Kuta Lombok is an amazing place and a must see if you are travelling South-east Asia! From beautiful beaches to beginner, intermediate and advanced surf spots – Lombok has it all. You can enjoy incredible scenery, chow down on delicous food and still go out to party. If you are tired of the Bali crowds and need a little break from the vibrant lifestyle, Lombok is your destination. Here’s your survival guide for Kuta Lombok – do’s and dont’s.
Let’s start out with some food options. Kuta Lomboks food options are not as wide as Bali’s, but it is definetely as tasty. If you feel like having a cheap local Indonesian dish, do try Nasi Campur. It’s essentially a rice dish where you are able to pick whatever you feel like from a window. It includes everything from chicken, vegetables, noodles, meat and pretty much everything you can think off! Bonus! It’s super cheap. It will only cost you around 1-2 USD for a full plate!
If you are in the mood for western food, do try the Mexican In Town to have your lunch or dinner. They have a broad menu with super tasty food and fish-tacos to die for! On Fridays they have a two for one deal – so make sure you plan that in! Plus, two for one burritos on Mondays and a killer Happy Hour everyday. Do stop in Milk on a Sundays for 2 for 1 Pasta night. Do go to Bush Radio for their salads and bowls.
However, most importantly when eating food in less touristy places, do double check how fresh the food is. There is a possibility that the food might’ve been out in the heat for a long period off time and you definetely don’t want to get food poisining or the classic bali-belly. If the place looks a bit dodgy, maybe avoid it just to be safe
Surfing around Kuta Lombok
Kuta Lombok has a lot of different surf spots around. It doesn’t matter if you are a beginner, intermediate or advanced surfer – there are spots to suit everyone! But if you do want a spot where the whole group of friends can surf together, do head down to Gerupuk (about 15-20 min scooter ride from Kuta, Lombok) and take a boat out to either Inside Gerupuk or Don Don’s.
For a more advanced surfer do head to Outside Gerupuk depending on the weather conditions. A private lesson will cost you 300 000IDR (including the boat) and just a boat 150 000IDR if three people and 50 000IDR per person if more than three. Do also check out Mawi, Seger Beach and Tanjung Aan Beach for both waves and a nice beach day.
Don’t go down to Gerupuk and start bargaining for surf lessons and rentals anywhere, especially not with multiple locals. To make your life easy, do head down to Edo Homestayand talk to the first person there and stick to that one. If you end up talking to more then one local they might become angry and try to make you pay both or worst case scenario, not even let you on the boat at all!
If you decide on renting a boat and heading out do give sunrise surfing a try! There is something truly magically about heading out while the sun rises over the hills and something even more magical about beating everyone else into the water.
If you’re looking for a safe ATM with the highest withdrawal amount do go to Mandiri ATM, located just next to Kuta Lombok Fresh Market. If this one for some reason is unavailable do go just cross the street and use the other one. Don’t just go to any atms as there is a lot of scams happening around Indoensia and Kuta Lombok!!! Always look for ATM recommendations or even ask other backpackers for their opinion while travelling in general.
While driving a scooter for the first time always be overly cautious, especially as the roads can be very sandy with many sharp turns. If you’re not feeling comfortable driving, make sure you don’t take anyone on the back of the scooter. Im sure you all heard a horror story or two about backpackers falling with the scooter. Anyhow, it might sound dorky – but do always wear a helmet, it could be someone else’s fault that you fall – even if you consider yourself as a good driver!
Interacting With Locals
While walking around Kuta Lombok or sitting at a restaurant, local kids will run up to you and try to sell different bracelets. The first and second time you’ll probably not mind, but after many attempts from different kids you’ll likely to feel like enough is enough. Even when you do; do always try to stay friendly and humble. It’s not the easiest of jobs and they just trying to make some money. do use a friendly line ” Tidak Terima kasih” – which means “No thank you”. Indonesians are extremely helpful and friendly in general, so do be that way back.
If you really don’t want to buy a bracelet, make sure you don’t get involved in any sort of game with the kids. The local game is usually rock, paper and scissors. PRO TIP, you will loose and then you pretty much have no choice than to buy one! Also, don’t use words like maybe or see you tomorrow – because they will find you.
The Locals in this community are so welcoming! You may find yourself invited to a wedding or another family/ community celebration. Do go! Do not miss this opportunity, join the celebration. They will get you on the dance floor to learn the traditional dances, hand you a drum stick to play with the band, help you dress in tradition garb, and share their amazing dishes.
Choice of clothing while walking around town
Walking around Kuta Lombok town by day or night has a mixed of a vibrant but also super relaxed atmosphere. What to keep in mind while walking around is… don’t dress too freely. For men, do wear a t-shirt while going in to stores. For women, do throw on a piece of clothing to cover your bikini while wandering around town.(On the beach it’s no problem of course). Lombok is a traditional muslim island and it’s an easy way to show respect to the locals by simply wearing clothes!
Kuta, Lombok is a small town so the large, over the top, all night parties of Bali are just not a “thing” here. Don’t take that as them not knowing how to throw down and have a good time! Quite the opposite. Each night of the week is reserved for a certain bar and that is the spot for everyone in town to head to. If you only have one night to go out do head to Surfers Bar on a Friday night. A smaller open aired beach bar that the entire town heads to every week. Live music, and a Dj accompanied by lots of dancing leads to having a great time.
Like in Bali Bintang is the local beer of choice but unlike on Bali there is also homemade rice wine. The rice wine is not sold at the bars but can be found at the local stands in water bottles. Do proceed with caution and if you want to try some, do so at your own risk. Being homemade it is not regulated and could contain anything. They make both white and red depending on the type of rice used to make the wine. Tasting almost like a fancy kombucha drink only much more sinister.
While heading back to your room after a night of dancing and fun, do remember to be respectful. Being a small town and still new to tourism there are many families that call Kuta, Lombok home that are trying to get a good nights rest. Being the warm, welcoming community it is, acting respectfully really goes a long way here. It’s easy don’t be loud and everyone is happy.
You could stay in Kuta, Lombok and not leave the town to enjoy your time but the Island of Lombok is so full of beauty you do need to do some exploring. Jump on a scooter or join a tour it doesn’t matter just do it! There is so much to see… rice paddies, snorkeling, diving, jungle, waterfalls, hiking Mount Rinjani, and so much more. Whatever you are into, chances are this island has it.
Surround by incredible natural beauty the laid back little surf town of Kuta, Lombok is all about the good vibes, good times, and good surf. So drop in and enjoy all this town has to offer! Using our SURVIVAL GUIDE FOR KUTA LOMBOK (DO’S AND DONT’S) you will defiantly enjoy your time.
Need to get from Bali to Lombok and Back? Follow our guide to help your travel day run smoothly.