Gili Islands & Komodo Island

Has anyone visited either of these destinations?

Will be in Indonesia for 10 days over Xmas and not to keen on staying in Bali for more than a night or two.

Any tips or recommendations? :)



    They're not easily reachable from each other. You pick one or the other.

    Gilis is more about European backpacker party island..

    Komodo is quieter, more remote, much larger region. Great diving and you have the famous Komodo dragons. Treks on the islands for great views from on top of hills. Lots of boat travel.


      Ah ok that's a shame! Might be best to split our time between the 3 Gili islands then. Thanks!


        I suppose for a 10-day trip its doable to do both.. you would pretty much spend 1 whole day doing the transfer. 10-days is too much for either of the destinations really.


          Will stay in Bali the day we arrive and then the night before our departure so more like 8 days I guess. I am researching now to see what there is to do but I think if we split those 8 days between the 3 islands it should be ok hopefully!


    If you're flying in to Bali and going to the Gilis, you may as well spend a couple of nights in Amed, which is a departure point from Bali to the Gilis and is a very nice relaxing area. I spent four days there and really enjoyed it. If your main experience of Bali has been Kuta etc. you'll find Amed very different and I would suggest checking it out.

    The Gilis are nice but honestly there is not much to do there (Gili T has a good party scene but my tolerance for that isn't what it used to be). The other two Gilis are much quieter and are nice and relaxing but TBH I think you can get much of the same in Amed without the boat ride and with better food and nicer snorkelling. There are some good snorkel and dive spots around the Gilis but most of the coral has been destroyed by dynamite fishing.

    3 days on the Gilis is enough time to experience the whole thing and get bored, unless you are into the party scene and want to do that for a few days/nights on Gili T.

    If you were feeling adventurous you could then go on to Lombok, climb Rinjani, hire a scooter and drive around the island. I did that a few years ago and had a good time, but Lombok is not as relaxing and friendly as the nicer parts of Bali.

    Komodo is high on my list of places to check out but as mentioned by the other poster it is really a separate trip to the Gilis unless you're there for a bit longer and have time for more travel. Komodo and Flores are often combined in one trip so I would look into that option if it interests you.


      Thanks for the reply! Have only spent time in Ubud and Seminyak/Kuta. Amed might be a good idea actually!

      I like the hostel party scene but wouldn't want to do this for more than a night or two considering our time frame. I like the idea of hopping between the islands but maybe a combined Amed/Gilis trip is the way to go.

      I would have loved to climb Rinjani but the partner definitely isn't! So probably wont visit Lombok at all.


        Gillis are technically a part of Lombok district. Its a very short distance to the Lombok mainland


          Do you think it's worth visiting Lombok?


        Once you get there you'll see that 'hopping between the islands' isn't as exciting as it sounds. There are three islands. Two of them are small and have almost nothing of interest on them (not that they aren't nice places to be, precisely for that reason, but once you've hopped once… you'll be done). The larger one has more to do, but I think the Gillis are at most a 4 day destination, unless you are doing a dive course or some other planned activity for a couple of days, or unless you just love sitting on the beach doing nothing for days. I do enjoy that for a day or two but I would get bored at the Gilis after 3 days.


          Ok thanks! I think we'll play it by ear then and book as we go


          I got bored after 1 day at Gili-T

          Just not my scene

  • +1 vote

    I checked out Komodo Island and Flores over a decade ago and loved it. I traveled with an Indonesian mate from Flores which helped.

    I flew into Ende and then checked out Kelimutu before travelling by car to Labuan Bajo. It was other worldly as many villages are much the same as they have been for 100's of years (no electricity or plumbing). They worship their ancestors so every night they light candles everywhere so you would just see rolling hills with candles everywhere. My mate took me to some really remote villages, some of the kids hadn't seen a foreigner before. I almost got speared in another village because the shaman had a recent premonition where a "white ninja" came to kill them all then I showed up a day later.

    If you are planning on checking out Flores you do need to allow quite a bit of time because it is mostly windy roads so you are only travelling at 20-30kmh everywhere.

    We paid a fisherman to take us to Komodo on his boat. It was powered by an old car engine, he controlled the throttle with a broom stick. Once on Komodo we walked around with a guide and managed to get quite close to the dragons.


      Dude that sounds amazing! I'll do some research into Flores!



    Hi, spent 4 days on Gili T in August. It is a coral island so difficult to walk on the beach in a lot of areas as well as trying to walk out in the water. As mentioned full of European back packers who have never heard of being polite and forming a cue (ie to board a boat, to wait for a table to be vacated). Sorry to put a downer on the trip but I am still having treatment on my neck after the incredibly bumpy boat ride tho in saying that my friend went and the sea was flat as a tack.


      Thanks for the reply! Ah that's a shame about the coral, hopefully the others Gilis are a bit better!
      I've heard a few bad stories about the gillis but I'm still keen to explore :)