Gili Trawangan, or popularly known as Gili T, is a small island that’s located at the west coast of Lombok, together with two other even smaller islands known as Gili Air and Gili Meno. Gili Trawangan is so small that there are no cars, and only small horse carriages or bicycles are used as the main mode of transportation.
The majority of the hotels, restaurants and shops are mostly located on the east side of the island. Having said that , the west is a popular area for sunsets and there are many sunset bars in that area.
To get there , fly to Lombok (2 hours flight from KUL via air Asia ), take a 2-hour taxi from the airport to Bangsal Pier, then another 40 minutes boat ride then you are on your way to paradise !
There are three ways to get a taxi from the airport. You can expect around IDR 250K to 300K for one way.
- There are taxi counters located within the airport , you can get one from there (but apparently more expensive).
- There are taxis waiting outside the airport , you just need to walk further out to get to them.
- We used Go Car (from the Go-Jek app) , and the fare was IDR 227 K.
There are three ways to get to Gili T.
- By Public Ferry (about 20K per person)
- By speed boat (85K per person , but much faster than public ferry).
- Charter your own boat if your group is a big group.
So here’s our Gili Trawangan Itinerary . Or check out my video on You Tube ~
Day 1 Arrival in Lombok , weaving village , Transfer to Gili T.
The weaving village was along the way to the pier , so we had a quick look. The locals still use the traditional way to weave the songkat.
By the time we got to the hotel , it was already 4 pm and we fell in love with Gili T immediately because the waters were simply gorgeous, and did I say that the waters were blue blue blue ?!
There are also lots of cafes along the road, all with a million dollar view !
Dinner was at Egoiste. We took the seafood platter which was excellent and very value for money. The portion was meant for two and it had two small lobsters , two fish , king prawns , lots of calamari rings , French fries and rice ! It was more like for 4 people than for 2 !
Day 2 － Full Day Snorkelling & Chill on the Beach.
Day 2 was snorkeling day. We went to a few different spots around the three gili islands. We liked one of the spots on Gili Meno the best because it had both beautiful corals and an abundance of fish while the other two only had one or the other.
For the rest of the day , we came back and just hung out on the beach.
Day 3 – Two Hours Snorkeling via Renting a Boat, Cycling, Snorkeling at Gili T, See Sunset at Ombak Sunset
We took a 2-hour snorkeling package but this time we saw something completely different.
The first snorkeling spot took our breath away ! The boat driver told us we would be seeing “statues”. We really didn’t expect anything grand so when we saw the massive sculpture with 20 life sized figurines entangled with each other, it l felt like we were in an Indiana Jones movie discovering some hidden treasures underwater ! It was only in retrospect that we found out the sculpture is called “Nest”, designed by Jason DeCaires Taylor. The material used for the sculpture is PH friendly and is meant to encourage the flourishing of the coral ecosystem.
Not too far away from the sculpture , we saw a sea turtle so close to us ! It was our very first time. It swam right up to us and it was really an amazing moment to see a wild animal so close up !
The last snorkeling spot was the ship wreck. Another Indiana Jones moment again ! The spot is quite deep so we could only float above it to see the ship wreck. Diving would have been more ideal if you really want to see the ship closely.
Our boat driver told us that there’s a good spot for snorkeling on Gili T itself , near Mango Dive. So we went there via the bicycle which we didn’t really have too because we could have easily walked there. I didn’t snorkel this time but Gary did, and he saw another turtle again ! He said he couldn’t believe it because he didn’t really expect to see the turtle was so close to the shore and so close to him too ! Too bad I didn’t get to see the turtle 🙁
(We also unintentionally rode the bike around the whole island as we thought the distance of getting to Mango Dive through the west part of the island would be more or less the same , making an estimate from the map. There’s not much to see there , so it would be good to just to hang out on the beach and save some energy : )
Ombak Sunset Bar was next. The swings at Ombak Sunset hotel is a popular spot. Everyone wants to get themselves on the swing for a few minutes at this super instagammable place !
For dinner , we ate at Scalywags. We saw it on the night before and it was filled with people. It’s gotta be good right if it’s got a lot of people right ? And it was ! Excellent seafood and absolutely fresh but a little pricey though.
We hung out by the pool before checking out. The pool at Vila Ombak was great. The sea and the mountains were right behind it. Loved it.
For lunch , we ate at Black Penny and I would recommend the lobster penne , which is super value for money at only 105K. Then it was another 2 hours drive to the Lombok Airport and good bye Gili Trawangan !
Cost per person (excluding food)
Air ticket RM 337
Hotel RM 650
Snorkeling RM 250 (1.5 days)
Taxi from Lombok airport to Bangsal Pier Round Trip RM 75 (we used the Go Jek App)
Total RM 1312 per person.
For hotel, we stayed in Villa Ombak which is a mid-high ranged hotel at about RM 400 + per night, and for the snorkelling trip, we chartered our own boat even we only had two people. If you’ve chosen a mid-ranged hotel (you can easily find one from RM150 per night) , shared boats with others or had more people to share the taxi cost, you should be able to reduce the cost to RM 1000 per person or less.