Gili Trawangen

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August 27th 2008
Published: August 18th 2008
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We weren’t sure what to expect when we arrived on the island as people we’d met along the way had said how busy and expensive it had become.

As we stepped off the boat most things seemed the same, quite a lot more people around maybe. We went in search of accommodation, our favourite place last time we were here was Edy Homestay, unfortunately it was full, after lots more searching and haggling of prices we found one nearby that was similar to Edy’s. 5 little bungalows around a cute well-kept garden. The price was over double what we’d paid 3 years ago but was still one of the cheapest around. We quickly discovered one downside to these bungalows though. A mosque was right next-door and woke us up every day at 5 am then again at 6am. Of course the cockerels also got woken up and joined in the chorus. Surprisingly we got use to it and hardly noticed it a few days later.

After more exploration around the island we discovered that much more building has gone on since we were here 3 years ago. Along the beachfront some new swanky hotels have sprung up with prices to match. Most of the charm of the town has remained the same though and we had no problem finding good restaurants with live music, reasonable food and entertaining staff. The Irish Bar, Tir Na Nog, was lively every night and so was Rudy’s, especially during happy hour between 3pm and 10 pm.

Despite there being more people around, the beach was never overcrowded. The strong current was as bad as we’d remembered from three years ago but at least it made made for some good drift snorkels. Unfortunately the coral is showing signs of deterioration but there was no shortage of fish. We saw huge shoals of several varieties of fish and on one day alone we came across five turtles. We were able to swim right along side them as they came up to the surface to breathe, they seemed to be enjoying our company and made no attempt to swim away from us.

One day we took a trip over to Gili Air, it’s reputed to be quieter than Gili Trawangen. It was sprawled out along a long dusty roadway and didn’t hold much appeal to us and we instantly made the decision to spend the rest of our time on Trawangen. We treated ourselves to 11 days of complete chill out, lazing on the beach and snorkelling in the sea by day, dining out and enjoying the company of fellow travellers and the Bintang beer by night.

This life is becoming addictive!

Additional photos below
Photos: 35, Displayed: 23


North end of BeachNorth end of Beach
North end of Beach

A shady place to relax and sip a cold drink
Entrance Rumah Hantu.Entrance Rumah Hantu.
Entrance Rumah Hantu.

Our homestay on the island. One of the nights the power DIDN'T go off!
Our Cosy Room.Our Cosy Room.
Our Cosy Room.

Rumah Hantu Homestay
Sunset Sunset

Over Mount Batur, Bali
Trawangen on the way to be being RuinedTrawangen on the way to be being Ruined
Trawangen on the way to be being Ruined

New hotels are springing up everywhere.
Taking the Easy OptionTaking the Easy Option
Taking the Easy Option

A donkey cart decorated up joining in the fun

10th September 2008

Yes, it is addictive isn,t it?! That,s why we are still on the road! Will have to get back to reality at some point, though!
17th September 2008

This blog certainly brings back memories of our time there with you for Sharon's wedding. Shame about the 'progress'!
5th April 2009

thanks for the pix!
I am trying to plan my vacation time and was wondering if much happens there on independence day or if I should stay in Bali....but this looks really nice, a local village parade!
27th April 2009

Independence day
hi, if you're in Indonesia for Independence day you should definately try to get to Gilli Trawangen, we found the island a much better experience than time spent in Bali. Apart from the parade we watched, nothing else was much different to normal but just a brilliant place to be, if you want to party you can but if you want to sit back and relax you can do that too. Who can ask for more? Sheila

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