It’s always a good time to go to the Gilis. The Islands are beautiful all year round however, there may be some factors to take into consideration before booking your trip to paradise.
Firstly, lets take a look at the weather. Generally, the three Gili Islands are mostly dry and hot throughout the year however, there is an official wet season and dry season. The wet season is minimal in comparison to the main Island of Lombok and Bali though. You could be watching a torrential downpour across the water on mainland Lombok whilst sunning yourself up on the beaches on the islands.
Wet season begins in November and ends in April. During this time, the weather can be difficult to predict and can change very quickly. You could wake up to bright sunshine in the morning and by the time you’ve had breakfast and got yourself to the beach it could be raining heavily, then by the time you’ve gathered your things and got back to your hotel, it could be hot and sunny again.
The Gilis are much hotter and drier than Bali and Lombok but the evenings are a lot cooler. If you want to visit during the hottest time of the year then it is best to visit the islands between June-September, the average daily temperature during these months is between 27°C-32 °C.
The Gilis have 3 main seasons:
Mid season: May, June and October
Low season: February, March, April and November
High season: January, July, August, September and December
High season gets extremely busy in comparison to the rest of the year, especially on Gili Trawangan where it is estimated that around 1000 people come and go from the island everyday. Accommodation and transport is always more expensive during this time but good weather is almost a definite.
During Low season, the islands can be very quiet and of course everything is a little cheaper. If it’s down-time that you’re looking for, low season is a good time to visit the Islands. This is also a really good opportunity to learn more about the culture and history of the Islands because the residents are less busy and therefore, you’re more likely to catch them for a conversation about Island life.
In Indonesia there are many holidays and celebrations that take place. The Gili Islands are sometimes directly affected by some of these holidays for example during the Balinese holiday of Nyepi in March, the Gilis become extremely busy as boat loads of tourists arrive from Bali to skip the Holy day of silence.
The local people of the Gilis are predominantly of Muslim faith. Therefore, the Holy month of Ramadan takes place for one month each year, during this time many of the businesses around the Islands will adapt their opening times to accommodate their local staff whilst they are fasting.
It’s a good idea to check for any holidays and/or celebrations taking place during your trip to the Islands so that you are sure to plan around it if needed. If you are lucky enough to visit during these times, feel free to get involved in the celebrations and remember to be respectful of the Island etiquette.
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