Distance driven: 676km
Days spent: 17
Distance driven/day: 39,8km
Diesel price: 1,07€/l
Money spent: 861€
EU citizens do not require a visa and are allowed to stay for up to 28 days in the country.
We enjoyed being able to talk in English again once we arrived in Gambia and met mainly friendly individuals. In the tourist areas everybody wants something from you but it is still fun. The roads on the north and south bank of the Gambia River are now tarmac through to Farafenni and make for a beautiful drive through lush vegetation and neat villages. Serekunda was a good spot to stock up on conserves and other imported goods for fair prices. The coast south of Serekunda was beautiful with deserted beaches and small, friendly villages like Kartong. The police, military and drug officers are worth a mention though as we passed plenty of suspicious road blocks, had to go through two complete drug searches and persistently talk our way out of a false fine.
Sierra Leone visa:
We got our visas a couple of hours after applying on the same day at the High Consulate in Banjul without any fuzz.
Costs are 100USD/person for 1 month single entry and 150USD/person for 3 months multiple entry.
The border crossing at Karang was easy enough with the obligatory unsuccessful bribe request from the Senegalese police and a thorough drug search of our vehicle on the Gambian side. They accepted our carnet and gave us a 21 day visa on the spot. We did not have to pay anything at this border and were through in about 1,5 hours.
Recommended Campings (prices for 2 people and a 4×4):
Tendaba Camp, Tendaba – N13 26.362 W015 48.521
Ex-Swedish lodge now run by Gambians in a beautiful location right at the Gambia River with friendly staff and good ablutions who allow camping
Price has to be negotiated. We ended up paying 700Dalasi (14€) including a simple breakfast.
Sukuta Camping, Serekunda – N13 25.182 W016 42.939
Long established German run campsite with well kept, shady grounds, clean ablutions, friendly staff and knowledgeable owner who can swap European propane gas bottles
9,10€/night, electricity 1,50€/day, Wifi 3€/day, laundry 4,50€
Halahin Lodge, Kartong – N13 06.482 W016 45.863
Camping under a huge tree with a deserted beach in walking distance, good restaurant, not the best ablutions and friendly staff and owner
Price needs to be negotiated. We paid 200Dalasi/night (4€) and had to eat in the restaurant once.