Sunday, January 3, 2016

Jom Lombok!

Jom Lombok!
(25/07/2015 - 28/07/2015)

Travel Agency:Personal
Airline:Air Asia
Total Package:RM2,230.40 for 5 persons (Flight only)
Hotel :RM2,022 - 3 nights at Kila Senggigi Beach Resort with 2 bedroom and 1 extra bed
Currency Rate:RM2.92 = IDR10,000 (Indonesian Rupiah)
Time Difference:UTC+8:00 (0 hours from Kuala Lumpur)

This visit was done together with my family in law. We have been planning to visit Lombok since 2010 and finally, we made it!

Day 1 : 25/07/2015

Main Destination:Lombok, Indonesia
Depart:Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (KLIA2) at 8.40am
Arrive:Lombok International Airport, Indonesia (LOP) at 11.45am
Total Expenses:IDR150,000 (Lunch for 7 person)
Some token to visit Dusun Sasak
IDR326,300 - Dinner
IDR45,750 - Snacks at Mini Market

Start our journey to what they call as the Island of Thousand Mosques. This time we were lucky. My husband had a friend in Lombok and most of our days were taken care by him and his family. From lunch to dinner, with all the attractions that are required for us to visit as a tourist, most of it covered by them. But still, I will list out the prices for your future reference.

Mount Rinjani from our flight

After we arrived at the Lombok International Airport, we have been brought to a nice restaurant in front of the airport roundabout junction to have our first meal.

Bandar Udara International Lombok

In Lombok, the most favourable food is ayam taliwang with nasi balap. They use organic chicken, also called village chicken (ayam kampung), which is halfway grilled and pestled. Served with fresh tofu and pelecing kangkung vege.

The Restaurant: Rumah Makan Cahaya

From top right to clockwise: Fresh fried tofu,
nasi balap with ayam taliwang and pelecing kangkung

With this, we also took air kelapa gula aren as our main beverage. Honestly, it was the most soothing drinks I have ever had. Nicely, freshly made by the Lombokians (I'm not sure if they call it this way..). This drink consists of local coconut drink, put together with a brown sugar made from a tree called aren. Delicious. From here, I knew that we are going to eat this thing for the next few days.

Air kelapa gula aren

Next we went to Dusun Sasak village to see the aborigine of Lombok. The entrance fee is based on the amount of donation that you would like to contribute. Usually, most tourist will give around IDR5,000 per person and this money will be used to maintain the village for tourism purposes.

Entrance of Dusun Sasak Village

This village consists of about 150 houses with 700 people occupying the area and their main economy is agriculture. In some parts, it was good to know that they have a different thinking about marriage. Those girls and boys who plans to get married, they should be abducted by the guys, get married out of the village and come back as a husband and wife. This is to avoid shame by the parents. Yeah, I don't understand it either, but still it is their culture for us to respect.

Houses in the village

The walls are made from bamboo, the shades are made from ijok leaves and the floors are barely with the red soils. Seems that they are handling their culture so tight and trying their best to avoid using the modern design. Not that they can't, it's just that they resist to be polluted with the latest influence.

Walking around the area

There were some souvenir shops around the area. My mother bought 2 pieces of their hand made songket for about IDR500,000. It was our mistake for not able to negotiate the price. We found the price for the same songket in Mataram with only IDR100,000 per piece. So if you are planning to buy it there, try your best to negotiate the best!

Performance of the day at the village for all the visitors

After the full day of hanging around with the culture, we then went to check-in at Kila Senggigi Beach Lombok. The hotel looks big and comfy. The front desk officers and all the staffs were so friendly and I believe that this hotel could be chose again in our next trip to Lombok.

At the hotel area

At the walkway

The hotel beach

That is the end of the day. At night, we save our energy for the next day and just call for the room service for our dinner. Price? Well, it is almost the same like every hotel. around 3 times higher compare to any restaurants outside the hotel. You can expect that though.

Day 2: 26/07/2015

Main Destination:Beach and Mataram
Ambient Temperature:35oC
Total Expenses:IDR400,000 - Supir (Driver)
IDR245,000 - Souvenirs
IDR501,000 - Lunch and Dinner

Today we were completely on our own. Went to the beach, had some time to relax and headed to Mataram city for some touring.

The private beach is located beside of the hotel. If you walk through the open beach, you may see the same beautiful open sea, surrounded with the shaded mountain view of the Bali island, which is not far from Lombok. 

The beauty of the beach

At 11.00am, we started our plan to Mataram city. We hired a supir (driver) with about IDR400,000 per day. He is Haji Sufian, which you can reach him at 087865764449. We are lucky to get someone that is so knowledgeable about Lombok. Lots of stops, tourists and non-tourists areas were brought during our visit with him. 

Our first stop is at the Oleh-Oleh Lombok. Here we bought a lot of keropok and other types of junk foods. I think this is a good place to buy the Lombok's signature keropoks for your souvenirs or your own snacks.

Oleh-Oleh Lombok

On our way to Mataram, we pass through the biggest mosque, where they call it as the Lombok Islamic Center. During our visit, this place is still under construction and expected to commence their operation in January 2016. This place locates the main Quranic studies in Lombok and lots of other activities to be organised.

Lombok Islamic Center

Then we went to the biggest shopping mall, Hero @ Mataram Mall. Just like other shopping malls, lots of items can be found here. We were also feel surprise with the existence of McDonald's at the mall. From what I understand, they are boycotting McDonald's. So, means that they have opened their mind there. At the same time, there are also a new KFC inside the mall that was newly set-up. So, no harm if you plan to give a try of the local KFC. It will definitely going to be a different taste.

Hero @ Mataram Mall

Mataram Mall

From Level 4 of Mataram Mall

Next, we went to the 2nd famous ayam taliwang in Lombok, called Taliwang Raya for our lunch. And yes, I do agree that this restaurant had given us their best flavours.

Taliwang Raya Restaurant

The Menu 1

The Menu 2

The Cozy Environment
Nasi Balap with Ayam Taliwang

At the outside of the restaurant

Honestly, we had taken our best shot during the lunch. Everything was so nice and yummy. Like yesterday, we picked nasi balap with ayam taliwang, coconut juice with aren sugar, pelecing kangkung, tauhu ang tempe. These will be the perfect meals.

Then we went to Pasar Kebon Roek, brought by Pak Supir when we requested to buy the Gula Aren (aren raw sugar) from their own market. So we look ourselves at their daily sales location and it was a good experience to know what they sell and what they have.

Pasar Kebon Roek

Gula Aren

Then we went to Oleh-Oleh Gandrung, just for a stop. Now, I can say that, we had found something that surprises us. The songket that we bought with IDR400,000, can be obtained with only IDR100,000 at this shop. So be careful with what and where you plan to buy. Well, maybe because of the quality? I don't know. What I can see is almost the same.

The Songket
Oleh-Oleh Gandrung
So our final touch before going back to the hotel, was the famous baked corn at the Puncak. Lots of corn hawkers were there to give you their sweetest corns. So, don't forget to give a try.

Corn Hawkers

Scenery from Puncak

Day 3: 27/07/2015

Main Destination:Namada Park and City Touring
Ambient Temperature:33oC
Total Expenses:IDR6,000 - Namada Park Entrance per person
IDR480,000 - Souvenirs (key-chains, magnets, t-shirts)
IDR600,000 - Dinner for 9 persons

So today we went again to the beach, this time for some play and swim. Nice and cool water at 9am in the morning. And yes, this beautiful beach makes us stay longer than we expect.

Me and my sister

Just to the transparency of the water

After a long bath, we had a walk around the beach and bought additional souvenirs. Some crafted key chains with names and t-shirts. I suggested that you try your best to bargain, but not overly do. Of course the first price will be much higher than what you can get. As for the key chains, we managed to bargain for IDR15,000 per piece. And do buy in bulk for the good price.

Then, with we went to Namada Park, accompanied by my husband's friend. Basically, below is the basic information of the park, taken from this page.

Narmada Park is located in the Village Lembuah, Narmada district, West Lombok regency, some 10 kilometers east of Mataram, West Nusa Tenggara. Park which covers about 2 hectares was built in 1727 by King of Mataram Lombok, Anak Agung Ngurah Karang Asem, as a place Pakelem ceremony held every full moon Caka fifth year (October-November). In addition to the ceremony, Narmada Park is also used as a resting place of the royal family during the dry season.

So just click the link for further readings. ;)

Namada Park

Entrance to the fountain

The fountain area

The grave of the Lombok

Then we had our dinner at Rumah Makan Dan Lesehan Yeni Murad located at Jalan Jendral Sudirman, Rembiga-Mataram. This time we had some fishes, prawns and squids for our meals. But still, I prefer nasi balap with ayam taliwang, which I think is more delicious.

Next before we end the journey of the day, we head to my husband's friend house, in West Nusa Tenggara. We had some traditional kuih (tidbits). If you can see in the picture below, the names for the yellow kuih is Bolu, the green cone-like is Serorot and the green cover at the top-left is Lempar. If you ask me, I like Serorot more than others. Truly Asian. Haha.

Day 4: 28/07/2015

Main Destination:Puncak and back to KLIA2
Departure:7.15pm local time
Arrival:10.25pm local time
Ambient Temperature:34oC
Total Expenses:IDR315,000 - Additional key-chains
IDR200,000 - Clay
IDR170,000 - Lunch
IDR250,000 - Coffe Bean at airport
IDR6,000 - Keropok

So today is our last day, staying here in Lombok. Like everyday, we will take our time at the beach near to the hotels before we head off from the hotel. But this time, no swimming and bathing. Just had some refreshing time of the white sand.

The beautiful beach - My current desktop photo

Relaxing view

After packed our luggage, my husband's friend came to fetch us again for the last day. The first place he took us was at the Puncak. Well, it was about 30 minutes, further north from our hotel. From here, we could see quite a beautiful scenery of Lombok oceans, from the top of the hill.

From Puncak - The view of Mount Batur in Bali

The beach view from Puncak

3 monkeys, rush for our corns. And only the best win.

From here, we can see Gili Island, which is the main attraction of Lombok that we could not go to. I don't think it is a good place to go with old parents. But if your parents are adventurous enough, you really have to try it out.

Then we head to the Bakso Haji Anang, a restaurant that sell Bakso in Mataram. They have a really nice Bakso, but for me, the best is still in Bukit Tinggi, Padang. See my posting at Jom Bukit Tinggi, Padang! for more info.

Bakso Haji Anang

Bakso Urat

Bakso Special

For those who ask, the said it is Halal

The menu on the wall

Talking about the price, with one bowl of about RM3.50 to RM6.00, it can be considered affordable. So if you think you need Bakso during the trip, this could be the best place to hang-out. 

The only thing I could not get during the trip, which I really craved for was the Es Pukat or Avocado Juice. Obviously, this is not going to be my last trip to Lombok. My next trip will include Gili Island, which I could not have the chance to go to. So, see you in my next trip to Bangkok!