Feast at these 5 restaurants on Gili Trawangan
THE Gili islands, found just off the northwest coast of Lombok in Indonesia, are reserved for those who don’t mind traveling far and wide to find a slice of paradise.
The islands are made up of Gili Trawangan (Gili T), Gili Meno, and Gili Air, with Gili T being the biggest and liveliest of the three. Yet it’s still nowhere near as busy as other popular Indonesian vacation spots such as Bali.
Gili T has a reputation for enticing party animals, but that’s not all it’s good for. Gili T is rimmed with golden beaches, stunning sunsets, crystal-clear waters, and some great restaurants.
So, if you’re heading to Gili T and wondering where to indulge your taste buds, try these places:
Pretend you’re in Italy at Regina Pizzeria
It may seem silly to be in Indonesia and eat Italian food but when the pizza and pasta are this fresh, you wouldn’t want to miss it.
Regina Pizzeria is owned by an Italian chef who prepares each pizza from scratch before tossing it in the huge woodfire oven. All the pasta dishes use local ingredients and are prepared on the day they’re severed for a freshness that can be tasted in each bite.
If you’re a party of two, we recommend going for one pizza and one pasta dish, so you don’t miss out. The spinach ravioli is eye-rolling-ly good and the simple but delicious Margherita pizza is heavenly with a splash of chili oil.
You’ll never wait more than 20 minutes for your dinner at Regina Pizzeria, even on the busiest nights.
- Where: Jalan Ikan Hiu, Gili Trawangan, 83352.
- Opening hours: Monday to Friday, 17:00-23:00.
Grab brunch at Kayu Café
Although traditional Indonesian breakfasts such as nasi uduk and nasi kuning are delicious, you can’t be blamed for wanting avocado on toast occasionally.
The best brunch place on Gili T has to be Kayu Café on Main Street. The extensive menu will have you salivating before you even get to the counter to order.
Alongside Western classics such as avocado on toast and a full English breakfast, there are poppyseed bagels, smoothie bowls, burritos, omelets and pancakes.
Then there are the freshly baked cakes, coffee, and detoxifying juices. You would be forgiven for letting brunch run into dinner at Kayu Café.
- Where: Main Street, Gili Trawangan,
- Opening hours: Monday to Sunday, 07:00-21:00.
Visit Spain at Tapaz Bar Gili
Bringing a little bit of Spain to Gili T, Tapaz Bar Gili offers dinners a taste of Iberian flavors such as paprika-sprinkled potatoes with rustic tomato sauce, fresh anchovies marinated in vinegar and lemon, thick potato-layered tortilla, and fiery prawns.
Tapaz Bar Gili also pours out Spanish flavors in the form of white and red sangria.
Every dish at Tapaz Bar Gili is like an early birthday present.
- Where: Main Street, Gili Trawangan, 83352.
- Opening hours: Monday to Sunday, 11:00-23:00.
The Roast House
Just as the name suggests, The Roast House is all about delivering good old-fashioned chicken roast dinners with lashings of gravy, roasted vegetables, and the fluffiest potatoes.
The rotisserie-roasted chickens are served whole, in half or quartered, with or without the usual roast trimmings.
For those who aren’t keen on having a roast dinner in a tropical climate, there are plenty of other wholesome delights on the menu, including the schnitzel burger topped with a sunny side up egg and bacon.
There are also sandwiches, wraps, baguettes and classic Indonesian cuisine such as nasi goreng (fried rice).
The Roast House has a lowkey, Hard Rock Café theme to it with posters of rock legends plastered to the walls. It’s the best restaurant on the island to enjoy wholesome, soulful food.
- Where: Jalan Bintang Laut, Gili Trawangan, 83352.
- Opening hours: Monday to Sunday, 12:00-21:00.
This is perhaps the only restaurant on Gili T where you must reserve a table to avoid disappointment.
Jali Kitchen is tucked away at the end of Jalan Nautlius towards the center of the island. It’s first and foremost a boutique resort featuring a centerpiece pool with overhanging frangipanis that extend into the restaurant.
Jali Kitchen is a treat for your eyes and your palate with its Asian fusion menu and seriously scrumptious juices; who knew papaya, coconut milk, and peanut butter would work so well together?
Jali Kitchen is renowned for its traditional beef rendang, an Indonesian classic. It also serves spicy Penang curry, fiery Indian butter chicken and blow-your-head-off Thai green curry.
There are plenty of vegetarian options such as the crispy mushroom wontons, tempeh balado wrap, and tofu pad thai, to name a few.
Jali Kitchen is well worth the adventure of finding, we promise you won’t be disappointed.
- Where: Jalan Nautlius, Gili Trawangan, 83352.
- Opening hours: Monday to Sunday, 07:00-23:00.