Located about 15 miles (24 kilometers) from Banjul, Banjul International Airport (BJL) is the only airport in Gambia offering flights to other African countries and Europe. Most of the airlines that serve the airport are from neighboring African countries, but a few European airlines and charter companies fly into the airport as well.
Airlines serving Banjul International Airport: Afrinat International Airlines, Arik Air, Binter Canarias, Elysian Airlines, Ethiopian Airlines, Gambia Bird Airlines, Mauritania Airways, Nigerian Eagle Airlines, Royal Air Maroc, SN Brussels Airlines, Spanair, TACV-Cabo Verde Airlines, and Transavia.
The Gambia is a small country with not that much roads and the roads you’ll find aren’t always in that good condition. The one you find in the costal area are quit all right, but the further you go inland the worser they become. Travelling is always an rough adventure.
There are several modes of transport, when you want to move all independent the best you could do is hiring your own car. It probably is the most expensive way but you’re free to move. The price tag at the other hand is about 100 - 150€/ day without driver, gasoil and KM charges. For an all inclusive expect to pay about 200 – 250€ depending the model.
They always ask a deposit of 300 – 500 € and you probably will find cheaper car rental agencies, but the question is are they reliable or not?
Best way to travel is by the green taxi's or bushtaxis which are not too expensive. Agree on the price before you leave.
If renting a car make sure to have a written contract and inspect the technical condition of the car.
taxis are about the best way to get about in the Gambia,but getting one always involves haggling.
Your Hotel will get one for you and the prices are usually displayed on a board,but this is expensive try to get the green and yellow ones.Your hotel will try to put you off but try they can be up to two thirds less depending on how good you bargain,The prices on the boards are not fixed you can bargain here too.get a taxi all day, most drivers would wait for you rather than lose a fare.we took taxis to the beach and they waited all DAY !!.Taxis drivers WILL remember you .dont be vague and say things like possibly or perhaps SAY no.they take perhaps as a yes.Be very clear on what you want and price.Scams seem to be your taxi brakes down and can they have some money to fix it .just get another taxi.But mostly taxis are good if old and beat up,some had nice Lino floors !!all were very friendly.be careful about being invited to nameing or ather family gatherings unfortunately these are sometimes ways of parting you from money
You can get around in many ways in The Gambia,by tourist taxi painted GREEN and supposed to be safer but MUCH more expensive than ,the YELLOW and green striped taxis used by the more monied locals,or what most people use Minibusses,these vehicles go from town to town and will drop you where you want fares are fixed for all the way trip or a drop off before you reach the "garage"at the end,said garage is not a building but just a recognised parking place at each town,the condition of all transport in The Gambia leaves a lot to be desired compared with developed countries but you will probably arrive in one piece.BEWARE of lorries (or trucks if you prefer) as they are usually overloaded and OFTEN have NO BRAKES so beware!
There is no Railway in The Gambia.
Best way to get around is to have a driver who can also be your quide and a friend. He is responsible of you so you are been taken care of. Some young men work for somebody else and then you may need to settle the prize beforehand. Remember to pargain.
Some people just ask for a tip, "what ever comes from your heart". Remember that gasoline is fairly expencive in Gambia.
I found the trips of the official quides quite expencive too.
One plus in having a driver is also that most of the unpleasant "friends" will leave you alone when you already have a local with you.
Our driver was Kara from front of Bakotu hotel. He is quite a good bloke and I can recommend him.
Did you know that in the Gambia you dont need to go to driving school to get the license..
There are no bridges across the Gambia River, and the only way to get across is by ferry. The Banjul Ferry runs regularly between Banjul on the south bank of the river, and Barra on the north bank. Two rusty and broken-down ferries are scheduled to make the 30-minute trip every one to two hours between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., but there are usually delays, and it is common for at least one of the ferries to be out of commission.
Because space is limited for vehicles, anyone crossing with a vehicle will have to wait for many hours to get on the ferry, and commercial trucks usually have to wait for days. Those without a vehicle can just walk onto the ferry. The boat's top deck can become very crowded, and visitors must be aware of the many pickpockets attracted by the crowds.
The best fun you can have is to use the local mini buses known as "Geleh-Gelehs", the driver is often accompanied by his son who is continually balling out their destination. A trip from the west coast beach resorts into Serrekunda can cost you as little as five delasi per person. The bush taxis are literally that, if you take one into the rural areas as we did to visit Ebou Bah's family, they plough through the bush as there are no roads leading to these small villages. The villagers take their crops up to the nearest main road to await collection by the farmers' co-operative. The tour operators warn you that your insurance policy doesn't cover you for local transportation, I've not yet come across a policy that has that clause in it!
We made far more use of the local buses this time around. It’s still a little confusing that the buses and the yellow and green taxis are referred to as “Bush Taxis”, as the cost between using these two means of transport is astronomical. We walked from the Suma Hotel to the Brikama Bus stand where we were very efficiently packed inside and charged an extra 10 Delasi for stowing our rucksack on the roof, along with a worryingly large amount of building material, including several hundredweight of scaffolding. We enjoyed the trip and the company and turned up in Brikama an hour and a half later, the rucksack not having been flattened of sloshed in white paint. A few days later we took another bus from Brikama bus stand to Gunjur a very smooth ride along a new road, at 10 Delasi for us and eight for the bag. Alarmingly Gunjur bus stand consisted of two rows of buses on either side of the road, pointing in different directions. Gunjur is a bit of a vague village, with no real center, luckily we had been told that we needed to ask for “Beach Side” and pointed to a bus that would leave when it had filled up, in maybe an hour. After slightly less than the estimated time we took off on a journey that lasted less than ten minutes and pitched up in Gunjur fishing village. We had been told that our guesthouse Woulaba Garden was a fifteen minute walk from the fishing village. A very helpful bur not very knowledgeable local boy, named Boubicar, told us he knew exactly where the guesthouse was and would show us the way, just for the pleasure of our company. An hour and a half later we found it after stopping at almost every compound to ask directions and criss-crossing various bush paths.
When we left Gunjur we headed north to Brufut, having taken a donkey cart to Gunjur “Bus Stand” and boarding the Serrakunda bound bus. This was gratifying as we not having any kind of Gambian bus time table we now knew that we could pick up this same bus to complete our journey, when our stay in Brufut was done.
Living as We do in Scotland, we use the ferry service a lot but, this is one ferry trip everyone should make an effort to take. We crossed the river from Banjul to Barra several times and every time, even when the ferry was not busy people pushed shoved pulled and squeezed to try and get on or off as quick as possible, The first, time we shared the "vehicle" deck with a herd of sheep. (The more unfortunate sheep took a pirogue, but that's another story) several lorries, various cars and a minibus that had to be pushed on, and then off again at the other side. Even if you do not want to visit Barra (Which in itself is a photographer's paradise, with the hustle and bustle of the market) or Fort Bullen, it is worth taking the trip at 5 dalasis each way
O.K. ... I know I'm biased, but I just cannot get into the ancient Russian aircraft so many African nations still use.
The only international airport is at Banjul; there are direct scheduled and charter flights from the UK. Regular buses and taxis cross the border into Senegal.
To fly in is the best way, if coming from overseas. But it is very easy to cross the border over from Senegal.
The local taxis, are lethal and have no sense of either direction or speed - but they are an experience. They can also work out quite expensive. It is probably best to take the local minibuses which seem to run everywhere and at a fraction of the cost -they are also a lot of fun.....
When you travels in West Africa, you will see a lot of busses and trucks coming originally from Europe. Often you will see still the names and signs of the European companies on the vehicles.
So our fellow-traveller saw this truck with the name Sterenborg still on it. It was a company, he had worked for in the past, allthough this was not the truck, which he usually drove.
During one of our stops along the higway to the east I had the chance to have a close look at the pavement of the asphalt road.
Big surprise, I didn't notice it ever before. The road was paved with seashells !!!
The Kombo Beach is the only hotel we have been to in The Gambia, we stayed here the first time and...more
well such an extraordinarily well run venue in Gambia. German influence, very efficient. What...more
AU Hwy, Brufut Heights, PO Box 3311, Serekunda, Gambia
Satisfaction: Very Good
Good for: Couples