With 20 years of experience studying the wildlife of The Gambia, and involvement in conservation initiatives, we offer a unique insight into the rich wildlife and the pressures it faces. Our tour visits all of the main habitats found in this incredibly diverse country, maximising your chances of seeing the widest range of species possible.
Our personal connections at community-level and the experience of our staff and partners mean that we can experience things no other tours can offer and explain them in a clear and knowledgeable way. From the hippos and chimpanzees of our boat trips to the warthogs and baboons of our safaris and the turtles and sharks of our beach days, every day is packed with new highlights and issues to discuss.
This tour is suitable for all participants from wildlife and conservation bodies to academic groups as it provides an excellent introduction to African wildlife. Although even repeat visitors will be wowed by the highlights our expert, but friendly, guides can provide. Every day we’ll be accompanied by a British Zoologist and a Gambian expert on the habitats we are to visit.
What to expect?
By joining our eco-tourism expeditions in the Gambia, to see its wonderful wildlife is a breathtaking and life-changing experience, which we can assure,
you won’t get anywhere else.
Just visiting makes a huge difference as the sight of tourists at eco-attractant sites helps to convince locals that "their" forests and wildlife are important and that there is "value" in preserving them.
Specialist trips for amphibians and reptiles will take place for organisations such as the Cumbrian Amphibian and Reptile Group (CARG). These will be one or two-week trips during the wet season, in order to optimise sightings of amphibians. Little is known about the amphibians of The Gambia and so surveys have groundbreaking potential. Other work includes setting up a breeding programme for the vulnerable West African dwarf crocodile (Osteolaemus tetraspis) that was rediscovered in the country, by our team.
Day 1 - Arrival
It’s always fun to welcome new faces to The Gambia! After the flight from the UK, often departing in grey, cold conditions, the explosion of heat, bright sunlight, vivid colours and huge smiles can be a lot to take in. But once we’re out of the airport, the drive down to our hotel lets you know you’re in proper Africa. Huge, brick-red termite mounds are scattered through the fields, while gracefu...
Day 2 - Abuko Forest
Our first full day sees us visit The Gambia’s most popular eco-tourism destination, Abuko. To make the most of the wildlife, we’ll make a morning and a dusk trip (most species rest in the middle of the day). This reserve comprises several very different habitats, from forest pools to dry scrub.
The balcony of the Darwin Centre (paid for by the UK government) is the perfect setting to watch Temm...
Day 3 - South Gambia
A scenic, day-long cruise in our open-top Landrovers takes us the to Southern border of The Gambia. As we travel, we’ll collect data on vultures and eagles and stop to look at wildlife on the way. We’ll visit a fishing village to look at the exploitation of sharks and rays and look for turtle and dolphin remains and explain the importance of our research. For lunch, we’ll call at our friends at th...
Day 4/5 - Upcountry
The base for the upcountry trip will depend on the temperature. From Nov to Feb we go to Janjangbureh (formerly Georgetown), but at others times this is too hot and we turn our attentions to Tendaba, with trips to Kiang West National Park and Bao Bolon Wetland Reserve.
The journey to both sites gives an opportunity to explore the drier conditions inland. During the journey, we will make regular ...
Day 6 - Bijol Islands and Ghanatown
Another contrast in habitats today. We will visit the Bijol Islands, a short distance offshore from Tanji Bird Reserve. The site used to host a huge seabird breeding colony, including up to 25,500 pairs of West African Royal Tern and 2,000 Caspian Terns. Other terns should include Little, Sandwich, Common, Black and possibly Lesser Crested. The gulls and waders need to be checked to find Slender-b...
Day 7 - It's Up to You!
Your options could include trips to Pirang-Bonto National Park, Katchikally (the sacred crocodile pool), Paradise Beach, a shopping trip to the local craft markets, or a school/village visit to see how Gambians live and study. After this week, you’ll have plenty of things you’ll want to do!
Our volunteer research assistant costs start from;
GBP 479 | EUR 522 | AUD 845 | USD 582 per week
In-country transport (including Landrovers and boats)
Research Permits and Park Entrance Fees
PLEASE NOTE: Costs do not include lunch and dinner or the cost of flights (but we will collect you from the airport!).
We can assist you through our trusted partner The Gambia Experience for full ATOL protection on flights.