Beaches just don't get much better: the water is warm, striped turquoise and curls into barrels, and the sand is silky and snow-white, framed by massive headlands and sheer cliffs. The south is noticeably drier than the rest of Lombok and more sparsely populated, with limited roads and public transport.
Southern Lombok's incredible coastline of giant bite-shaped bays is startling, its beauty immediate, undeniable and arresting. Yet this region has historically been the island's poorest, its sun-blasted soil parched and unproductive. These days those hills are also pocked with illegal, undocumented gold mines, which you'll see and hear grinding away as you head west to the surf beaches.