Lombok and the Gili Islands

Trip Start Oct 02, 2008
Trip End Jan 30, 2009

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Flag of Indonesia  , West Nusa Tenggara,
Tuesday, November 25, 2008

After our weeklong surf camp we decided it was time to check out Lombok, a neighboring island which is home to Mt. Rinjani, a 12000ft Volcano.  The size and population of Lombok is very similar to that of Bali, however, Lombok appears much less populated, more rural, and tropical than Bali.  We were lucky enough to get our own Villa with two rooms and a pool for $20 a night at Imaj private villas with a beautiful view of the ocean.  It was also a very special day because it was Jaime's 29 Birthday!  Although we were traveling for most of the morning and relaxing by the pool for the afternoon, we planned a fun night of drinks and dinner at Quinci restaurant (a beach-side bar/restaurant with great views of the sunset).  We had a great dinner which ended with the whole staff signing happy birthday (Indonesian version) and presenting a cake with Jaime's name written on top.  It was a very entertaining night.
The next day we decided to head down to Sengigi which is the main resort town, very small, with several good restaurants and bars.  We hung around town, checked out the beach, and arranged a boat trip for the next day to Gili islands.  Later we made our way to Café Alberto, a great secluded restaurant on the beach with very good Pizza and Pasta.  Unfortuantly, the following day we were all feeling under the weather, so we choose to stick around the Villa and rest.  
On our final day in Lombok we were feeling well enough to take the boat ride to the Gili islands.  Our boat was a colorful narrow wooden boat with bamboo pontoons on both sides for stability.  About 5 minutes into the ride our outboard engine died and after some investigation, our captain discovered that the fuel had water.  We waited for about 30 minutes for another boat to come out and give us a different fuel tank and we were off.  The ride lasted about one hour to our first stop, Gili Trawangan.  We snorkeled around the beach which turned out to be surprisingly good.  The coral was alive and there were plenty of fish and we even spotted two giant Turtles.  After some beach time we headed over to Gili Meno for lunch.  We ate at a great beach café with elevated wooden platforms where you can lay out and eat lunch while the water flows underneath.  We ended our stay with some more relaxing and snorkeling.  The weather had turned more windy so the ride home was a little rough but we made it after almost two hours on the boat. 
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