There is only one thing better than sitting at a sandy beach: sitting at a pink beach, like the one in Lombok.
On Lombok wealth means family, nature and the sea.
When fine white sand and red corals meet and shallow waves shake both like a cocktail, you get pink sand. Perhaps something no photographer will capture correctly, but so I walked from one side to the other, trying every angle but nature is too fast. It wants to be in secret and not exposed.
To get to Pink Beach you have to conquer the worst street conditions. Finding an easy direction is nearly impossible. The cleverest decision is to find someone who brings you there. Beware: this isn’t easy. No one really wants to go and put their car through those street conditions. Local travel agencies don’t have this beach listed. But I was happy to take the bumpy road.
Happy because once arrived, you get an awesome view on the Mount Rinjani. And happy, because I really like going off-road.
It took us three hours to get there. Roads became paths, paths became forest, forest became jungle.
“You know a three hours ride is for us people on Lombok a very long journey. We rarely go so far and this equals an adventure”, tells us Aweng our driver.
There aren’t tourists on the beach, just a few locals, renting a snorkelling set and dive into the cold water.
The privilege to lend and sell at the beach is shared by three families from the surrounding jungle. Each week they rotate the “right” to sell out of the small waggon. In addition they offer tours to the nearby coral riffs.
For 300.000 Rupiah (18 Euro) you get a two-hours ride to the close by islands to observe corals and sea life. The boatsman points us to fish and explains their name and habitat. Aweng translates, English isn’t common in this part of Lombok.
We take a break in front of another island. I jumped of the boat and swam to it.
I thought the soft pink beach cannot get any better, but here I found an even mellower version. It’s like walking on a pillow. There aren’t any footprints, no plastic garbage, nor any people. You could almost believe you’re the first person entering the island.
Could you get any happier?
I guess the dog, on such a hot day relaxing under the shadow of a tree, has the same question in mind. Or the ox who found green grass between the dust and dry soil.
“On Lombok oxen are a sign of wealth”, explains Aweng.
We walked along the beach and meet a farmer sitting underneath the trees. He greeted us but only spoke Bahasa. So while Aweng talked to the farmer I carefully observed the oxen, which I think I’ve never seen up close before.
When they finished Aweng translated excitedly: “If you’re living in this area you are more worth if you own more. So this farmer has over 30 oxen and everyone appreciates him and his family. They even come and seek advice. Man, it’s always so interesting to learn more about your own culture.”
Absolutely and I learned, on Lombok, wealth means family, nature and the sea.
How to get there: by car
Activities: snorkelling, boat tour, exploring smaller islands
Bring: sunscreen, a waterproof camera, something to drink/ eat for the ride
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