I understand why one guy was asking for my ticket, so he can re-sell it outside. I think the officers inside are aware of this but they are not doing anything at all. This will just create bad business for the ferry operators.
Anyway, I had a very nice and comfortable experience in the ferry. But I heard that not all ferries are as big, clean and comfortable as the one I took.
Upon arriving in Padangbai, try to look for the Perama office. They offer shuttle services to Ubud, Kuta, Sanur and even as far as Lovina. And keep your ticket. Your old ticket will give you Rp10,000 discount for your next purchase.

7th to 8th Feb- stayed in Ubud. I am not sure if I am allowed to post anything about Bali here since this is a forum for Lombok but just a few recommendations:
Nyoman Inn in Hanoman street is just lovely. I was able to get a huge room with bath tub and hot and cold shower for Rp130,000. They serve fresh fruits and give you bottmless tea as well for breakfast. Totally worth it. They are very near Monkey Forest and Jalan Raya so very convenient to shops and restaurants.
Warung Batan Ketapang in Jalan Raya Pengosekan serve the tastiest and the most tender pork ribs in Ubud. Okay, I am bias here but I just love this unassuming place near the Panorama Hotel and Arma Restaurant. Try their barbecue chicken and fish as well. They don't even charge government tax!

Important tip: Always negotiate the price before availing for any services, whether it be for the shuttle services, bemos or porters. And if they say that they give you the best price, just do not tell anyone because others have gotten a higher price than you, better think again! Chances are, you are being offered the higher price.

Overall, I had a very nice time in Lombok and Bali and would definitely be coming back but would be staying longer this time.
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Lombok Looney

Number of posts : 591
Location : Kuta Lombok / Jimbaran Bali
Registration date : 2008-07-01

PostSubject: Re: My Lombok (and Bali :-)) travel report   Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:47 pm

Thanks for opsting your report. it is nice when members come back and share details of their trips with us.

It was great to meet you and look forward to seeing you again some time in Lombok Very Happy
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Lombok Looney

Number of posts : 415
Location : nowhere
Registration date : 2008-07-02

PostSubject: Re: My Lombok (and Bali :-)) travel report   Thu Feb 10, 2011 7:22 pm

Thanks for the report, as Gemma said, it is really great when people come back and post about their experiences cheers
Bangsal and Lembar harbours haven't changed in the many years I've been coming to Lombok. I hate that it goes on, but in a way it is part of the experience that will get cleaned up one day - along with lots of other changes, and the new sterile westernised Lombok will be a different place to what it is now, which will no doubt be fondly remembered in years to come.
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