Home #WHERETONEXT Indonesia & Indian Ocean Serenity Routes: Effortless Voyages from Bali to Gili Trawangan

Serenity Routes: Effortless Voyages from Bali to Gili Trawangan

Indonesia is a place that is as beautiful as it is fascinating. With jaw-dropping landscapes to admire, diverse plant and animal life to behold, welcoming locals to meet, and rich culture to explore, there are so many reasons to visit this incredible country.

For most travelers that visit Indonesia, Bali is the primary destination, and understandably so given its beauty and wealth of entertainment options. But while Bali may be the jewel in the country’s touristic crown, there is much, much more to discover. As the largest archipelago in the world to comprise a single state, Indonesia is the ideal destination for island hopping, and if you intend on using Bali as your exploratory hub Gili Trawangan, in Lombok’s Gili islands, is an awesome place to start.

Want to know how to get from Bali to Gili Trawangan? We’ve got you covered with all the information you need!

Getting from Bali to Gili Trawangan

Located to the east of Bali, just off the coast of the Lombok, Gili Trawangan is one of the largest of Lombok’s Gili islands, but that doesn’t make it all that big. It has a population of only around 1,000 people and covers a total of around 6 km2. Needless to say, there’s no airport here, so you’ll have to travel by boat one way or the other.

  1. Hop on the fast boat

The quickest and easiest way to get to Gili Trawangan from Bali is to take one of the fast boats, as these speedy boats can take you directly to Gili Trawangan. They primarily depart from Padang Bai harbor, on Bali’s east coast, but it’s also possible to catch one from other parts of Bali, such as Sanur Beach further south or Amed Beach to the North.

One-way tickets for a fast boat usually cost around $20-35 US (approximately 350,000-550,000 IDR) depending on the company you travel with, and the trip typically takes between 1 hour 15 mins and 2 hours (boats departing from the North of Bali will be fastest). There are many companies operating on the island, the most popular of which is probably BlueWater Express, and most offer at least two departures per day, usually in the morning and afternoon.

  1. Catch the ferry

If you don’t want to get the fast boat, then you can also take a public ferry. Much like the fast boats, these run regularly from Bali’s main harbors, and tickets are very cheap at less than $4 US (approx. 50,000 IDR). The trade-off here is that the trip takes much longer, typically between 4 hrs 30 mins and 6 hours, and the boats can be quite crowded at times.

Additionally, public ferries usually leave passengers at Lembar, in the southeast of Lombok. That means that you will need to arrange further travel to get to your destination. While the boat from Lombok’s Bangsal port to Gili Trawangan will cost less than $2 UDS (approx. 25,000 IDR), getting a taxi from Lembar to Bangsal will run around $20-25 US (300,000-400,000 IDR).

This route might suit you if you want to stop off in Lombok and explore a bit more as you slow-roll your way to Gili Trawangan, but otherwise, it probably not be worth the extra hassle.

  1. Fly to Lombok

Since Lombok has its own airport, you can also opt to fly from Bali to Lombok and then go by boat to Gili Trawangan if that appeals to you. A flight from Bali Denpasar will normally set you back around $70-80 US (approx. 1,110,000-1,250,000 IDR), and will you to Lombok Praya in around 40 minutes.

The downside with this is that you’ll have to account for waiting at the airport, which will offset some of the time you save by flying. Additionally, this option will also require you to arrange your travel to Bangsal port (taxis are also around $25), where you can get a short ferry to Gili Trawangan. Alternatively, you can arrange a private land and sea transfer from Lombok airport, but naturally, this will cost considerably more.

If you want maximum comfort on your bucket list trip to Indonesia and are willing to shell out for transfers when you touch down on Lombok, then this option could work for you.

 Experience Gili Trawangan

With azure waters and pristine beaches on every side and no cars to speak of on the Gili islands, Gili Trawangan is a peaceful little piece of paradise and is well worth visiting if you’re already in the region. While it’s not possible to fly or drive directly to Gili Trawangan from Bali, there are different options to choose from. The fast boat offers the best balance of speed and economy, but depending on the kind of adventure you’re on, the slow ferry or flight options may well appeal to you more. Travel is all about freedom and exploration, after, so do what works best for you, and most of all, enjoy Gili Trawangan!