|Pic courtesy: Derrick Chang|
In general, Bali and Lombok have similar weather, though Lombok is dried and receives less rain than Bali.The hot and sticky rainy season lasts October to March with downpours that can obscure all visibility. The wet season brings daily rain with the worst falling between December and February. From June to August, the temperature drops slightly and there is usually a refreshing cool breeze in the air. Humidity is high during the rainy season and better in the dry season.
The popular dry season, referred to as "summer" by the locals even though it is the southern hemisphere, is cooler and much more pleasant. The best time to visit is during the dry season from April to October. December and January are characterized by sudden and short thunderstorms in the afternoon, though sometimes it can rain for days, flooding all the rivers and roads. This is also high season together with Christmas and New Year, when most hotels and villas will charge higher rates.
Low, High & Peak Season
Low: January 9 to June 30; September 16 to December 20. Low season is a great time to negotiate deals on accommodations and find cheap hotel packages.
High: July; September 1 to September 15; Chinese New Year and Easter week. Accommodation is hard to find and almost as expensive as peak season.
Peak: August; December 20 to January 9. Although the weather in August is cooler than the rest of the year and there is very little rain, December's weather is hot and humidity is high. During peak season, Lombok is bursting at the seams with tourists. The roads become heavily congested and dinner reservations are hard to get. Expect to pay almost double for accommodations; shopkeepers will drive a hard bargain.
Most of the major Christian, Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist holidays are celebrated in Lombok. The government also sets a few additional days every year during the year, though Islamic holiday dates change year to year. January: 1 New Year; February: 14 Chinese New Year (2561), 26 Maulid (Birth of the Prophet); March: 16 Nyepi Balinese New Year (1932); April: 2 Good Friday, 28 Waisak Day (Buddha's birthday); May: 13 Ascension Day; August: 17 Indonesia Independence Day; September: 11 and 12 Eid-ul-Fitr Muslim festival to end Ramadan, 13 shared holiday by government decree; November: 17 Idul Adha, cattle sacrifice and hajj pilgrimage; December: 7 Islamic New Year (1432), 25 Christmas.
The main religious event on Lombok is the Bau Nyale Festival (Feb or Mar). The Lingsar Temple is the site of a mock war in October for Perang Topat.