There’s so much to see and do on the Gili Islands, but here are our top five things to do with kids!
The Gili Islands are absolutely stunning and were a real highlight of our trip around Indonesia. There’s so much to see and do with little ones, I can’t recommend it enough! The majority of these are found on Gili T which is easily accessible by boat (10-20 mins) from the other islands
1. White sand beaches
Each Gili island is encircled by beautiful sandy shores leading down to shallow turquoise waters. Buckets and spades are readily available from the shops (thank goodness because we didn’t have room on our luggage to pack one!) and there’s plenty of shade from trees and restaurant parasols on the beach. We spent time on the beach in the morning and evening to avoid the hottest part of the day. As it turns out, Gili has spectacular sunrises and sunsets!
2. Snorkelling and Scuba Diving trips
We hired a private boat and travelled around the three Gili Islands, stopping off at the best snorkelling locations on the way. The private boat, crew and snorkelling gear cost 900,000 IDR for four-hours. Having a private boat meant we could go at our own pace which was best with little ones!
For adults and older children, there’s scuba diving. Gili has an abundance of sea life including sharks, turtles and manta rays along with wrecks and beautiful coral. There’s a price agreement on Gili so all Dive companies charge around 450,000 IDR for a single tank dive and discounts are given for booking multiple dives, having 4+ people or your own equipment.
3. Explore the island
Each Gili island is small and can be explored in an afternoon. On Gili T there are canoes all along the beaches available to hire (60,000 IDR / hour for a double) along with paddle boards. There’s horse riding (400,000 IDR / hour) which is particularly lovely at sunset. Cycle hire with a child seat is available for 50,000 IDR per day which is a great way to see the island… but avoid the sandy roads in the North!
4. Try Indonesian food
The delicious Indonesian Nasi / Mie Gorang was a huge hit with our little one. Fried rice / noodles mixed with seafood, chicken or vegetables and served with chicken satay, prawn crackers and a fried egg.
5. Sunset on the south coast of Gili T
There are several beautiful beach clubs and restaurants on the south coast of Gili T that welcome children. Huge beds on the beach, beanbags, hammocks and swings are fun for both adults and children! We particularly enjoyed Malibu and Exile which had campfires and live bands on the beach for sunset.