Gili Air - Insight


 Having visited Gili Air for over 14 years now, I felt compelled to write a brief article mainly for the benefit of western visitors to Gili Air, in order to give them an insight into the joys & tribulations of this small Indonesian Island.

An Australian living in Darwin with a career background of  21 years full time military service, Marine Engineer, Project Director & just prior to  my early retirement in December 2008 I was a Director of the Australian Institute of Project Management.      In January 1999 I made a deliberate decision to visit Indonesia with the intention of gaining a better understanding of Indonesia, at that time & possibly still today many Australians are fearful, ignorant or just do not care about our nearest northern neighbour.  (to be successful in life you must triumph over fear)       Indonesia with a population of 240 million people & Australia with only 23 million people, I believed it is in Australia’s interest to have a better understanding of the peoples of Indonesia & their country, so I decided to act on my beliefs & lead by example by making many friends on the Island of Gili Air. (You must have a dream for a dream to come true)

My experiences on Gili Air in the past 14 years with both the local people & tourists (from many countries has been tremendously enjoyable & rewarding with only the occasional disappointment.       I have learnt many new things about the people of Gili Air & Lombok & even about some of the many tourists during this time. (The man who says he is too old to learn, was probably always too old to learn)


My friends & their families have known me for many years, they are honest, hard working loyal & reliable.   ( I am very appreciative of their loyalty & achievements) also the many happy & friendly local bar & restaurant staff spread out around the beaches of Gili Air are a delight to talk with.


The vast majority of tourists on Gili Air are relaxed, happy, friendly & kind to the locals

A very small minority of tourists are unfriendly & unkind to the locals.         I get the impression because the locals are Indonesian they feel that they (westerners) are superior & therefore do not have to respect or be kind to the locals.  


PEOPLE GENERALISATION - the following statement applies to many countries.....  including Australia:

Lucky for me many years ago, in regards to many countries & places, I rightly or wrongly categorise people into two groups the GOOD GUYS & the BAD GUYS & I don’t associate with any of the bad guys. The BAD GUYS around the world will try to deceive people into parting with their money (including trying to sell them land they do not own) – So BE WARNED !


I hope this has been a helpful albeit VERY brief insight into my fourteen years experience on the beautiful island of Gili Air ?


David Tyrrell

Project/Marketing Manager