For sun-seekers looking to escape the UKs freezing temperatures come winter, TUI now have another beautiful African destination on offer for 2020! Say hello to The Gambia which has everything and more you could expect of a tropical paradise. Get ready for blissful beaches with miles of uncrowded golden sands and warm tranquil seas.
Don’t worry if relaxing beach holidays aren’t for you, The Gambia is perfect for both sun worshipers and adventurers alike. The Gambia is big on beaches and big on wildlife whilst also being dubbed the Smiling Coast of Africa thanks to its friendly locals.
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Although many tourists are drawn to The Gambia for its picturesque coastline, it wouldn’t be Africa without some exotic wildlife to sink your teeth into. With Attenborough worthy sights, you can witness hippos, crocodiles and manatees along the Gambia River whilst monkeys jump through the treetops overhead.
Once you’re done exploring the jungle you can head back to the shoreline, where long strips of soft white sands go on and on to what seems like the end of the earth. For those not wanting to lay out, you’ll find craft markets and a strip full of bars and restaurants right on the coast.
Kotu is mellow and calming yet grants the option to venture toward more lively parts if you so wish. You can watch the fisherman haul in their catch at the beach and spend time at the beautiful Koto Creek. When you’re up for a bit more action, you can leave behind the beaches lined with more palm trees than people and pop next door to Kololi. Here you’ll find a flurry of lively bars and there’s even a shopping centre to grab some extra souvenirs.
Only a 20-minute drive into the capital, Bakau has the best mixture of sights. From wildlife to bustling markets and the most serene stretch of beaches. Test out your bartering skills at the craft markets in Banjul, or take a guided boat trip along the waters to spot some native wildlife including crocs and hooded vultures!
Many hotels in Bakau are located by the beach, so on the days where you wish to just chill, you can be on the beach and strolling into the refreshing waters of the Atlantic Ocean in a matter of minutes.
Kololi is probably The Gambia’s most popular resort due to it ticking all the boxes for wildlife, beach life and nightlife! Recently updated to host a flurry of luxury hotels, Kololi is now one of the liveliest beach destinations for tourists. Kololi has a modern edge and is perfect for those wanting to bask in the sunshine each day and party on into the night.
From sunset walks along Kololi beach to tasting delicious local delicacies at neighbouring seafood shacks. You can even spy vervet monkeys in the trees! Kololi and The Gambia provide holidays you won’t forget in a hurry.
Top Hotel Picks in The Gambia
Ocean Bay Hotel & Resort | 4* (TUI UK Rating)
Ocean Bay Hotel & Resort in Gambia
Are you ready to spend your days laying out around a pristine pool or on a stretch of The Gambia’s stunning coastline? The Ocean Bay Hotel & Resort resides right on the coast in Cape Point, an area of Bakau that’s known for its beautiful unspoiled golden sands.
The hotel is only 15 minutes’ walk from some of the area’s most popular sights and for those who love being around nature, you might even spot a few monkeys swinging from the trees within the grounds!
Bakotu | 3* (TUI UK Rating)
Bakotu Hotel in Gambia
A central location yet also close to the beach, this family-run hotel is right in the heart of Kotu. With craft markets, many restaurants and the beach on your doorstep, there’s lots of way to fill your days!
One of the most appealing aspects of Bakotu Hotel is its stunning viewing platform. Witness views across Kotu Creek, an area best known for bird watching! Ideal for nature lovers wishing to feel at one in the wilderness, you could see up to 80 different species just around this area alone.
If you’re a keen golfer, Bakotu Hotel is also set on the edge of an 18-hole golf course with a stunning lagoon as its backdrop.
African Princess | 4* (TUI UK Rating)
African Princess Beach Hotel in Gambia
A popular choice at the southern end of Kotu’s beach, African Princess makes the most of its beachfront setting with a wraparound U-shape design looking out toward the Atlantic Ocean.
This hotel only opened its doors back in December 2018, so it’s still wonderfully new, fresh and modern and even boasts swim up rooms! Its location is quiet for those seeking a relaxing break in the sunshine, however a 20-minute walk into livelier Kololi welcomes many more bars and restaurants, as well as a buzzing nightlife for those wishing to dance into the morning hours.
When can I go on a holiday to The Gambia?
Like the sound of a Gambia holiday? Well it’s good news! TUI will be flying here from November 2020 – perfect for your next winter warmer. They’ll be flights departing to The Gambia twice weekly from Gatwick plus weekly flights from Birmingham and Manchester!