Tropical paradise............ apparently

Trip Start Sep 30, 2005
Trip End Sep 29, 2006

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Flag of Indonesia  ,
Thursday, July 13, 2006

Having managed to escape labuanbajo, minus 200,000 :(...we embarked on a 25 hour journey to Lombok's gili islands. We hoofed it over the island of sumbawa....its described as having nowt there to attract the tourist, but to us, it looked pretty nice! Lots of little farming villages and smiling locals. Shame we had the bus ticket, we may have hung around a few days. Anyway, we got to Lombok, and straight over on the ferry to Gili Trawangan. Its one of 3 tiny islands and is considered the 'party' island. The other 2 being much less touristed. However, the week before we met someone who had just left the islands and they said all 3 were utterly abandoned and if there was any party going on they certainly didnt see ant evidence of it :) So, we opted for Trawangan, as it has the most facilities. We checked in to a semi-decent place and looked around the island. You can walk round the entire thing in one and a half hours (snails pace too).
The gilis seem to be a paradise unrealised. The natural island is beautiful. UNFORTUNATELY...the development which was started wasnt finished and loads of places seem abandoned and semi-derelict! Theres the usual piles of trash you see everywhere in places where no-one cares anymore, and piles of building rubble. In general the place looked as Adam put it...the money tap was turned off some time ago!. BUT never the less, it is a beautiful place and worth a few days. We managed 3 before becoming so utterly bored we had to leave. The sea is REALLY no swimming or snorkelling. and the beach was like being sandblasted for we gave up on that too. Still, a nice place regardless and worth the side trip if ever youre out here :D We decided not to dive off the gilis afetr bumping in to a guy we met in thailand, he was working for one of the companies doing liveaboards in the similan islands. He and his girlfriend had just dived the gilis and described it as...'OK!, nothing special'. I aint forking out 30 dollars for 'nowt special'! To be honest tho..everyone is saying the diving off Bali,lombok etc is slightly over rated. Theres better diving in other parts of Indonesia! THATS ALL WELL AND GOOD....BUT...WERE NOT GOING TO OTHER PARTS OF INDONESIA !!!! We may have to leave dive-less :(
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