Photo: Have boat, can explore.

Sumbawa is so big, we’ve split it up into areas, select one of the below for detailed accommodation and food listings in that area. Sights and general overviews for Sumbawa as a whole can be found via the icons above. Don’t know where to start? Read an overview of Sumbawa’s different areas.

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Gili Kenewa

Our rating:

A hit with Indonesian travellers, Gili Kenewa is confusingly quite similarly named to Kanawa Island in Flores and is remarkably similar (though much smaller). Savannah all over, the island has a small hill to its western end that you can climb (watch your step, the trail is very steep and slippery in spots) to take a crowd-pleasing pic of the island.

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Less crowd-pleasing is the rubbish. While also a problem on Gili Paserang, Kenawa’s beaches are particularly bad, with plastic ringing the island’s high water mark like a land reef. That something so popular and beautiful, and so easily accessed isn’t cleaned up at least semi-regularly, is very disappointing. (And where does the rubbish come from in the first place? Do you really need that single-serve plastic cup of water?)

Climb a hill ...

Climb a hill …

We also visited Gili Namo, which we were told has some good coral gardens on the far side of the island by the mangroves. By the time we got there, the tide had changed and the water murked up sufficiently that we decided not to jump in. The boatman told us there is also some very good snorkelling off Gili Kalong (the two-humped island near Namo), but we didn’t have time to try it out.

... and enjoy the view.

… and enjoy the view.

To get a boat to Gili Kenewa, leave Poto Tano’s main ferry terminal and walk a couple of hundred metres and you’ll see a second, far smaller, wooden pier running out to sea with some small wooden boats attached. Head here and stand around looking like you want to hire a boat. It shouldn’t take long before you’ll get some interest.

Sadly, best viewed from a distance.

Sadly, best viewed from a distance.

The prices below are what our boatman quoted us for individual islands, but if you select a few islands, the price drops somewhat. For example, we paid 700,000 rupiah to visit Gili Paserang, Gili Kenawa and Gili Namo. Bargain hard but be polite. These prices are for boat charters. You get the boat for as long as you want.

Gili Paserang: 550,000 rupiah
Gili Kenawa: 250,000 rupiah
Gili Namo: 200,000 rupiah
Gili Kalong: 350,000 rupiah


Gili Kenewa
20 minute boat trip from Poto Tano.

Location map for Gili Kenewa

What next?

 Check out our listings of things to do in and around Poto Tano.
 Read up on how to get to Poto Tano.
 Do you have travel insurance yet? If not, find out why you need it.
 Planning on riding a scooter in Poto Tano? Please read this.
 Browse the web securely while travelling with TunnelBear. Try with a 7–day free trial.

See below for more sights and activities in Poto Tano that are listed on

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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Poto Tano? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Indonesia.

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