Photo: A shack with a view.

Sumbawa is so big, we’ve split it up into areas, select one of the below for detailed accommodation and food listings in that area. Sights and general overviews for Sumbawa as a whole can be found via the icons above. Don’t know where to start? Read an overview of Sumbawa’s different areas.

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Beaches and islands around Sape

Our rating:


While Bima has a couple of beaches, notably Kolo to the north, better beaches and islands are reasonably easy to visit out of Sape. You could base yourself out of Sape to explore, but Bima is a more interesting town to stay in, and it’s just a 90-minute ride or drive from Bima to Sape.

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The most popular spot to see is Pulau Bajo, 20 minutes by boat from Sape port. We visited two of a bunch of beaches on the island. Pantai Putih (White Sand Beach) runs out to the south of the village by the pier. It is indeed a white-sand beach, and there is apparently some decent snorkelling offshore, but the trash on the the beach above the high tide mark detracts from what is otherwise a very pretty spot.

The main beach is quite pretty.

The main beach is quite pretty.

Further along the coast of the island is the much smaller, but also very pretty, Santigi Beach. This also has a coral reef offshore, but the coral looked pretty dead with few fish — we got a close look as the boatman ran aground on the reef.

Litter, as always, is a problem.

Litter, as always, is a problem.

The other popular beach out of Sape is Pantai Lariti. It’s a mainland beach, but the road is poor and if you’re already taking a boat to Pulau Bajo, get this one thrown in as well. It’s an islet connected to the mainland by a sandbar, which only appears at low tide (your boatman will be able to advise of tide timings). The beach itself is a bit so-so, but the view from the islet (ignore the “admission” fee gate) is impressive.

Santigi Beach (with boat off reef).

Santigi Beach (with boat off reef).

None of the beaches mentioned above are earth-shatteringly gorgeous, but they are pretty and if you find yourself stranded in Bima for whatever reason, a trip out to visit them is a good way to fill a day.

Lariti Beach - best at low tide.

Lariti Beach – best at low tide.

To charter a boat to visit all the above costs locals 100,000 to 150,000 rupiah. We were charged 250,000 rupiah, with zero scope for bargaining — your mileage may vary. The boatmen are clustered on the left as you arrive at the ferry terminal in Sape.

What next?

 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Bima.
 Read up on where to eat on Bima.
 Check out our listings of things to do in and around Bima.
 Read up on how to get to Bima.
 Do you have travel insurance yet? If not, find out why you need it.
 Planning on riding a scooter in Bima? Please read this.
 Browse the web securely while travelling with TunnelBear. Try with a 7–day free trial.

See below for more sights and activities in Bima that are listed on

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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Bima? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Indonesia.

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