The Secret Gili’s are located in the southwest of Lombok. We visited 3 of the 15 islands in October, namely Gili Nanggu, Gili Sudak and Gili Kedis. The islands of the secret Gili’s are often uninhabited and don’t have many tourists! So, we had to visit these islands to experience this by ourselves !
Gili Nanggu – one of the Secret Gili’s
Gili Nanggu is an island located 30 minutes from the harbor of Lembar in Lombok. We took a taxi from Kuta Lombok (about 1.5 hours) to the harbor of Lembar, where we took a small traditional boat to go to the Secret Gili’s. These 3 islands are all very close together and have no harbor, so a small traditional boat is certainly the easiest option!
Tip: ask a taxi driver if he can arrange a trip to the Secret Gili Islands, they usually know the right people and will be happy to arrange this for you!
When you arrive at Gili Nanggu you feel like you’re in a totally different world. It’s not the same as the popular Gili islands (Gili Trawangan, Gili air and Gili Meno), where many tourists spend their holidays. At Gili Nanggu there is only one place where you can stay overnight, Gili Nanggu Cottages & Bungalows, here you pay about 30 euros per night. We did not spend the night at Gili Nanggu, but chose to do a day trip to the Secret Gili Islands. Who really wants to be off this world and wants to stay in a peaceful place, can certainly stay overnight!
Snorkling @ Gili Nanggu
The ‘main attraction’ on this island is undoubtedly snorkeling, after this you can make a romantic beach walk. There is a chance that there are still some people on the beach, but if you stay a little longer, you will be completely alone ! The snorkeling is done close to the beach, where you can already see several beautiful fish and coral! The coral at Gili Nanggu is much more beautiful compared to the popular Gili islands. Unfortunately, the coral is also dying here, even though people are doing their best to keep this as good as possible.
From Gili Canggu it only takes about 10 minutes to go by boat to the next island. During the afternoon we made a stopover on the island of Gili Sudak, where we had lunch in Nirvana Gili Sudak. Gili Sudak is an inhabited island, where only fishing families live. There is one restaurant where you can also stay overnight. They serve delicious fresh fish for ridiculously little money (4-5 euro pp). The fish is caught in the morning and afterwards deliciously prepared on the beach, it can’t be more fresh than this!
The last stop was on the island of Gili Kedis. This super small and cute island is only 2 minutes away from Gili Sudak, we could almost swim to it ! You can take the word ‘small’ literally, the island is only a bit bigger than a tennis court. The locals call this island the ‘honeymoon island‘, because this island has the shape of a heart. In the middle of the island is a kind of ‘bar’, where you can order something to drink. Pretty funny as this island is so small and they have put a bar there . There are also a few chairs and 2 swings! Gili Kedis is surrounded by different mountains, which creates a beautiful green oasis!
Why should I do a trip to the secret Gili Islands?
- beautiful underwater world, with colorful fish and coral
- peaceful place
- almost no tourism
- small, tropical islands
- ‘back-to-basics’ feeling
- to escape from mass tourism