It was finally time to start my solo motorbike trip from Bali to Flores. The first leg would be to get off Bali by taking the ferry from Padang Bai, about two hours from Kuta. The ferry to Lombok takes around five hours, so I decided to leave late and sleep on it.
I arrived at the terminal at 11, and showed the disappointed policeman my bike’s registration and my Indonesian driver’s license. No tea money for him! I drove on, parked, and found a place to sleep for a few hours. Taking a motorbike off of Bali really was easy.
I was roused from my fitful sleep at 4 am. We had arrived on the island of Lombok. It was cold and pitch black. I should have left later!
My plan was to just drive across the island to Labuan Lombok, where I could catch a ferry to Sumbawa. I’d see more of the island on the way back.
Bali is Hindu, and Lombok is Mulsim, so the island is like a different world. Google Maps sent me down small roads through villages. Women walked with baskets on their heads. I passed fancy mosques lit up in the darkness.
Around five the mosques started blasting music. Then the calls to prayer started. There were so many mosques the calls blended together into cacophony. I stopped in a field to admire the stars, and listen to the crickets and chants.
The rising sun made Mt. Rinjani glow. I saw the sunrise over this huge active volcano from Amed, Bali. It dominates the landscape. I hoped to climb it on the way back. But for now, I pressed on.
As the morning progressed, Lombok’s famous horse carts came out. I passed through a busy market town and stopped for coffee and breakfast.
My drive across Lombok took about four hours. It seemed strange not to stop anywhere, but I knew I would be coming back this way.
Finding the ferry was a little tricky, and I had to ask a few folks. There were no police guarding it, and I drove on unmolested.
I was the only foreigner on this boat. The short crossing would take me to Sumbawa, where tourists don’t venture.