Tuesday 9 August 2016

Lombok Travel Part 3: Senggigi

Senggigi is a small town on the west coast of Lombok about 48km from the airport and 13 km north of Lombok's capital city Mataram. There are not many attractions in Senggigi but it is chosen as our base to get to Gili Trawangan and to other parts of Lombok Island.
Even though it is a quiet little place, there are ample hotels and restaurants to choose from. Getting public transport to almost anywhere is a breeze as the 'Express'and 'Bluebird' Taxis constantly ply Jalan Raya Senggigi, a long coastal road that runs through the town. There is also an airport shuttle bus, Damri that commutes regularly between Senggigi and the airport.
There are innumerable travel agents that will jump at your request to arrange private day tours to popular Lombok destinations. This is such a competitive trade in Senggigi you don't even need to pre-book or pay through online agents that normally charge exhorbitant and inflated rates for such services.  To sum it up, Senggigi can be considered a good travel base to explore Lombok.

Getting To Know Senggigi
Senggigi is such a small town and it doesn't take long to explore most of it in a short time. There are a few things you can do here.

1. Visit the beaches and see Senggigi sunset
Senggigi Beach, Kerandangan Beach and Batu Bolong Beach are the three beaches around Senggigi. There are no 'Wow" factors in these beaches and having seen the award winning beach in Borocay, these beaches failed to impress us in any way. However, these beaches face the west and make good places to view the setting sun.
Senggigi Beach
Batu Bolong Beach from where you can see a Hindu Shrine, Pura Batu Bolong.
The estuary at Batu Bolong Beach
A beautiful silhouette of Senggigi Beach against the setting sun.

2. Visit Art Market
The art market is a beachfront area that has a few restaurants and many stalls selling local handicrafts and other merchandise. 

3. Relax At Orchid Day Spa And Beauty Salon
The cheapest place to get a body massage in Senggigi is probably Orchid Spa. You only pay IDR70.000 (approx RM22) for an hour of body massage. We did a 2 hour massage, body scrub and body mask for INR175,000/pp which is hard to get anywhere else.

4. Try The Local Cuisines
There are many restaurants catering to diners of varying budget. Asmara is a high end restaurant in Senggigi, and apparently less popular probably because of its high food pricing.
There are street food vendors like this satay woman at Batu Bolong Beach. 
We patronized a few eateries namely Warung Tenda Cak Poer, Lombok Resto and The Angel's Cafe to try out local Lombok cuisines. 
'Ayam Taliwang' is a specialty here. This spicy roasted spring chicken is a popular local food in Lombok.
The ox-tail soup is another of Lombok's delicacy.
The Angel's Cafe's version of 'Mee Soto' failed to meet my expectation though.

5. Grab Some Souvenirs From Bayan Lombok Gallery
Bayan Lombok Gallery is a good place to grab some local handicrafts. This place is recommended as souvenirs are very reasonably priced.

6. Take A Leisurely Stroll Around Town
Taking a leisurely stroll is a good way to pass time in a laid-back town like Senggigi. 
The post office
A Statue By The Roadside
Shops And Restaurants
At The Art Market

Recommended Hotels In Senggigi
Listed below are a few good hotels within walking distance to Senggigi town centre. 
1. Sheraton Senggigi Beach Resort - A high end beachfront hotel in town centre, 
    very near Art Market, ample choices of eateries, easy to get public transport, 
    airport shuttle and tour agents.

2. Kebun Villas Resort -An upper end resort just 400 meters to town centre. Located 
    in the midst of a lush tropical garden on a hill slope. Easy access to eateries, public 
    transport, airport shuttle, and tour agents. 
    Click to see: Review Of Kebun Villas And Resort

3. Mama Bella's Retreat - A value for money lower end accommodation with a resort 
    setting. Though the immediate surroundings are found wanting, the resort is 
    generally good, near to town centre, a comfortable walking distance to eateries, 
    tour agents, shops etc.

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