Where to enjoy Gambian culture & wildlife

Updated on Jun 06, 2023 by Ella Brundle

Blog > Where to enjoy Gambian culture & wildlife

Immerse in culture and wildlife on a once in a lifetime trip to The Gambia. From The National Museum of The Gambia to Janjangbureh!

The Gambia is the perfect holiday choice for wildlife watchers as the area is home to a host of different species within its forests, wetlands and mangroves. Although The Gambia is one of the smallest countries in West Africa it also is one of the most biologically rich on the continent.

Here is our guide on where to visit to make the most of your time in this incredible country:

Maksutu Forest

Managed in collaboration with the local communities, this rich forest is set alongside the mangrove-lined Mandina Creek. 'Makasutu', meaning sacred and deep forest, comprises mangroves, savannah and rich forest and is home to a variety of wildlife including antelope, and crocodiles, as well as an array of birdlife - most commonly seen is the forest's population of Guinea baboons. When visiting Makasutu Forest you will also have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the Gambian culture, often visitors will enjoy watching local crafts being handmade and sold, alongside the musicians and dancers who will provide entertainment and an experience that will never be forgotten. 

Baboon at Makasutu Cultural Forest


Located on the River Gambia this small island has a fascinating mix of wildlife, important historical sites and museums that help visitors understand the slave trade in West Africa, such as the National Museum of The Gambia. The island used to be accessed by boat, but a bridge has been built which allows visitors to access the island easily. Visitors to Janjangbureh can enjoy spotting hippos, crocodiles, and warthogs, as well as the monkeys and the Guinea baboon. Some visitors have reported having seen manatees near the banks of the river and there is a large variety of birdlife to be seen, with the Fishing Owl a particular highlight.

Slave trading history at Janjangbureh

River Gambia National Park 

The winding River Gambia with its mangrove-lined banks is the centre of the River Gambia National Park. Jump on one of the many boat trips available and you are likely to spot hippos, crocodiles and even bottlenose dolphins. The national park is also home to a variety of primates including the Green Monkey and Guinea baboon and upriver you can have the opportunity to see Chimpanzees at a specially created rehabilitation centre. The birdlife around the river is also incredible and it is one of the best places in the country to see hornbills, vultures, the African Fish Eagle and many smaller birds on the stretches of the riverbed.

Our team have experienced The Gambia for themselves so to ensure you get the most out of your trip call us to discuss your booking.


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