How to Plan Your Perfect Gili Islands Itinerary Whether You Have 3, 5, 7, or 10 Days

If you’re planning a trip to the Gili Islands and looking for the perfect Gili Islands itinerary, look no further. I am here to guide you through the ultimate Gili Islands experience. Whether you have three days, five days, a week, or even ten days to spare, I have curated the perfect itinerary for each duration so you can make the most out of your time in this tropical haven. This slice of paradise is a must-visit for anyone who dreams of sun-soaked days and starlit nights.

Having explored these islands myself, from the bustling paths of Gili Trawangan to the serene shores of Gili Meno and Gili Air, I’m here to guide you through creating the perfect itinerary, whether you’re planning a quick escape or an extended island hop.

Why Visit the Gili Islands?

Far from the hustle of Bali, yet easily accessible, the Gilis offer something unique for every traveller. Gili Trawangan buzzes with vibrant nightlife, Gili Meno seduces its tranquillity, and Gili Air strikes a perfect balance with its laid-back charm and ample activities. Here, cars and scooters are replaced by bicycles and cidomos (horse carts), making your island experience genuinely serene and wonderfully authentic.

๐Ÿ“– RELATED READ: How to Get to Gili Islands from Bali Easily โ€“ with Proโ€™s and Cons & Travel Tips

Gili Islands at a Glance

๐Ÿฅณ Gili Trawangan: The largest and most developed, known for its lively atmosphere.

๐Ÿข Gili Meno: The smallest and quietest, offering an intimate escape.

๐Ÿ–๏ธ Gili Air: Blends Gili Tโ€™s buzz with Menoโ€™s serenity, perfect for families and couples.

๐Ÿ“– RELATED READ: 5 Tips on How to Choose Which Gili Island is Best for You โ€“ All Gili Islands covered!

Now, whether you have 3, 5, 7, or 10 days to spare, Iโ€™ve crafted the ultimate itineraries to ensure you make the most of your Gili adventure.

My Favourite Things to do on Gili Islands

Halfday Private Snorkeling with Turtles, Coral Reefs and statues in the Gili Islands

(4 Hours | Viator Badge of Excellence | 154 Reviews) โžก๏ธ BOOK IT

Gili islands snorkelling with turtles

5H All Inclusive Breakfast & Snorkeling Cruise on Utopia Catamaran

(5 Hours | Viator Badge of Excellence | 21 Reviews) โžก๏ธ BOOK IT

Utopia Catamaran from Gili islands Breakfast and snorkelling tour

Authentic Indonesian Cooking Class

(2 Hours | Viator Badge of Excellence | 157 Reviews) โžก๏ธ BOOK IT

Indonesian Food Indonesian cooking class gili islands

Sunny Surf School Lessons on Gili Trawangan

(2 Hours | Viator Badge of Excellence | 26 Reviews) โžก๏ธ BOOK IT

5H All-Inclusive Sunset & Snorkeling Cruise on Utopia Catamaran

(5 Hours | Viator Badge of Excellence | 43 Reviews) โžก๏ธ BOOK IT

Gili trawangan utopia sunset catamaran cruise

Gili Islands Sunset Boat Tour and Snorkelling

(2.5 Hours | GYG Recommended | 59 Reviews) โžก๏ธ BOOK IT

Sunset Snoreklling on the Gili Islands

Horse Ride On The Beach Gili Islands

(1 Hours | 11 Reviews) โžก๏ธ BOOK IT

Gili Islands Horse riding

Half day Kayak or Stand Up Paddle Board

(4 Hours | New activity) โžก๏ธ BOOK IT

Gili islands BBQ and Snorkelling Cruise with Gili Hai

(4 Hours | 25 Reviews) โžก๏ธ BOOK IT

5 Secret Gilis islands Day Trip: Gili Layar, Gili Rengit, Gili Nanggu, Gili Tangkong and Gili Kedis

(10 Hours | 79 Reviews) โžก๏ธ BOOK IT

Gili Nanggu and secret gili islands tour

๐Ÿ“– RELATED READ: 20 Amazing Things to Do on the Gili Islands

Gili Islands Itinerary 3 Days: The Quick Escape

Ok ok, you are short on time so this will be your little taste of the Gili, trying to visit them all might be a stretch but we definitely can maximize your experience with a bit of a squeeze.

Day 1: Gili Trawangan

Start your Gili adventure on the most dynamic of the three islands. Your Gili Trawangan Itinerary should start with renting a bike to explore (to maximize your time on the island), sunbathe on the Northeastern beaches, and snorkel among turtles in Turtle Point. In the evening, experience the vibrant sunsets and dine under the stars.

  • Rent a bike from your hotel or at the numerous bike stalls across the island
  • Start your trip with a delicious lunch at one of the numerous cafes and restaurants on the North East side of the island at Turtle Beach (La Bella, Almarik or La Moomba)
  • Get your first dose of snorkelling on the Gili islands my favourite things to do in Gili islands
  • Start your evening with a sunset cocktail at Pinkcoco Beach Club on the SouthWest side of the island
  • Head back to the East for some incredible seafood from the night market or many BBQ spots en route

top pick

Gili islands snorkeling tour

โญโญโญโญโญ

HALF-DAY PRIVATE SNORKELLING TOUR WITH TURTLES & UNDERWATER STATUES

๐Ÿคฟ Private tour

๐Ÿคฟ Mutliple snoreklling spots

๐Ÿคฟ Check out an underwater Vespa on Gili T, The BASK Sculptures on Meno and the Coral Reefs Gardens of Gili Air along with turtles everywhere

๐Ÿคฟ Includes boat and snorkelling gear

BOOK IT โžก๏ธ

Where to Stay on Gili Trawangan

โญ Hotel Villa Ombak (Rating: 8.2 | 3494 Reviews) โžก๏ธ CHECK AVAILABILITY

โญ Pearl of Trawangan (Rating: 9 | 4202 Reviews) โžก๏ธ CHECK AVAILABILITY

โญ Pinkcoco Gili Trawangan (Rating: 9.2 | 1613 Reviews) โžก๏ธ CHECK AVAILABILITY

โญ Manta Dive Gili Trawangan (Rating: 8.8 | 1258 Reviews) โžก๏ธ CHECK AVAILABILITY

Day 2: Gili Trawangan and Gili Meno

Ease into your morning with a sunrise beach walk, or sleep in? Breakfast spots and smoothie bowl cafes are plentiful so you won’t go hungry if you don’t have brekkie included in your stay. Depending on what you did yesterday, Fancy some more snorkelling and a bit of a chilled vibe?

Take a quick boat ride to Gili Meno for a day of ultimate relaxation. Check out the Turtle Sanctuary on arrival just off the jetty, then spend your afternoon snorkelling at literally any spots off the beach. On the West is where you’ll find the famous BASK underwater statues. These hauntingly beautiful underwater sculptures at Nest by Jason deCaires Taylor are something pretty special.

  • Catch a boat from Gili T to Gili Meno in the morning from 9:30
  • Gili Meno is super CHILL
  • Snorkelling can be done off most parts of the beach
  • Check out the BASK Scultures on the West coast of the island
  • There is also a very pretty freshwater lagoon easily reachable from the BASK underwater sculptures
  • Head back to Gili T in the afternoon by boat at 16:20
  • Snap an epic sunset shot at the Hotel Villa Ombak sunset swings
  • Head further north into the nightlife of Gili T and enjoy, drinks, music and vibes at one of the many bars and clubs like Sama Sama Reggae, The Jungle Bar, Eascobar etc. Definitely one of the most popular things to do on Gili Trawangan

If you prefer to be a bit more festive then opt for the BBQ and snorkelling cruise below from Gili T:

top pick

BBQ cruise from gili islands with snorkeling

โญโญโญโญโญ

GILI ISLANDS BBQ CRUISE FROM GILI T

๐Ÿ›ฅ๏ธ Welcome drink

๐Ÿ›ฅ๏ธ Tour stops: Underwater statues, Turtles Point, Gili Meno’s famous white sand beaches, and Secret Point

๐Ÿ›ฅ๏ธLight BBQ lunch

๐Ÿ›ฅ๏ธSnoreklling gear, towels, drinking water and insurance included

BOOK IT ๐Ÿšข

Day 3: Gili Trawangan

Depending on how heavy your night was, you might just be sleeping in this morning, having a quick bite for brekkie and then catching the boat back to Bali or Lombok depending on your plans. If you’re still wanting to do something quick in the morning, maybe take a walk up to the Gili Trawangan Viewpoint for some pretty views from the highest point on the island.

  • Get one last snorkel in – may be closer to your hotel like just in front of the Pearl of Trawangan where the underwater motorbike can be found
  • Take up a walk around the whole island (it’s pretty quick – less than an hour even at a slow pace
  • Head up to the Gili Trawangan Viewpoint for some panoramic island views – this Gili Trawangan trip is super quick

Gili Islands Itinerary 5 days: The Balanced Adventure

Add two more days to your itinerary to experience the islands more deeply. This was pretty much our itinerary although I still wish I had had more days to experience everything fully.

Day 1: Gili Trawangan

  • Check into your accommodation and rent a bike to head out and start exploring
  • Savour some local cuisine or seafood at a beachside restaurant/cafe
  • Lounge on one of the beach and soak up the atmosphere or have a chilled snorkel at Turtle Point on the Eastern shore
  • Sunset cocktails at Pinkcoco Beach Club or any of the sunset beach spots

Day 2: Gili Trawangan

Do a 5H Breakfast and Snorkelling tour on an 18m catamaran. The perfect way to start your morning and a great way to venture to the other snorkelling spots of the Gili islands

top pick

Utopia Catamaran Gili islands Snorkelling tour

โญโญโญโญโญ

5-Hour Breakfast and Snorkeling Catamaran Cruise

5 Star Rated | Viator Badge of Excellence | 48 Reviews

๐Ÿคฟ All-Inclusive 18m Catamaran

๐Ÿคฟ Snorkelling spots: Turtle City, Secret Garden and BASK underwater statues

๐Ÿคฟ Breakfast and Buffet lunch with refreshments

BOOK IT ๐Ÿšข

In the evening soak in the sunset at Hotel Vila Ombak on the sunset swings and enjoy a BBQ evening of delicious food at the night market or beachside restaurants

Day 3: Gili Meno

Take a boat to Gili Meno and explore the island’s famous underwater statues and freshwater lagoon. Relax on the beach on a lounger with a good book.

  • Take a boat ride to Gili Meno
  • Snorkel among BASK underwater sculptures and visit the freshwater lagoon
  • Lounge on the beach with a good book

Where to Stay on Gili Meno

โญBASK Gili Meno (New Property | Rating: 9.8 | 20 Reviews) โžก๏ธ CHECK AVAILABILITY

โญ Mahamaya Gili Meno (Rating: 9 | 629 Reviews) โžก๏ธ CHECK AVAILABILITY

โญ Seri Resort (Rating: 8.6 | 832 Reviews) โžก๏ธ CHECK AVAILABILITY

โญ Le Pirate Gili Meno (Rating: 9.4 | 135 Reviews) โžก๏ธ CHECK AVAILABILITY

Day 4: Gili Air and Gili Meno

Take a boat to the third and final island, Gili Air. This island has a great mix of both lively and tranquil spots. Spend your day exploring the island on foot, indulging in delicious food and drinks at beachfront cafes and restaurants, and lazing on the beach. Another great option is to do a sunset horseback ride on the beach

  • Take a boat to Gili Air
  • Explore the island on foot
  • Enjoy beachfront cafes and restaurants for lunch and drinks
  • Go for a snorkel
  • Enjoy a sunset horseback ride on the beach
  • Head back to Gili Meno or Gili Trawangan

Day 5: Gili Trawangan

Head back to Gili Trawangan and take the boat back to Bali or Lombok

Gili Islands Itinerary – 7 Days: The Deep-Dive

Immerse yourself fully in seven days which allows you to truly experience all the islands, including a visit to the lesser-known islands without the rush

Day 1: Gili Trawangan

  • Rent a bike and explore Gili Trawangan
  • Ease into your trip by stopping off at the numerous beachside cafes and lounging on the beach, taking a dip or snorkelling
  • Enjoy sunset cocktails at Pinkcoco Beach Club

Day 2: Gili Trawangan

top pick

Gili trawangan utopia sunset catamaran cruise

โญโญโญโญโญ

5-Hour SUNSET and Snorkeling Catamaran Cruise

5 Star Rated | Viator Badge of Excellence | 48 Reviews

๐Ÿคฟ All-Inclusive 18m Catamaran

๐Ÿคฟ Snorkelling spots: Turtle City, Secret Garden and BASK underwater statues

๐Ÿคฟ International buffet dinner with refreshments

BOOK IT ๐Ÿšข

Day 3: Gili Meno

  • Take a boat to Gili Meno and explore the island’s underwater sculptures, check out the turtle sanctuary and freshwater lagoon
  • Relax on the beach with a good book or take a walk around the island and stop at the numerous local and hotel restos and cafes
  • Spend the night on Gili Meno or Head back to Gili Trawangan for a sunset horse ride on the beach

Day 4: Gili Trawanganan

Day 5: Gili Air and Lombok

Head to Gili Air to explore the island on foot or by bike, visit the beautiful beachside cafes and restaurants and shop at the local markets. In the afternoon, take a boat ride to Lombok so that you can explore the secret Gili islands on Day 6.

Day 6: Lombok and the The Secret Gili Islands

Day 7: Leave Back for Bali or Fly out from Lombok

  • Head back to Bali on the boat or fly out from Lombok’s airport

Gili Islands Itinerary – 10 Days: The Ultimate Experience

For the ultimate leisure and exploration balance, stretch your stay to ten days, allowing for full relaxation and adventure.

Day 1: Gili Trawangan

  • Arrive and check into your island retreat.
  • Hit the beach for some sun and maybe enjoy some yummy local cuisine, soaking in the vibrant island vibes.
  • Ready for a guided snorkel? or head to the Turtle Point on your own on the northeast side of the island
  • Unwind at a beach club, watching the sunset with a cool drink in hand.

Day 2: Gili Trawangan

  • Enjoy a morning surf lesson at one of the island’s top spots.
  • Explore the island by bike, stopping for photos, snacks, and chats with locals.
  • Have a sunset horse ride on the beach
  • Savour the flavours of the night market โ€“ a feast for the senses!

Day 3: Gili Trawangan and Gili Meno

  • Start your morning with a 5H Breakfast and Snorkelling tour on an 18m catamaran
  • When you get back, check out of your hotel and ferry over to Gili Meno for a change of pace.
  • Beach day! Lounging, swimming in the crystal clear waters, and snorkelling with turtles.
  • Enjoy a quiet dinner by the sea, under the blanket of stars.

Day 4: Gili Meno

  • Start the day with a sunrise walk, coffee in hand.
  • Pass by the turtle sanctuary and learn about their efforts to protect the hatchlings
  • Maybe go back to the underwater bask sculptures and snap those shots without the crowd
  • Enjoy a pretty walk around the freshwater lagoon
  • Free time for more snorkelling or simply unwinding with a good book.

Day 5: Gili Air

  • Travel to Gili Air, the perfect blend of its sister islands.
  • Take a paddleboarding or kayaking tour around the island or an Indonesian cooking class
  • Seafood dinner at one of the islandโ€™s renowned restaurants.

Day 6: Gili Air and Lombok

  • Morning snorkel to discover more of the incredible marine life.
  • OR perhaps treat yourself to some very affordable spa treatments
  • OR head to Lombok and spend the night there for an easier transition to explore the secret GIlis

Day 7: Lombok – Secret Giliโ€™s

Day 8: Lombok to Gili Trawangan

Head back to Gili Trawangan, revisiting favourite spots or discovering new ones.

  • Enjoy a leisurely day, maybe trying out another snorkelling spot or just beach-hopping.
  • Evening at leisure, maybe finding the perfect spot for dinner and drinks.

Day 9: Gili Trawangan

Day 10: Head back to Bali

  • Enjoy your final island breakfast and soak up the last of the Gili atmosphere.
  • Depart for Bali, filled with memories, stories, and maybe a few new friends.

Insider Travel Tips for First-Timers to the Gili islands

  • Getting Around ๐Ÿšฒ: Rent a bike for the best island experience. Itโ€™s eco-friendly and gives you the freedom to explore at your own pace.
  • Packing Essentials ๐ŸŽ’: Bring reef-safe sunscreen, a good book, and an open heart. The Gilis are casual, so leave the heels at home.
  • Cultural Norms ๐Ÿ‘—: Respect local customs. Dress modestly when away from the beach and always greet locals with a smile.
  • Safety โ›‘๏ธ: Although the Gilis are generally safe, always be cautious when swimming and snorkelling. Stick to designated paths for horse rides and avoid interactions with wild animals.
  • Weather Conditions ๐ŸŒค๏ธ: The peak season is from April to September when there is less rain and pleasant temperatures. Expect more crowds during this time as well.
  • Island Culture ๐ŸŒด: Embrace the island lifestyle and take a break from technology. The Gilis are known for their laid-back atmosphere, so enjoy every moment without constant distractions.
  • Support Local ๐Ÿฝ๏ธ: The locals on the islands rely heavily on tourism, so support small businesses and buy souvenirs from local markets to contribute to the community’s economy.
  • Bring Cash ๐Ÿ’ต: While some places may accept credit cards, it’s always best to have cash on hand for small purchases and emergencies. ATMs can also be limited or out of order on the islands.

Overall, just relax, have fun, and soak up the beautiful surroundings of the Gili Islands. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience that you’ll never forget!

Conclusion

The Gili Islands offer a unique blend of excitement, relaxation, and natural beauty. Whether you have a few days or a full week, thereโ€™s an itinerary to match your pace.

Planning your trip to the Gili Islands is the first step towards an unforgettable adventure. With each visit, Iโ€™ve discovered new hidden gems and made memories to last a lifetime.

Share your Gili adventures or tips below, and if you’re dreaming of your next island escape, why wait? The Gilis are calling

Affiliate Disclosure: Some of the links in the article have affiliate links, what this means is, if you click a link and make a purchase I may earn some money to buy a coffee (whoohoo!). Thanks for the support, I’d love to keep making this content freely available to all. As always opinions and thoughts remain my own.

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