This 8-day discovery tour of Lombok and the Secret Gili Islands is perfect for adventure-seekers who are short on time. Immerse yourself in the Sasak culture and local wisdom with visits to local villages, before exploring the untouched beauty of Bali's lesser-visited neighbor, with trips to secluded waterfalls in the jungle, remote beaches, and quiet, untouristed islands.

Highlights

  • Visit Lombok's highest waterfall, Sendang Gile
  • Go on a morning cycling tour around Suranedi
  • Check out the beautiful Tanjung Aan beach
  • Explore the underwater world of the Secret Gili Islands

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrival in Lombok Kuta, Lombok
Day 2 Tetebatu - Rice Paddies, Villages, & Waterfall Tour Kuta, Lombok
Day 3 Beach Hopping on Lombok's Southern Beaches Kuta, Lombok
Day 4 Kuta to Senggigi, Cycling Tour around Surenadi Senggigi, Lombok
Day 5 Secret Gili Islands Snorkeling Trip Senggigi, Lombok
Day 6 Senggigi to Gili Gede Gili Gede
Day 7 Diving or Snorkeling in Gili Layar Gili Gede
Day 8 Gili Gede to Lombok Airport via Sukarare Village & Banyumulek Village  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Lombok

Witness Gendang Beleq and the ancient art of Peresean
Witness Gendang Beleq and the ancient art of Peresean

Welcome to Lombok! When you arrive at the airport you will be met by your guide and welcomed in the traditional way of the Sasak people who greet guests who visit their houses, with a gift of a Selandang (scarf).

When you arrive, stop by the Ende Sasak Village, where you can see local kids performing Gendang Beleq (a music and dance performance with big drums) and Peresean—an ancient martial art that involves fighting with rattan sticks. After that, take a quick tour around the village, where you can meet the locals and learn about the traditional ways of life here on Lombok.

From there,  make your way to Kuta,  a laidback surf town on the south coast, where you'll have the rest of the day free to relax and explore at your own pace.

Day 2: Tetebatu - Rice Paddies, Villages, & Waterfall Tour

Take a short hike through the jungle to Sendang Gile waterfall
Take a short hike through the jungle to Sendang Gile waterfall

This morning, make your way from Kuta up to Tetebatu for a day of exploring. As you make your way up north, stop to explore local villages, visit fruit plantations, and take a walk through endless rice paddies. Stop en-route to try local fruits like rambutans, jackfruit, and guavas, and to see endangered black langur monkeys.

Following that, you'll head out on a short hike through the jungle to the Sendang Gile waterfall, one of the biggest in Lombok.  When you arrive, cool off under the icy water and relax for a while surrounded by the sounds of nature, before making your way back to Kuta, where you can spend the evening relaxing after a long day.

Day 3: Beach Hopping on Lombok's Southern Beaches

Go on a beach-hopping tour along Lombok's southern coast
Go on a beach-hopping tour along Lombok's southern coast

Enjoy a more relaxed pace to the sightseeing today with a beach-hopping trip along some of Lombok's most rugged and beautiful coastline. Starting from Kuta, make your way along the coast, stopping to visit Mawun, Tampah, Lancing, and the picture-perfect Tanjung Aan. 

If you feel like being a little more active, take a hike up to the viewpoint on Merese Hill to check out the coastline from above.

Spend as long or as little as you like exploring all the beaches and swimming to your heart's content, before heading back to your hotel in Kuta for another night in this laidback surf town.

Day 4: Kuta to Senggigi, Cycling Tour around Surenadi

Go on an early morning cycling tour
Go on an early morning cycling tour

Get the day off to an early start to make the most of the golden hour light and cooler temperatures in Karang Bayan where you will go on a leisurely cycling tour through the countryside around Suranadi. Take it slow to catch a glimpse of local life as you pass by. 

Stop off for a coffee in a small village, before making your way on to Senggigi. The main tourist destination in Lombok, Senggigi has more of a nightlife and shopping scene than the rest of the island but is still pretty laidback compared to neighboring Bali. When you arrive, take a walk to see some of the beaches and go for a stroll through the center before heading back to your hotel for the night.

Travel Time: 1.5 hr
Travel Distance: 40 miles (65 km)

Day 5: Secret Gili Islands Snorkeling Trip

Go snorkeling on the southern Gili islands off Lombok
Go snorkeling on the southern Gili islands off Lombok

After breakfast, head to the harbor to go on a day trip around Gili Nanggu, Gili Sudak, and Gili Kedis. Known as the 'Secret Gilis', these islands are part of the Sekotong archipelago off the coast of Lombok, just a short boat ride from the mainland.

Spend the day exploring above and below the water, with plenty of time for snorkeling on the colorful coral reefs surrounding the islands. Keep your eyes peeled for starfish and tiny blue seahorses in the coral, and look out for the sea turtles who call these warm tropical waters home. Ask your captain to swing by Nemo's Spot to see clownfish hiding amongst the anemones, just like in the movie.

After having your fill of snorkeling, head over to the tiny heart-shaped island of Gili Kedis to stretch your legs on the untouched white beaches, before making your way back to your hotel on the mainland.

Day 6: Senggigi to Gili Gede

Watch the sun set over the ocean while you sip on a coconut
Watch the sun set over the ocean while you sip on a coconut

After breakfast, head back out to the harbor to board a boat out to the island of Gili Gede, where you'll be spending the next few nights. Although 'Gili Gede' means 'big island', in Sasak at just 2.5 miles (4km) long, and 1 mile (1.6 km) wide, it isn't really that big, and you can easily walk all the way around the island.

Still relatively untouched by tourism, the tropical Gili Gede is like what the better known Gilis—Gili Air, Gili T, and Gili Meno—were a decade or two ago, with long empty beaches and crystal clear water.

Once you arrive, enjoy a free day on the island before climbing into a hammock with a coconut or a cocktail to watch the sunset over the ocean.

Travel Time: 2 hr
Travel Distance: 50 miles (80 km)

Day 7: Diving or Snorkeling in Gili Layar

Head out on a scuba diving trip around the islands
Head out on a scuba diving trip around the islands

Get ready to experience more of Lombok's rich underwater world with a boat trip out to Gili Layar, where qualified divers can head out beneath the waves to get up close and personal with the marine life. 

Alternatively, head out on a snorkeling boat trip stopping at different reefs around the island and catch a glimpse of different coral and tropical fish.

After, head back to Gili Gede and make the most of your last afternoon relaxing on the beach.

Day 8: Gili Gede to Lombok Airport via Sukarare Village & Banyumulek Village

Wave goodbye to Lombok as you begin your onward journey
Wave goodbye to Lombok as you begin your onward journey

It's time to say goodbye to tropical island paradise and make your way back to the mainland. Check out from your hotel and hop on the shared ferry back to Lombok, where you'll visit Sukarare Village and Banyumulek Village before making your way to the airport to begin your onward journey.

These traditional villages are some of the local centers for handicrafts, with Sukarare best known for its traditional weaving, and Banyumulek known for its pottery.  Watch as the local artisans demonstrate their weaving and pottery techniques using traditional tools, whilst learning about the history of the villages and the people who live there.

From there, you'll make your way to the airport with plenty of time to check in for your flight and relax.

Travel Time: 2+ hr
Travel Distance: 41 miles (66 km)

Map

Map of Off-The-Beaten-Path Lombok & Secret Gili Islands - 8 Days
Map of Off-The-Beaten-Path Lombok & Secret Gili Islands - 8 Days