TOURISM & CULTURE

Türkçe Gambiya Turizm sektörü

English Gambia Tourism sector

”The smiling coast of Africa”

Tourism has been a way of life for Gambia, ”The smiling coast of Africa” since we gained nationhood in 1965. For nearly five decades the smiling coast of Africa has welcomed millions of tourists from all over the world.

Due to our unique geographical location and proximity to Europe, coupled with our breadth taking and captivating Eco-tourism facilities, and one of the most friendly people in the world, the vast majority of visitors have visited our beautiful country several times and made lifetime friends and business partners among our people.

Gambia is renowned for her majestic River Gambia; a unique and natural water way that extends 338 kilometers through the length of the country. The natural ecosystem of the River Gambia banks provides habitat to over 500 species of birds, Crocodiles, Hippos and other animal species. Gambia is also blessed with 80 kilometers of sandy beaches that border the Atlantic ocean and provides tourist with memorable beach and water sports. Dozen of hotels are spread across the 80 kilometer coast line, serving as lodging for the growing number of tourist who visit the ”smiling coast of Africa”.

gambia_tourism_excusions

Why Gambia

  • Just six hours from Europe with no jet lag
  • Guaranteed sunshine all year round
  • Beautiful golden sandy beaches stretching for miles.
  • One of the safest destinations in the world
  • Freedom to travel around
  • Excellent and varied restaurants
  • Beautiful ecotourism
  • One of the best destinations for bird watching
  • Excellent sea and creek fishing

Hotels

1. African Village Hotel

2. Badala Park Hotel

4. Bijilo Beach

5. Bungalow Beach Hotel

6. Calabash Residence

7. Cape Point Hotel

8. Coco Ocean

9. Laico Atlantic Hotel

11. Dunes Resort

12. Golden Beach Hotel

13. Holiday Beach Club

14. Jerma Beach Hotel

15. Kairaba Beach Hotel

17. Kombo Beach Hotel

18. Lemon Creek Hotel

19. Luigis Complex

20. Ngala Lodge

21. Ocean Bay Hotel & Resort

 

25. Paradise Suites

27. Sarge’s Hotel

28. Seaview Garden Hotel

29. Senegambia Beach Hotel

30. Sheraton Gambia Hotel Resort & Spa

32. Sunset Beach Hotel

33. Sunswing Hotel

34. Bamboo Hotel

35. Wavecrest Hotel

Tourist Attractions 

Abuko Nature Reserve

Situated half hour away from the main tourist area, Abuko Nature Reserve was established in 1968 as The Gambia’s first protected area and provides a good introduction to the country’s plants and animals. The pools in the reserve hold a substantial population of Nile crocodiles and attract a wide variety of birds, mammals and reptiles. The education centre overlooks the pool and gives an interpretation of the ecology and Abuko is home to more than 270 species of birds, including the green turaco, kingfisher, little greenbul and red-bellied paradise flycatcher. Mammals in the reserve include bushbuck, Maxwell’s duiker, Gambian red legged sun squirrel and crested porcupine.

The park contains monitor lizards and several species of snakes, and visitors will also encounter colourful butterflies and dragonflies. The animal orphanage hosts

spotted hyenas, baboons, parrots, turtles and three species of monkeys.

Tanji Bird Reserve

Tanji Bird Reserve is comprised of the Tanji river estuary and the Bijol Islands. It is located a short drive away from the tourist development area, making it a perfect day trip for nature enthusiasts. The reserve is an important bird nesting site for terns and gulls and is home to more than 250 species of birds, including several European migrants and 34 types of raptors. Visitors to Tanji may also see the Western red colobus,callithrix and patas monkeys, as well as bushbuck, porcupines and the rare Mediterranean monk seal.

On moonless nights from May to July, green sea turtles come to the islands to dig nests for their eggs.

Kunta Kinteh Island and Related Sites

The old Fort of james island (re-named Kunta Kinteh Island in Gambia) is located about 30 km upstream on the river and is home to the ruins which once belonged to colonial Britain. This was the last bit of African soil that many slaves saw before being transported in the bowels of transatlantic slave ships to the Americas.

Today on a visit to the island there are still the ruins of colonialism and slavery there. There are still caves and prisons on the island where slaves were imprisoned before being shipped off to the American colonies. There are also some cannons standing in their military attack positions.

Stone Circles 

The ancient stone circles, in Gambia, are located around Wassu in the Central River Region, and Kerr Batch, and are believed to be burial mounds of Kings and chiefs in ancient times over 1,200 years old. The stone circles have been dated to between 3rd century BC-1000 AD, and because of this local legend has it that there is a curse on anyone who disturbs those laid to rest there. This may account as to why they have lasted so long with little human interference.

The stones sizes and circular shapes do vary from 10 to 20 stones with sizes from 4 to 6 metres across. Though they were burial sites the stones themselves are of a younger age than the graves. The average height of each stone column is 5 feet 9 inches. The 11 large concentration of circles have puzzled many a traveller over the centuries and have been the subject of dozens of archaeological excavations since the 1800s.

Excavations were made on them earlier this century but none came closer to laying bare the whys and wherefores of the site than the one carried out about over 30 years ago which revealed their age. What has been found are iron weapons, arrow and spearheads, knives, pottery vessels and bronze ornaments

Makasutu

Makasutu forest reserve is a private, ecotourism woodland reserve in the Kombo Central District, of the West Coast Region of The Gambia in West Africa. The woodland is 5 kilometres to the northeast of brıkama town, and is directly south of the Banjul capital. The nature park has a land area of 405 hectares (1,000 acres) and encompasses the Mandina Bolong, a tributary of the Gambia River. The protected wilderness is a pristine expanse of riverine, palm and hardwood-forest, mangrove creek, savanna and salt-flat ecosystems.

For peace and tranquility in the heart of the African bush, the striking riverside Mandina Lodges at Makasutu Forest offer an unforgettable experience in the wilderness with the chance to discover the people and wildlife of The Gambia that have made the forest their home: the amazing birdlife, monkeys, monitor lizards and ever-increasing troupes of baboons. Mandina Lodges is featured in the book ‘1001 Escapes To Make Before You Die’ which is a guide for those in search of the world’s most unusual and beautiful places.

Other tourist attractions include;

1. The monkey park in Bijilo
2. Fort Bullen in Barra
3. Mungo Park Memorial in Karantaba
4. The Reptile Farm in Kartong
5. Gambia National Museum
6. Tanji village mesuem
7. River Gambia National Park
8. Kiang West National Park
9. Slave house of Janjanbureh
10. Nuimi National Park

courtesy (GIEPA), Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Access Gambia