The rapid development of this tiny archipelago located on the northwest tip of Lombok has turned Gili Air, Gili Meno and Gili Trawangan into some of the most sought-after island destinations in Indonesia. In spite of the increase in tourism, the three Gillis have maintained a unique charm and identity catering to visitors of all ages with a multitude of interests. You won’t find any motor vehicles on the islands, however, you can explore by bike, on foot or by horse-cart (cidomo). Once mainly visited by backpackers and party-goers, today the Gili islands offer a wide array of accommodation options from private luxury villas to boutique hotels.
Popular activities range from diving and watersports to yoga and cooking classes, along with high-level spas and fine dining restaurants side by side to local warungs. As well, a real highlight is simply sitting back and admiring the stunning sunsets of an evening.
The Gilis are some of the most advanced places in Indonesia in terms of marine conservation. A variety of environmental initiatives have been implemented to limit the impact of tourism on the islands. You can even be involved by assessing the marine species population, building the Biorock, attending a recycling workshop or a beach clean-up.
The three small islands offer contrasting ambiences, experiences and flavours:
Gili Air is a balanced compromise between local life and high-end foreign tourism. Family and couple friendly, the island also caters for young crowds who enjoy a bit of fun in the evenings, as well as for the spiritual seekers who enjoy practising yoga.
Gili Meno is certainly the island that has preserved its natural environment the most. Large patches of green land, long white sandy beaches and traditional life are the main characteristics of this tiny island sandwiched between the larger and more hectic Gili Air and Trawangan.
Gili Trawangan is the “big city” of the archipelago. Famous among the young crowds for its parties on the main strip, it is also a great destination for honeymooners who commonly opt to stay on the sunset side of the island, characterised by luxury villas, boutique hotels and fine beachfront restaurants.
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