Flag of Gambia

Gambia

The Gambia (officially the Republic of The Gambia) is situated on the Atlantic coast at the centre of the western bulge of Africa. It is the smallest country on the African continental mainland and is bordered to the north, east, and south by Senegal, with a small coast on the Atlantic Ocean in the west. It consists of a thin east-west strip of mainly low plateau, which decreases in height as it nears the Atlantic coast. The plain is broken in a few places by the River Gambia and its tributaries, which flow through the centre of the country and empties into the Atlantic Ocean. Mangrove swamps, park-like savannah and unspoiled beaches all feature in country's landscape. The capital and seat of government is Banjul, which features 19th-century architecture with a pleasant colonial atmosphere.

The River Gambia dominates the country and is the major method of transportation, providing opportunities for fishing, boating and sailing. Particularly well worth visiting is the Abuko Nature Reserve, where visitors can see crocodiles, monkeys, birds and antelopes.

Recommended dishes include benachin (a mixture of spiced meat and rice with tomato puree and vegetables) and chere (steamed millet flour balls). Although in general, nightlife can be low key, there are nightclubs in Banjul, Farjara, Bakau and Serrekunda. The Roots Homecoming Festival takes place annually in June/July. There are also organised performances of Gambian ballet, drumming and fire-eating displays.

Map of the Gambia