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The Gili Islands Bali Travel Guide

The 3 Gili Islands Bali; Gili T, Gili Air, Gili Meno

Gili Islands Bali, just a few miles from the coast of Lombok in Indonesia, is an archipelago of three islands. Although small, the island has fast become one of the best tourist destinations for visitors from around the World. Also referred to as Gili T, the Gili island was discovered in the early 70s and has since undergone several changes over the years to accommodate travelers from all over seeking tropical island experience.

All three interconnected islands of Gili features some of the best snorkeling and diving opportunities, crystal clear waters, and powdery white sand beaches. By implication, you will always enjoy being in a tropical paradise regardless of the one you choose to visit.

Each of the islands is different. As such, each is shaped to cater to a specific type of traveler. Getting between each of the islands is cheap and convenient.  But do you know which one is best for you?

Gili Trawangan

Things to do in Gili T -the amazing Gili T swing

More people frequent Gili Trawangan as it is the biggest of the three islands. As a result, it is a preferred destination for parties and a fast vibe. The first of the three island triplet spans about 3.4 square kilometres. The island is lined with

nightclubs and bars for an enriching and vibrant nightlife. As a result, young people, especially backpackers, prefer to stay in Trawangan.

It is worth mentioning that motorized traffic is not allowed, and houses are not taller than the tree levels. Consequently, the primary means of getting around on the island is via horse-drawn carriages and rented bicycles. If anything, though, the island is home to many professional dive centers for scuba diving for all ages.

Accommodation on the Trawangan ranges from luxury villas, resort-style hotels, budget guesthouses, and mid-range hotels. The housing’s strategic location is such that it lets you have an unrestricted view of Bali, nearby volcanoes, and the sunset. Not just accommodation, the restaurants on the island offer some of the tastiest international cuisine, fresh seafood barbecue, and local foods.

Ready to check out the best things to do Gili T?

Things to do on Trawangan

things to do on gili t, gili trawangan, gili islands, gili, gili island, gili trawangan weather, snorkeling gili trawangan, wisata gili trawangan, trawangan, gili terawangan, what to do in gili trawangan

  • Capture an unrestricted view of the sunset
  • Go snorkeling or dive to check out the abundant marine life on the island
  • Join a party or explore by yourself on a boat
  • Horse riding
  • Spas and beauty treatment
  • Sign up for a Gili yoga session
  • Deep dive and swim
  • Motorized water sport
  • Acquaflight and UV dive

Trawangan is no short on restaurants as there are up to eighteen restaurants on the island. By implication, you can eat just about what you want for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Nightlife on Trawangan is always explosive since it is an essential attribute of the island. The destination features up to five lounges and bars; hence, after dark action is always till dawn.

Gili T Accommodation

Gili Meno

gili meno on the gili islands Bali
gili islands Bali

Gili Meno is the quietest and smallest of the three islands and is best for a tropical getaway. Since it is located between the other two islands, it is best for seclusion and quiet living. The island has up to 500 residents and has a swimming beach all around it.

Like Trawangan, accommodation on Meno ranges from small resorts to beachside bungalows, hotels, and other luxurious options. For a little fast pace of living, the environment is excellent for snorkeling, diving, and sanctuaries for birds and turtles. The island is lined with dusty lanes of farm shacks and coconut groves.

However, the most desired spot on Meno for snorkeling, diving, bars, accommodation, and restaurant is the northwest corner. Unfortunately, the island is no stranger to prevailing winds that come over from Trawangan. More often than not, the winds put an abrupt end to the nightlife and force most tourists to retire for the night.

Lombok is relatively calm, and as a result, charter boats and public boats can reach between the islands quickly. You can book a ticket and sign up with the local service for transport between the islands.

Things to do on Meno 

gili islands Bali
gili islands Bali

The Meno sanctuary is dedicated to protection and conservation of threatened tortoise and turtles. When the turtles lay their eggs on the beach, the shelter takes them in and releases the young ones into the ocean for a fee. You can visit the sanctuary while on your trip and help one of nature’s most precious assets.

Of the three beaches, Meno has the most pristine beaches and a calm environment. There are also seven restaurants and three bars for endless fun.

Gili Meno Accommodation

Gili Air

gili air Bali
gili air Bali

Gili Air combines the features of Trawangan and Meno for a hybrid of the two. Although it is closest to the mainland, it is the preferred destination for a blend of tranquil and bustle. As a result, the island is an excellent choice for tourists that wish to be part of the local culture but don’t wish to be identified with the bustle of the tourist crowd.

The island is identified by its warm and shallow waters and its tropical marine life. Although life is slower than in Trawangan, there are still enough activities to keep you entertained. There is also a wide range of dining options that offer local inland food, international cuisines, and top-notch accommodation.

Like the other islands, the distance on the island can easily be covered on a bike or rented bicycle. The island provides an unrestricted view of Lombok’s most active and highest volcano, Rinjani, and a view of magical sunrise. You could also sign up for an excursion for a closer look at the volcano.

Things to do on Gili Air 

gili air Bali
gili air Bali
  • View the sunset and enjoy local fun
  • Scuba diving
  • Free diving
  • Kitesurfing
  • Snorkeling
  • Motorized water sport. 
  • Eat out any of the nine restaurants or visit all three bars
  • Yoga and boat ride 

Gili Air Accommodation

Staying in the Gili Islands

Staying on the Gili Islands is a paradise experience, and you can find accommodation on the Gili islands for really cheap! And, there’s plenty of types of accommodation to choose from. For example, luxury villas, beach villas, hostels, and more.

Depending on your budget, you’ll find something for you. If you’re on a honeymoon, you may want an all-inclusive room on one of the islands. Or, you may just want a bed and breakfast. We just usually get breakfasts included with our rooms.

You should be a way that the 3 Gili islands are doing their best to preserve wildlife and the protection of the reef that surrounds the islands. You will be told this if you go snorkelling that you need to be careful on the reefs. Also, you need to take care of the turtles that swim in the waters around the islands.

How to get from Bali to the Gili Islands?

You will have to get a ferry from Sanur to the Gili islands. If you visiting the popular Nusa Penida or Nusa Lembongan first, then I’ve done this useful guide on getting from Nusa Penida to Gili Islands.


It is easy to visit and stay on the Gili islands. If anything is sure, it is that the islands offer quality accommodation, decent meals, and enough activities to make you relish your visit. You should add it to your travel itinerary or bucket list of things to do in Southeast Asia.

You should visit Ubud after these islands! Check out the top things to do Ubud and the best places to stay Ubud with a view if you plan on visiting!


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