How to get around Gili Trawangan

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1 min read
by Marlin
May 20, 2023

As you may already know, motorized vehicles are not allowed on the Gili Islands in order to maintain fresh air. Therefore, you won't find scooters, taxis, or cars in general on Gili Trawangan.

To get around Gili Trawangan, you can take a horse-drawn wagon called a Cidomo or rent a bike from one of the nearby businesses.

Since the island is not very large and most places are centered in one area, many people on Gili Trawangan prefer to walk from one place to another.

Renting a bike

Finding bike rentals in Gili Trawangan is not difficult. If you see many bikes parked in an area, it means they are available for rent. Some hotels also offer bike rentals.

The cost of renting a bike on Gili Trawangan varies depending on the business and season. Some businesses offer hourly rentals, while others offer daily rentals with an average cost of IDR 50,000 per day.

bike on Gili Trawangan

Bike rental costs on Gili Trawangan:

  • IDR 15,000 per hour

  • IDR 30,000 per 3 hours

  • IDR 40,000 per 3 hours around sunset time

  • IDR 50,000 per day

  • IDR 75,000 per day in the high season

Can I cycle around Gili Trawangan?

Yes you can cycle around Gili Trawangan and it only takes approximately 20 minutes to complete the circle.

Using an electric scooter

Wait, did you say that scooters are banned on the Gili Islands? Yeah, that's true, but the ban doesn't apply to electric scooters since they're considered more environmentally friendly.

Electric scooters have become increasingly popular on Gili Trawangan in the past couple of years. Right now, it's the hotels that offer electric bikes for rent.

electric scooters on gili trawangan
Electric scooters for rent

The cost usually ranges from Rp 250,000 to 350,000 per day, depending on the type of scooter you choose.

Electric scooters are pretty fast and can accelerate quickly. They can be really convenient if you need to zip around between places because riding a regular bicycle can get tiring after a while.

Taking a horse wagon

Horse wagons or as the locals call them Cidomo, are the traditional transportation in the Gili Islands. They originated on the mainland of Lombok, and you can still find them in some parts of the city of Mataram.

If you have just arrived on Gili Trawangan with a lot of luggage and your hotel is far from the dock, taking a horse wagon can be a good option.

horse wagon or cidomo on Gili Trawangan

A horse wagon on Gili Trawangan costs between Rp 100,000 and Rp 150,000 to reach a single destination, and it costs Rp 250,000 to 350,000 to circle the island.

Just like cycling, it takes approximately 20 minutes to circle Gili Trawangan using a horse wagon.

A horse wagon can accommodate up to 3 adult passengers, but if I were with 2 others with a ton of luggage, I would hire two wagons just to give some rest to the horses.

By foot

Usually, those who use transportation to get around have already been on the island for a little while. New tourists tend to walk down the street just to get to know the area before deciding where to go next.

southeast street on gili trawangan
Southeast street view

As I mentioned before, most places on Gili Trawangan are located on the east side of the island. This makes it easy for tourists to access necessary places such as ATMs, money changers, hotels, and restaurants.

Walking around the island of Gili Trawangan can be a lot of fun! Yes, you can walk around Gili Trawangan, and it only takes approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes to fully circle the island.

But if you've just arrived and you're eager to get to your hotel right away, especially if it's way out on the far west, walking there can be incredibly exhausting.

Essential note

If you're looking to get to the west side quickly, there's no need to go around to the south or north first. Instead, you can take a shortcut right through the middle via Jalan Villa Kelapa.

Finding the entrance to this street can be quite challenging since your map may not indicate your exact location.

I myself had to search for it multiple times before finally discovering it. To make things easier for you, here I provide you with the entrances to Jalan Villa Kelapa on both the east and west sides.

villa kelapa street gili trawangan east entrance
Villa Kelapa street EAST entrance
villa kelapa street gili trawangan west entrance
Villa Kelapa street WEST entrance

Another important point to mention is that there is no road on the northeastern side of the island. It's all sand, making it impossible for any kind of vehicle to pass through.

Therefore, if you plan to reach the north side on your bike, you'll either need to carry your bike for approximately 200 meters or find an alternate route from within the island that can guide you towards the north.

Map below shows where the sandy road is.

How big is Gili Trawangan

The size of Gili Trawangan, according to Google Earth, is 3.44 km2 / 1.33 mi2. The distance around the island is 7 km / 4.35 miles.

To give you an idea of the distance, circling Gili Trawangan is like walking from the Tegalalang rice fields all the way to the main street of Ubud, if you've ever been there before.

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