Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic calednar, is an entire month of fasting for Muslims. From sunrise to sunset, they will not eat a bite of food or take a drink of water.
Since the majority of those living in Lombok and the Gili Islands are Muslim, this is a very prominent religious time here. This month of fasting finishes with a large celebration, called Idul Fitri. This will be a day of feasting with friends and family, signifying the end of the month-long fast.While most things will remain the same, there may be a slight change on your holiday to Gili Air.
Some Local restaurants (warungs, as they’re called here) may close for prayer throughout the day or when it’s time to break their fast after sunset. Other than that, scuba diving, snorkeling, boats to and from the island will stay the same! To try and be respectful to our Muslim friends on the island, here are a few things to remember throughout this month.
Please don’t walk in the village or into any shops wearing just a bikini/swim wear. It’s much more respectful to utilise a sarong or a T-shirt !
Keep the mentality of island time! Please be patient if things take a bit longer than normal. Fasting is difficult on its own, let alone in a tropical client.
Aside from food and drink, our local brothers and sisters are also abstaining from smoking during daylight hours. We recommend doing your best to not smoke in the streets or while walking around. However restaurants and bars are just fine. This shouldn’t change your decision to come visit the Gili Islands. In fact it’s a very interesting cultural experience for tourists and travelers from the Western part of the world. Ramadan of this year (2019) will end beginning of June. On another note, Villa Saia will also be closed two days to celebrate with our staff and friends around the island for Idul Fitri.