Step into a tropical paradise on the Gili Islands, each surrounded by turquoise water, white sand, and colourful coral reefs. The Gili Islands sit in the northwest coast of Lombok, made up of three small islands; Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno and Gili Air. The islands welcome all types of travellers, from backpackers, couples and families.
To reach the Gili Islands, transfers from Lombok and Bali are readily available by boat. Fast boats run from Lombok, taking off from the port in Senggigi. There are no cars or motorised vehicles on the islands to preserve the quiet life. You will see horse carts, bicycles and people wandering the streets as the main transport modes to get around.
Each of the Gili Islands brings its very own charm and atmosphere, depending on what you're looking for. Moving between the islands is easy, and you can explore all three in one holiday. Local boats run between the islands and do not require pre-booking.
Gili Trawangan is the largest and most popular island for visitors, bringing relaxing island life combined with late-night dining and party options. Restaurants along the beachfront provide a choice of street-food to high-end international cuisine, and the southern part of the island is filled with bars and clubs to party at until the early hours of the morning. Previously, Gili T had built a reputation for being a backpacker’s haven, but it now provides a choice of luxury and upmarket options too. Scuba diving is a popular activity on the island, with many completing their professional diving course (PADI) here. In the high season, Gili T can get very busy, so be sure to book your accommodation in advance.
Gili Air is smaller than Gili Trawangan and provides a more balanced mix of lively entertainment and tranquil island life. Sitting closest to Lombok, here you can expect a more relaxing escape yet still with some live music, dining and nightlife options. With a choice of accommodation, it caters to all budgets, and it offers a mix of restaurants as well as beachfront dining.
Finally, Gili Meno is the smallest island and is a quiet escape, much more untouched than the other islands, with no nightlife to explore. Gili Meno is a nice break away from life's chaos and it is a peaceful retreat, perfect for honeymooners or those looking for seclusion. The accommodation also varies between hotels, bungalows and some luxury options. Dining is a more casual affair with beachside cafes, and here you can enjoy diving and snorkelling or visit the Gili Meno Turtle Sanctuary.
Accommodation options on the islands are rapidly increasing, providing a choice of stays suitable to all budgets types, from luxurious villas to hostels. Dining is also varied, and you will be able to find nearly every kind of cuisine. Choose from traditional Indonesian food to Western cuisine like pizza, sushi and more. Beyond backpackers, the Gili Islands are also perfect for family holidays with hotels and villas catering accordingly. Babysitting is easily accessible as well as many outdoor activities to enjoy as a family, like yoga classes, day spa's, stand up paddleboarding and more.
Situated in Gili Air, Beranda Ecolodge features rooms set in Indonesian traditional village setting with wooden and bamboo furnishings. It has an outdoor swimming pool, garden and free WiFi throughout the property.
At the hostel, all rooms include a terrace or a balcony. Rooms include a shared bathroom, while some rooms have a pool view or garden view.
Gili Trawangan is 5 km from Beranda Ecolodge, while Tanjung is 9 km from the property.
Located right on the white sandy shores of the tropical Gili Meno Island, Seri Resort Gili Meno offers an amazing and homey beachfront accommodation with an outdoor pool, free WiFi access in all areas of the property.
The property is about a 15-minute boat ride from the neighbouring Gili Trawangan Island. Padang Bai Harbour in Bali is reachable within 1.5 hours by fast boat. Getting to Lombok Praya International Airport from the property will take around a 20-minute boat ride to Bangsal Harbour and another 2-hour drive.
Each of the modern and cosy bungalow at Seri Resort Gili Meno provides a flat-screen cable TV with DVD player, air conditioning, wardrobe, seating area, and a minibar. There is also an en suite bathroom featuring shower facility complete with free toiletries. Guests can enjoy either sea view or garden view from the terrace.
Facilities offered at the property include water sports facilities, a shared lounge and a tour desk. An array of activities can be enjoyed with additional fee on site or in the surroundings, including cycling, horse riding and fishing. The staff at the front desk are available from 07:00 to 23:00 and can assist with arranging massages or yoga sessions.
For dining option, the on-site Seri Restaurant serves an array of delectable Indonesian and western dishes.
Boasting a beachfront location and an outdoor pool with a swim-up pool bar, Pearl of Trawangan is located on the beautiful island of Gili Trawangan. It also offers a second outdoor swimming pool which overlooks the garden and features a hot tub. Free WiFi is available in all areas.
The rooms at this resort feature rustic designs that embrace the tropical atmosphere. Each one is fitted with modern amenities like air conditioning, a flat-screen satellite TV with DVD player, an electric kettle and a fridge. The semi-open private bathroom has shower facility, free toiletries and hairdryer. Fresh towels and bed linens are also provided. Guests can enjoy views of the garden from the room. Views of the pool and beach are only available in the selected rooms.
Pearl of Trawangan is located only a few hundred yards away from Gili Trawangan's main promenade where guests can find multitude of restaurants and bars. The island's traditional market and boutiques are about 801 m away. The property offers speed boat transfers between the Gili Trawangan and Teluk Kodek in Lombok, which will only take 10 to 15 minutes. From there guests can catch a 2-hour drive to Lombok International Airport.
The staff at the 24-hour front desk are available to assist guests with bicycle rental, laundry requests, shuttle service, as well as airport transfer service at additional charges. The staff can also help guests to arrange for travel tickets day tours in Lombok, and activities like horse riding, diving, snorkeling, and fishing. Daily housekeeping service are available for free.
The Gili Island's underwater statues have become somewhat of an icon in Indonesia. Nest, which was designed by Jason deCaires Taylor is located off the coast of Gili Meno. The statues were installed in 2017 and ever since, snorkelers and divers have been flocking to the islands to witness these incredible figures standing on the ocean floor. Here, the outline of the sculptures merges into the surrounding natural environment. However, the statues were not just placed there as art; they are part of a more extensive project for environmental conservation towards creating an artificial reef.
Visit at your own accord or join one of the tours by local companies taking you from the shore to the site. Make sure you don't forget your underwater camera! The statues are an incredible tourist destination and attraction to visit; however, keep in mind that the reef is an attempt to preserve and grow marine life. Take your snorkels and flippers to explore the area comfortably, or hire the gear on the island. The water temperature is warm; therefore, a wetsuit won't be needed and a bathing suit will suffice.
The sculptures sit off Gili Meno, and the circle of 48 figures stand together. Both snorkelers and divers can reach the site, with it submerged just four metres underwater. Over time, the sculptures will begin to cover in coral, which will help to generate a reef flourishing with sponges and coral. Marine life flows in abundance surrounding the statues, with colourful fish, black and white tip reef sharks, turtles and moray eels for you to encounter.
Gili Meno Turtle Sanctuary was initiated to help preserve the turtle wildlife on the island. Turtle breeding is a unique process and unlike any other, yet with this comes many newborn deaths. The sanctuary’s focus is to protect the turtles by allowing them to grow in a sheltered area. Once the turtles are fully grown, they are released into the water on their own (which only happens every few months). To be a part of the release a small fee is required which is donated back to the turtle sanctuary.
The sanctuary is a tiny patch of beach and relies on donations to keep it alive. Don’t be confused by the name; it is a private initiative and just a small area off the beach. Several shallow pools stand with turtles divided according to their age. The turtle sanctuary can easily be missed, with a sign under corrugated iron pointing you in the right direction. However, even though it is a small initiative, it makes a big difference in the turtle population. Your support and donations keep the sanctuary alive and help feed the growing turtles so that they can then be released into the wild. During your stay on Gili Meno, take a wander down and visit the Gili Meno Turtle Sanctuary to learn about these beautiful creatures.