photos and the stories behind them from around the world
life on a tiny island
Imagine three tiny islands with no cars, motorcycles or dogs, surrounded by beautiful clear blue waters and white sand beaches. The occasional clip-clopping of horse hooves blends harmoniously with the rhythmic sounds of the ocean and the occasionally mewling of a cat. What you’d have imagined are the Gili Islands, an archipelago of three tiny islands off the coast of Lombok, Indonesia. “Gili” which means “tiny island” in Sasak, is an accurate adjective for these islands which together are less than 10 square miles. I spent some time on Gili Air and fell in love with its otherworldly beauty, its quiet streets and small fishing community.
Gili Air is the second smallest of the islands and has a population of around 1800 local residents. While it is a popular destination for tourists who mostly stay in small bungalows on the beachy perimeter of the island, when one walks the interior or wakes up early and heads to the harbor, one still gets a sense of the real community and the rhythms of its anachronistic lifestyle. Below are some of the vignettes I encountered during my magical time on Gili Air.