Let’s get wanderlusted in Gili Trawangan, Lombok!
Well, I will make it short. When I was there, I found out 15 facts that are completely different than what I expected. So, here they are. Enjoy!
It’s not part of Bali
A lot of people think because it’s not far from Bali then it’s still in the Bali area. No, it’s in Lombok Province.
Their traditional language is Sasak
This is totally different than the language in Bali.
The word “Gili” means island
No wonder if you’re seeing lots of islands called “Gili in Lombok. So, Gili Trawangan, it actually means Trawangan Island.
How hot and humid it is
When I was in Gili Trawangan, it was in September. The island is so freaking hot and humid, I barely feel the wind. I expected to get some breezy summer time by the beach but it was burning me.
How they look at you
Their stares will follow you when you’re passing by. That’s weird and I don’t like it. Based on my experience, when the hotel workers had nothing to do, they’d sit along together and when I passed by, they kept looking at me, following on where I was going. At least, it’s what happened in my accommodation and I hate it. Hopefully, that won’t happen the same to you.
Everything here is more expensive than in Bali. For example, 1 Litre of mineral water costs Rp 10.000 (US$ 1) in the minimart while in Bali, it may cost about Rp 6.000 (US$ 0.5).
Some restaurants are terribly awful
Just look where the crowds are, the good restaurants are usually crowded. I ate macaroni & cheese which didn’t look or taste like macaroni & cheese in one of the “by the beach” restaurant for Rp 40.000 (US$ 3). It was expensive and tasted awful since it was basically boiled macaroni with shredded cheap cheddar cheese on top.
It’s not really a Party Island
In my opinion, the parties in Kuta, Bali are way more pumping also the clubs will open till the morning. Unfortunately, as far as I know, the clubs and bars stop the music after midnight in Gili Trawangan.
The mushroom is quite popular being sold and used in Gili Trawangan but do you know what it’s made of? The mushrooms grow in buffalo poo, usually when it’s humid. Yuck! I wouldn’t want to taste it. But, if you’re willing to try, that’s your free will.
Last time when I came here, there were always 3 polices patrolling the Gili Trawangan island. Well, there might no police in the past but not anymore.
They’re mostly not Hindu
Different from Bali, the religion on most people here is Islam and you will hear the adzan 5 times a day from the mosque located in the center of the island. Adzan is a calling/praying that’s being sung in the mosque to remind Muslim people that it’s time to pray and in Indonesia, it’s normal to hear it quite loud through the mosque’s speaker.
Advanced snorkeling trip
This might be because I was choosing the wrong snorkeling trip. I wasn’t prepared for swimming that far away since all I know about snorkeling is the boat will stay in one place while you snorkel the surroundings. It is a different story, there will be 2 guides, 1 in the front and 1 in the back. You will have to swim further away from the boat following the sea current and then the boat will go to your finish area so there will be no turning back. I was so exhausted, I didn’t even join the first round.
The centered crowds
Not all parts of Gili Trawangan are crowded, there are some infamous areas where you can find local houses. The downtown area is the most crowded.
Cheap eat places
If you’re overwhelmed by how expensive the foods are and looking for “warungs”, try to walk inside the narrow streets or just use Google Maps. The restaurants or cafes by the beach are quite expensive.
As you may know, there is no motorbike so you have to walk or rent the bicycle. As far as I know, the bicycle rent is only until dawn and the price range is almost the same as motorbike renting in Bali mainland. Also, the horse-drawn carriage a.k.a. cidomo is very expensive.
After knowing the facts of Gili Trawangan, now how do you get there? By a speed ferry of course which you can easily book online, hassle-free completed with free cancellation. Well, the price online maybe even cheaper than buying it offline though!
CLICK ME | Ferry from Sanur, Bali to Gili Trawangan
CLICK ME | Ferry from Padang Bai, Bali to Gili Trawangan
CLICK ME | Ferry from Lombok to Gili Trawangan
Thank you for reading this short blog post. Let me know how you like this, I might make some more. In case you’re planning to go to Nusa Penida, I got you covered, just click here. Or you wanna go to Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan? Just click here for the travel guides and tips.