The Gambia Favorites

  • In Makasutu
    In Makasutu
    by toonsarah
  • Kapok trunk
    Kapok trunk
    by toonsarah
  • Albreda football pitch
    Albreda football pitch
    by toonsarah

The Gambia Favorites

  • Take a tour with Habib

    As an alternative to doing the holiday company's excursions I would recommend booking a trip or two with a good local guide. One of the best, judging by the many plaudits he gets, is Habib. He can be booked through the reception at Ngala Lodge or via the contact details below, and offers a range of half-day and whole day trips. Although we did one...

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  • Birds of The Gambia

    The Gambia is considered to be a birdwatcher's paradise, and even as non-experts and only mild enthusiasts we had great fun spotting and photographing (or in some cases trying to photograph) the myriad species here. Those we saw included:At Ngala Lodge, Fajara~ Common Bulbul~ Long-tailed Glossy Starlings~ Pied Crow~ Red-billed Firefinch~ Red-billed...

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  • River life

    The Gambia River defines the country – almost literally. The Gambia’s boundaries were set in 1889 when Britain and France agreed to divide up the disputed territory in this region, with France having the major share (present day Senegal) but Britain, crucially, retaining control of the river through the establishment of a Crown Colony, British...

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  • Baobab trees

    These distinctive trees, called by the locals “upside-down trees” because their branches look so much like roots, dominate the landscape in The Gambia as in so many other parts of Africa. They are relatively unusual here in that they lose their leaves in winter, so at this time of year they stand out even more. They can live over a thousand years,...

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  • Kapok trees

    The other stand-out trees for me from the Gambian landscape are the massive and often ancient Kapok trees. Also known as silk cotton trees, the fibres from the pods of this tree are used to stuff mattresses and pillows, sofas etc., and can be used for insulation. They grow to a large size and the trunks are massive, with striking buttresses. We saw...

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  • Gambia Visas - BEWARE

    GAMBIAN VISASIf you can't trust a country's High Commission Consulate - then who can you trust?We recently decided to experience a warm short break in Africa and decided to go to The Gambia as the prices were extremely competitive. My Partner required a Gambian visa although a European Commonwealth Citizen, which was double-checked and a cost of...

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  • Travelling as a single woman?

    Well, travelling alone is not a problem really, I did it quite often. Just came back last week.Which part of Serrekunda is he stayig? I would not prefer it since it is loud, noisy and full of exhaust gases. But Serrekunda is big, far bigger than Banjul, the Capital, so it might be o.k, sepending on the area.The Gambians are used to tourists, at...

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  • Dalasis

    The currency they use in The Gambia is the Dalasi.The exchange rates are 35Dalasi for 1Euro.You’d better change your money at the airport, banks or hotels because at the black market they sometimes try to rip you off.

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  • Banjul

    Banjul was founded by the British in 1816 as a trading post and a base from which to attempt to suppress the slave trade going on in nearby French West Africa. It is located on Saint Mary's Island at the mouth of the Gambia River, and is connected to the mainland by bridges to the south and ferries to the north. The city's original name was...

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  • warning about gambia

    (the good points) . its very relaxing . and a good place for winter sun without too much of a long flight . with the gambia people they either love it or hate it . it depends on the kind of person you are.its very dusty and the top end of the hotels are not to the strandards that we are used to here. if you enjoy something different . its is...

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  • Getting a guide

    out of the tourist areas ,see more than just Senegambia,the main tourist area.this is easier with a good guide,all your read in VT about Bumsters is true they can be non stop pestering and hassle.but they are just trying to earn a living.you soon learn to deal with them.the first day on the beach,our second encounter of the day we booked a trip out...

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  • Changing money

    You get a better rate in the Gambia for currency rather than travellers cheques. In Feb 2007 I got 51 Dalasi to the £ for cash as against 49 for t. cheques.You will need a room safe obviously, and you will also get a better rate outside the hotels, but only at designated currency exchange offices. One such place is Barries very close to Sarges...

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  • Womens clothes

    The Gambian women are just beautiful and atleast what I saw, very fine dressed. Traditional clothes are colourful and nicely cut. Meny women use scarf in their head in traditional way. They and little girls use lot of effort in their hairdos too. Wigs are quite popular also. Of course I knew that people in Africa carry things on top of the head but...

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  • Cats in Bakotu hotel

    One of the four cats of Bakotu gave a birth on the bed in our hotelroom on our last night in The Gambia.We became friends with te mothercat during our vacation. First thing in the morning it was always behind the door asking for food. In the evening when we were getting ready for going out, it was always keeping us company. Maybe it felt safe to...

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  • Banjul Library

    If like me you always take several books with you on your holiday why don't you donate the ones you have read to the Banjul library? On recent trip to banjul I visited the library and was dimayed at the condition of the few books they have to offer, and was only too pleased to give them the books I had brought with me. The library is situated on...

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  • Guides

    One of the great things about Gambia is once you make freinds its fun to let them share their local knowledge and take to to some of the more out of the way places

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  • Road from Basse to the Senegalese border

    From the Gambia to Senegal we crossed the border between Basse Santa Su in the south-east of the Gambia and Velingara in Senegal.The 25 KM long road between Basse and Velingara is unpaved, dusty and bumpy. The Badiara Senegalese borderpost between those two towns in the middle of nowhere is told to be the most friendliest borderpost entering...

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  • Are we travelling in tropical Africa?

    In the Lower River Division south of the Gambia River with all the mangroves and tidal wetlands we were sometimes wondering, where were we travelling.Is this tropical Africa or are we back in the flat and green wetlands of the Netherlands ?

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  • Vultures

    In Gambia we saw several times prey birds and vultures along the way to the east. Often the vultures were sitting in the tops of trees, waiting for their meal.Suddenly we saw also this one, only a few meters from the mainroad, eating a cow or donkey. We couldn't see it properly.

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  • Traditional villages

    Everywhere in the Gambia we saw many traditional villages. The round huts are made of the local natural materials. So they have mud walls and thatched roofs. Villages like this are allready constructed for many centuries in the same way and perfectly fit in their natural surroundings.

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  • Doors made of oil drums

    In African countries I always like to see the creativity of the people by using second hand materials for almost everything, they construct. In Gambia I saw a lot of doors made of oil drums. This door in Soma looks really nice.

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  • Car wrecks in the street

    At so many places in the country I saw old car wrecks in the streets. Sometimes these car wrecks looked rather surrealist, almost like modern art.It looks like nobody cares about it. And I suppose, there doesn't exist an environmental police either.

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  • Vultures and fruits in the tree

    In Soma, when we were waiting for the repair of our tyre, we had a good view at a tree with peculiar fruits at the other side of the road.In the same tree we saw two vultures, waiting, but waiting for what ? it was not really a place to find dead animals.

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  • Gambian streetlife

    The streetlife in Africa is always very lifely, like here in Soma.I can sit for hours soemwhere in the street and have a look what is going on in the streets. Ther are all kind of trading activities and small business, all types of transport and a lot of people.

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  • Mosques along the road

    In the Gambia there are three kinds of religions. You will find muslims, animists and christians in this country.In many towns we saw mosques. I liked the local architecture of these African mosques.

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  • Cows along the road

    In the rural areas of the country, but even in or near the towns we saw always a lot of cows along the road.In thse areas I liked this type of cows with their nice horns. After some time you learn how the cows act, when you encounter them en route, especially when they cross the road or not.

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  • Visiting villages, some madinka or wolof...

    If you visit a village or compound it's nice to speak or know some words in the local language (madinka or wolof)yes: haa/waawno: nahi/dedetthank you: abaraka/jere jefgoodday: fo waati koteng/ cijammagoodmorning: hera laata/ jamanga fanaangood afternoon: hera tiinyanta/ jamma a endu good evening: suuto ye diya/ nyu fanaalal jamawhat is your name: i...

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  • Tipping

    We found that the Gambian people like photographs and like to show you pictures of their friend and families.We tipped our guide with a disposable camera and he was delighted. When we saw him the next day he'd already taken all the pictures!

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  • Visit the GTS Bar and Restaurant

    This restaurant is run by a charity called Gambia Tourist Support and offers a wide range of facilities for people on holiday, accomodation, trustworthy guides, trips and excellent food. The bar is in Kololi follow the road to Bijilo park. Visit their website gambiatouristsupport.com

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  • Souvenirs

    In the Gambia they’ve got very skilled woodcarving artists, so when you need a souvenir for at home, don’t hesitate. You can find souvenir shops all around the country. But don’t pay the price they ask, you have to bargain for a reasonable price.

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  • We always have an adventure

    Whenever we visit there is always something special to remember but dancing with 100 Gambian ladies around a Baobab tree until 2.30 am at a naming ceremony is definately something I will treasure.Make friends with a Gambian family and watch and listen and feel honoured. Sitting on a deserted beach watching the children having fun in the sea.

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  • The President's Guard

    I remember there was a state dinner thrown for the delegations participating in the meeting. It was hosted by the then President (1993), and I had a chat with one of the many plicemen scattered all over the place in his protection.The man was utterly frustrated, earning less than $50 a month and unable to support his family, while watching the...

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  • sunset at Tendaba

    don't be afraid. The Gambian people are poor, but mostly very friendly and nice. Don't listen to the people who want to keep you in the hotels. Enjoy The Gambia with the Gambians. Every guide will gladly show you around to places you should see.

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  • We did all our excursions with...

    We did all our excursions with the Senegambia Adventure Safari Team and be sure it was a real and very good experience. We laugh a lot with these 'boys in red'.Simply the 'Best of the West'. The most we missed when we were at home is the 'Smiling' people of this country.They have no much but they are always friendly and ready for help.

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  • Back to Nature

    You must meet Lucas Jatta, a rastafarian palm wine tapper. His open air "Nature" palm juice bar is next door to the Badala Park Hotel, Kotu, just past the bush taxi stand. Do buy some of his palm wine and fresh fruit grown there in the palm stand. He is a very warm, and loving man with a large family to support. Spending all of Christmas day 2001...

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  • find yourself an good guide...

    find yourself an good guide who shows you this beautiful country, and of course take time to enjoy the sun!! Our guide Branco Pala,phone 906606

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  • Click the map to enlarge.Our...

    Click the map to enlarge.Our hotel was situated right on the beach of Cape Point in Bakau, about a 20-minute drive west of Banjul.

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  • jigeen's General Tip

    I was in AfricaI was in Africa and don’t know how to put it into words. The happiness. The life To sit in a small bar, drinking beer, listening to music, move to the rhythm. To be lazy. To Laugh. To sit in the shade of a mango-tree, drinking attaya, watching the tea to be poured from one glass to the other. People come, people go, some stay, some...

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  • enjoy the sunshine, the...

    enjoy the sunshine, the friendly people, make a tour on the Gambia river, do a drive on the beach and enjoy swimming in the Atlantic (be aware of the waves)and get in touch with the local people. Bumsters can be a problem but be firm and you will get them lose very quick. The nice weather and friendly people.Nieuwe pagina 2

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  • jill_archer's General Tip

    The Gambia is situated on the West African coast midway between the Tropic of Cancer and the Equator on approximately the same latitude as Barbados. One of the smallest countries in Africa The Gambia is mostly flat and shaped like a crooked finger a narrow strip of land on either side following the course of the majestic River Gambia from which...

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  • See the local swamps and...

    See the local swamps and mangroves.There's a lot oflife.Visit the coasts and swamps by boat.you can rent boats in every village,of course with a local guide.Gambia is a small country,so there isn't much to see.You can visit the capital Banjul,but it isn't interesting.Visit the jungles and brooks.The nature in gambia is more interesting than the...

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  • Visit Abuko Nature reserve. A...

    Visit Abuko Nature reserve. A tranquil special part of The Gambia for tourists and locals. We have seen there monkeys, deer, crocodiles, snakes, eagles and many different birds and wonderful trees and flowers.Also in the centre is a small zoo containing hyena and lions donated from Holland.You can spend a whole day there walking the different...

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  • Visit Abuko National Park ......

    Visit Abuko National Park ... Are the crocodiles stuffed or are they real??? The people ...the beach (not the beach boys!) .... beautiful sunsets

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  • Basically just relax! It's got...

    Basically just relax! It's got fantastic beaches! I hope you'll love them! This was the simple pleasure of seeing my old college friend Francis M'Boge, who was a great chap i met in Oxford. His mother made the mistake of inviting me over! 3 years after graduation... I was there!

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  • Meet a crocodile!

    Go to the crocodile Park and shake hands with Charlie, the (tame!) crocodile. A bit touristy, but if there is only one touristy thing to do, make sure that this is it. Going to visit a local school, and being able to join in with one of the maths lessons. The children also sang us songs and made us little presents. It was very emotional,...

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The Gambia Hotels

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The Gambia Favorites

Reviews and photos of The Gambia favorites posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for The Gambia sightseeing.
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