Gili Air, Indonesia

After another great breakfast (Indonesians make great pancakes and fruit salads) we pack a bag and head around the island. Gili Air is pretty much surrounded by shallow reef, which means swimming isn’t so easy, but snorkelling is as easy as getting in the water. We stop under the shade of a tree where the views of Lombok’s mountains are stunning. Danny, the landlord of out beach chalet, has leant us a snorkel so we get straight into floating out over the reef.

The reef is home to beautiful fish and a few plants. It isn’t as good as the Great Barrier Reef or Whitsunday Islands is Australia, but it is so much more accessible here. After lounging around we get some lunch and take a walk around the rest of the island.

There is some more traditional village life at the southern end of the island, around the boat jetty. The western side of the island is pretty sparse these days, but there remains some signs of accommodation, which was probably the first on the island. We stop at the north western side and take a swim. The water is very shallow and the water very warm. It looks as though the reef has been removed at this point of the beach. I can still feel the bed of the reef under my feet, but nothing remains on the top. Broken reef is used as gravel around the island and I can’t help but assume that early developers of the island just removed the reef from the shallow sections and dragged it up the beach. It looks as though this practice has ended now.

We spend the remainder of the day relaxing in the shade and marvelling at the incredible sunset.

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