Picture a journey to three remote islands surrounded by clear turquoise waters; you’re in a little boat that seems to cut through the glass-like ocean reflecting the clouds above. There are hints of rocks and brightly colored fish as a reminder that you’re staring at the ocean…
THESE are the Gilis and you may have to pinch yourself to believe that is real!
We hired a private glass-bottom boat from Siri beach (read here) for a relaxed tour of the Gili islands. Not in a mood to be particularly rushed or surrounded by screaming tourists in a party boat, we were looking forward to this day-long excursion.
Since we had booked the tour from our hotel (read here), they packed us up with towels, snorkeling gear, lunch box with some fresh fruit and a cooler filled with chilled water/soft drinks/beer.
And then we were off to the Gilis!
Gili simply means “small island” in Sasak (native language of Lombok). As a result, these islands around the coast of Lombok have Gili in their names; Gili Air, Gili Meno and Gili Trawangan (aka. Gili T)
The Gilis are somewhat sheltered in their location and are fortunate to offer a slightly drier, more tropical weather through out the year.
Even the rainy season includes much less rain on the Gilis, making it one of the best beaches close to Bali.
Our first stop was Gili Air –
The word for water is Air (AH-yer) and Gili Air is the only island of the three to have subterranean fresh water. Best known for snorkeling right off the main strip and surrounded by clear turquoise water. We saw lots of colorful fish and several tortoise!
Gili Air has a lovely white sandy beach dotted with bamboo bungalows and little restaurants where you can eat virtually on top of a turquoise sea 🙂
Next up Gili Trawangan (“T”)
Gili T is the most happening of the three Gilis. Bustling with people on bikes, horse carts and local craftsmen, this little island turns into a party town at night! If you’re looking to grab a bite, Gili T has more options off the main strip with little bars, dive shops and restaurants.
And the last stop, Gili Meno
This is the smallest island of the three, and makes for a great lounging stop after all that sun and snorkeling! To get a quick tour of this isle that’s filled with coconut plantations and a few grazing cows, hail a Cidomo – a horse cart and preferred means of transportation.
We found a little bar next to a picturesque beach for a chilled beer and a nap!
Soon, it was time to head back to Lombok and wrap up our incredible excursion.
Overall, the Gilis offer white sandy beaches, colorful tropical coral reefs and warm inviting waters – the definition of an IDEAL beach getaway ❤
Hope you enjoyed reading! xo, – A&A