After a last breakfast of banana pancakes at Sama Lama, we squeezed ourselves and our bags into a horse and cart and headed for the jetty. The boat to Gili Air is pretty speedy, even with a stop at Gili Meno for people to board the boat via a little transfer vessel while we were still out at sea.
Gili Air is noticeably smaller than Gili T, but doesn’t lack the bustling atmosphere or abundance of bars and restaurants like Gili Meno does. We hopped back into a horse and cart and headed north to Begadang Backpackers, our home for the night. After a few weeks of pretty luxurious accommodation, it was funny to be back in a hostel again! It had a big pool shaped like a mushroom, a bar with bean bags and all of the bedrooms were little bamboo huts. It was like camping out in the middle of the jungle, with just a mattress, mosquito net and a fan (thank god) in our room.
It was a boiling hot day so we jumped straight in the pool and cooled off with an amazing coconut frappe from the smoothie bar in the hostel. In the afternoon we borrowed bikes from the hostel and cycled to the Sate Bar for some lunch. We had some delicious Tempe & vegetable satay with the best peanut sauce and little crunchy fried potatoes. We spent the rest of the afternoon cycling around the island, which was pretty tricky in parts as there are even less roads here than in Gili T so it’s very sandy!
After our longer than planned bike ride (cycling through sand in the boiling hot sun is pretty hard) we headed back to the hostel for an evening swim and a beer. Once we’d cooled down we headed back out on the bikes to watch the sunset, and then to Pachamama for dinner. It’s the most beautiful vegetarian restaurant, decorated like a lush greenhouse with tons of plants and tea lights. We had delicious eggplant burritos with amazing vegan pesto and a couple of bintang for good measure. It was a pretty treacherous cycle home in the pitch black (we weren’t lucky enough to have head torches this time!) and then a nights sleep in our little jungle hut with geckos scuttling around above us.
Our little hut
Lunch at Sate Bar