A trip to Bali would not be complete without an excursion to one of the Gili Islands. A short boat ride away, the three small desert islets are surrounded by white sand, coconut palms and beautiful turquoise sea. We decided Trawangan aka Gili T was the right Gili right for us – you just can’t do it all – the others will have to wait until next time.
One of Indonesia’s top destinations, Gili T is known for it’s bar life, access to snorkeling and delicious restaurants. It is a tropical paradise and playground for those wanting a mixture of sea, sun and fun.
After many hours of scoring through TripAdvisor and weighing up pros and cons of all the available accommodation on Gili T, we decided to stay at Hotel Vila Ombak due to its modern vibe and closeness to all of the action.
Onsite there are restaurants, spas, a Dr, multiple communal swimming pools as well as a centre for snorkeling, diving and other water sports.
As it was my birthday, we were super keen to go out on the glass-bottom boat and go snorkeling with sea turtles. I couldn’t imagine a better way to spend the day! We went all around the island to different coral reefs and instantly were surrounded by all sorts of glorious colourful fish. Our guide was a local expert and seasoned snorkeler who knew all of the hot spots and although he set our expectations low (there was a chance of seeing no sea turtles), we saw two seas turtles!
After a few hours of swimming it was time to feed the fish. Holding bread in our hands, the fish came right up to our fingertips to steal chunks of carbs.
Back on land we got dressed up to go out. Being my birthday, we were pleasantly surprised to find a piece of chocolate birthday cake laid out on the desk. An absolute treat given we were pretty hangry from swimming. It was those little nice touches that made staying at Ombak nice.
We decided to eat dinner while sitting in the bean bags at the outdoor movie theatre as Mad Max was playing. As it was low season, there wasn’t actually a lot of partying going on so after a bit of wandering up and down and with nothing much going on we decided to call it a night. I didn’t mind though because after such an intensive four-month tour through Europe I was in a transient state of mind.
The next day we were feeling pretty lazy and decided to hang around in our private pool. We ordered a tonne of delicious room service – everything from breakfast to their amazing Nasi Goereng. I feel that sometimes you just have take a step back and chill out – it isn’t every day you have your own private pool. Well.. actually maybe in Bali it is.
Our time as Vila Ombak and Gili T was pretty rad. It was a bit of a shame that we didn’t get a decent boogie in but everything can’t be perfect all the time – I think it is still worth going there in it’s off season if you’re after a bit of swimming and relaxing action.
After staying at Hotel Tugu in Lombok we took the twenty-minute public ferry from Bangsal Port to Gili T. If coming from Lombok, make sure to get a taxi to the official concrete offices; there are lots of street sellers claiming they can sell you tickets who will rip you off. Gross. At the time of writing this, public boats are super cheap at Rp9,000 per person. They leave all day when they are full.
There are no cars on Gili T so expect to get around via horse with cart, bike or walk. I wasn’t a big fan of using the horses, most looked tired, hot and hungry. After we got on one and it shrieked we thought it was much better to walk. I’d rather be in pain than some poor wee animal!
Back to Serangan harbour in Bali on the Fast Boat on route to Uluwatu. We found the best boats in terms of reviews were Gili Cat and Blue Water Express – a tad more expensive but had better times and transfers without any dodgy reviews. They also provided seasickness tablets which were much needed.
The Unimpossibles visit was courtesy of Hotel Vila Ombak Hotels.[line]
Tugu Hotels Lombok Contact Details://
Website / bookings, Instagram, Facebook
Phone: +62 370 6142336
Address: Gili Trawangan Island, Desa Gili Indah, Kecamatan Pemenang, Lombok Utara, Nusa Tenggara Bar. 83355, Indonesia