Why The Gambia should be on your list for a winter sun holiday

Updated on Feb 20, 2024 by Ella Brundle

Blog > Why The Gambia should be on your list for a winter sun holiday

Sun, sea, sand, delicious food, friendly locals, exciting excursions and fabulous culture, The Gambia is packed with reasons why it is the perfect winter sun destination.

The team at The Gambia Experience believe that The Gambia is the perfect choice for our customers, we love giving our customers the opportunity to leave the cold winter weather at home and enjoy some tropical winter sun and travel to The Gambia. Our new Marketing Manager, Vicky, has just returned from her first trip and shares why The Gambia is the perfect winter getaway for people looking to enjoy the sun this winter…

I had never considered The Gambia as a winter holiday destination but having experienced a week of endless sandy beaches, incredibly beautiful hotels, friendly locals and a holiday packed with wildlife, I wanted to share why I think you should book your next holiday with The Gambia Experience. 

Hotter than the Canaries and closer than the Caribbean.

If you are in search of winter sun but not keen on a long-haul flight then The Gambia is the perfect solution, with just a six-hour flight and zero jetlag it’s a great way to access this sub-tropical climate without the stress, travelling to The Gambia is easy! Visitors to The Gambia can enjoy the perfect holiday weather from October to May which makes this the ideal stress-free option to avoid the cold dark UK winter.

Stunning and Uncrowded Beaches.

For some reason, The Gambia has avoided becoming a tourist hotspot meaning you get to enjoy this fabulous country without the crowds. I enjoyed walking along the most beautiful stretches of beach, listening to the sways of the palm trees with just the local fishermen and birds for company, an experience I have not had in any other country I have visited. Even in the main tourist spots throughout the season, you will not experience huge numbers of tourists which allows you to take in the wonder of The Gambian culture and way of life.

Kotu Beach

Convenient flight times and no jet lag

Our charter flight with Titan Airways departs Gatwick twice weekly at 8.30 am, meaning that you can arrive in The Gambia at a reasonable time to still be able to enjoy your afternoon and evening. The return flight is at 4pm, allowing you time to enjoy a relaxing morning before heading to the airport for your flight home.

The flight time from the UK to Banjul is just six hours, and with no time difference, you won't have to worry about jet lag on your Gambian holiday! Why not begin your holiday in style? With Titan's Star Class, you can opt to upgrade to receive a fantastic three-course meal, extra room with a 2:2 configuration and a selection of complimentary drinks. Find out more about Star Class here.

Diverse Range of Hotels. 

I visited 12 hotels on my trip, and I was overwhelmed by the sheer diversity of the hotels available in The Gambia, all very special. The hotels were so unique, from traditional African themed to spa hotels and even weird and wacky boutique hotels, here are some of my favourites.

Mandina Lodges: Perfect for bird enthusiasts this beautiful hotel is hidden in the African bush on the banks of the River Gambia. It is the most peaceful and tranquil hotel I have ever experienced which surrounds its beautiful pool. We enjoyed a trip down the river with a local guide who pointed out the abundance of bird life along our journey. I would recommend a stunning floating lodge.

The swimming pool at Mandina Lodge

Coco Ocean Resort and Spa: The perfect African getaway which includes a stunning three-tiered pool and flows onto the beautiful Bijilo Beach. The spa is decorated in an African style and offers an array of treatments to help you enjoy your holiday. This hotel is just ten minutes away from the town where you can experience traditional African food and craft markets.

Tiered pool at Coco Ocean

Ngala Lodge Hotel: This quirky hotel was like walking into paradise, an intimate boutique hotel with just 24 bedrooms decorated rather uniquely with beautiful and interesting art installations around every corner. Its personal service and incredible restaurant mean your every wish is catered for while enjoying a cliff-top view of the sea with the beach below. If you are looking for a place to relax and reconnect then this is the hotel for you.

Beachside decking at Ngala Lodge

If like me, you take ages to decide on where to stay I would suggest you combine two or more hotels for a more unique trip.

Incredible Wildlife

The Gambia is home to over 570 species of birds making it a bird watchers' paradise, I was overwhelmed by the sound of the birds as I woke up and enjoyed an early walk on the beach to watch the kites chasing each other. The Gambia offers a vast variety of wildlife to be spotted within its river and mangrove forests, hop on a river cruise and keep your eyes peeled for hippos, crocodiles as well as baboons and monkeys playing on the riverbank. Speak to our team about finding the perfect excursion for you.

Wonderful Culture

Known as the “Smiling coast of Africa”, The Gambia welcomes you from the moment you arrive at this friendly and laid-back country. Venture out of the hotel to experience the fabulous Gambian culture, take a cooking lesson with a local, enjoy some African dancing and soak up everything that The Gambia has to offer. Our hotel offered traditional entertainment which included drumming and dancers which was a wonderful addition to our stay. Don’t miss out on visiting a local craft market and enjoy the locally made wooden ornaments and brightly coloured fabric and clothing.

Book with our experts

Before departing for my first trip, I picked the brains of our in-house sales team who flabbergasted me with their in-depth knowledge of this fabulous country. The team have all been to The Gambia several times and will be able to tailor the perfect holiday for your requirements, they can recommend excursions, local restaurants, and hidden gems of this wonderful country. I would thoroughly recommend a winter holiday to The Gambia and I am sure that you will love this country as much as I do.

To book your holiday with The Gambia Experience give the team a call today on 01489 866939

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