Discover Ampenam Market - Lombok
In Lombok, there are three cities: Ampenan, Mataram and Cakranegara. Over the years, they've expanded and merged to create Lombok. Essentially, it's a shopper's delight with residential and administrative centers mixed in. These cities are perfect for a day trip full of shopping and grazing; Trip Guru cannot suggest a more perfect place to do this than the Ampenan market.
Of the three cities, Ampenan was chosen as the original old port during its time as a Dutch colony, and has remnants of the architecture as proof. There are shops in Ampenan selling pearls and pearl jewelry for extraordinarily low prices, and are perfectly genuine pearls from the pearl farms in Lombok and Sumbawa. If you're good at haggling, you can even walk away with a beautiful piece at a very low price. There are also gold shops, where 24 carat gold is sold by the gram. If you feel hungry, there are numerous restaurants, food stalls and warungs that would be happy to serve you traditional dishes and snacks. Ampenan is also the best place to go if you’d like some authentic “Sasak” pottery.
In the evenings, the market area is more pronounced and vibrant, jam-packed with warungs and food carts eager to serve delicious snacks and traditional Indonesian food for the most authentic local flavors available. There are plenty of things to check out, such as the horse carts, and shops selling all sorts of sundries. There is also an area called Kebun Rock in Ampenan, just on the road from the airport. Here, traders have stalls up selling the freshest produce from all over the island, and you can even see them selling live chickens and fish that become available when the fishing boats dock. Unlike the usual shopping centers, strolling through markets provides an immersive experience, where all your senses are engaged.
To get to Ampenam market from Lombok, you can take a rental car and go to Jl. Ahmad Yani to Jl. Koperasi in Mataram and continue onto Jl. Koperasi until you reach your destination in Pejeruk. When walking through the market, be mindful of your belongings and refrain from wearing flashy jewelry, and visit in the mornings to get a chance to examine the various goods being sold there at your own pace.