Finally, a day out!January 2nd, 2009 | Posted by in 10-Indonesia
At last a break from the thunder and lightening and a long overdue tour of Trawangan got us out of our damp hotel room for a few hours. Luckily we could finally use the top rated snorkel gear which we specially bought for this trip. Needless to say, the weather wasn’t on our side before today but now all looks “Sunny Side Up”.
A rather strange, but beautiful, island indeed. It’s just a tourist trap and nothing more. Almost all (99%) of it’s inhabitants are from Lombok and just stay during the tourist season and return home out of season.
There are no police just a mafia styled security mob. If something gets stolen, you simply notify your local security chief who hunts down the perpetrator and returns the item(s) with the least amount of fuss or embarrassment.
There are 32 licensed taxis (horse and carts) that circle the island. They are allowed to work a maximum 8 hour shift in 24, thus elevating congestion and to give the horses a rest. At the end of each shift they report to an office and pay tax on their day’s earnings. There are no cars or mopeds allowed.
Marijuana and magic mushrooms are advertised and sold all over. A little more discreet than Amsterdam, but with a tasteful chill out vibe.
On New Year’s Eve night locals had to pay to enter the bars while tourists got in for free.
Men with walkie talkies parade the ferry dock communicating the numbers back to the hotels. The number dictates how much you will pay for your room that night and throughout your stay. Guests in our courtyard – which has identical rooms – are paying anywhere between 150 to 600 rupia. Thankfully we arrived early on a fishing boat and caught them all by surprise and got our room for 150.
There is a committee for everything; taxis, bars, hotels, ferries etc. all work in concert to ensure tourists enjoy their stay and pay well for the privilege. It is not cheap, but if you want a safe, relaxing and enjoyable holiday with good diving, surfing, night life and beaches with turquoise water then Trawangan is it!
Just a couple of snaps of our tour yesterday. You can easily cycle the island in 1–hour including a couple of refreshment breaks.