About Gili Air
Gili Air is a small island located off the northwest coast of Lombok, Indonesia. It is one of three popular islands collectively known as the Gili Islands, the other two being Gili Trawangan and Gili Meno. Gili Air is the closest island to Lombok and is known for its laid-back atmosphere, pristine beaches, crystal-clear waters, and excellent snorkeling and diving opportunities.
The island is approximately 5 kilometers in circumference and can be easily explored on foot or by bicycle. There are no motorized vehicles on the island, which contributes to its peaceful and relaxed vibe. Gili Air has a range of accommodation options, from budget-friendly guesthouses to luxurious villas.
The island is also known for its seafood, which is caught fresh daily and cooked in a variety of delicious ways. Visitors can enjoy a range of activities on the island, including snorkeling, diving, kayaking, and surfing. Gili Air is a popular destination for travelers looking to escape the hustle and bustle of mainland Bali and Lombok and immerse themselves in a tranquil and serene island atmosphere.
History timeline of Gili Air
Here is a brief history timeline of Gili Air:
- Pre-20th century: Gili Air was inhabited by the Sasak people, who are the indigenous people of Lombok. The island was primarily used for fishing and farming.
- Early 20th century: The first foreigners arrived on Gili Air, mainly adventurers and traders. They were attracted by the island’s natural beauty and abundant marine life.
- 1942-1945: During World War II, Gili Air was occupied by Japanese forces, who used the island as a strategic base for their operations in the region.
- 1950s-1960s: Gili Air started to attract more visitors, mainly backpackers and surfers who were looking for a peaceful and unspoiled island experience.
- 1970s-1980s: Tourism on Gili Air continued to grow, and more businesses and accommodations were established on the island. However, the island remained relatively undeveloped compared to neighboring Bali and Lombok.
- Late 1990s: Gili Air became part of the Gili Islands, which started to gain popularity as a tourist destination. The island underwent some development, but efforts were made to preserve its natural beauty and traditional way of life.
- 2000s-present: Gili Air continues to attract visitors from around the world, who come to enjoy the island’s beautiful beaches, clear waters, and laid-back atmosphere. However, the island remains relatively undeveloped, with no motorized vehicles and limited infrastructure, which contributes to its unique charm and tranquility.
What can you do at Gili Air ?
here are plenty of activities to enjoy on Gili Air, including:
- Snorkeling and diving: Gili Air is surrounded by coral reefs teeming with marine life, making it an excellent destination for snorkeling and diving. Visitors can rent equipment and take a guided tour to explore the underwater world.
- Swimming and sunbathing: The island’s beautiful beaches and crystal-clear waters are perfect for swimming and sunbathing. Some of the most popular beaches include the Sunset Beach, the Beach Club, and the East Beach.
- Island-hopping: Visitors can explore the other two Gili Islands – Gili Trawangan and Gili Meno – by boat. Each island has its own unique attractions and activities.
- Cycling and walking: Gili Air is a small island that can be easily explored on foot or by bicycle. Visitors can rent bicycles and ride around the island to see the local villages and stunning views.
- Yoga and wellness: Gili Air has a number of yoga studios and wellness centers that offer classes and workshops for visitors looking to relax and rejuvenate.
- Kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding: Visitors can rent kayaks or stand-up paddleboards to explore the coastline and nearby islands.
- Fishing trips: Gili Air has a thriving fishing industry, and visitors can take a fishing trip with a local guide to catch fresh seafood.
- Dining and nightlife: Gili Air has a range of restaurants and bars serving local and international cuisine. In the evenings, visitors can enjoy live music and drinks at the island’s beachfront bars.
List of Hotels at Gili Air ?
List of hotels on Gili Air:
- Gili Air Escape – A luxurious resort with private villas and an outdoor pool.
- Mowgli Villa – A beachfront villa with a private pool and a tropical garden.
- Gili Air Lagoon Resort – A boutique resort with traditional bungalows and a saltwater pool.
- Salili Bungalow – A budget-friendly option with traditional-style bungalows and a garden setting.
- Gili Air Santay – A beachfront hotel with air-conditioned rooms and a garden courtyard.
- Gili Air Hostel – A hostel with mixed dorms and private rooms, located near the beach.
- Slow Private Pool Villas – A collection of private villas with outdoor pools and garden settings.
- Villa Karang Hotel & Spa – A beachfront hotel with traditional-style rooms and an outdoor pool.
- The Waterfront Hotel – A boutique hotel with modern rooms and a beachfront location.
- Grand Sunset Gili Air – A beachfront hotel with traditional-style bungalows and a pool with a view of the sunset.
List of restaurants at Gili Air ?
- Pachamama Organic Cafe – A popular cafe that serves healthy and organic meals, juices, and smoothies.
- Scallywags Organic Seafood Bar & Grill – A beachfront restaurant that serves fresh seafood and grilled meats.
- Le Pirate Beach Club – A beachfront restaurant and bar that serves Indonesian and Western cuisine, as well as cocktails and live music.
- Mowie’s Bar and Restaurant – A beachfront restaurant that serves Indonesian and Western dishes, as well as fresh juices and smoothies.
- Gili Bliss Cafe – A vegetarian and vegan cafe that serves smoothie bowls, salads, sandwiches, and desserts.
- Gili Air Santay Restaurant – A beachfront restaurant that serves Indonesian and Western cuisine, as well as cocktails and fresh juices.
- Warung Kampung – A local Indonesian restaurant that serves traditional dishes such as nasi campur and mie goreng.
- Coffee & Thyme – A cafe that serves coffee, pastries, sandwiches, and light meals.
- Chill Out Bar & Bungalows – A beachfront bar and restaurant that serves Indonesian and Western cuisine, as well as cocktails and live music.
- The Mexican Kitchen – A restaurant that serves Mexican cuisine such as tacos, burritos, and nachos.
How is Gili Air different from other Gili islands ?
Gili Air is different from the other Gili Islands – Gili Trawangan and Gili Meno – in a few ways:
- Size: Gili Air is smaller than Gili Trawangan, but larger than Gili Meno. This means that it has a more intimate and laid-back atmosphere than Gili Trawangan, but with more activities and amenities than Gili Meno.
- Development: Compared to Gili Trawangan, Gili Air has less development and fewer crowds. It is a popular destination for travelers who want a more authentic and relaxed island experience.
- Accommodations: Gili Air has a range of accommodations, from budget-friendly hostels to luxury resorts, but there are fewer options than Gili Trawangan. However, the island is known for its charming and traditional-style bungalows.
- Culture: Gili Air has a strong local culture, with a number of small villages and temples scattered around the island. Visitors can take a cultural tour to learn more about the Sasak people and their way of life.
- Nightlife: Compared to Gili Trawangan, Gili Air has a more laid-back nightlife scene. There are still plenty of bars and restaurants to choose from, but the atmosphere is more relaxed and low-key.