Getting to the Gili Islands was a huge mess though. Unlike Thailand and the Koh Islands, the ferry system is very disorganized. There are a lot of companies at the ferry point of Pandang Bai and nobody really knows what's going on. You just kinda see the ferries come into the port and wait for employees to shout. It was really stressful but totally worth it when you get to the island. I feel islands in general have a really laid back feel and this was definitely the case with Gili T. There is a dock but all the ferries just pull up to the beach where you get off. Our Airbnb hostess, Esther, met us as we docked and took us around the island. The island is the biggest out of the three but still small enough to walk in maybe three or so hours. There are no cars or motorbikes either. Everyone either has a bike or uses the horse carts.
Since we were so active in Bali, we wanted our stay in Gili T to be a bit more relaxed. As I said before, there are no cars or motorbikes and that just adds to the lax vibe of the island. Our first day there we spent the whole day at Sunset beach and ended the day with a beautiful view of the sunset.
Our second day there was spent exploring the bigger providence Lombok. Lombok is so different from Bali. There is tourism but still more of the countryside can be seen here. Lombok is famous for it's many waterfalls and Mt. Rinjani. Obviously wasn't going to trek Mt. Rinjani but decided it was a must to see the waterfalls. After an hour car ride from the dock, we met our local tour guide - Alam. Our tour guide said he is a local village man and explained the trek we would take. I have never met someone who is just so genuinely happy like Alam. He was a great tour guide and honestly made our hike so much better by helping us get across all the rocks and getting into the pit where you can swim. If it weren't for him, I don't think we would have even got into the water. Just such a great guy who was just happy to be there and show us these magnificent waterfalls.
The next day we went island hopping and snorkeling. One of my most favorite activities was this. The coral that surrounds the Gili Islands are so beautiful. For just $100,000 IDR, you can join a group and explore the seas. We stopped between Gili Trawangan and Gili Meno to look at the coral as seen above. Amazing views and just beautiful. We then continued on to Turtle Point, which is north of Gili Meno. Here we were able to see and swim with the turtles. Unfortunately, we only saw about three but our guide was telling us that there are usually dozens of them swimming at once. But hey, better than seeing none! We stopped off at Gili Air for lunch then went south a bit to look at some more deep water coral and fish. Unfortunately the waves were a bit rough and our guides couldn't take us to the Gili Meno wall wreck but if I return, I would love nothing more than scuba diving to it.
At last, our final day full day arrived where we spent the whole day on the beach and then a total of four hours at the spa. For $36 USD, I received a full body massage, a facial, a spa pedicure, and an express manicure. The deal was amazing and still can't get over just how cheap it was. Just full on people tending to me, which my body needed after a month of backpacking.
To end the trip, we watched the sunrise before heading out to the ferry and back to Bali. I can't believe how fast this entire trip went. It seems like only yesterday I was getting of my plane to go to Vietnam. I'm so thankful that I was able to do this trip. Southeast Asia is an amazing destination. Not only is it budget friendly but the people are amazing. In a lot of these places, people don't have much and are still so happy with what they have. I think it's hard for people to realize that nowadays and it was refreshing meeting locals who are genuinely content with life. Sometimes you forget what you have and this trip was just so eye opening for me as well. I definitely will be back. Southeast Asia is a gem and would love to explore more of Thailand and Vietnam and also visit Myanmar and Laos. Until then, it is back to the States I go. If you've actually been reading all my posts, thank you so much! I hope you enjoyed them and I hope one day you get to go to these places as well!!
Just traveling the world and sharing my adventures and experiences.
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