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Exploring The Gambia


There is much to discover in The Gambia beyond the hotel resorts and stunning beaches. You could practice your haggling skills in a local market or kayak along Tanji creek and see some of the many birds found here. Perhaps you’d like to visit a fishing village and watch the colourful pirogues being unloaded or spend the day cruising down the River Gambia keeping one eye open for the magnificent Goliath Heron. You could even learn to cook West African style.

Recommended Excursions

Guests staying at Leos’ Beach Hotel, Coco Ocean Resort & Spa, Ngala Lodge or Ocean Bay Hotel will be able to book the following excursions during there holiday in The Gambia. Please note that these are subject to availability and minimum numbers.

White Horse Residence, Mandina Lodges and Fathala Wildlife Reserve all offer their own excursions. At Mandina Lodges, your personal guide and excursions on foot or by canoe are complimentary. Please let us know if you would like more information by email,, or by giving us a call on (UK) 0207 112 0019.

Private Excursions

Land Rover Hire
HIre a Land Rover or 4WD with an experienced driver that will also act as your guide for your own private use for a half or full-day allowing you to visit the varied attractions of The Gambia at your own pace.
Boat Hire
Explore the waterways of The Gambia and soak up the natural surroundings from your private pirogue. Stop for a swim, fish or simply soak up the sun. Many beautiful birds can be spotted along the way and you may see local women collecting oysters from the mangrove roots at low tide.
Birdwatching with Malick Suso
Malick Suso has over 20 years' experience and is the preferred bird guide of BBC presenter and naturalist Chris Packham. We're delighted to offer half or full-day excursions with Malick as your guide which we recommend booking in advance.

Group Excursions

Six tours in one
This full-day excursion is a fabulous introduction to The Gambia including a visit to a bustling market, Kachikally Crocodile Pool, a fishing village and so much more.
Ida's Home Cooking
Visit Tanji fishing village to experience the hustle and bustle of the fish market and purchase ingredients before heading back to Ida's courtyard kitchen. Throughout the morning Ida will share many fascinating insights into local life before you tuck into a traditional West African lunch you've helped prepare.
Tanji Birding by Canoe
Arrive at Tanji at around 7 am and head out along the tranquil creek. Explore the waterways by canoe or kayak to see the abundant birdlife. During the morning you'll stop in a clearing to stretch your legs and have some refreshments and be back at Tanji around 11 am.
Lazy Day Cruise
Drift along the River Gambia in a 60ft modern Gambian-style river pirogue. Relax on the sundeck or birdwatch from the shade. You'll also have a chance to take a cooling dip in the water before an excellent lunch is served. This is a leisurely day that's popular with repeat visitors.

Day Trip to Senegal

Fathala Wildlife Reserve
Home to zebra, giraffes, warthogs, rhino and more, Fathala Wildlife Reserve makes a fascinating day out. It is a long day, however, and not suitable for young children, the elderly or anyone with limited mobility. Patience may be needed while waiting for the sometimes erratic ferry to cross the River Gambia, an exciting experience in itself. A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required to cross the border to Senegal.

More things to do in The Gambia

Luxury Spa Day
Coco Ocean Resort & Spa is the most luxurious hotel in our collection and its spa is second to none in The Gambia. Non-residents are welcome, however, we highly recommend booking in advance.
The Royal Albert Market is a highlight of any visit to the capital, Banjul, where stalls are packed together to form a maze of narrow alleyways.
Tanji Fishing Village
Watch the colourfully painted traditional pirogues being unloaded by the beach at Tanji as gulls squawk overhead and the shouts of fish being bought and sold fill the air.
Kachikally Crocodiles
This sacred pool in Bakau is home to around a hundred crocodiles. The small onsite museum is also well worth visiting and includes displays of ancient traditional musical instruments.
Bijilo Forest
Visit Bijilo Forest near Kololi for the chance to see green vervet monkeys. The forest is also home to red colobus monkeys and a wide variety of bird species.
Traditional Wrestling
Wrestling is one of the oldest sports in The Gambia. Every Sunday wrestling matches are held at Sanyang Beach. This is an entertaining show that the whole family will enjoy. You can visit independently or on a group 'Six in one' excursion (Sundays only).
Vulture Feeding
See the vultures, a critically endangered species, being feed at Kotu Stream each morning around 11 am. It's quite a spectacle!
Traditional Music
The polyphonic rhythms of the djembe drum are mesmerising. Be sure to catch a show from a drum and dance troupe during your stay. Also, look out for kora players (West African harp) and the Fula acrobats who perform at different hotels each evening.
Ngala Lodge
A unique, cliff-top boutique hotel with stunning ocean views and one of the finest restaurants in The Gambia. More
Coco Ocean Resort & Spa
The elegant Moroccan inspired Coco Ocean, by a tranquil neverending beach, is one of the most luxurious hotels in The Gambia. More
Leo's Beach Hotel
This intimate, contemporary eco-friendly hotel boasts excellent sea views from it’s elevated position by a quiet golden sand beach. More
White Horse Residence
An eco-friendly, tranquil retreat with seven thatched lodges in a lush green tropical garden overlooking the ocean and a beautiful sandy beach. More
Ocean Bay Hotel
A well-established, family-friendly hotel by one of the best beaches in The Gambia. More
Mandina Lodge
A unique, tranquil hideaway, these stunning eco-lodges on a tributary of the River Gambia, lie deep in the heart of Makasutu Forest. More
Fathala Wildlife Reserve
See zebra, giraffes, monkeys, rhino and more while glamping at this wildlife reserve in Senegal, just across the border from The Gambia. More
African Princess Beach Hotel
A unique and contemporary hotel by a beautiful beach in South Kotu. We particularly love the swim-up ground floor rooms. More

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