Getting to Sumbawa Besar

Trip Start May 05, 2008
Trip End May 05, 2013

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, West Nusa Tenggara,
Monday, June 4, 2012

The journey from Gili T to Sumbawa Besar started off with a pleasant boat ride to Bangsal. We had purchased an open ticket prior to Gili that would get us back to Mataram including the boat.On presenting the open ticket at the ticket office in Gili T they explained that they have many problems with this company Pesona Shuttle Service and they never pay them for the boat. So we had to pay the boat. We got to Bangsal and were greeted by lots of people claiming to be from Pesona but they weren't really. We walked to the cafe where we were first met and this is Pesonas office. We mentioned the issue with the boat and they said they would provide a refund. They also talked us into taking their bus including ferry from Mataram to Sumbawa Besar. This we were told would leave at midday. After driving around and wasting lots of time dicking around we eventually got to Mataram. We got dropped off in a strange place where it seemed we would transfer to a different bus. The Pesona bus buggered off. The guys there explained that our bus was not leaving until 4 pm and said that for 100,000 IDR more they could get us on a bus at 1pm. We were getting pretty pissed off now. We had already paid 350,000 IDR. We agreed to only pay 50,000 IDR and we were brought to the bus station and bundled onto a local bus bound for Sumbawa Besar. We in fact just wasted our money and should have just ditched Pesona when we got to Mataram and flagged an ojek (motorbike) to the terminal. So far we have been hustled and dicked around by the shuttle bus operators here on Lombok.

It should only take 2 hrs to cross Lombok to the ferry terminal on the eastern side. Local buses however, stop everywhere and anywhere along the way and sometimes just stop for no reason at all until you notice the driver has stopped for a smoke and a chat with mates. The ferry crossing to Sumbawa was fine, only 2 hrs and then it was a further 4 hr drive to Sumbawa Besar. It took us all day to get here.

We spent just on night here in a dingy hotel and head off again the next morning to Bima.

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