Gili Trawangan – The paradise getaway Island
Gili Trawangan is a true paradise. It is the third out three wonderful tiny islands close to Lombok. You will be absolutely blown away by what you see there. Especially the unique vibes will make you never wanna leave this fantastic place again. And there are heaps of things to do: snorkeling, scuba diving, boat tours, fishing and much, much more.
Gili Trawangan – The paradise getaway Island
Upfront I have to say: I love Gili Trawangan. It is such a lovely place and I just could not resist the charm. So don’t be suprised, if this post might sound like a little love letter here and there 🙂
But I promise you from the start, you will love it too. I haven’t met anyone, who did not like it. Many people consider Gili Trawangan to be the small more paradisaic brother of Bali. So, that is a big statement for itself already, I guess.
Gili Trawangan – General information, costs and where to stay
Gili Trawangan is one out three islands from a small island chain called Gili Islands. They lie in the balinese sea right next to a bigger island named Lombok. Lombok is famous for its Rinjani tour. And the Gili islands are the perfect getaway after this tough hiking tour. Especially Gili Trawangan is the place to go to for most people.
Alle of the three islands are known for something different. Gili Trawangan is known to be a combination of wonderful nature and good fun. Why that combination?
Because on the one hand it is really beautiful. Perfect water, nice beaches, palms and small huts everywhere…
And on the other hand it is a good place to have fun and party, because many travellers come to this island every single day to have a good time. So, there is something for everyone. For people, who need some quiet time. And for people, who need want some action.
History and accommodation
Gili Trawangan has about 1.800 inhabitants and was found in 16th century by Portuguese sailors . Back in the days, it only was a small island that no one really cared about. Today it is only used for tourism purposes. No suprise when you see how beautiful it is.
To get there you need to take the ferry. There is a small boat and a slow one. You can either come from Bali or from Lombok, depends on what you did before. The costs for the fast one are about 30 $ (Bali to Gili Trawangan). The slow one is less So, it is not a lot. Prices in Southeast Asia are very cheap anyway. And you can get it even cheaper on the spot.
To get around on the island you can only take the bicycle, use horse drawn carriages or just walk. I find this way of transportation to be quite a nice alternation.
Accommodation on Gili Trawangan is very affordable as well. Of course it is a little higher than on the mainland, but on an average you pay about 8 – 15 $ per night. Does not matter where you stay. Gili Trawangan has good quality hotels and homestays like Oceano Jambuluwuk resort as well as normal backpacker hostels. I have seen both and I can say, every option has something positive to it. The more expensive ones obviously have a higher standard where as in the hostels you meet more people. So, it depends on what you like 🙂
Island, restaurants and weather
Gili Trawangan is actually that small, you can walk around the island in about 2 hours. If you take a bicycle, you can get from one to the other end in less then 15 minutes.
You do not have to worry about anything on Gili Trawangan. This small paradise is connected pretty well to the mainland so, that there is always food, water, drinks and everything else you might need available.
Gili Trawangan has plenty of good and cheap restaurants. A filling and simple meal like fried rice with veggies and an egg is about 2 – 4 $ depending on which restaurant you choose. Just watch out with the seafood in Asia. If you want to eat it, make sure it’s fresh. Otherwise you will have a problem for a couple days 😉
The weather at Gili Trawangan is also very decent. Besides the rainy season (November to March) you have sun all the time. The temperature is averages on 27 °C. When I was there, I have not had a single bad day. And I guess, most people will tell you the same. So, if you like the sun, then Gili Trawangan is your place 🙂
Gili Trawangan – Highlights and what to do
Gili Trawangan has many highlights. Of course the range is not that wide, but for people, who just wanna chill out in paradise and do typical paradisaic activities, Gili Trawangan is the perfect place.
The first highlight on Gili Trawangan is definitely the snorkeling. The ocean is just phenomenal. Crystal clear torquoise waters with a pleasent temperature. The corals in the whole area are really beautiful as well. When decide to go snorkeling, then you will probably see one famous turtle (there are more than one turtle though). This turtle is is swimming along Gili Trawangan since ages now.
I was at Gili Trawangan with 2 Brazilians and 2 French guys. One Brazilian told me he has seen the turtle that I have seen 6 month before already. And he got told of it by another traveller even more than 1 year before that. So this turtle is stayed in the same area all the time. Why is it so famous? Because it is probably the most gentle turtle you will ever meet. It has not problems with humans and is even coming close to you, because he/ she wants it.
Snorkeling gear can be rented everywhere. It only costs a couple dollars for a whole day. You can also check out the baby turtle “farm”. It’s basically aquariums with looooads of baby turtles in them. So cute 🙂
Gili Trawangan is also famous for scuba diving. There is even the opportunity to see mantas in the area. The chances are low, but they exist. They diving areas are very good. Even though I have not been scuba diving at Gili Trawangan, I still have seen some footage and it looked really cool. Many people do their licences there, because it is quite cheap 🙂
Swing and fishing
The third thing to do is to check out the beach and the swing on the west side of the island. Once you reach it, you will be rewarded with a magical sunset and you can take some nice pictures for your Instagram (postcard material). The beach itself is really pretty to and you also find some bars/ restaurants there. So you’ll never be thirsty or hungry 😉
I also recommended you to try ou fishing in at Gili Trawangan or you try out a proper fishing tour. You’ll be put on a small boat and get driven to spots where you just through in your fishing line and you will easily catch some. Even beginners will be able to do this 🙂
Something really nice on Gili Trawangan are the night market. Very night you can go to the market, where they sell all kind of stuff: food, drinks, clothes, toys, etc. Most people go there to eat some fresh seafood. All the vendors will put the fresh fish, quid, etc. In front of them on big table and you can choose whatever you want. You can even negotiate with them (and I recommend you to), because they need to sell there stuff on the same day. The clothing stores are also very nice. They are very cheap. You even get some pretty good fake branded stuff in good quality. So check out the market of Gili Trawangan. You’ll like them 🙂
The last thing you should consider to do in Gili Trawangan is to go on a big night out. I know this is not everybody’s favourite thing to do, but Gili Trawangan is famous for that. This small island has plenty of restaurants, bars and even some small clubs to go to. Because everyone is so chilled out, the overall atmosphere is very relaxed. Everyone is just there to have a good time. No stress, no worries. It’s very cool and I definitely recommend it whenever you visit Gili Trawangan.
Gili Trawangan – What I have learned
Gili Trawangan taught me a small lesson. As you can read here, travelling teaches you a lot of lessons. You will have bright days and dark days on your travels. Just like in everyday life. There is not a difference. But just like in normal life, you will also need some time to relax once in a while.
But first you should have achieved something before you relax. Relaxing without reaching a goal before, is just not deserved in my opinion. People, who do that, only fool themselfs. Before Gili Trawangan, I finished the Rinjani trekking, which was my goal and a hard task to do. But I made it. It took a lot of effort to make it. But, because I still did it, I deserved a short time out at Gili Trawangan.
So always remember:
First work, then hang out!
This is what Gili Trawangan told me and I am really glad about it, because I still implement this rule into my life until today.
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