Kombo resort area is delightfully close to the ocean.
Beach outings and sunbathing in Gambia are strictly Western
ideas—locals usually confine beach visits to
exercise sessions or craft/cashew vending. Be warned
that the tides and currents along the Gambia's coastline are surprisingly
strong, and sinkholes and sand bars are common, though the ocean
generally remains on the shallow side a good distance into the water.
There are few lifeguards in the country, so use extreme caution when swimming—it's
not a good idea to go into the sea if you’ve come to
the beach alone. Remember that if you are caught in a riptide current, the rule is to swim parallel to the shore to escape it,
then swim back towards the land.
localities the rocks can
be quite sharp, so it is recommended avoid swimming or
wading near visible outcrops.
The same eroded black sandstone offers a great opportunity for tide
pooling, but don’t touch the many snails, crabs, rays and fish
that can only be found in Africa.
Never, ever touch a jellyfish—even
if it is dead and washed up, it can still sting you badly. The sand on
beaches has an especially interesting quicksand like
quality in spots where the tide has left but water
still saturates the ground.
Some best beaches in Gambia are on the top right of
one of the quiet beaches in Gambia whose name means
"by the seashore" in Mandinka, this is a hangout for many
ex-pats and Peace Corps/VSO volunteers, as it attracts far less
bumsters than the more touristy beaches north at
Cape Point and
south at Kololi (Senegambia).
Leybato offers comfortable hammocks in
the shade for naps
and reading/schoolwork sessions as well as a
restaurant serving food and drinks.
A sandy path affording
idyllic views from a cliff can be accessed from the beach—take
a right when you emerge from the shady restaurant area and look
for any of the several “paths”
to get to the top of the cliff
where you will see a better defined trail. (The path ends on
Atlantic Road, by the huge water tower.)
To get to Leybato, follow the steep dirt path marked
by a sign at the end of Kairaba Avenue where it intersects with
Atlantic Avenue. To get a taxi to Leybato from the compound,
it’s most cheap and convenient to take a ride for about $0.15
towards Bakau, get off at Sabina, and walk from there, though a
town trip may be more economical with a carload of people. The
sand path goes up a hill and down the other side—when you see
the fancy Fajara Village apartments, keep going to the left
through the gate, where you will see the cabins on the left and
a restaurant area on the right, which you should enter to access
Cape Point: If you keep walking away from
the tourist district,
you can find some fairly secluded, peaceful areas, though
bumsters are still more visible than at Leybato.
is about 30 km down the coast, making a very nice
retreat for a day trip. Take a taxi from Serekunda garage, look
(ask) around for a car to Sanyang.
Ask to be let off at the junction in Sanyang; the car will turn
left off the main road into the market at precisely this
junction, but you should turn right on foot and walk down to the
beach. The mile-long walk through outskirts of the village offers some gorgeous
countryside. If it’s too hot or long to walk, you could snatch a
town trip from one of the numerous yellow taxis that ply the
way, but expect to bargain hard.
The Tanji beach area is not suitable for sunbathing
as it is a fishing village and the water tends to be full of
flotsam and jetsam of decaying fish, plastic bags, old fishing
nets and general rubbish. You need to move away about 1/4
of a kilometre from the smoking houses to find a decent place to
relax and soak in the Gambian sun.
If you really want to get off the
beaten track then you should consider travelling to
the southern most tip of The Gambia to the delightful,
secluded beach at Kartong Village. The area is
wonderfully unspoilt in surroundings of nature and
wildlife. After a good sunbath there are plenty of
activities in the village such as fishing,
birdwatching or visiting the local
On either side of the fishing area
Gunjur offers one of the quietest beaches in The
Gambia. Enjoy mile upon mile of unspoilt golden sands
occasionally peppered with stone outcrops.