Three small dots speck in the northwestern coast of Lombok Island. They may seem insignificant on the map but they are a major tourist destination complex. The three Gili Islands are the most popular attraction in Lombok so far. That says a lot considering Lombok is developing their tourism sector really fast.
The Gili Islands are typical resort islands; they have powdery white sandy beaches, surrounded by shallow waters, and somewhat fertile with many green trees. Life at the islands are also slow and relaxing, making it an ideal holiday destination, especially for young people. Here we’re going to learn about the three islands.
Gili Air, an often overlooked beauty
Gili Air is the closest one to the mainland Lombok. In the past, Gili Air are often overlooked by tourists because it is less developed than the other two island. But the table have turned with the new trend of budget traveling. Being less developed, Gili Air provides cheaper accommodation that cannot be found in the two neighboring gilis. The whole island is explorable on foot so you can choose any part of the island to enjoy. Gili Air is a great swimming and snorkeling area,
Gili Meno, honeymooners’ favorite escape
Gili Meno is located in the middle of the cluster, and it is also the smallest one of the three islands here. Though only 2 kilometers long and a kilometer wide, Gili Meno actually has its own lake! This island is very popular to honeymooners as it provide a total escape. For divers and snorkelers, Meno is inviting because of the Gili Meno Wall. In this underwater wall, turtles roam freely during the day, and moray eels swims among giant gorgonian fans during the night.
Gili Trawangan, the most popular destination
Often called Gili-T, this island has developed a reputation as hippy party paradise destination. Gili Trawangan is the biggest of the three and also the most popular one. There are several luxury hotels and villas that aims to help build this island’s new reputation as a family friendly destination suitable for all ages. Some hotels and villas offer baby-sittings services so that no one gets left behind when the family decide to go on vacation.
Abundant Diving Spots
While enjoying the beach and snorkeling could be enough enjoyment for some, others opt for a bit more challenging holiday. Gili Islands provide just that by offering many diving packages. There are many diving spots surrounding these islands, each has its own specialties. Depends on your preference, you might dive to meet mantas, sharks, turtles, moray eels, stingray, or generally enjoy the colorful coral reefs. The Gili Islands Diving Association (GIDA) makes sure that there are no unhealthy price war as well as ensure that the service quality is top notch.
These Gilis are most accessible from Lombok, but you can also reach them from Bali. Here, you can enjoy a sunrise over Mount Rinjani of Lombok and Sunset over Mount Agung of Bali. Motorized land vehicles are prohibited in these islands, meaning your options to explore the lands is on foot, by bicycle, or on a cidomo (a pony-drawn cart). Accommodation varies from a budget friendly hostel till luxury rooms.
So, which gili will you be going to first?