Mataram The Capital of Lombok
Mataram is the administrative capital of Province Nusa Tenggara Barat. Public buildings, banks, post office, general hospitals and shopping malls are found here. A part of West Nusa Tenggara province, Mataram is the capital and main city of Lombok. It includes the port town of Ampenan, the town of Mataram, Sweta and Cakranegara. As a center of government administration, Mataram has many large, public buildings and substantial houses include Governor office, Mataram university and two public hospital.public hospital province and new mataram public hospital .The city also has transportation and shopping facilities. The main square is used for art exhibitions, theater and dance performances. In other parts of Mataram, there are a variety of old-style markets and neighborhoods featuring traditional craft work like basket ware and gold- and silver-threaded sarongs, or garments. The port of Ampenan was once Lombok's main port, but it now relies mostly on fishing vessels. Cakranegara has significant Balinese and Chinese populations, the Chinese having been brought by the Dutch to provide cheap labor.The town is easy reach from Lombok international airport about 40 minutes drive by taxi or Airport shuttle bus and Lembar sea port just 20 minutes drive with public bus transportation take 25 minutes.
How to get Mataram ( capital of Lombok Island)
Airport shuttle bus
A public bus service is available from Bandara Internasional Lombok to service passengers wishing to travel to and from either Mataram or Senggigi. The 8 DAMRI buses serving the route have a capacity of approximately 40 passengers, 10 further buses with a 20 passenger are expected to complement the fleet but have not been delivered. They are new air-conditioned buses and are white in colour.
DAMRI services depart from their office located in eastern Mataram on Jl. Tuan Guru Faisal (a three minute taxi ride from the Mandalinka Bus Station) every hour and proceed to the airport, commencing at 04:00 with the last bus leaving that terminal at 19:00.
The fare from/to the Mataram is Rp 25,000.
DAMRI services are also provided to connect Senggigi to the airport departing Senggigi from 03:00 and then every 1.5 hr until the last departure from Senggigi at 20:00. Some airport buses may provide services between Mandelika and Senggigi. In the last coup[le of months these services have not been accurately following the published schedules, ensure you leave plenty of buffer time if catching a departing flight.
Taxis are normally available at the terminal for travel onward to other areas.
The port of lembaris 22 km south of Mataram. There are ferries every 90 minutes or so, 24 hours a day, from padang bai on bali with the trip taking 4-5 hours. Any volunteer "porters" who carry your bags will expect at least Rp. 10,000.
If you arrive with the Ferry from Padang Bay (Bali) in Lembar, you can take a bemo on the first street you get in, when you walk out of the harbor. You will find plenty of guys, who try to offer you a seat to Mataram. Be careful: You realy have to negotiate the price for the ride. You should get it for 15.000RP.
Taxi fares are quite reasonable if they use the meter. Some drivers may try and enforce a 20,000rp minimum. Blue bird *Lombok Taksi, ? +62 370 627000, is the most common taxi available in Mataram. Both the Bluebird and white coloured Express Taksi have a radio despatch system and both companies cars are equiped with meters which should be used by their drivers at all times. Flag fall is approximately Rp 6,000 and the meter ticks up a few hundred rupiah for every hundred meters past 2 km. Taxis can be booked in advance either by calling them yourself or by booking through your hotel. Taxis may be hailed down on the street anywhere around Mataram with the exception of the dark blue Airport Taksi the use of which is limited to arriving airport passengers only.
Bemos run many set routes in and around Mataram, Ampenan and Cakranegara. They may be flagged down anywhere on the streets of Mataram. Bemo can sometimes be crowded and may stop and start frequently to pick up and set down passengers or to tout for business. Sometimes trips can get a bit drawn out. Beware of pickpockets as they often prey on passengers especially around the Cakranegara routes. These pickpockets can be persistent even if their activities are detected. It may be more straight forward and possibly less expensive to take an airconditioned taxi especially if there are 2 or more persons in your group.
Prices are negotiable but a rule of thumb is Rp 5,000-10,000 for a short trip with a local motorbike rider if the destination is nearby, longer distances will require some informed negotiation.
Horse carts known as cidomo remain a common means of transport in Mataram and they are often found operating throughout the congested streets near a pasar or produce market. Public bemos and metered taxis are more commonly used for transport in and around Mataram.
Renting a car is a possible alternative in Mataram. It will cost around Rp 400000-Rp 500000 for a Toyota Avanza/Daihatsu Xenia (2x4) 6-8 seats, Rp 50,000- Rp 650.00 for a Toyota Kijang inova with 7-8 seats. Age and condition of car will effect price as will high rental demand in the peak tourism period around the June-August and local holidays. Rental periods should be for 24hours.
See/Place to visit
- Mayura GardenTaman Mayura is a water palace built in 1744. This was a location of some of the fierce battles that took place between Dutch and Balinese forces in 1894.
- Narmada Park (Taman Narmada). Located 10 km east of Mataram, this park was the relaxation place for the king during the time of feudalism. This park has a Hindu temple and swimming pool. It also has a fountain which is called "Youth Fountain", believed to give long life to a person that drinks its water. Entry fee for this park is cheap, at around Rp 4000 and 'Foreigners' are sometimes charged a posted entrance fee of Rp 10,000. Despite this awkward entrance fee aberration the staff at Taman Narmada are pleasant and helpful and they often just overlook imposing this "Foreigner" fee just welcoming all people with equal enthusiasm and at the normal entrance fees. Despite the venue being a little run-down it has a feel of celebration about it especially on Sundays and is very popular with the people of Lombok who flock there to picnic and swim in a large swimming pool fed by fresh water forest springs. It is a great place to see Lombok people at play.
- Museum Negeri Nusa Tenggara Barat(Lombok Museum), Jl Panji Tilar Negara 6, Mataram, ? +62 62 632519. Tues-Thu & Sat-Sun 08:00-14:00, Fri 08:00-11:00. The NTB museum has exhibits on the geology, history and culture of Lombok and nearby Sumbawa
- Meru:a hindu temple builit by king dom anak agung made karang
- Jalan Udayana. There is a long strip of warungs and small food stalls lining both sides of the road near the airport between Jalan Gilli Gede and Jalan Adi Sucipto. The area is very popular at night especially on the weekends and is a very popular destination for couples who appreciate both lack of bright lighting and the opportunity to stroll or sit in the lineal parks that line the road on both sides. Parking is available along the road and a small parking fee will be requested by the park 'attendants' as you depart. It may seem a bit intimidating due to the very low lighting but it is not a threatening place, more one of subtle and discreet romancing by many of the visitors. Not really worth an outing to see in itself but if you are in the area it can make a pleasant rest stop. There are many outlets selling snacks like satay or small meals. Soft drinks and bottled water are sold by most of the food vendors.
- Jalan Pejanggik, (West of Mataram mall near Ruby supermarket and Rumah Sakit Risa (Risa Private Hospital)). This very informal night time strip has many street food vendors and 'tenda' roadside eating venues that set up at dusk and trade until later in the night. This area can get quite busy some evenings and there is even a half decent cake shop in this strip at
- Melissa bakery, Jl Pejanggik, Cakranegara (opposite the High School smuk) Some of the best doughnuts around. The best doughnuts are found in the glass container, unwrapped but come early on the weekends, the best flavors sell out by midday. Although the staff can only speak very limited English, owner Melissa is very helpful and will explain all that is on offer. Redwood Cafe and Lounge is on the 2nd floor and the ground floor also has a small supermarket or minimart with some speciality and general items.
- Mataram Mall, Jl Pejanggik, Cakranegara (lies between Jl Pejanggik and Jl Pancawarga). Mataram mall like many of the larger malls in Indonesian cities has become a 'destination' for many residents of both the city and from distant kampungs. It has recently been upgraded and expanded yet is showing it's age and does not have pleasant AC. It has parking for cars and motor bikes, an outdoor swimming pool off to the side of the main mall and an amusement arcade on the upper levels. There is a wide range of shops including a smallish Hero supermarket, a Tiara department store, a reasonable homewares store along with a McDonalds and KFC on the ground level. Many smaller shops offer clothing, homewares, computer accessories, travel bags, electrical appliances and handfones. Unless you actually need to buy something it would not need to be visited as other parts of Indonesia have far more interesting shopping malls and the streets, warungs and restaurants of Mataram offer a far richer experience
- Cakranegara. has the greatest concentration of retail outlets and a produce market. There are a few interesting small shops above the markets and a large area to the rear of the fresh produce area containing a considerable number of clothing and homeware vendors. It is an often dark and confusing maze of little corridors and goods so travellers who are not used to tightly packed and slightly chaotic asian market environments might find it best to stick with the more predictable Mataram Mall. The streets of Cakra have a wide assortment of shops lining the roads selling a wide range of goods. Some of the guides in Senggigi and especially Mangsit may be prepared to take a visitor on a trip to the markets and shops of Cakra.
- Mataram Mall. Lombok's premier shopping mall (don't get too excited), has a Tiara department store, a small Hero supermarket (where you can buy beer at the counter) plus fast-food favorites including McDonalds and KFC.
- Epicentrum Mall, Jl. Sriwijaya No. 333. Epicentrum mall is a more modern, "western" shopping mall some 4km from Mataram mall. Including Starbucks, KFC, Levis and more. Here is Lomboks only Cinema, playing movies in English with Indonesian subtitles, and a big hypermart supermarket.
- MGM supermarket, Jl Arief rahman Hakim. sells a wide range of items on two levels and has some interesting shops surrounding the car park at the rear.
- Guided shopping tours. This is a good idea if you want to find your way around the markets and backstreets of Mataram, Ampenan and Cakranegara more easily and possible arrive at some places you might otherwise not discover. Choose your guide carefully and it could be a most interesting outing or just find your own way around. There is everything from second hand motor bike parts, cooking equipment, bric-a-brac antiques and reproductions to gold, pearls and costume jewellery. Much of it is presented in an apparent maze of reasonably civilised chaos whilst other parts are very quiet and laid back. Bargaining and price enquiry is essential in the smaller shops and the market areas. Larger shops in the Mall and the supermarkets have fixed and marked prices on their goods.
Mataram has a large number of restaurants, eating houses and warungs. Look for the ones that seem popular and explore the menus. Most serve traditional Indonesian and Lombok food but there are variations including many restaurants run by the local ethnic Chinese community and a few middle eastern influenced venues. Remain aware of food hygiene issues especially with some street vendors as they may have limited access to water for cleaning utensils and other items. Be adventurous though as Mataram has some good places to eat.
- Dua Em, Jalan Transmigrasi, telp. +62 370 626734. Famed for the best ayam taliwangin Lombok.
- Cak Por, Jl Pancawarga, Mataram. Authentic and well prepared Indonesian food served in a spacious clean reasonably new restaurant, interesting menu with plenty of choices. Secure off-street parking is available at the rear. Reasonable prices.
Some restaurants in Mataram will serve cold beer as do the hotels but do not expect a wine list to be available in other than a large and substantial hotel. You can buy (cold) beer at the counter of the supermarket in Mataram Mall.Public drinking of alcohol or drunkenness is not condoned in any part of Lombok including Mataram. Many restaurants and eating houses have an excellent range of local fruit juices, tea including ginger tea and local coffee (kopi biasa or kopi lombok) at very moderate prices.
- Lombok Raya Hotel, located near Mataram Mall
- Arianz Hotel, located at Jalan Catur Warga
- Bale Rama Hotel, located at Cakranegara area, near Mataram Mall
- Sahid Legi Hotel, at the south side
- Nitour Hotel, Ampenan
- Viktor. This hotel consists of three different sections called Viktor 1, Viktor 2 and Viktor 3 respectively. Viktor 3 has been recently renovated and houses the aircon rooms which cost Rp 200,000. Viktor 3 has wifi which is available to everyone in the hotel. However some rooms in Viktor 1 and 2 will not get a signal. All rooms have TVs, breakfast is supplied. Rp 100,000.