I went to Gambia on my Africa holidays on the 9th November 2007. After much deliberation, my friend and I decided on a holiday to Gambia because it was somewhere a little unconventional with great weather. No way did we expect to return home with the memories of some of the best experiences of our lives. We flew with First Choice from Manchester airport. The flight went smoothly and upon landing we were greeted by glorious sunshine. We were driven to our hotel, the Holiday Beach Club, which we were a little apprehensive about; it only had a 2* rating. However, when we arrived we were over the moon. It was beautiful.
The blissful beach
The first two days of our Gambia holidays passed us by as we relaxed on the beach, just watching the world go by. On the third day of our holiday we went on a trip to a local school. Knowing how difficult it is for families to purchase basic educational equipment, we took along some pens, paper, sweets, etc. At the sight of just a single pencil, their faces lit up as though it was Christmas. The children were delighted; they sang songs for us and proudly showed off their work to us. No-one could have prepared us for this day. This experience was such an eye-opener; such a humbling experience – the children had nothing yet they were so happy. We also visited a family in their home which, again, was very humbling. They were such nice people, and welcomed us with open arms and wide smiles.
We ate out in resort on a night, sampling the local cuisine, in addition to tasting some delectable Indian dishes.
The Gambian people really did make this holiday so special for us. We took part in crab racing and dancing and so many other crazy things you’d never dream of back home. In fact, crab racing was so much fun I don’t know how it hasn’t caught on!! This was the best holiday in so many ways, and one I’ll definitely never forget. If you get the chance, visit the Gambia – you’ll learn so much, have so much fun and come back with a whole new perspective on life.
By Katie Whitham