Gambia travel guide

Gambia Tourism | Gambia Guide

You're Going to Love Gambia

Surrounded by neighboring Senegal, Gambia has a rich mix of cultures and history as well as ample opportunities to immerse in the natural beauty of the country with its wildlife and beautiful beaches.

What to do in the Gambia

1. Explore the Rainforest

The Abuko Natural Reserve has nature trails that allow visitors to walk through the rainforest with its diverse mix of animals, birds and native species of plants that all thrive in The Gambia's first official nature reserve.

2. Relax on the Beach

Go to the south of Gambia and bask in the sunshine on Kartong or Gunjur Beach. Alternatively, visit Senegambia Beach or Kotu Beach, which are closer to Banjul but where the sea may be rougher.

3. Visit Banjul

Go to Albert Market to see the work of local artisans as well as to take in the colors and sounds of the food section of the market. Visit the National Museum of Gambia or stroll through the old town with its decaying colonial era buildings.

4. Cruise Along the River Gambia

Take a long-distance cruise on the river and do some game watching from the comfort of a boat. Hippos wallow in the river and there are numerous species of water birds to look out for.

5. Explore the Wassu Stone Circles

Go to eastern Gambia and visit the UNESCO World Heritage Wassu stone circles, made up of megaliths, which stand between 3 ft and 8 ft tall.

1. Explore the Rainforest

The Abuko Natural Reserve has nature trails that allow visitors to walk through the rainforest with its diverse mix of animals, birds and native species of plants that all thrive in The Gambia's first official nature reserve.

2. Relax on the Beach

Go to the south of Gambia and bask in the sunshine on Kartong or Gunjur Beach. Alternatively, visit Senegambia Beach or Kotu Beach, which are closer to Banjul but where the sea may be rougher.

3. Visit Banjul

Go to Albert Market to see the work of local artisans as well as to take in the colors and sounds of the food section of the market. Visit the National Museum of Gambia or stroll through the old town with its decaying colonial era buildings.

4. Cruise Along the River Gambia

Take a long-distance cruise on the river and do some game watching from the comfort of a boat. Hippos wallow in the river and there are numerous species of water birds to look out for.

5. Explore the Wassu Stone Circles

Go to eastern Gambia and visit the UNESCO World Heritage Wassu stone circles, made up of megaliths, which stand between 3 ft and 8 ft tall.

When to visit the Gambia

Gambia experiences sub-tropical weather and the best time to visit is between November and May when humidity is low and temperatures average around 80°F. November to February is the best time to go game viewing and bird-watching as it is drier in these months.

How to Get to the Gambia

Entry requirements

Holders of passports from some EU countries, Canada, UK, and Australia, will not require a visa. US, French, Portuguese and Spanish passport holders will need to get a visa upon entry, while visitors from several South American countries will need to get a visa before travel. Visitors from African countries will need to get entry clearance and a visa to visit Gambia.

Plane

Banjul International Airport is the main hub for arrivals into Gambia. Flights are operated by airlines such as Royal Air Maroc, Brussels Airlines, TAP Air Portugal and Vueling.

Bus

Gambia Transport Service Company operates a route between Banjul in Gambia and Dakar in Senegal.

Boat

Banjul, on the coast of Gambia, is on the itinerary of various cruise ships, such as Seabourn and Oceania Cruises, that travel the west coast of Africa.

Entry requirements

Holders of passports from some EU countries, Canada, UK, and Australia, will not require a visa. US, French, Portuguese and Spanish passport holders will need to get a visa upon entry, while visitors from several South American countries will need to get a visa before travel. Visitors from African countries will need to get entry clearance and a visa to visit Gambia.

Plane

Banjul International Airport is the main hub for arrivals into Gambia. Flights are operated by airlines such as Royal Air Maroc, Brussels Airlines, TAP Air Portugal and Vueling.

Bus

Gambia Transport Service Company operates a route between Banjul in Gambia and Dakar in Senegal.

Boat

Banjul, on the coast of Gambia, is on the itinerary of various cruise ships, such as Seabourn and Oceania Cruises, that travel the west coast of Africa.

Popular airports in the Gambia

Popular airlines serving the Gambia

Lufthansa
Good (4,692 reviews)
SWISS
Good (961 reviews)
Turkish Airlines
Good (2,235 reviews)
Iberia
Good (1,608 reviews)
United Airlines
Good (4,988 reviews)
Qatar Airways
Good (2,406 reviews)
Air Canada
Good (6,070 reviews)
Brussels Airlines
Good (228 reviews)
TAP AIR PORTUGAL
Good (1,178 reviews)
Ethiopian Air
Good (413 reviews)
Royal Air Maroc
Good (308 reviews)
Vueling
Good (803 reviews)
Kenya Airways
Good (165 reviews)
TUI Fly Belgium
Good (27 reviews)
Air Senegal
Good (56 reviews)
ASKY
Good (16 reviews)
Air Peace
Okay (8 reviews)
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Where to stay in the Gambia

The main hotels on the coastline of Gambia range from upmarket hotels and all-inclusive resorts to budget hostels. Visitors can also stay in lodges or camps within the nature reserves. Further inland, accommodation options may be limited to guest houses and local hotels.

Where to stay in popular areas of the Gambia

How to Get Around the Gambia

Public Transportation

Shared taxis, otherwise known as bush taxis, which can be cars or minibuses, are the only means of public transport within the towns of Gambia and do not run on a fixed schedule. They can be flagged down anywhere. Tourist taxis have fixed fares and are regulated by the Gambia Tourism Authority.

Bus

The government owned GTSC runs a network of bus routes that transport passengers along both banks of the Gambia River. Buses run hourly on the south bank and less frequently on the north bank and fares range from around 9 GMD (0.20 USD) to 260 GMD (5 USD) depending on length of the journey.

Public Transportation

Shared taxis, otherwise known as bush taxis, which can be cars or minibuses, are the only means of public transport within the towns of Gambia and do not run on a fixed schedule. They can be flagged down anywhere. Tourist taxis have fixed fares and are regulated by the Gambia Tourism Authority.

Bus

The government owned GTSC runs a network of bus routes that transport passengers along both banks of the Gambia River. Buses run hourly on the south bank and less frequently on the north bank and fares range from around 9 GMD (0.20 USD) to 260 GMD (5 USD) depending on length of the journey.

The Cost of Living in the Gambia

It is relatively cheap to live in Gambia. For grocery shopping, expect to pay around 341 GMD (6.60 USD) for a gallon of milk and a dozen eggs. Eating at restaurants is much cheaper than cooking at home with prices of around 50 GMD (1.00 USD) per person to eat in a slightly cheaper, local restaurant. While credit cards can be accepted in the upmarket hotels if this is arranged before arriving, local businesses will only accept cash or a travelers check. ATMs are present in larger towns but there are not many of these machines and they may be unreliable, so it is advisable to have cash on hand.