There's a lot things to do in the Gili Islands, one of the small paradises left on earth, perfect for relaxing a few days, after a great trip through Indonesia.
These 3 small islands, Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno and Gili Air, which are very close to the island of Lombok and at least two hours by speed boat from the magical Bali, can be traveled in less than two hours on foot and are surrounded by a spectacular seabed, something that makes them one of the most desired destinations for scuba divers and snorkeling enthusiasts.
Gili Trawangan is the island that has more tourist infrastructure, hotels, private villas, bungalows, cafes, terraces on the beach, restaurants, pubs and diving companies, which will make you not bored at any time. Of course, it is not the most suitable island for those looking for a space in which tranquility prevails since the nights tend to be moved and in high season there are many people.
Gili Air has always been a paradise for backpackers and although in recent years it is growing at a great pace, this island is a perfect option for those who want to enjoy more tranquility than in Trawangan and with amenities in the form of villas and restaurants older than in Meno.
Gili Meno, located between Gili Trawangan and Gili Air, has the most beautiful beach areas and is also the quietest, so we could say that it is perfect for couples and for travelers looking for more tranquility.
On our trip to Indonesia for free we spent 5 days in the Gili Islands, while on our last trip to Bali we spent a week in Gili Trawangan, based on our experience, we have made a list of the best things to do in the Gili Islands.
How to go to the Gili Islands
The fastest and most comfortable option to go to the Gili Islands, either from the tourist Bali or the neighboring Lombok, is by fast boat. Most travelers arrive to the Gili Islands from Bali by hiring a package that includes transportation from the hotel, it has to be located in the southern and central area of Bali, to the departure area of the Padang Bay boat, plus the journey in Fast boat to the chosen island.
This system is the one we chose both times we visited it and can be hired at any Ubud agency or in the city where you stay. The price is between 70 and 90 euros, round trip, a good option is to book the ticket at a similar price in advance and with a trusted agency.
Something to keep in mind is that you have to be very attentive on the return trip in the landing area in Padang Bay, since when leaving the ship there are many places asking for the ticket and asking the city to which you are heading. Do not pay attention, since it does not belong to fast boat companies. On the contrary, what you have to do is continue walking to the parking lot and only get into the van that bears the name of the agency with which you have contracted the package.
1. Watch the sunset
One of the best things to do in the Gili Islands It is approaching at sunset time to one of the many terraces on the beachfront for a drink while waiting for one of the best sunsets in the world.
In our case we have all seen them from Gili Trawangan, our lodging place, which has a spectacular sunset with the Agung volcano of Bali, in the background. On each island you will see several restaurants and cafes on the beach with sun beds, sun loungers, tables on the beach and even background music, to enjoy the great moment of the day, so the only trouble that you will have, will be to choose in which of them to enjoy one of the most incredible moments of the day.
The sunset area in Gili Trawangan, as in the other islands, is perfectly signposted and although you can ask to make sure, the best way to locate it is the various swings that are over the sea and in which you can not stop taking a picture of postcard while the sun goes down and a powerful red lights up the sky.
The Gili Islands have one of the most spectacular seabed in the world, which will delight diving enthusiasts. You should keep in mind that there are many areas of the reef that cannot be enjoyed by snorkeling alone and although you can see turtles and other fish in shallow waters, the most spectacular and best preserved corals, and the largest fish, are more than depth.
This, in addition to the low prices of the diving courses, together with the good sea temperature and the clarity of the water, make the Gili Islands an ideal place to start in the world of scuba diving.
On this last trip, although I had already dived before, I took advantage of having more time to get the Open Water diving title at the Manta Dive school in Gili Trawangan.
This course that you can take in 3 days, includes 4 dives in the sea and is perfect to learn all the essentials of this world.
If you don't have much time you can do a sea christening , which includes a dive or if you are already a diver, book dives.
Another recommended option is to book this PADI Open Water diving course, dive baptism or dives in advance, all with a Spanish instructor.
If you feel like helping us complete the list of Top 10 things to do in the Gili Islands, add yours in the comments.