Travel guide: Gili Air (Indonesia).
Gili Air is one of the three Gili islands between Bali and Lombok. They are very close to remote paradise. Except they’re not so remote. You’ll get your dose of dreamy sunsets and good snorkelling. Gili Air is just a little bit more developed and has more restaurants than Gili Meno but it’s much more quiet than party-ish Gili Trawangan. Here’s a short Gili Air travel guide.
How to go to Gili Air from Bali or Lombok
You’ll probably visit Gili Air from Bali. You can buy a combined ticket to Gili Air from every tourist agency on Bali, we payed 270.000 IDR from Ubud (don’t forget to bargain!). Cheaper way is to go to Padangbai by yourself and buy a ticket to Gili Air there.
If you’re planning to go from Lombok you need to go to Bangsal (you can also come via Sengiggi). Start your trip early (boats drive from 8 – 16 h) and buy a ticket for public boat to Gili Air in Koperasi Angkutan Laut Karya Bahari (not some smaller fake office) for 12.000 IDR (drive lasts 30 min). Wait for the boat to get full and don’t buy any extra tickets, no matter what they say. Warning: Don’t buy tickets from people in the port who are saying that the official office doesn’t have tickets anymore/there are no boats/your ticket is not valid! Sometimes they even want to sell you a ridiculously expensive mosquito repellent or even antimalarics. They’re full of s**t.
You also have the option of a shuttle boat and fast boat for different prices.
Where to find a hotel on Gili Air
Gili Air is quite small so you can walk around on foot and find an accommodation yourself. We found a very basic double room with bathroom for 120.000 IDR without breakfast (150.000 IDR with breakfast) in one of the local homestays, but this option was probably the cheapest around.
Where to eat on Gili Air
You can find a lot of beautiful restaurants with right on the beach (in most of them you can choose your fish and veggies – around 5 $), and lots of cheap local restaurants in the village (15.000 – 30.000 IDR).
What to do on Gili Air
The best thing to do on Gili Air is of shore snorkelling. Corals are ok and the fish are friendly (maybe because everyone feeds them) and you’ll see turtles in the evening, feeding on corals.
1 $ = 13.850 IDR
Few useful words in Bahasa Indonesia
It will make the locals happy 🙂
Good morning = selamat pagi (S’LAH-maht PAH-ghee)
Good afternoon = selamat siang (S’LAH-maht SEE-yang)
Good evening = selamat sore (S’LAH-maht soh-ray)
Good night = selamat malam (S’LAH-maht MAH-lahm)
Thank you = terima kasih (TREE-mah KAH-see)