What is Lombok famous for? That’s right: beaches and waterfalls. As one of the most popular islands among tourists, it’s got some of the finest beaches in the world, each with a unique “selling point” that attracts thousands of foreigners every single year. In this review, we’ll talk about the Kaliantan Beach. It’s super-clean, beautiful, and tranquil.
I bet it will look and feel exactly like you imagine it: tropical, fun, and with wonderful island vibes. People from all over the globe visit this place to relax, have a good time and gather the necessary strength to go back to their routine lives. So, try to get as much of this place as possible – sink it all in, as the locals like to say.
The Kaliantan Beach is located very close to the famous Kuta beach and village. If you’ve been reading up on Lombok, then you probably already know about the peculiar Bau Nyale ceremony that he Sasak people hold once a year. Usually, the festival takes place in February and the streets are always crowded during that time.
For the locals, this is one of the most important and fun ceremonies, while the foreigners love to check out the exciting games and have a taste of the traditional food. This is, indeed, quite an unusual thing to watch, and when you’re standing on the beach surrounded by numerous people – all smiling – the experience is truly amazing.
The Bau Nyale Ceremony At The Kaliantan Beach
During this event, the entire bay turns into one big, loving family, and you’ll see something interesting on every single corner. I’ve described this ceremony in my other reviews, so I’ll keep it short. Bau Nyale dates a couple of centuries back and a beautiful princess in at the center of it all. According to legends, Mandalika’s father wanted her to get married to one of the local princes, but she refused to obey.
The girl didn’t love any of those men; besides, she knew that regardless of her decision, a war would follow. So, in order to save her people from a meaningless slaughter, she sacrificed her own life by jumping into the ocean from a high cliff.
People that live near the Kaliantan Beach (along with the majority of Lombok’s citizens) believe that she lives on through the worms that come to surface during the February-March period. Young men and women come together in a beautiful dance and collect these worms with their bare hands. They say those that eat them become lucky and never get sick.
The couples take boats into the ocean and go back to the shore with their catch. Indonesia is a very conservative country, but during this celebration, the youngsters have a chance to get to really know each other. I tasted some meals made of these sea worms, and they were quite good.
What Is There To Do At The Kaliantan Beach
While Kuta is the pride and joy of Lombok and a very popular tourist spot, the Kaliantan Beach always goes back and forth. During the high season, it’s heavily crowded. But during the low season, there aren’t that many people around (I’m not saying it’s empty but less noisy).
So, choose a time for your visit according to your “taste.” If you can’t imagine a tropical beach without busy streets and kids running around, then February will be the best month for you. On the other hand, if tranquility and serenity is what you need, choose a different month. The quiet atmosphere attracts people that want to run away from all the noise of their daily lives.
The Kaliantan Beach is pretty far away from “civilization”, and public transports don’t go that way. But they will take you to the Jerowaru district, and you’ll be able to reach your destination from there. If you want something more active, fun, and “trendy”, visit the Senggigi Beach.
It is the most popular beach in Lombok and will welcome you with drinks, food, and lots of happy people 365 days a year. I’m a fan of peace and quiet, and Kaliantan is the obvious choice for me. The white sandy beach with those tiny hills look amazing, and the fact that you won’t find any trash in the area makes me love the place even more.
Where To Stay And What To Eat
As a general rule, you can’t always get the “whole package”, as a friend of mine likes to say. The beach is very quiet and secluded, and that means you won’t find any food stalls, hotels/guest houses, or even fishermen around. Thankfully, the Kuta village is 10 minutes away, and there, you’ll find more than enough cafes, restaurants, and hotels.
That turns the Kaliantan Beach into a perfect spot: enjoy peace and quiet at the beach and be back in your hotel room in the blink of an eye! There are almost no trees at the shore to protect you from the sun, though. Try to get there early in the morning while the sun is still “sleeping”. That’s when you’ll get to enjoy the beach the most.
During the day, I encourage you to take a dip in the crystal-clear water. As mentioned earlier, there’s no trash lying around, and the waves are calm enough for comfort. The beauty of the underwater life will take your breath away, that’s for sure. Wear something light and use sunblock to protect your body.
Sunburns are a regular thing in Lombok, and the Kaliantan Beach is no exception. Back in the day, the locals used to cultivate seaweed in this area, but not anymore. Unfortunately, the somewhat outdated infrastructure and the fact that this landmark is far from the center of the island prevent it from becoming more popular, but it certainly does deserve the extra attention.
Some Tips For Having A Great Time
I know I mentioned that there is a bunch of eating spots in the area, but I have to also say that during the holiday, you won’t be able to buy anything to eat; bring your own drinks and food. There are no clear signs that would direct you to the beach. So, if you’re having a hard time finding the right way to it, don’t be shy to ask the locals for directions.
Even if you can’t speak Sasak, just mention the Kaliantan Beach and they’ll know exactly what you want from them. Please remember that there are no lifeguards on the beach, which means you shouldn’t go too deep into the water – nobody will come to your rescue when you drown.
Alright, that’s pretty much it. This is yet another lovely beach in Lombok that you’ll definitely enjoy, especially if you travel with your friends. It’s not the busiest spot on the island and you’ll have to entertain yourself, so to speak. There are plenty of other beaches that are more fun. Kaliantan is all about solitude and being alone with Mother Nature.
The umbrellas and tents will protect you from the sun and the wind. The locals will share crazy stories about the princess. The birds will sing their beautiful songs. The ocean will enchant you with the waves. The sand will “hug” your feet and keep them warm. And the Kaliantan Beach will take your breath away!
How To Find The Kaliantan Beach
As I already mentioned, this place is located close to Kuta and all the beaches in Central Lombok. Even if you don’t have a car/bike, you can just walk from one spot to another, admiring the view and checking out the hotels and restaurants. Lombok is famous for the affordable and lovely service – it’s one of the reasons why tourists really love to visit the island.
Renting is also an option, and with more foreigners visiting Lombok every year, the locals are starting to offer way better deals than before. I’m a big fan of bikes. Riding a steel horse along the shore and following the gigantic waves of the ocean is the best remedy for any frustrating and confusion you might have.
From the Lombok Airport, the drive is 1 hour 15/30 minutes long. Take the shorter route – the road will be very straightforward and without any bumps. Or, pay a taxi driver and let him worry about it. Mataram is approximately 2 hours away. So, if you’re in the city right now and want to visit the Kaliantan Beach on your last day in Lombok, it would be better to hire a personal driver.
Please be advised that the road might get worth as you approach the beach. This part of the island is not nearly as developed as, say, the capital, which means you should be careful and drive slow.