Summer 2017, part 2, Lombok

I have changed my life completely about 10 years ago when I have sold out my running export-import company and started to pay my bills as a full-time systematic trader. The first years were tough, as it is often when starting the new company. I didn´t avoid the costly mistakes as I’ve hoped, but I´ve learned from my mistakes and gradually the biggest benefits showed up. The INDEPENDENCE and the FREEDOM.

I always loved to travel. My longest journey in 20 years, when I was the owner of the export-import company, was lasting 19 days! Every time I needed to come back sooner than wanted, to control the operations, stock supply, warehouses, the office staff etc. And I dreamed about the long travels, where I´d be able to stay in a place for weeks, to absorb the local feelings, not only to check the place as visited. Probably it sounds similar to some of you.

I wasn´t able to judge the real advantages of working remotely before I tried. I was afraid, of course, the Change is irreversible. Finally, the decision to exchange my bricks and mortar company with warehouses, offices, cars, staff for one office and a bunch of computers was one of the best decisions in my life. I can live my dream now.

Gains of the Petronel Systems allowed me to spend the summer by exploring South-East Asia countries after I spent 2 months in Sri Lanka earlier this year. Most of July we spent in Bali, as I covered in the previous post.


We were in no rush, for transportation to Lombok Island we´ve chosen the “slow ferry”, the real local way. Slow ferry is a big vessel, filled bumper-to-bumper with cars and trucks in the bottom and with uncounted passengers in the upper decks. There is no reservation seat system, the rule is first come first take. People are sitting inside the seating area, with the loud TVs playing telenovels or they are scattered on open decks, mostly sitting or lying right on the floor. Smoking, eating, sleeping. Or staring at foreigners, us, for the looong time.

The fare takes some 6 hours, against 2 hours by the fast ferry, but the journey is more calm, as these vessels are really huge and more resistant to the ocean waves moves.

Slow Ferry, Padangbai Bali – Lombok

Lombok Island surprised us with its natural beauty, but also with the massive construction all around. From the airport there are new, sometimes 4-lane roads to the south shore and probably further on east. The old parts of the roads are being replaced everywhere. On the south seaside, there is just booming construction of promenades, coastal roads, hotels. Heavy equipment and hundreds of workers. Also in the mountains, still untouched, there are hectares of newly uncovered terrain ready for construction of the new hotels and resorts. I think we´ve caught the last period of less developed Lombok. In few years the number of tourists here will be many times higher. And we´ll have to find another place still keeping its character.

Place for the hotel with the magnificent view
Construction in Lombok

Most of the tourist in Lombok stay in the south, in town Kuta area. Stunningly beautiful Kuta Beach, right in the town, is the biggest attraction here. It has clear blue-turquoise water and changing its deep and color depend on the tide. Big advantage is you can swim right here (if there isn´t low tide actually), the reef is hundreds meters in the ocean and no big waves come close to the shore.

Kuta beach Lombok

There is no public transportation in Lombok, the best way how to explore other parts of the island is to rent a motorbike or a car. There are beautiful places around, no matter which side you choose, you´ll always find something beautiful on the way. When you turn left on Kuta beach, after few hundred meters there are nice hills, not very high to climb on, but with stunning views around neighboring beaches and inland too.

Lombok beaches from the hill
Batman Cave
Inland and shore

What I love most in Lombok is still the provincial character of the place. I think some surfers shifted here from Kuta Bali, being replaced in Bali by seniors.

You can still feel a natural atmosphere here, which always dismiss after the big money enters the place. Simple barbecue restaurants offer a great selection of fresh fish every evening, really delicious and still reasonably priced. You can find laid-back bars with great surfers atmosphere and the live reggae music in the night. Still no big clubs here. Still lovely Lombok, I hope for a long time.

Fish restaurant in Kuta
Surfers bar, Kuta


Oldrich Karas

The next post will be about our August in the Philippines


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