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Lose Yourself in Lombok

Nov 16, 2007
Lombok is an exotic destination, located about 40 km east of Bali and west of the Sumbawa Islands, in the West Nusa Tenggara Province in Indonesia. Occupying an area of more than 4500 square kilometers, Lombok consists of several tiny islands, and looks like what Bali was more than 25 years ago.

The island can be easily reached from Bali through an enjoyable boat ride or via a 30-minutes flight from Denpasar International Airport in Bali. Lombok is made up of three administrative regions: Central Lombok, West Lombok, and Eastern Lombok. Mataram, located to the west, is the administrative capital as well as the largest city in the island. Lombok's other prominent two cities are Selong in the east and Praya in the center.

Dominated by the magnificent Mount Rinjani, perched about 3500 meters above sea level - Lombok has more than a dozen of incredible beaches, and is much favored for its beautiful landscapes comprising charming mountainsides, towering volcanoes, swaying palm trees, and stunning bamboo plantations. The island, with its incredible sandy beaches, becomes truly magical when twilight sets in. In deed, Lombok is truly a paradise, and no wonder why vacationers including honeymooners visit this amazing destination year-round.

Most popular among the attractions of Lombok is undoubtedly its beaches, of which perhaps the most prominent is Senggigi. A perfect spot to relax and unwind, Senggigi is an awesome beach resort area, boasting of an array of white sandy beaches as well as safe swimming areas. The central region of Senggigi has some excellent spots for enjoying surfing. The vivid reef seen here forms shelter for a variety of rare species of marine life. In addition, its elegantly shaped coral makes it an excellent spot for snorkeling. Senggigi also provides superb facilities for activities such as canoeing and boating.

Excellent beaches are also found in the Gili Islands, located off the north-west coast of Lombok. An archipelago of three stunning islands such as Gili Air, Gili Meno, and Gili Trawangan, Gili's each island features superb white sandy beaches, picturesque coral reefs, azure blue water, and multi-colored fish, all of them making it a great spot for activities such as scuba diving and snorkeling. Gili Islands are much popular among the westerners as well as travelers looking for a secluded island experience.

Another unbelievable beach in the island is Kuta, situated on the south coast of the island. During the low tides, the beach becomes a shallow water pool with turquoise blue water, thereby making it a haven for swimming. Tanjung Aan and Gerupak are the other popular beaches in the area.

However, the attractions in Lombok are not just beaches, but beyond that. Many of the prime attractions in Lombok are centered around its capital city, Mataram, which is also the seat of administration of the island. Mataram has something for everyone. For instance, if you are an art and culture lover, then take a tour to the Mataram main square, where art exhibitions and puppet shows are organized. Sightseeing options are also aplenty in Mataram, and just few among them are Karang Bayan Traditional Village, Narmada Park, Mayura and Bale Kambang, and Mayura Water Palace.

A plenty of sightseeing options are also available in Lombok cities such as Cakranegara, which is regarded as the commercial center of the island and inhabited by Chinese and Balinese communities. The focal point of the city is the Paru Meru, the largest temple in Lombok. Many of the restaurants and outlets found here are owned by Chinese; hence this city is sometimes referred to as the Chinatown. Also, a popular city is Ampenan, a port town which is home to the only airport in Lombok. Not to miss attractions in the city are the Water Temple of Pura Segara on the northern shores of Ampenan and the Negeri Nusa Tenggara Barat museum.

Lombok has a great number of hotels to cater to every taste and budget. For those who want to experience the tranquility of Lombok in luxury, then some excellent choices are available in the form of upscale hotels with rooms appointed with top-end amenities. Some hotels provide packages inclusive of sightseeing and facilities for enjoying a continuum of activities such as trekking, snorkeling, diving, golfing, and surfing. There are also hotels providing superb packages for conducting beach weddings in Lombok.
About the Author
The Accor Group manages Hotels with the Sofitel, Novotel, Mercure, All Seasons, Ibis, Formule 1, Grand Mercure brands and offers services to corporate clients and public institutions: 23 million people in 35 countries use a broad range of services engineered and managed by Accor Services.
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