Motorcycle Trip In Lombok, Indonesia

The beauty of a motorcycle road trip

 

When it comes to traveling, Jugo and I love going on road trips. For Jugo, his ideal road trip is on two wheels, in South East Asia, dodging chickens as he cruises to off the path places.In this post, I’ll leave it to my adventurous hubby to tell you all about Part 1 of his series on The Ultimate Motorcycle Road Trip to Lombok Itinerary. 

Motorcycle road trip around Lombok, Indonesia


“Getting there is half the fun.” – quote by: many people in some form or another

If this is true, which we believe to be, then the longer you travel the more fun, right?

 

Jenn and I believe this to be true, which is why our favourite mode of travel is road tripping. We get to see far more of a new place, with more freedom to stop where we like and see what we wish. During our recent trip to the Scottish Highlands, we kept stopping every 20 minutes because there was always something interesting to see. 

For me, however, the best type of a road trip is not in a car, but on a motorcycle. I love the simplicity and added freedom you get with it. A motorcycle road trip gives you more of a connection to the place you are traveling. There are some dangers such as pot holes, crossing chickens, and cows, which for some would be a nightmare but for others like me, it’s all part of the fun on a motorcycle road tripWhile we maintain that the quote above is certainly true, a more honest one may be:

 

“Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and enjoy the journey” – Babs Hoffman

 

Riding through rice patties in Kuta, Lombok

 

Motorcycling in Lombok, Indonesia 

Nevertheless, Jenn is an adventurer at heart, and so occasionally relents to my begging for a moto adventure. This has resulted in a few mini motorcycle road trips during our travels. We’ve done such trips in Vietnam, the Philippines, and Indonesia. Not accidentally, also places relatively cheap for motorcycle rentals and easy for light packing due to sunny weather. In this post, I’ll share our favourite and most recent motorcycle road trip in Indonesia.
A jungle view of Lombok, Indonesia

 

It was a three-day loop around the entire island of Lombok. Located next to more famous and far more visited Bali, but just as beautiful, Lombok is an amazing place for those looking to get ‘off the beaten path’. While still frequented by plenty of tourists in some parts of the island (typically by surfers, or those trying to get into surfing), from our experience the majority of the island is untouched. The island is largely populated by small villages of friendly locals willing to lend a hand and wave a welcoming hello when they encounter foreigners.

 

Filling up gasoline on our motorcycle road trip


Planning a Long Motorcycle Trip 

Before I get into our story, here are some basics for those interested in planning  a similar long motorcycle trip. 

Licensing

You are legally required to have a motorcycle license in Indonesia. Same goes for Vietnam, the Philippines and pretty much anywhere else you ride. A moto license from your home country is usually good enough for local and small trips. However, an International drivers permit might be required for longer cross-country tours involving highways where police are more likely to care about the specifics.

The more local and remote you go the less likely the local authorities are to care about technicalities and licensing. In such cases, you might not be stopped, which is why so many foreigners often ride without them in Asia. 

If you don’t have a license, just stick to a small scooter (electric is best) and enjoy. These too can require some skill, particularly in rainy weather, and an adjustment to riding in a foreign place, but at least you don’t stick out as much and aren’t riding illegally. Plus the point is to enjoy more of the road, not speed through a place at a 100km an hour.

Motocycle looking out

Safety

I cannot speak for Indonesia as a whole, as it is a huge country with over 17,000 islands, different cultures, and people. But the places we visited in predominantly Hindu influenced Bali, and Muslim Lombok, people were incredibly, and equally friendly. We had no problems at all on Lombok.

The only issue we had in Indonesia was on Bali. A young dude tried to pull a fast one and charge us for parking our scooter. He was claiming he was the parking authority but we called his bluff by asking for a receipt before we paid, at which point he relented, albeit quite rudely. But this can honestly happen in literally any place in the world that gets lots of tourists. In general, Indonesia was one of the friendliest places we have been.

Road conditions

The roads on Kuta, Lombok

Compared to South East Asia, the roads in Lombok were quite good. Paved road circumventing the entire island, with some dirt side roads if you go more inland. Not many pot holes on the main roads. The biggest problem was animals crossing, or simply lying/sleeping in the middle of the road (this baffled us).

Driving

Like most of Asia, bigger vehicles have the right of way. If riding a small bike, stick to the side but stand your ground. They’ll go around you, and you’ll be just fine. Plenty of people riding scooters, bikes and so on, so it’s not like you’re the only one.

 


 

Alright, now to our story…

 

Starting in Kuta, Lombok

We set up our base camp in Kuta, Lombok (South end of the island), where we would spend a few days preparing for our trip and taking the opportunity for some surf lessons. 
Surfing in Kuta Lombok

 

We found the best place to stay accommodation in Lombok at Yuli’s Homestay which is fantastic! It is a family run business with the husband from New Zealand and wife from Indonesia. The place has 15 spacious rooms equipped with air conditioning. On the property, there’s a guest kitchen with complimentary coffee and tea, a free tasty breakfast, and 3 pools. Or you can just walk 600 meters to the nearest beach. It cost us $40 CAD/night. Best of all, Yuli’s offers motorcycle rentals which is where we got the idea to do a motorcycle road trip around Lombok. 

Tip

Kuta Lombok is a perfect place to start because the area has a few motorcycle rental places if you don’t stay at Yuli’s or would like to shop around. Also, in much of South-East Asia a bigger bike usually means anything bigger than a scooter, as big bikes are unnecessary and hard to come by. 

 

Yuli’s rode in two bikes for us to choose from, both 150ccs. Although it’s not the best road trip motorcycle and small by Western standards, it was great for a small trip on a relatively small island. After a quick test ride our steed was chosen. An old rusty Kawasaki (supposedly) with all sorts of patchwork. But it ran, and we didn’t have much choice as a little scooter for two adults wouldn’t cut it for a three-day island adventure. 
A long motorcycle trip around the island of Lombok Indonesia

 

Lombok Itinerary

Lombok itinerary for a 3-day motorcycle road trip
The plan for our Lombok itinerary was to start in Kuta, ride clockwise around the coast of the island, make a break toward the active volcano (Mount Rijani) in the middle once we got to the North, then continue back down the coast along the Eastern side back to Yuli’s to return the bike. Along the way, we had the hope of finding some of the best beaches in Lombok and trying out some local village/town foods that aren’t catered to tourists. With a look on the map with our host and an open mind, we set out.

 

Click here for Part 2 on The Ultimate Motorcycle Road Trip to Lombok, Indonesia! 

 

Pin it for later! 

Motorcycle Trip Lombok

 



15 thoughts on “Motorcycle Trip In Lombok, Indonesia

  • I’m a big fan of motorbike rides around islands and had the pleasure of riding a bicycle around an island near you (Gili Air), though definitely smaller in scale. Still, your photos and words take me back and make me want to make a return trip to that part of the world. Thank you for sharing!

    • Glad I found another fan of motorcycle trips! There’s something about the freedom that it gives you compared to a car that really makes it feel like an adventure. I was also on Gili Air and loved it there. Best part is that they’ve banned cars so it’s a nice, quiet and peaceful island Thanks for your comment Duke! 🙂

  • My husband and I also love roadtrips but we’ve never taken motorcycles, I want to say it’s never too late to learn but at the same time I have a bit of fear about it. Then again, I can totally relate to the joy you must feel, the same freedom as a car roadtrip but more intimately connected to the landscape.

    • Hi Kavita! I felt the same way about riding before which is why I first started taking day trips riding on the back of a scooter. Once I was comfortable with that, then I progressed to the motorbike. Hope you get a chance to try it sometime! 🙂

    • Glad you enjoyed the post Jen! Indonesia is an amazing country with the most hospitable locals so I’m sure you and your husband will have a great time 🙂 If you ever have any questions, feel free to ask!

    • That’s great that you’ve had a chance to visit Bali. I do hope you get a chance to make it to Lombok and stay at Yuli’s. It’s an amazing beautiful island that really allows you to get away from the tourists!

  • Road trips are indeed one of the best of travel experiences. We love road trips as they get you close to the places you are traveling through and give an opportunity for close interactions with the locals. Road trips are indeed a very immersive experience. Traveling on a motorbike with the wind blowing in your air is surely one of the most blissful of experiences. Lombok seems to have been specially made for a road trip.

    • I can’t agree with you more Sandy and Vyjay! I love how road trips allow you to travel at your own pace and discover things you wouldn’t otherwise experience. Hope you get a chance to do a road trip through Lombok!

  • What a lovely post and lovely pictures. Loved these amazing landscapes. I and my husband also love to go on road trips, but we mostly prefer to drive a car. I hope the route mentioned by you can be covered in car as well. I am planning to visit Indonesia very soon and then definitely will like to take a road trip there.

    • Hi Neha! I’m glad I’ve found another fan of road trips! That’s great you are planning to visit Indonesia soon, it is an amazing country. It’s definitely possible to travel by car through Lombok. They have rentals at the Lombok International Airport and you can find the best prices through Skyscanner. Just make sure to get a credit card that covers car rental insurance so you can avoid the company’s fees. I use American Express for this. Hope you have an amazing trip in Indonesia 🙂

  • I feel one of the most thrilling experiences of life is riding a motorcycle on uncharted roads. The wind blowing in your face as you exult in the sheer joy of living. Lombok looks like a great place to indulge on ones’ motorcycle fantasies. The best thing about these kind of trips is you get so close to the local places and people resulting in an immersive and unique experience.

Leave a Reply