Toes in the sand, a tropical breeze playing in your hair, with nothing on your hands but time… If this is your idea of the perfect holiday, you should definitely add Gili Trawangan to your travel bucket list. The largest of the three petite Gili Islands floating in the Indian Ocean between Bali and Lombok, this relaxed tropical islet offers a blissful break from everyday hustle and bustle. As a testament to the laid-back local way of life, there are no cars on the island. Our team discovered a more luxe side of Gili T during our stay at Majo Private Villas.
How to Get to Gili Trawangan
Before diving headfirst into our stay at Majo, a little orientation is in order. Gili Trawangan (or Gili T for short) is one of the three Gili islands (Trawangan, Meno and Air) scattered off the coast of Lombok, east of Bali. The boat trip from Lombok to Gili Trawangan takes just over 30 minutes, with the port in Bangsal located about 90 minutes from Lombok International Airport.
Our team travelled to Gili T from Bali. We took a private car from Seminyak to Padangbai, with the drive over taking around two hours. Most boat companies also offer a free shuttle service from your accommodation to the port, but this will mean stopping along the way to pick up other passengers. From Padangbai, we took a boat over to Gili Trawangan. The travel time between the two islands is around 90 minutes. When you book a villa through Ministry of Villas, our concierge team can help make all these travel arrangements for you.
After landing in Gili Trawangan, we hired bicycles (again, there are no cars on the island) and made our way to Majo Private Villas. This leisurely ride took just around 10 minutes and gave us the perfect introduction to the relaxed pace of the island.
Island Style, With a French Twist
Majo Private Villas is a boutique resort home to nine beautifully styled one-bedroom pool villas and a fabulous restaurant with a swimming pool – but we’ll get to those mouth-watering details later.
The style of Majo Private Villas is best described as French sophistication meets relaxed island style. Right on arrival it’s obvious that this is a winning combination. We can’t stop snapping photos of the flower framed pathways, quaint bamboo walls and chic interior details – think woven wicker lamps, eclectic textiles and elegant furniture mixing jewel tones with earth hues. And this was all before even checking into our villas.
Each of the Majo villas is unique in its styling but they all share the same elegant design and superb attention to detail. Every villa has its own private pool, open-air lounge, dreamy bedroom and beautiful bathroom with dual sinks and a rain shower. Upon check in, we’re greeted by a romantic towel and flower arrangement – it’s easy to see why these beautiful villas are so popular with couples and honeymooners.
Our days at Majo Private Villas started with a fabulous breakfast. During our stay, we had the chance to sample the pancakes, American breakfast and egg toasties. Everything was even more delicious than it sounded as described on the menu. A case in point: even the toasties were prepared using rich brioche bread – yum!
Even if you’re too lazy to roll out of bed in time for breakfast, Majo’s restaurant is definitely a feather on the resort’s cap. The beautifully styled venue overlooks a pool and serves ambitious cuisine mixing Indonesian flavours with European influences. Take it from us – a gourmet burger and a glass of wine by the pool are the perfect way to wrap up a day on the island.
Life on Gili T
Gili Trawangan is the place to stay if you really and truly want to unwind and perhaps even – gasp! – turn off your smartphone for a while. Once we were able to tear ourselves away from our pool, we hopped on a bicycle (complimentary for guests staying in the villas) and headed out to explore the island.
Out of the three Gili Islands, Gili Trawangan is often labelled as the “party island”, but in reality the nightlife is only endemic to a small corner of the island, with all the most popular bars located within a ten-minute walk of each other close to the port. Once you peddle yourself away from the main hubbub, you’ll discover serene beaches perfect for sun tanning, leisurely walks, snorkelling and sublime sunset views. Venturing inland, the island is shaded by photogenic palm groves, with a sleepy pace of life that will leave you feeling like you’ve stepped back in time. For our team, this was the perfect antidote to life in busy southern Bali.
All too soon, it was time to pack our bags and head for the port to catch our boat back to Bali. Though our team has stayed in some of the most luxurious villas across Asia, Majo Private Villas made a huge impression and we couldn’t stop raving about our stay for days to come. Reach out to our villa specialists if you have any questions or if you would like to book your own stay at this island utopia.