Gili Islands diving
The three small Gili Islands located to the northwest of Lombok can be reached from Bali or Lombok. It is also possible to island hop between the three islands. Marine life around the many dive sites is healthy including reef sharks and turtles but coral bleaching from the 1998 El Nino is very evident. An experienced guide will be able to find all sorts of small critters for their divers. Currents are usually manageable for all levels of diver and visibility ranges from 10-30m.
Gili Trawangan diving
Gili Trawangan is largest of the three islands and is popular with backpackers who come here to party. There are several dive centres running courses and daytrips.
Shark Point is the most popular dive site with the best chance to see white tip, black tip and grey reef sharks as well as sting rays, turtles and bumphead parrotfish.
Manta Point gets regular manta ray visits at certain times of the year.
Sunset Reef is a healthy hard coral reef down to 20m with schools of reef fish.
Halik Reef is a good spot to see turtles.
Deep Turbo has all the usual reef fish as well as moray eels and many crustaceans.
Gili Meno diving
To the east of Gili Trawangan is the smaller island of Gili Meno. It is a slightly more upmarket resort island.
Meno Wall is covered with soft corals down to 24m. It’s is a popular day and night dive. The usual reef fish are here. Turtles are also seen. Crustaceans and nudibranchs are numerous. Spanish Dancers are often seen on night dives.
Malang Reef is a submerged sea mount that starts at 12m then drops away to over 40m. Hard and soft corals, sponges and gorgonian seafans are home to impressive marine life. There are some good swim-throughs here.
Gili Air diving
Gili Air is the closest of the Gili’s to Lombok and is the most populous. There are plenty of accommodation options and a couple of dive centres. One dive centre runs a turtle hatchery to protect hawksbill and green turtles.
There are several diving spots around the island including Hans Reef and Air Wall. Coral coverage is less than perfect but despite that these are good dive sites to find macro subjects such as frogfish, ribbon eels, mantis shrimps, jawfish and ornate ghost pipefish. Of course turtles are seen as well as the occasional small reef shark.
The Japanese Wreck is a World War II patrol vessel lying in 45 metres to the south of Gili Air. The 20m long wreck is home to lionfish, scorpionfish, moray eels and schools of fish including trevally and barracuda.