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Banjul Port formally referred to as Bathurst in the British colonial rule era began like a buying and selling outpost in the 19th century on which has become known as the region of St. Mary. Situated in the mouth from the River Gambia because it spills out in to the Atlantic Sea, Banjul is really a tiny port of call for many passing cruise ships. It's the capital of Gambia, which is among Africa's tiniest independent nations.
It's a flourishing commercial port where individuals exchange various crafts and jewelry, and it has little to offer when it comes to tourist points of interest. However, to be the gateway to Gambia's wealthy treasure chest of tourist locations, from lengthy sandy beaches to African Safaris, the town sees its great amount of vacationers visiting Africa on West African cruise ships from Europe and also the Mediterranean.
Ships pier in a most unexciting location, 1-1.5 km towards the Albert Market. Should you insist get helpful tips for Albert Market, you will find that this is when Africa meets the Arab Traders. Taxis are usually available.
Gambia is wonderful. Its basically because the British thought it was 150 yrs ago and basically the way they left it! Banjul is really a somewhat dirty unexciting place not associated with the relaxation of Gambia. Situated on the sandy peninsula in the tip of Banjul (formerly St Mary's) Island, it's a modern city organized in power grid form, and also the capital from the Gambia. Among its chief industries are peanut and seafood processing and producing filigree jewelery and woven materials for that growing tourist industry. Don't miss the fascinating Condition House and also the minarets from the King Fuad Mosque while you stroll through Banjul's historic districts. The folks are extremely hospitable to people from other countries.
Better to take an organized tour or have a taxi for any circular drive towards the nice Kairaba and Senegambia 4 star Tourist hotels and spend time. Outdoors (but secure) may be the Strip with sensible coffee shops, bookstores and bars, shops along with a small nice the best value native market. Here you can have a few of the atmosphere that Gambia offers.
Make certain your driver goes through Serrakunda and across the old colonial Fajarrah road beyond the British Embassy. Brikama is really a genuine craft village well worth the visit. If reasonably adventureous walk having a sensible guide through Serrakunda Market.
Tour operators use comfortable air-conditioned coaches for his or her transfers and 4-wheel drives for his or her activities. For individuals wanting to adventure out by themselves or perhaps in small groups, you will find three different taxi services within the Gambia.
Tourist Taxis
They are mostly colored eco-friendly and also have a "tourist taxi" sign up their cars. These taxis are licensed through the Gambia Tourism Authority and devoted for everyone vacationers along with other site visitors. They're normally parked outdoors hotels Within The resort areas. They work on a queue system and also have a released tariff for those distances inside the Gambia and outdoors. However, we advise you to definitely take a look using the driver before departure. It is perfectly normal to tip these motorists.
Yellow and Eco-friendly Taxis
They are mainly 4-passenger saloon cars colored during these colors, which operate a shared taxi run between short distances or parked in the kerbside for individual hire (also known as a "town trip").
Collective (Rose bush) Taxis
The most typical method of driving for local people is as simple as collective taxis otherwise known as "Rose bush" taxis. They are mainly 7-passenger cars, vans, minibuses and buses. They don't have just one co lour plus they manage a shared service between both short and lengthy distances. There is a set fare. Please request for that fare before you decide to board the automobile. They are able to make several stops in order to allow people to board or disembark.
 Gambia National Museum
 The museum is in Banjul's northern sector on Independence Drive and was officially opened on 18th February, 1985. Within the pleasant front garden of tamarisk and palm there is a drinks stand and shaded seating area as well as toilets, administrative buildings and stores. The building used to house the Bathurst Club house consisting of European members only.
Even though it is quite small, cramped, and dimly lit, it contains some interesting, though sometimes not easy to find, artifacts - some a bit dog-eared, yearning for restoration. As you are about to enter the main hall you will see a Kankurang mask 'guarding' the door. Inside the display hall you will find numbered exhibits  in a semblance of a circuit, from the late 19th and 20th centuries. You can find colonial era written and printed ephemera, including a passenger ticket from Bathurst to Liverpool on board the Elder Dempster Line's 'MV Apapa' - a so called a banana boat, bananas being one of the chief exports of the Gold Coast at the time. There is also a gathering of Oku marabout (Yoruba) pieces such as a bridal basket, waist beads called 'bin bin', an engagement calabash gourd, which would hold the bride's kola nuts, dowry and other oddments.
The museum also collects books, colonial maps, traditional music string instruments, cooking utensils such as large wooden mortars and pestles, large calabash gourds, Neolithic pottery, masks, the bau / worro (holed board game), handicrafts, large paper model boats called fanals, prehistoric tools, historical documents and photographs relating to the material culture of The Gambia. In some of the dimly lit corners, you'll see, among the crumbling ethnographic pieces, revealing old maps, papers and information about local migrations and conflicts in the Senegambia region, a few captivating pictures of kora players called jali, as well as masked dance ceremonies from an earlier era. Don't miss the life-sized Kankurang - a potent spirit incarnate, covered in baobab bark (from whom women, children and the uncircumcised must hide).
(Tel no: 4226244, Email: musmon@qanet.gm)
Bird Watching
If you are keen on birdwatching then head toward the most southerly road in the Banjul capital called the Kankujereh Road (Bund Rd.) which passes through bird rich saltwater wetland habitats with numerous bird species. It goes past the Gambia River estuary mudflats to your left with its rusting, mud sunken ships which are home to cormorants and pelicans roosts. At low tide, the mudflats are used as feeding grounds by striated herons, African spoonbills, gulls, waders and terns.  To your right is some re-claimed land followed by the Tanbi Wetland Complex of mangroves to your right and left. Here you might spot black headed plover, yellow billed storks, little grebe, or the Senegal thick-knee. The best time to go is when there is light traffic such as after 11 am up to 5pm, but Fridays after 3pm and weekends are the best times to visit. Note: much of the area is strewn with scarp metal so sturdy boots and a stick might be useful.
Sports Fishing
You could also go back towards the Denton Bridge and hire a local pirogue (long canoes - some with an outboard motor) which can take you out on the quiet waterways of Oyster Creek, which are rich fishing grounds for keen anglers. The dense mangroves are particularly interesting and home to around 70 species of fish and other wildlife such as tilapia, mullets, Atlantic mudskippers, shrimps, crabs and mangrove oysters. The fish fauna are of pelagic or demersal species in the fry, juvenile or sub-adult stages. You can also pick up a larger, more professional boat to take you up river or for some blue ocean sports fishing.
There is virtually nothing in the capital city by way of night clubs as most people have left the town by 7pm, not to return until the next working day. The only night spot worth visiting for tourists is at the Atlantic Hotel, which is elegant, air conditioned, and opens till late. The people who do hang out in the evening are usually Gambians and foreigners, in front of their accommodation, drinking Attaya or visiting friends nearby, otherwise the streets are virtually empty. The only sounds you'll hear in the early evening are the various, distant calls of the muezzin, from minaret loudspeakers.
Other Attractions
MacCarthy SquareOther places to see in Banjul are the War Memorial & Fountain, near MacCarthy Square, erected to commemorate the coronation of Britain's King George VI in 1937. You can also visit MacCarthy Square which is surrounded by a colonial atmosphere, with eye-catching 19th-century architecture. It is used for public events such as Independence Day ceremonies, open concerts and cricket. There is also a children's playground with a modern play area which has colourful slides, swings, rocking horses and a small course.
Restaurants & Nightlife
Banjul has an acute dearth of restaurants, especially in the evenings, but there is still some good quality basic food served from local diners and fast food establishments during the day. The Ali Baba Snack Bar serves European and Lebanese snacks, dishes, cold drinks, and freshly squeezed fruit juices. It's ideally located in the commercial district and close to the market and shops. On the same road is the King of Shawarma Cafe which has similar Middle Eastern cuisine plus dishes like fish & chips. If you feel the need to sit at a beach bar and restaurant facing the Atlantic ocean then try Nefertiti Beach Bar, just off the entrance of Marina Parade, near the Arch 22. It is at the end of the road leading past the registrar of companies and near the Atlantic Hotel; it is Lonely Planet's top choice among the places to eat.
Nearby Places
Circled by dense lush mangrove forest, in the city you can go to such exotic locations because the holy crocodile pond of Katchikally, whose water is stated to assist fertility. You may also board the straightforward roofless motorboats within the Makasutu Character Reserve and are available just a little it nearer to the strategies of the thick mangrove wood and discover about traditional folklore in Camping Makasutu.
If shopping is the interest, then take a look at Banjul itself. Its small size belies the truth that it is among Africa's more affluent cruise ports. Products that you'll bargain for can cost you half the cost in Banjul in comparison to anywhere else around the West African region. The Albert Market on Russell Street is substantially simpler to look at, in comparison with many African Marketplaces. It is evenly as vibrant and aside from a number of spices or herbs, seafood and veggies, vacationers can bargain for instruments, woodcarvings, traditional African masks and African dress materials or hand-made jewelry which are displayed through the market.
The Albert Market and adjacent craft market offers a number of products and typically the most popular are tie and dye materials, batik, antique masks along with other wood designs and carvings, leather goods, jewelry, sand painting and basketry. Buy with caution and employ the African practice of negotiating for any fair cost making use of your own judgment. Shop and stall proprietors literally sell everything on the planet. Visitors are informed to prevent using charge cards at locations apart from resort hotels.

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