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If you are thinking about the Gili Islands, you can imagine the picture of clean, fresh turquoise water, ornamented with white sand and palm trees. The Gili Islands are a paradise destination spot in the world. Partying till Dawn, swimming with turtles, snorkeling, watching beautiful sunsets is what some of the best things to do in Gili Islands. You can find beauty in Indonesia like never before and here are some of the best things to do in Gili Islands.

13 Best Things To Do In Gili Islands

There is no dearth of exciting things to do in Gili Islands. Take a look at some of the best activities to do in Gili Islands.

1. Diving And Snorkeling


When you are in Gilis, the classic thing to do is diving and snorkeling. This is because the islands have very interesting underwater activities. There are different diving schools and then although you are on Gili Trawangan. There are dives from beginners too and you can nicely borrow the snorkeling equipment which is available on every street in Gilis.

Ideal for: Water sports enthusiast
Cost of the activity: It depends on the individual activity.

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2. Go Around The Islands

Gili Islands

The best thing to do in Gili Islands is to walk around the islands for just one or two hours. A better term for this would be circumnavigating and you can rent a bike here in Gili Trawangan where you could easily get one. Or else, the place where you stay will have private bike rentals so you can ask them too. Thus, take a ride on the bike and go around the islands. Lock your bikes all the time because if you leave it unattended then you can only dream about the lonely dream beaches.

Ideal for: Everyone
Cost of bike rental: Ask around local bike rentals

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3. Island Hopping On Gili Islands

Gili Islands

Island hopping is when you can visit different islands on the same day. For this, you would have to leave early, around 9.30 AM and they leave from Gili Trawangan to the other islands. You can estimate the one-way prices to be around 20,000-30,000 rupiah. Also, get in line with the transport people and see if there are ticket booths on the Trawangan islands itself from here you can go to other islands. See if you are a group of 10 or more, you can choose an own charter boat which will cost you a complete 350,000 rupiah round trip. It is much more effective than public transport.

Ideal for: Thrill seekers
Cost: As discussed, for a detailed account, you can directly call the transport providing company

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4. Water Sports In Main Island


The most thrilling part of the most fun thing to do in Gili Island is going to have fun in the water. There are different activities like standing paddling or SUP where you can paddle yourself along the island. You can also do some canoeing or kayaking on your own. There is a specific company called Karma Kayak which will lend you some day trips to the islands where the food and the guide are included for 20 euros. Apart from this, you have kitesurfing, wakeboarding, snorkeling, etc. Never estimate any strong currents and that is the only precaution you need to take.

Ideal for: Family and Friends
Cost of Water Sports Activity: Depends on singular activity

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5. Surfing, Fishing, And BBQ


How about some surfing and then fishing followed with BBQ? Sounds like a nice plan right? There are some great surfing spots on the islands and these are mainly in the southeast of Gili Trawangan. There is Gili Meno and Gili Air. You will find more popular ones when you ask the locals. Apart from this, there are fishing tours where you will be taken fishing and then you can put on a great BBQ. You may get the chance to do spearfishing too.

Ideal for: Anglers/ friends
Cost of fishing: You can contact the travel and activity in organizing companies

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6. Shop In The Night Market


When the sun has set, you can take a stroll in the market square. Do you know why it is one of the most fun things to do in Gili Islands? That is because you are going to get some cheap thrills. You can shop great thrift store items, eat noodle dishes, loads of vegetables, grilled corn on the cob and a lot more. There are many dishes you can try in the market place like Nasi Campur which is one of its kind Indonesian rice with lots of vegetables, eggs, meat, peanuts and of course some fried noodles. There are so many food booths too where you can try a grilled Red Snapper and tofu.

Ideal for: Foodies!
Location: Marketplace

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7. Watch A “Stick Fight” Tournament

Stick Fight

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So, in the Sasak language, it is called as Present. This is very traditional and old combat between two randomly selected fighters who will go against each other with a stick and shield. They are then musically accompanied by the Beleganjur players. They might end up fighting brutally but it is simply a popular sport. The players too know that it is just for sport and they do have a good relationship with each other. There are some dancing and genuine joy moments too.

Location: Marketplace. The tournament takes place on Sunday afternoon

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8. Appreciate The Cinema

 Open Air Cinema

Whether it is 7 o’clock or 5 o’clock, this is one of the things to do in Gili Trawangan island. They have the best kind of open-air cinema. This is a good alternative when you want to have a laid back evening and not in a mood to party. Of course, it is a holiday but there will be a few evenings where you will be extremely hungover and you cannot party. One of those days, opt for watching movies on the main beach.

Ideal for: Cinema enthusiasts, couples
Location: Main beach of Gili Trawangan

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9. Relaxing Or Eating At The Beach

boat on a beach

Gilis Islands are all beaches and they offer the best sun-protected loungers. You have big cushions on the beach so you can simply chill and enjoy the brilliant beach drinks. You can also eat something great and enjoy the view of the beach. The western food starts at 40k rupiah and the local food is quite cheap. The local food like Nasi Goreng is famous and you have to try it at any cost. You can also try those fresh fruits or buy those grilled Satay Skewers or the Tempeh/Bakwan or fried vegetables that are recommended.

Ideal for: beach people or families or friends.
Location: Different beaches

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10. Watch The Sunsets

watching the sunset

One of the most unique things to do in Gili Islands is to watch the sunset in one of the beach bars, have some drinks and listen to great chilled out music. There are quite a lot of bars and one especially Sunset bar which is in the southwest of Gili Trawangan Island. Go a bit early, settle in and since this bar is quite famous, it gets packed with people. This way, you will be able to see and enjoy the sunset. If you like the quiet and the lonely of the beach, then just walk along and you will surely find the one or the other deserted stretch of the sea.

Ideal for: Soul searching
Location: Sunset Bar, Gili Trawangan

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11. Partying

Beach Party

When you are on an island and if you don’t attend the beach parties, then what is the fun? Gili Trawangan is the most suitable and apt destination for partying. There are different places like Blue Marlin on Mondays, Tir Na Nog on Wednesdays and Rudy’s on Fridays. Their parties are simply stunning and you cannot miss it if you love to party. There are some well known Indonesian bands too which perform some great Reggae music. Apart from this, there is a certain South Sea Nomads who got a party boat. They offer a $25 a trip from noon to sunset where they go around the Gili Islands and yes, the food is included here.

You will also find a full moon party celebration on Gili Trawangan where it is similar to the Moon party of Thailand on Koh Phangan.

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12. Jamming To Some Favorite Medleys

Image Source

How refreshing is it when there is some good live music is played. At a place called Sama Sama, they play during day time too where jamming sessions and live music takes place. There are jam sessions in Sasak Island Café too. You can have some cold Bintang daily with the gang. This is going to be the most fun things to do in Gili Island as they will play some old Reggae classics.

Ideal for: People with good taste in music. Preferably reggae.
Location: This beach bar is located in the west of the island and this can be seen from the Gili Trawangan.

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13. Take A Ride Along The Beach On A Horse

Horseback Riding

Have you watched those dreams where they ride along the beach on horseback? If you are vintage that way then you can take a classic horseback ride on the beach. It is a great bonding time for couples too. You can find this service at Stud Horse Riding Adventures or the Sunset Stables.

Ideal for: People who love horses. Also for families.
Extra info: You can directly meet them up or call them for further process.

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Thus, as they say, live while you are young, this place certainly depicts that. Have maximum fun and Gili Islands will make sure it gives back the best memories of your life. You will enjoy diving here because Gili Islands are quite popular as a diving destination. You will encounter plenty of marine life like the green turtles, hawksbill, reef sharks and seahorses, pipefish and abundant crustaceans. These things to do in Gili Islands will make your vacation extremely memorable. So, do take a trip to these islands when planning a vacation to Indonesia to enjoy it to the fullest!

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Frequently Asked Questions About Things To Do In Gili Islands

What is there to do in the Gili Islands?

You have a lot of things to do in the Gili Islands. For example, you have diving and snorkeling which is probably the snorkeling, etc. You can also do some island hopping, water sports, and surfing. You can also do fishing and BBQ. You can simply go out and party too.

What is Gili island famous for?

Gili Islands is known to be famous for its underwater life, gorgeous coral reefs, and some diverse marine wildlife.

How do I get to the Gili Islands?

To get to Gilis from Bali you have to take the public ferry. Sometimes, you need to consider the fact that it is going to be a very long journey. This is a long journey as you need to take two boats to reach the islands. You will take the public ferry from Padang Bai to Lombok. The boat takes every hour is about 5 hours.

Can you walk around Gili Trawangan?

You can walk around the islands and it takes about two hours to completely walk around the Gili Trawangan. You can walk an hour and a half for Gili Meno, and just 2 hours of walk around Gili Air. That’s when if you do not stop along the way at the beach bar or you need to simply explore the side streets.

What is the best Gili island to visit?

Gili T is the westernmost Gili Island, and if you want to see those epic sunset shots, you will find them there. Sunset on Gili Trawangan can be pretty magical. Gili Trawangan is the best Gili Island if you want a great food scene. There is an interesting nightlife and they are the best sunsets.

How long does it take to get from Bali to Gili Islands?

This takes 1.5 hours from Bali to Gili Islands. The journey time from Gili Trawangan to Padang Bai is 1.5 hours. If your journey is other than air is by boat. It will take you about 2 hours 15 minutes.

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Category: Gili Islands, Indonesia, Things To Do

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