Gili Meno, Gili Islands Indonesia
If you dream of being completely away from it all, or honeymoon on a remote island, but you still want to be near “civilization”, then Gili Meno is your answer. Situated only some 20 minutes from Senggigi Beach by speedboat on the west coast of Lombok island, Gili Meno is one of three islands now gaining worldwide popularity. These are Gili Trawangan, Gili Air and Gili Meno. In the local Sasak language, “gili” means island. So take note that there are many “gilis” around Lombok that are either stand-alone or are in cluster.
Among the three islands in this cluster, Gili Meno is the quietest, and Gili Trawangan the most popular. If Gili Trawangan looks more like a tourist village, Gili Meno offers more of serene nature, besides superb diving opportunities. Meno is the smallest island with the least inhabitants, located in the center of the cluster. Here are white beaches, and shady palm trees interspersed with grassland, where cattle graze.
Gili Meno is a most idyllic and romantic retreat for honeymooners, but has sufficient attractions and things to do. Around the island are three dive spots that are favorite with scuba divers, they are called the Meno Wall, Sea Point Turtle, and Point Coral Blue. Besides, there is a seawater lake and a Bird Park that comes complete with homestay facilities.
Amidst amazing scenery of white sandy beaches, swaying palm trees, crystal clear seas and the soft lapping of waves, you will hear the chirping of many birds. The Gili Meno Bird Park was built by an Australian in a dome-like structure and has over 200 species of Asian and Australian birds, that include flamingos, cuckatoos, eagles and pelicans, besides other beautifully feathered friends. Uniquely, visitors must pass through labyrinths before reaching the dome.
The Gili islands strictly ban motorized vehicles. Therefore, transport is by bike or on a “cidomo” the local horse-drawn carts. But to really absorb the beauty and serenity of nature you can hike, taking care to bring sufficient drinking water with you.
The small port at Gili Meno is called Bangsal Port, and you must wait until there are 20 passengers before the boat leaves. If you are in a hurry you can rent speedboats. When arriving by plane at the Lombok International Airport, you can take a taxi to Senggigi. You can also take the DAMRI bus to Mataram, capital city of Lombok and continue by taxi. There are direct ferries that ply between Bali and Gili Trawangan. At Gili Trawangan, find a boat to take you to Gili Meno.