Where to begin as my memories are slightly faded...
We stayed over in Lombok for 7 wonderful relaxing days in Oct.
Since arriving back here in Australia we have moved house, our son had a bad motor bike accident so I have had no time to reflect on our holiday, no time to read TA on either forum ( Bali) however today I have some ME time so I will share our holiday & some feedback.
We flew over from Bali to Lombok with Lionair....no problems at all, the flights pretty much left on time, the airport Bali side at Domestic is slightly unorganised, it's hot & not very comfy however Lombok airport is very impressive! We were both surprised how modern, clean & organised Lombok airport is....this can be said about the roads in Lombok.
Our driver Eko was there to meet us, the drive to Sengigi was pleasant with well maintained roads, nice views of clean open countryside quite similar IMO to areas of Fiji.
Lunch was an experience at Coconuts Beach ( o I do hope my memory is tuned in) its a cafe on the beach near Sengigi...very cute rustic bales to stretch out take in the ocean views with coconut trees everywhere....the spicy fish was the best I have ever eaten...price was so cheap like $12 for both our meals,drinks & ice cream.
I suggest stopping in for a meal or fresh juice if you have the time as it gave us a break to stop & chat with a few locals & take in the laid back feel of the area..bliss, I feel all mellow just remembering the coast line of Lombok!
Linda from Villa Almarec had her boat waiting for us so we missed out on the high jinks of the harbor guys... shucks I was kinda hoping to use all my notes hehee!
Easy enjoyable quick boat trip over to Gili T, from the time we caught the view of the island we loved it...I love the lay out of cafes along the beach, the mountain backdrop...we loved Gili T. Can't wait to go back!
We payed Linda for both boat & horse/cart transport to villa Almarec, as we headed further away from the jetty we knew we had made a "choice" decision booking up the other end of Gili T..it's so much nicer, the beach areas are lovely, not so much noise either, some cafes & accom have on music blasting from cheap static cd players..oh that was the only negative but we love music so it wasn't enough to spoil our holiday....relieved to have peace & only the sound of nature at Villa Almarec, next door they are building a convience store so some of the time they had portable cd player turned up but not enough to bother us in our room or while relaxing at the beach...in some areas on the island be warned its enough to get you moving on, we hired push bikes to ride around the island, great way to get around & see what's there,stop at cafes ....so many to pick from...we loved every moment of our 5 nights over there....perfect amount of time any less we would of felt rushed. I could easily stay over there a month ...I could live the rest of my life over there! ( plus Lombok)
Before going I had been on this forum picking everyone's brains for help, I love this forum & Bali TA as people share so much info that one can get a feel for what to expect for the majority of planning.
Our holiday was wonderful, life changing as we have dream to retire in Lombok Kuta area... well in the south of Lombok on a cliff or beach front...it's on our daily prayer list ..the bucket list.
Lomboks rugged cliff line & friendly shy monkeys & farm land is special, I am so wrapped that for a cheap flight of approx $50 return from Bali we can head over in comfort by plane to Lombok..awesome!
I understand why so many Aussies own homes in Lombok it's divine, what more could anyone want. The people we came across were all friendly, we had a drive around the south of Lombok tour, it was fascinating, we saw squid drying on lines, seaweed farming, lots of beautiful pearls, surf camps , wildlife including a long green snake . We had a look at properties for sale to get an idea of costs plus we chatted to an Aussie man building Villas on a cliff edge in the most amazing position. we got some insight into the building time frame.
Ok so back to Gili T we stayed all 5 nights at Almarec...top of the list best choice for us, thanks to Sandy fro TA phoning ahead to check avail for us while they were on holidays in Bali....I didn't want to rush booking anywhere before we left...we had booked at Scallywags for 2 nights however after checking in we decided to head back to Villa Almarec as it was worth the extra cost per night to finish our holiday there...we love the beach out front, plenty of lazy chairs with umbrellas that you will want as it gets so hot, we can hang around on the beach for half a day just swimming, drinking, reading & people watching. They have a bar set up on the beach so we could Oder whatever we liked. Most of our days was swimming in the ocean, pool , riding the bikes to other cafes & to other spas for massages.
A local young guy took us over on a boat to Gili Meno, we asked him to come back over to collect us in 3 half hours, we had fresh juices at Mahamaya resort, followed by a swim, look around the area then luch at Mahamaya which was perfect fine dining at its best.
We purchased pearl necklaces that we had specially made to length for one of my sisters & my best friend & a set for me!,..on Meno a young guy sat watching us as we looked at pearls that another seller was showing us...it can get very annoying as they come at you full on trying to get you to look even when another seller is already displaying a truck load to you!
We had finished the deal with his mate...money had been handed over, he was happy , we were happy & wanting to have space to enjoy the view..lunch arrives which we eat taking our time to enjoy each course as it was 3 course set menu, all this time he is still sitting under the tree fiddling with his collection of pearls not annoying us in any way at all.....just as we had the last of our plates taken away he approached me asking if I would like to try on pearls! Smiling we let him know that we purchased from his friend that we didn't want to buy anymore...he then tells my husband that he likes the shirt hubby is wearing, he says he likes it because it is different to what he has seen...a very nice shirt!, hahaa it was so funny at the time as we were not expecting to hear this...it was a very nice Aussie dress shirt made by Quicksilver, the young guy had on a old faded tee shirt ..we'll you can guess where this all went...
He offered to swap anything in his case for hubby's shirt...I ended up with a short brown pearl necklace ( I purchased the matching studs from him) everyone was happy...hubby went back shirtless but with photos of the young guy who took the shirt from his back...I thought it was worth sharing the story here..quite romantic hubby giving the shirt off his back so I could I have pearls!
We took over a bag full of children's & ladies clothing which we ended up giving to the massage ladies to share at Villa Almarec, they were excited which was great as I was not sure if we were doing the right thing as I had heard they can be put off wearing preloved clothing.
Next time we will take over as much men's clothing to give away, I did notice that quite a few of the men & boys had old faded torn clothing so if you have the room take over men's clothing to give away. It wasn't any big deal nor did it take any time from holiday to give the bag away..after several massages on the second last day we asked the two girls if they would like to look at a bag of preloved clothing, they said yes with huge smiles so hubby walked back to our room to get the bag, they went thru it at lightning speed chatting about sisters,mothers,cousins & aunts that would wear the items..we left them to it.
After 5 nights on Gili T we said our sad goodbyes till next time then headed over to Kuta Lombok Novetel....wow wow wow
Resort is awesome...beaches are white sand, clean clear water in the ocean to swim with a stunning coast line. We loved our first short glimpse at Lombok.
We had lunch at Full moon or is called blue moon cafe, we chatted to a friendly policeman who asked if I minded getting a photo with him on his cell phone...we found all the locals we chatted with to be so friendly. This cafe was great to eat at..the views are beach front...huge servings of food, fresh food & tasty & cheap..great friendly service.
Battery getting low....long jbr hope it helps others planning a trip over to gilis & Lombok...I can see heaps of tpe errors but iPad touchy so can not edit them all!Edited: 9:31 pm, December 06, 2012