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Guidebook for our paradise island Gili Air, Lombok

Rose & Andreas
Rose & Andreas
Se registró en 2015
Rose & Andreas

Guidebook for our paradise island Gili Air, Lombok

Food Scene
One of the most comment questions we get asked is: “Where to eat on the Gili Air?”. That’s why we thought it’s a good idea to share our favorite restaurants and warungs with you! Let’s start with telling you that you can literally eat for days in Indonesia and always be trying something new. Try rendang (chicken or beef with chili dressing), sate (barbeque chicken, lamb or beef with peanuts sauce), bakso (beef or fish meatball served like soup with noodles and vegetables), gulai (boiled meat or fish with coconut milk dressing), pepes (steam tofu, meat or fish combine with vegetables wrapped in banana’s leaf), gado-gado (mixed vegetables light boiled served with peanuts sauce. The Gilis a great place for foodporn lovers. From sweet to very spicy, but always fragrant, full of flavor and with a teaspoon of love. A wealth of choice in fish, meat, vegetables –and not forgetting the vegetarian tahu and tempeh. You can get almost any local dish for under $2,50 dollar, so make sure you try as much as you can while you’re here!
Mowie’s offers a beachfront restaurant and accommodation on the sunset side of the beautiful island of Gili Air! Taste their delicious food while watching the beautifully colored sunsets during your meal! Their charcoal bun tuna burgers and their french fries are a bestseller!
Mowies on the Beach
Mowie’s offers a beachfront restaurant and accommodation on the sunset side of the beautiful island of Gili Air! Taste their delicious food while watching the beautifully colored sunsets during your meal! Their charcoal bun tuna burgers and their french fries are a bestseller!
Pachamama Organic Cafe & Pool Villa is a cute bohemian-looking, vegan and vegetarian restaurant that offers beautiful accommodation with private pool access nestled in the beautiful island of Gili Air. They are open from 9 AM to 10 PM, Monday through Saturday. They serve delicious breakfast, lunch & dinner options! Book your stay with them or taste their delightful island food while living in paradise!
Pachamama Organic Cafe and Private Villa
Pachamama Organic Cafe & Pool Villa is a cute bohemian-looking, vegan and vegetarian restaurant that offers beautiful accommodation with private pool access nestled in the beautiful island of Gili Air. They are open from 9 AM to 10 PM, Monday through Saturday. They serve delicious breakfast, lunch & dinner options! Book your stay with them or taste their delightful island food while living in paradise!
Ruby's Cafe is owned and operated by Indonesian Chef Ruby. Her mission is to provide fresh homecooked with passion from experience from working overseas inspires her delicious curries using imported ingredients unique to her cafe and her time in top Italian restaurants in Bali comes through in her perfect pasta dishes. Every plate is cooked from scratch, spring rolls,croquettes, curries, only the Rendang is cooked before as it takes 2 hours, no portions pulled from the freezer and buzzed in Micro. Ruby's is a simple open air cafe dedicated to providing tasty fresh food with love.
Ruby's Cafe
Ruby's Cafe is owned and operated by Indonesian Chef Ruby. Her mission is to provide fresh homecooked with passion from experience from working overseas inspires her delicious curries using imported ingredients unique to her cafe and her time in top Italian restaurants in Bali comes through in her perfect pasta dishes. Every plate is cooked from scratch, spring rolls,croquettes, curries, only the Rendang is cooked before as it takes 2 hours, no portions pulled from the freezer and buzzed in Micro. Ruby's is a simple open air cafe dedicated to providing tasty fresh food with love.
This is an adorable beachfront restaurant and cafe located on both Gili Air and Gili Trawangan. It’s just a few steps from the harbor so it’s perfect if you decide to do the island hopping trip! They serve the best coffee on the islands and offer great breakfast and lunch options to fill you up after a day of snorkeling or diving! The staff is the sweetest and you’re guaranteed to have a relaxing stress-free time there!
Coffee & Thyme Gili Air
This is an adorable beachfront restaurant and cafe located on both Gili Air and Gili Trawangan. It’s just a few steps from the harbor so it’s perfect if you decide to do the island hopping trip! They serve the best coffee on the islands and offer great breakfast and lunch options to fill you up after a day of snorkeling or diving! The staff is the sweetest and you’re guaranteed to have a relaxing stress-free time there!
Beach… Music… Delicious cocktails… An authentic culinary experience… Dancing… They have it all at The Mexican Kitchen! The Mexican Kitchen is a family and child-friendly venue, so rest assured your little ones will be entertained by nutritious and delicious food options and great vibes.
The Mexican Kitchen
Beach… Music… Delicious cocktails… An authentic culinary experience… Dancing… They have it all at The Mexican Kitchen! The Mexican Kitchen is a family and child-friendly venue, so rest assured your little ones will be entertained by nutritious and delicious food options and great vibes.
We’re both big pizza lovers and the pizza's of mama pizza are authentic and amongst the best, we’ve eaten. We would definitely recommend this beautiful place on the beach to anyone looking for a bite to eat on Gili Air.
Mama Pizza
We’re both big pizza lovers and the pizza's of mama pizza are authentic and amongst the best, we’ve eaten. We would definitely recommend this beautiful place on the beach to anyone looking for a bite to eat on Gili Air.
Back in the day, Philipp Messner was working on the Caribbean Cayman Islands as a bartender. One day he met Esin, a dive instructor working nearby. They fell in love, got married, moved to Gili Air and opened Sharkbites. Fast forward to today, Sharkbites is the place where the local dive instructors and dive enthusiasts of Gili Air hang out and get fed after a hard day in the ocean. Sharkbites use organic ingredients as much as possible, do not use plastic water bottles, and are the first restaurant on the island to replace plastic straws with glass alternatives.
Sharkbites
Back in the day, Philipp Messner was working on the Caribbean Cayman Islands as a bartender. One day he met Esin, a dive instructor working nearby. They fell in love, got married, moved to Gili Air and opened Sharkbites. Fast forward to today, Sharkbites is the place where the local dive instructors and dive enthusiasts of Gili Air hang out and get fed after a hard day in the ocean. Sharkbites use organic ingredients as much as possible, do not use plastic water bottles, and are the first restaurant on the island to replace plastic straws with glass alternatives.
Musa Cookery is a charming healthy vegan food restaurant just around the corner of Villa Nangka. Give their cold ‘Spirulina Smoothie Bowl’ a try! Spirulina is high in protein & vitamins and a low-calorie food and this smoothie bowl is a great addition to boosting your energy with this Indonesian heat!
Musa Cookery
Musa Cookery is a charming healthy vegan food restaurant just around the corner of Villa Nangka. Give their cold ‘Spirulina Smoothie Bowl’ a try! Spirulina is high in protein & vitamins and a low-calorie food and this smoothie bowl is a great addition to boosting your energy with this Indonesian heat!
Drinks & Nightlife
Beach Party every Wednesday
Legend Bar And Bungalows Gili Air
Beach Party every Wednesday
Beach Partys on Sundays
Luckys Bar - Psychedelic Bar
Beach Partys on Sundays
Things to Do
The better question would be: what can you not do in the Gili Islands? The three islands, surrounded by a beautiful blue and turquoise ocean full of coral and marine life, are the perfect place for all kind of water sport. Subwing, Diving, Freediving, Snorkeling, Swimming, Surfing, Stand Up Paddling, Sea Kayaking. Besides spending your day in the ocean feeling like a mermaid you can connect to your mind and spirit by doing yoga, improve your cooking skills by attending a cooking class, feel the wind in your hair while you’re horse riding on the beach or rent a bike and discover the secret hidden places on the island.
Need a break from the hard island life? Go ahead and give yourself a little treat. This stunning bamboo spa offers a wide selection of treatments and is incredibly popular with tourists and expats who are working on the Gili Islands. Slow Spa is part of Slow Villas but accessible for all visitors. They can be quite busy so it's recommended to book beforehand to avoid disappointment. You can book your appointment easily online here: https://slowspa.simplespa.com
Slow Spa
Need a break from the hard island life? Go ahead and give yourself a little treat. This stunning bamboo spa offers a wide selection of treatments and is incredibly popular with tourists and expats who are working on the Gili Islands. Slow Spa is part of Slow Villas but accessible for all visitors. They can be quite busy so it's recommended to book beforehand to avoid disappointment. You can book your appointment easily online here: https://slowspa.simplespa.com
No matter what course you would like to do, the instructors of Oceans5 will make sure it will be a fun and unforgettable memory. They offer you a full range of PADI dive courses, from your Open Water course to your Divemaster certification. Oceans5 Dive Resort is our partner in our Gili Shark Conservation Project and also a... * PADI 5 Star Instructor Development Dive Resort (IDC) * DDI (Disabled Divers International Instructor training Center * Reef Check facility Center * Shark Guardian Dive Center
Oceans 5 Dive Resort
No matter what course you would like to do, the instructors of Oceans5 will make sure it will be a fun and unforgettable memory. They offer you a full range of PADI dive courses, from your Open Water course to your Divemaster certification. Oceans5 Dive Resort is our partner in our Gili Shark Conservation Project and also a... * PADI 5 Star Instructor Development Dive Resort (IDC) * DDI (Disabled Divers International Instructor training Center * Reef Check facility Center * Shark Guardian Dive Center
The oldest and purest form of diving. Learn to become a breath-hold diver. Whether you’re a beginner or a more experienced freediver, the range of courses of Free Dive Flow will train you to be more efficient with oxygen and provide you with the skills necessary to have you diving to depths of up to 20m in no time. For some, Apnea may be about diving deep and conquering inner fears while for others it’s a way to peacefully interact with the underwater world. Would you like to know more? Andreas has been teaching freediving for years and loves to share his experience with you!
Freedive Flow
The oldest and purest form of diving. Learn to become a breath-hold diver. Whether you’re a beginner or a more experienced freediver, the range of courses of Free Dive Flow will train you to be more efficient with oxygen and provide you with the skills necessary to have you diving to depths of up to 20m in no time. For some, Apnea may be about diving deep and conquering inner fears while for others it’s a way to peacefully interact with the underwater world. Would you like to know more? Andreas has been teaching freediving for years and loves to share his experience with you!
Are you looking to feel completely connected to your mind, body and spirit? Take a breather from regular island life and sign yourself up for one of the yoga classes or retreats from Flowers and Fire.
Flowers and Fire Yoga Garden Gili Air
Are you looking to feel completely connected to your mind, body and spirit? Take a breather from regular island life and sign yourself up for one of the yoga classes or retreats from Flowers and Fire.

Consejos para los viajeros

Desplazamientos
Rent a bike
There are no motorbikes on the Gilis Islands, that’s why the air is so fresh and clean here. So, what’s the form of transport? Bikes! They’re really easy and cheap to rent out! Depending on your hotel, you can get a bike rental included in your accommodation package, or the chance to rent it out for the day at an additional price. Renting a bike out daily from a local bike renter shop. It shouldn’t be more than 40 – 50,000 IDR. We recommend getting a bike with a basket. It’ll be easy to put your beach bag or other small things inside while biking. If you’re planning a longer stay on the Gili Islands, it’s also possible to buy a bike for cheap (400,000 – 1 Million IDR), depending on who you buy it from and how good your bargaining skills are! You can then resell it afterwards so it’s a great way to get your money back!
Costumbres y cultura
Don't swim from island to island
We’re only half joking, but still feel like we need to say it! Please don’t try to swim between the islands; Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno and Gili Air. The three islands are easily visible to each other, and one would think you can swim between them, but there are strong currents and you could get swept away. Best to stick to the island hopper, which is only 40,000 IDR one way and it leaves once in the morning and another time in the evening depending on the island you’re coming from; Gili Air, Gili Meno and Gili Trawangan. On each island there is a ticket office at the harbour and there are schedules demonstrating the exact guaranteed times for when they leave.
No te lo pierdas
Ask To Have Your Coconut Cut In Half
Have you ever ordered a whole fresh coconut on the Gilis? You can ask the staff to cut it in half for you! The inside of the coconut is high in fibre, has significant amounts of iron & potassium, cholesterol-free and low in sodium! Almost all the restaurants and cafes on the Gilis have coconuts readily available to order! Treat yourself to one every day since you’re on island time now!
Modos de ahorrar
Use A Personal Hotspot
For all you digital nomads out there we recommend you use your own personal hotspot for internet while working on the Gilis! Although the majority of the restaurants have wifi, you will have faster and better internet through your own personal hotspot. Tip: Telkomsel is the strongest phone provider on the Gilis. You can buy 20-50 GB Internet plans through their app or going to the local electronics store on the island for only 120,000 IDR, which is so cheap! As soon as you run out of your internet, you don’t need to wait for the plan to renew and there is no autopay, you can go back to the shop, tell the manager your phone number and they will top up your account and you can buy your new internet deal automatically through the telkomsel app! Download it on your smartphone, it’ll be more convenient for you!
Qué meter en la maleta
Bring A Headlamp With You
It’s surprising to travelers visiting the Gili Islands for the first time that the side streets away from the central road are not lit up at night time. The main road will be lit up by restaurants, cafes and bars, but the majority of the side streets leading into the central village are not. So if you’re staying in a homestay or hotel in these unlit side streets, make sure to expect this! We recommend you pack a headlamp in your suitcase! It can have several uses while traveling; if the electricity goes out or you decide to rent a bike to ensure your bike safely. Take care of yourself, these side streets are safe to walk through, but we just want you to pack smart and ensure you don’t get injured or injure someone else!
No te lo pierdas
Salsa nights on Monday
The Mexican Kitchen is hosting salsa nights every Monday starting at 7.30 PM. Join their free salsa class before you dance the night away!
No te lo pierdas
Subwing - Best way to explore the beautiful reefs around the Gili Islands
* Do you want to explore the magical beautiful reefs of the Gili Islands in a new and fun way? * Do you like to try new things and are you looking for unique experiences? * Do you like snorkelling but you don’t want to book a standard snorkelling trip and be on a boat full with tourists? Try Subwing and fly underwater along the beautiful reefs of the Gili Islands! Subwing offers you a great and fun way to explore the underwater world around the Gili Islands, Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno and Gili Air. A Subwing trip around the Gili Islands take 3 to 4 hours during which everyone gets pulled twice for 25 minutes on the Subwing board for only IDR 450.000 per person.
Modos de ahorrar
ATM & Money Changer
Gili Air has several ATM machines. ATM withdrawal limits per transaction are usually quite low (IDR 1,500,000 – 3,000,000) due to the fact that the largest note in Indonesia is equivalent of USD$10 and the ATM opening is only so big… But don’t worry, the machines allow you to make multiple withdrawal transactions in 1 visit. There are also several money changers on all Gili Islands, but chances are big that you don’t get the same exchange rate as in Bali or in Lombok. To avoid disappointment, exchange your money before your visit us and change money at official money changers and/or banks.
Frases útiles
Most useful phrases in bahasa Indonesia
f you’re thinking of picking up some basic Bahasa Indonesia words for your trip, you’d be glad to know that the language is pretty easy to master! Here’s why: The language has no need for past or future tense, which means that verbs only exist in present tense. Also, Bahasa Indonesia makes no distinction for masculine and feminine nouns. To make the language even less complicating, the words have no plural; singular and plural terms are all the same. Here are some basic Indonesian words to help you prepare for your holiday on Gili Air: GREETINGS Selamat Pagi: Good morning Selamat Siang: Good afternoon Selamat sore: Good evening Selamat malam: Good night Apa kabar?: How are you? – Kabar baik: I’m good Terima kasih: Thank you Sama Sama: You are welcome Yes/No: Ia/ Tidak ORDERING FOOD From our personal experience, our Bahasa has improved significantly from ordering food in the Indonesian warungs. Going to the warungs will definitely invite opportunities to mix and converse with the locals. Do bring a pocket dictionary if you want to make your conversations more interesting! Permisi Pak, ada tempat makan di dekat sinin?: Excuse me Sir, is there a restaurant near here? Makan: To eat Pedas: Spicy (if you cant handle spicy, remember to say Tidak pedas!) Saya suka pedas: I like spicy Minyak: Oil Gula: Sugar Minum: Drink Nasi: rice Mie: noodle Sayur saja: if you are vegetarian you might want to ask for “Sayur saja” (Vegetables only) Enak : Delicious! BARGAINING AND NUMBERS Knowing a few words of the language will always help you to get better deals in Indonesia. As an advice, try to bargain around 30% off the initial price offered when you negotiate, especially in touristic areas: 1 – Satu ; 2 – Dua ; 3 – Tiga ; 4 – Empat ; 5 -Lima ; 6 -Enam ; 7 – Tujuh ; 8 – Delapan ; 9 – Sembilan ; 10 – Sepuluh. 11 Seblas 12 Dua belas 13 Tiga belas 14 Empat belas 20 – Dua puluh ; 30 – Tiga puluh, etc … 100 – Seratus ; 200 – Dua ratus etc… 1, 000 : Seribu – 10,000 Sepuluh Ribu 1 million : Satu juta Harga: Price Berapa harganya?: How much does it cost? Harga nya mahal: Price is expensive Lebih murah bisa?: “Cheaper possible?” Saya tidak ada cukup: I don’t have enough Mahal sakali: Very expensive!
Desplazamientos
What is the best way to get to the Gili Islands from Bali?
We always recommend Eka Jaya fast boats as they have one of the biggest boats and good customer service. The ticket should not be more than IDR 550,000 one way per person including a shuttle from Denpasar, Kuta, Seminyak, Sanur and Ubud to Padangbai, the fast boat harbor. Usually you get the best price in one of the small travel agencies which are all over Bali, just barter a bit. For more information you can check their website: http://www.baliekajaya.com/ The other option is to fly from Denpasar to Lombok. The flight takes only 30 minutes and is usually very cheap. A private driver from the airport to Bangsal or Teluk Nara, north Lombok, is IDR 350,000 and the ride takes 1 1/2 hours. - Bangsal, from here you can take a public wooden boat (leaves whenever there are 40 passengers, IDR 12,000 per person) or a public speed boat (leaves every hour between 10 AM and 5 PM, IDR 85,000 per person) to Gili Air. - Teluk Nara, from here you can take a private speed boat to Gili Air for IDR 300,000. If you need help with organizing your transport, just send us a message. We are always happy to help!