Ono’s Diary: A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia! 

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 1

Hello “Style Revolutionists”, welcome to my first post on Ono’s Diary for the year! Yipeeee….Also, to let you know that I now have my personal Instagram page @onodiary where I will be posting daily about my Style, Life and Travel.

This post is long overdue….So I was seeking for some inspiration and rejuvenation and decided to take a one week holiday after all the Christmas and New Year celebrations which is one of the busiest times in my line of work. I carefully researched for places to visit as I made up my mind to travel around Africa more and I wanted somewhere warm with nice beaches and visa free. After much research I settled for Banjul in the Smiling Coast of The Gambia, which is also in West Africa as Nigeria and is widely know for its crystal clear legendary beaches and some of the warmest people, it is a real tropical gem. My trip started on the 11th and ended on the 18th of February.

Let’s dig in proper into my holiday with tips on How to Get There, Where to Stay, What to Wear, Where to Eat, Indulge and Explore.

 

How to Get There: The flight time from Lagos to Banjul, The Gambia, is about 5hours, 30minutes and the only airline that flies from Nigeria is Fly Mid Africa. An economy ticket n the airline costs around N250, 000. My experience with this airline was all that pleasant mostly because the ground staff at the Lagos Murtala Mohammed Airport have an attitude and are extremely rude – oh well, that’s a story for another day. The 5 hours 30minutes flight itself ran smoothly and was okay, the cabin crew staff were polite too. I made sure to get an exist sit which gave me more leg room and was asleep most part of the flight time.

 

Where to Stay: There are loads of hotels to stay at overlooking the beach in Banjul, my first choice was the Coco Ocean Resort and Spa, its an amazing 5 star hotel but for the during of my stay, it was fully booked so I couldn’t get a room. The trip about getting nice hotels is to book at least two months before your date of travel as they go pretty fast, as a lot of tourist from Europe, the United Kingdom and America frequent Banjul. It’s also best and cheaper to book through travel websites like hotel.com which is where I booked the Kombo Beach Hotel, a 3 star hotel I later settled for located at the nice Kotu Beach Strand, Kotu is one of the best beaches in Banjul. The Kombo for me was more like a nice nice bed and breakfast, I don’t think its meets the standard of a 3 star hotel, however the rooms are clean, staff friendly and I made sure to get a room with a nice balcony really close to the beach front.

What to Wear: Gambia is a Muslim country, however, it is a tourist destination, so the people are not strict on dressing. You want to pack comfortable clothes, it gets really hot during the day so best to go for light clothing- Shorts, light dresses, lots of colours and prints is advisable, also, do not forget your swim wear, there will be a lot of lazy days by the beach or pool, and of course, you must have sun-screen. However, it tends to get really windy and cold at night so it’s advisable to have a cardigan or jumper just in case you get cold.

Where to Eat: The major area for tourist is the Senegambia strip and it has loads of restaurants. However, I truly enjoyed everything about these ones;

Gaya Art Cafe: I went here twice before I left Banjul because the food was too good. Gaya Art Cafe is located in the Serrekunda area of Banjul close to the Senegambia Strip where you find a lot of the restaurants. Gaya is just a little homely restaurant, however food here was the best I had during my stay.

Ngala Lodge: This hotel is in the Bakau area of Banjul on a cliff overlooking the Fajara beach. It’s a pity I couldn’t capture the stunning romantic view from the restaurant because it was dark, it’s really lovely. The food however just got a pass mark for me.

Captain’s Table: This is located in the Kotu area, and was just opposite my hotel. Try the seafood, it was nice, however, be ready to wade off mosquitos or rub some repellent

Coco Ocean Beach Hotel: This is the most luxurious hotel in Banjul, its located in the Serrekunda area. I had lunch at the beach restaurant and the food was good.

Indulge: You must unwind and relax here, spend your days on the beach and by the pool-side. Also indulge in an array of spa treatments. Most hotels have a spa, however, the best spa in the city is at Coco Ocean Beach Hotel. I had the Moroccan Hammam and some deep tissue massages and they were heavenly. Make sure you book way ahead of time because they are pretty much booked all the time.

Explore: There are so many places to explore here. I visited the Craft market in Senegambia and Kotu. Also, the Kachikally Sacred Crocodile Pool, Monkey Park, Fishing Village at Tanji are places you have to visit. I also travelled about a few hours out of town to Fort James “Kunta Kinteh” Island to soak in some Slave Trade history.

See some photos from my holiday below!

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello-

A life size Chess board 
Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 5Breakfast

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello-11Enjoying the beach 
Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 7

Some beach reading

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 9

Couscous with stir fried fish for lunch

Jul Brew is the popular beer

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 1

Outfit by Nigerian designer Amede paired with caged bra from Brief Essentials and handbag by Ghanaian designer Pearl X

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 12

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 14

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 15

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 18

A quick morning run on the beach

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 19

Breakfast

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 20

Ready to explore the city wearing Nigerian brands Maison de Helen Shirt and print shorts by Tiskies

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello-

Art shopping at the Senegambia Craft Market

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 27

Print dress by Amede

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello-21

 

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 22

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 23

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello-25

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 29

Relaxing on Kotu beach

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 30

Fishing

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 33

A horse carriage ride on Kotu beach is quite nice

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 35

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 39

The Monkey Park

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 40

The Crocodile Pool

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 41

The Crocodile Pool guide

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 42

Ankara print wrap top by SGTC Clothing

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 45

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 46

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 48

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 49

Dress shirt by Maison De Helen

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 50

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 51

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 52

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 53

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 54

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 55

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 56

Print skirt by Tiskies

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 57

The Fishing Village

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 58

Fort James “Kunta Kinteh” Island

 

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 61

Ono Diary A Review of My Holiday in The Gambia OnoBello 62

 

Cultural Dance

The people in Banjul are very friendly and lovely people, and it is a safe place to travel alone, however, as a woman you will get advances from the local men, which I found annoying. A lot of older women from America and Europe visit to find “love”, some of them end up marrying the men and take them back to their countries, so I guess it’s a thing there.  Without doubt, I will definitely be visiting again!


Leave your views in comments box below.

Share this

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *