The Gili Islands

Post date: Sep 18, 2011 7:14:33 AM

The Gili Islands are 3 small islands off the NW coast of Lombok. They have become tourist dive meccas with luxury resorts and dive shops to cater for the budgets of almost anyone who would like to go diving at almost any level. Each island has its own character, restaurants and dive sites.

We spent our time on Gili Air, which is surrounded by fringing reef and a protected lagoon surrounded by reef, which provides a safe anchorage on the eastern side. There are moorings to be had here for $5 a day.

POSITION: S 08º 21.917

E 116º 04.957

In total there are about 20 dive sites around the 3 islands. We went to 4 of them – each very different in their character and the sorts of marine life that inhabit that area. The water is generally clear, although there are quite strong currents between the islands.

The dive shops here have agreed to a standard price for dive tours and courses and ther all do internationally accredited courses – e.g. PADI or SSI for $ US 350

There is a range of accommodation from backpacker to luxury resorts on each island.

Restaurants serve both local and international food – at reasonable prices

Drinks are reasonably priced – Bintang 620 ml 25 000 Rp ($2.50) Pina colada 50 000 Rp ($5)

There is no motorised transport on the islands. Getting around means walking, hiring a bicycle, or getting a cidomo (horse cart) which is the best option fo carrying heavy gear. The roads are all sand but in front of some of the resorts there is a small paved section to reduce the dust level.

Coral reefs, the gentle hiss of warm tropical ocean water (28º) breaking gently onto white sandy beaches, swaying palm trees . . . PARADISE !!