English / Indonesia / Photography / Travel

Relaxing at Gili Meno

After Ubud, I proceeded to Gili Meno, on of the three tiny islands situated north-west of Lombok island. The crossing with fast boat from Padang Bai took about 1,5 hours. I was dropped at Gili Trawangan and hopped on another boat to Gili Meno.

The Gilisimage courtesy of Gilibookings

I spent 4 days at Gili Meno. What I did there was eating, swimming, snorkeling, tanning, walking, taking pics, sleeping and repeat. My husband went diving a couple of times on the many diving spots around Gili Meno. The island life there is so relaxing despite the scorching sun. A note from me: Bear in mind to cover up yourself when venturing out there off the beaches. On the contrary of Bali, locals of Lombok and the Gilis are muslims. Showing them respect is not too much to ask.

This horse cart is called Cidomo. If you want to move around but don’t feel like walking, you can take it as there are no motorized vehicles allowed in all three Gilis (Gili means island in local language).

Cidomo Gili Meno

There are a lot of boats sailing back and forth between other Gilis or to Lombok. Some boats carry all logistics ranging from food, drinks, ingredients to stools and tables from the main island. Others transport water too as there is only salt water available on the Gilis. When I was there I needed to adjust myself showering with salty water after swimming, but I got used to it quickly. Consider this as eco tourism.

Gili Meno boat

One day I woke up early to catch the sunrise on the beach in front of my hotel. This was around 6.30 am if I’m not mistaken.

Sunrise Malia's Beach Gili Meno

A couple of minutes later. The sun rose rather quickly that morning.
Sunrise Malia's Beach Gili Meno

Seafront bungalows of the hotel where I stayed.
Sunrise Malia's Beach Gili Meno

The golden hour in a tranquil morning. Such a bliss!

Sunrise Malia's Beach Gili Meno

All Gilis are backpacker’s paradise. Look at this array of affordable accommodations at Gili Meno. Some luxurious hotels and resorts have been built there also but the feel is still a backpacker island. That is exactly the charm of it, laid back vibe and unpretentious.

Gili Meno

I heard of this warung from my Indonesian neighbour in The Netherlands who knows the owner. Warung Ya Ya serves Indonesian food without MSG at friendly price.

Warung Ya Ya

Mango juice

Unlike its neighbour Gili Trawangan, the party island, Gili Meno is quiet. This is the only beach club there, Karma beach club. Lie at the bale and enjoy the music and the view.

gili-meno

Or watch local kids having a good time in sea after school with Gili Air, Lombok and Mount Rinjani on the background. What a life! Perhaps for them the sea and the view are so normal but the water is crystal clear, it was like swimming in an aquarium. And that is so special for tourists like me.

Gili Meno

gili meno

The other side of all the beauty Gili Meno has to offer, unfortunately the island has been badly littered. As an Indonesian I must shamely admit the awareness of keeping the places tidy and not littering is so low there, like elsewhere in the country. It is such a shame to see rubbish there, a lot of it. There are volunteers who pick up the trash.  This is a good initiative to support.

Malia’s Beach in Gili Meno where I stayed is located on the east side of the island. To see the sunset I walked to the other side but alas I couldn’t catch it properly. It was covered by Gili Trawangan. This was the dawn there.

Sunset Gili Meno

And this one was taken nearby the mosque in the center of the island where the locals live.
Gili Meno in dawn

I write this in one gloomy November day and the memory brings a smile on my face. Gili Meno was so relaxing and memorable. When I was there I turned 44, that was sure one of the most relaxing birthday celebrations I have ever had, in a hut on a beach with my loved-ones under the clear sky with countless stars.

This series of Indonesian summer holiday stories continues. Stay tuned!

 

26 thoughts on “Relaxing at Gili Meno

  1. Aku suka banget di Gili Air. Waktu itu nyebrang ke Gili Meno krn ikut rombongan snorkeling.

    Scandi Guy udah pengen balik aja lagi kesana

    • Jernih sekali airnya. Aku snorkeling aja udah bisa lihat ikan-ikan dan satu penyu gitu. Suamiku beberapa kali diving, dia bilang bagus banget. Si Mini Me juga mau balik lagi ke situ dan mau ke Gili Nanggu juga. Tetanggaku di sini orang Lombok Va, jadi banyak dapet info dari dia.

  2. Eating, swimming, snorkeling, tanning, walking, taking pics, sleeping and repeat, aaah heaven on earth ya mbak…. aku belum pernah nyebrang sampe Gili/Lombok, mudah2an one day i will….

  3. Ini post yang aku tunggu2 krn sekarang aku lagi bingung antara ke Nusa Ceningan/Nusa Penida atau ke Gili Air/Gili Meno pas ke Bali nanti. Ngeliat foto2 Mbak Yoyen jadi pengen ke Gili Meno, tranquil banget yah kayanya, cocok untuk relaxing. Btw foto2nya bagus Mbak🙂

    • Makasih Dixie. Eh aku mau sharing ya. Makin ke sini aku makin sedikit buat foto, cuma memang sekalinya niat motret ya mikir komposisi, lighting, warna tone, sphere etc lebih lama sebelum jepret tombol shutter. Tujuannya kalo bisa seminim mungkin edit foto. It is a challenge to use the camera settings properly according to photography. How do you experience it yourself? Care to share?

      Gili Meno & Gili Air enak memang, sepi. Kalo suka party dan rame-rame bisa ke Gili Trawangan. Yang sekarang mulai rame dikunjungi turis itu Gili Nanggu. Bagus katanya, aku belum pernah ke situ.

      • Thank you for sharing Mbak. Jujur aku kalo liburan kadang2 malah males foto pake DSLR karena berat & rada bulky, lumayan sering juga foto pake iphone walaupun memang teknisnya terbatas ya. Dulu pas awal masuk klub fotografi pas kuliah, ada senior bilang, “Kalo objeknya bagus (misalnya pantai cantik), semua bisa capture foto bagus, tapi belum tentu spesial.” Yang bisa bikin spesial itu gimana kita ngatur komposisi, angle, lighting, dan nemuin point of interest (POI) buat foto tsb. Untuk referensi, kalo liat foto2 NatGeo atau semacemnya yang aku liat pertama itu angle, komposisi, lighting, & POI, gimana fotografernya bisa bikin foto itu unik (btw 4 hal ini jd perhatian aku terutama pas foto pake hp). Krn sering liat contoh foto, aku jadi kebiasa ngeliat angle & komposisi yang unik buat objek foto, jadi ketika motret langsung ngeh sendiri. Kalo warna tone, biasanya aku adjust di editing karena aku pengen foto2 aku tone-nya seragam biar ada ciri khas.

        Kalo untuk teknis, dulu aku juga mikir lama kalo mau ngutak-ngatik setting, tapi emang practice makes perfect, semakin ke sini tangannya udah refleks dengan dial di kamera jadi ga mikir lagi. Biasanya setting kamera aku pasang di Aperture Priority mode, jadi aku hanya atur ISO & aperture, sedangkan shutter speed diatur kamera (untuk foto scenery atau inert object, selama shutter speed ga lebih cepet dari 1/200, ga masalah mau berapapun. Kalo speed tinggi banget, misalnya 1/1000, nanti jadi ada efek vignette). Aku kontrol aperture & ISO krn aku suka kontrol depth of field jadi emang harus mainin aperture, sedangkan ISO krn kontrolnya gampang, selama outdoor & terang pasang rendah aja. Dengan kaya gini udah lumayan simplified, krn aku jadi tinggal ngatur aperture aja (ISO ga banyak berubah). Aperture priority ini ngebantu banget, apalagi kalo foto moving object yang harus sigap (kelamaan mikir ntar momennya malah keburu ilang).

        Sebenernya dari dulu aku kepikiran mau bikin semacam artikel how-to, tips simpel untuk bikin foto unik & menarik (bahkan bisa pake hp aja fotonya, ga perlu kamera canggih), tapi masih nyangkut di draft aja. Baca pertanyaan2 Mbak Yoyen ini bikin aku jadi pengen nyelesain draftnya buat dipublish😀

        • Aku otodidak belajar motret sendiri, banyak baca dan praktek. Mungkin karena papaku seniman biasa sih lihat dan atur komposisi, POI, rule of third etc…etc… Maksudku share aku semakin sedikit motret selagi liburan karena pingin lebih menikmati liburan bukannya kalap mau capture semua, sementara aku selalu berusaha bertutur cerita lewat fotoku. Dengan begini sekarang makin sedikit bikin foto selagi liburan. Well, sisi positifnya sih ngga ribet seleksi untuk dibuang kalo sampe rumah.

          Yap, aku juga sukanya ISO rendah dan main shutter & aperture. Aku selagi motret kamera settingnya Manual mode, F max F 5.6, paling besar F 1.8 (biasanya untuk makanan biar ada bokehnya). Shutter antara 1/30 – 1/500 max. Bisa lambat shutternya karena biasanya aku motret benda ngga bergerak.

          Silahkan tulis posnya itu, aku pasti baca.

  4. Wow you covered a lot of ground while vacationing in Indonesia. I need to learn from you. Also to put Gili Meno in my list, as I am a sucker for clear water and white sands.

    • Thank you Dita. I love to observe the surroundings with the focus mainly on the food, architecture, culture, nature and how locals live and interact with tourists. This is beside vacationing and relaxing. You can do this also🙂

      Iyah, the clear water in several blue tones is so inviting.

  5. I love Gili Meno too, not as crowded as Gili Terawangan ya. Lovely pics as always, Lo. Missing Lombok, wanna go back there again!😍

  6. Omg, Bali udah lah beberapa kali.. tapi lombok belum pernah sama sekali. Someday i will! 💪🏼

    Foto2nya cantik banget mbak Yo, aku menikmati 😊

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