Gilli Trawangan

Trip Start Nov 18, 2002
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Indonesia  ,
Tuesday, May 15, 2007

The Perama boat finally rocked up on the small island of Gili Trawangan at about 8pm.  It was by now rather dark when we all transferred into a tiny boat and made made our way to shore.  We soon found somewhere to stay settling for a basic room for our first night and then find somewhere more 'our flash packer style' in the morning.  First impressions were limited due to the lack of day light but the night life seemed pretty up beat and fun down on the 'strip' where all the bars and restaurants were situated.

Next morning we wake to more beautiful sunshine and as we both took a 30 second stroll down to the water front there before us was the beautiful azure sea, blue sky and fantastic view over to Lombok.....yes we had finally found what we were looking for.  Our words were 'we're gonna love it here.'
Next task after breakfast was to find some accommodation which suited our needs.  As we envisaged diving a few times we wanted hot water shower (something not so common to get on Gili T) and by the soaring morning temperatures we felt A/C was a must too.
After having a long chat with Harriet (aboout all ur options) from Manta Dive we moved to a lovely big room situated conveniently at the back of the Irish Bar called Tir Na Nog.  It certainly ticked all the boxes for us and despite it being the bars 'all night party' on Tuesdays we were situated far enough away not to hear it boom booming until 6am.  For just under $20 a night including breakfast where ever you choose to have it, outside your room, in your room or on the beach front overlooking that beautiful picture one conjures up when you think of Paradise, Room 9 was perfect. 

Now a little bit about Gili Trawangan.  It's one of a trio of tiny (you can cycle round it in around a hour or so, but that includes getting off to walk when the sand gets too deep)! coral-fringed islands just off the northwestern coast of Lombok.  Gili Air and Gili Meno being it's relatives are just a few minutes away by boat.  All 3 islands are free from cars and motorbikes/scooters.  Just horse and cart, bicycles and walking allowed, fantastic.
We dived with Manta Dive a fantastic group of very professional people who have such enthusiasm for every dive you do with them.  Made up of mainly English instructors, dive masters they are a great bunch of people.  They made us feel very welcome and one day rolled into another, then one week rolled into another and before we knew it we had spent 29 days there.  29 days!!!!!  A common accurrance apparently.  We could have stayed longer but our 60 day visa was running out and our next destination of Japan was looming pretty quickly.
We spent quality time diving on sites with great coral life and fish including loads of turtles, black tip and white tip sharks.  We saw our first ever tiny tiny Pygmy Seahorse.  That was a very special moment as we had wanted to see one ever since we started diving back in 2003.  Around full moon time we also got to see the massive Bumphead Parrot Fish.  What a sight that was following all 16 of them until we had run out of air, basically!  We did a Nitrox course which was good fun with Tim our long suffering instructor.  We managed to string the course out for about a week instead of the usual 2 days!!  Being on Gili T made us soooo laid back we were horizontal.  We blamed it on the gang at Manta Dive.  They made us feel like one of the bunch.  We made some great friends there and would definitely recommend them as a dive school too.   It was certainly very difficult to say goodbye.  It became a standing joke with us as at least one person would ask us daily 'well, when are you leaving then?'  They knew we had all these great plans of heading east to Flores and or north to Sulawesi.  But then we would be having breakfast sitting in paradise and overlooking paradise and we'd just say 'naa not today.'  And that was for a whole 29 days.  We don't regret it for one moment.  We always maintain we are not on a tick list when we travel.  We really enjoy spending quality time where we are loving it most and Gili T was one of those times.  The locals were really lovely and friendly, the fellow travellers we met were great fun of which we are still in touch with quite a few and the crowd at Manta Dive topped it all off nicely.  Thanks guys and girls for everything. 
We spent 2 nights back in manic Kuta doing last minute shopping etc and then we headed off to Japan............
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