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Home to renowned surfing spots, the rugged island of Sumbawa in West Nusa Tengarra is a remote yet beautiful place. Located to the east of the more famous Lombok island, Sumbawa is just waiting to be discovered. It may take longer to reach but once you get to Sumbawa you’ll be rewarded with excellent surf and incredible views.
This island is best known for its waves, sandy beaches and wild terrain. With great surf and spectacular coral reefs, the majority of travelers to Sumbawa come to surf and dive.
The slogan of Sumbawa tells you all you need to know about this island. B E S A R stands for Bersih, Elok, Sehat, Aman Damai, Rapi (Clean, Beautiful, Healthy,and Neat).
As this is a rural destination Sumbawa lacks the tourism infrastructure of nearby resort islands like Lombok and Bali. Visit here if you have a thirst for adventure and want to get a truly authentic experience of local culture.
The pace of life in Sumbawa is slow. Local people are predominantly Muslim but traditional beliefs and practices also continue to influence daily life.
There are two main cultural groups on Sumbawa, the Tau Samawa in the west and the Dou Mbojo in the east. In parts of Sumbawa, traditional ways of living continue today. Many of the ritual events of old ways are still performed such as water buffalo racing and berempuk – a ritual boxing match.
First make your way to Lombok. From Lombok, you can take a ferry to Poto Tano in West Sumbawa.
Some resorts can arrange a private sea plane from Bali directly to Sumbawa or a fast boat from Lombok.
On Sumbawa there are public buses which run on the islands main highways. Car hire is possible through hotels in Sumbawa Besar of Bima. Motorcycles can also be rented.
If you want a more authentic experience, try a traditional horse cart – called a benhur – to explore around Sumbawa Besar.