Walking on Air

Trip Start Jul 05, 2012
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Trip End Jun 19, 2013


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Where I stayed

Flag of Indonesia  , Nusa Tenggara Barat,
Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Highlights

Gili Air.
There are 3 small islands off the coast of Lombok, Gili Air, Gili Meno and Gili Tranwanggen. We opted for Air as it was the closest. According to the guide book it was the middle of the three in terms of night life however it was quiet due to it being low season. The island is really nice with great bars and restaurants running along the beach. There are also no cars or motorbikes only horse and cart and it only takes 90 minutes to walk around the island so each night we tried different places to eat; the best being the chillout bar. We ate some yummy marlin fillet with garlic sauce and tuna kebabs with chili sauce! We spent most of our days just relaxing by the pool and having a dip. Ahhh lovely.

Gili Air Hotel.
After our epic journey to get to Gili Air we just wanted to find a hotel quickly, we were so tired and hungry. Our horse and cart driver turned out to be our hero by bringing us to Gili Air hotel. As we approached it looked way out of our league but after a bit of bargaining we bagged a bungalow near the beach with a pool for only 7 each! Plus a free breakfast, a decent one I might add not just bread and jam like all the others but unlimited tea, juice, eggs, omelets, pancakes. Take the breakie away and it was pretty much 4 each a night for 3 star hotel with a pool. We think we deserved this after our journey. We couldn't help ourselves and stayed here 6 nights. Our holiday in our travels! One other thing, every hotel in Indonesia be it in touristy Bali or a homestay in Flores seems to have its resident chicken. Great if you want an omelet at 4 in the morning not great if you want a lay-in!

Meeting people.
We keep randomly meeting other travelers we have met before and this time we noticed the Belgian couple we toured Prambanan with sat at our hotels restaurant. We spent a good evening with them chatting away until past 1, glad we didn't have to get up early like them!
We also met some nice Indonesian guys who worked in the bar next door, one of which was a Madrid fan. This lead to us going round at 2am to watch Barca/Madrid in their 'living room'. I don't think the guy sleeping on the mattress next to the tv appreciated our outbursts as the goals went in. We had some good banter and they wished us well on our journey when we left.

Lowlights

Journey from Labuan Bajo to Gili Air.
Ferry from Labuan Bajo to Sape - 8 hours.
Bus from Sape to Bima - 90 minutes. (both sat on beer crates in gangway)
Waiting for night bus - 2 hours.
Night bus from Bima to other side of Sumbawa - 9 hours. (no sleep due to driver swerving around bends like a mad man)
Ferry from Sumbawa to Lombok - 2 hours.
Bus from ferry port to Mataram - 3 hours.
Bemo from Mataram to Bengsal harbour - 90 minutes.
Waiting for boat to Gili Air - 45 minutes.
Boat from Bengsal harbour to Gili Air - 20 minutes. (more like bathtub, loaded sky high with produce and 20 passengers squeezed in around sides. We then got drenched on the way and with the boat swaying so much we didn't feel to great!)
Horse and cart from Gili air harbour to hotel - 10 minutes.
Finally we made it! Just over 28 hours of non-stop traveling we reached our destination.
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