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Introducing Sumbawa Besar

Sumbawa Besar, often shortened to ‘Sumbawa’, is the principal market town of the island’s west. It’s leafy, devoutly Muslim (that legion of nearby karaoke bars notwithstanding), and runs on the bushels of beans, rice and corn cultivated on the outskirts. It’s also quite friendly and easy to navigate, but there’s not much to see here aside from the old palace, and a lively morning market. Trips to Pulau Moyo and to nearby villages are worthwhile but take time and money, which is why most travellers simply consider this town a respite on the trans-Sumbawa highway.

Traffic runs in a high-speed Jl Hasanuddin–Jl Diponegoro loop. The best sleeping and eating options are clustered along Jl Hasanuddin.