Discover Magical Holidays In Gambia

Welcome to Footsteps Eco-lodge

Located in a serene, natural forest setting, a short walk away from a quiet beach, Footsteps offers the ideal blend of nature, cultural immersion, comfortable accommodations, and tasty culinary delights for your Gambia Holidays. We take pride in offering an exclusively adult-only experience, guaranteeing a truly tranquil and rejuvenating vacation for our valued guests. With a range of activities and excursions available to suit all tastes, guests can spend the day exploring this wonderfully friendly country, or relax at the lodge by our fresh-water pool or on the raised sun deck.

In the evening, guests usually dine together at our friendship table. Seating 12 people in the round, It’s a chance to chink glasses with your fellow travellers and share stories of the fascinating experiences you’ve enjoyed during the day. Romantics amongst you needn’t worry. Candlelit single tables are also available, for a quiet evening under the stars. At least once a week you will be treated to a delicious barbecue around the fire, with a cultural performance from a local musician, a drumming group or a traditional storyteller.

Making the most of your holiday in Gambia

You will find plenty of things to do in the local area. Whether you like to roam independently or prefer to go with a guide, you will never be bored. 

Within the grounds of the lodge, we are proud to have a number of local crafters working with us who not only have items for sale but also offer activity workshops for guests who would like to learn a local skill. Ousman is an accomplished tailor, making top-quality African clothes from local fabrics. Malang is one of Gambia’s finest wood-carvers and Bai Sering is a skilled silversmith still using the traditional methods and techniques that he learnt from his father.

Within walking distance, you can enjoy a deserted beach and maybe try your hand at a spot of fishing, see monkeys and amazing birdlife on a nature walk, visit a local market and even a local compound. With a bicycle, you can be at Kartong Snake Farm to learn more about the local reptile population, enjoy an afternoon at Sanyang Beach or relax at Kartong Riverside and enjoy great seafood whilst looking across the Halahin River to Senegal.

Lunch by The Alahein River

Visit Dodou's bar

Take a trip on the river in a dugout canoe, or have a lovely seafood lunch while watching the daily life on the river!

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Gambia’s capital city, Banjul

Take a trip to Gambia's capital

Visit Banjul and see Albert market or one of many Victorian buildings such as The Royal Victoria Training Hospital.

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Within an hour’s drive, you can reach many Gambia tourist attractions such as Senegambia, Kololi, Kotu, and Gambia’s capital city, Banjul. Explore the well-known Albert Market, where you can find crafts and fabrics. Additionally, visit the National Museum and enjoy the stunning views from Arch 22. On your way back, don’t miss the opportunity to stop by Bakau’s fish market and meet Charlie the Crocodile at Kachikally Sacred Crocodile Pool. Footsteps is a preferred choice for activities such as birdwatching, yoga, crafts, and fishing enthusiasts. We gladly accommodate group bookings, so please visit our activities page or contact us to organize a trip for your group.

If you prefer just to kick back and relax in our Eco-lodge, we have a fresh-water pool, table-tennis table and all the peace and quiet you need.

Our rooms

Our rooms are crafted with utmost attention to comfort, while adorned in pristine, refreshing hues, ensuring a great night’s sleep.

Each and every one of our roundhouses is equipped with en-suite bathrooms, powered by solar electricity and solar hot water 24 hours a day. Additionally, our rooms are equipped with room fans and composting toilets, which are both odour-free and environmentally friendly.

For those who prefer more independent accommodations, we offer three exquisite self-catered holiday homes. These delightful dwellings boast the same range of exceptional amenities, including private gardens, a steady supply of hot water, and fully equipped kitchens.

Perfect for groups or older families seeking a personalised getaway experience.

Our kitchen

Footsteps’ kitchen team are highly experienced and passionate about providing tasty food from our open-view kitchen. We have four chefs who love to combine fresh seafood from the local fishing village with fresh, seasonal produce from our own organic garden. With such great produce on hand, they also enjoy creating imaginative and delicious vegetarian and vegan dishes.

Our menu features a range of local and international dishes. Breakfast offerings range from fresh fruit salad with yoghurt and local honey to a hearty full English.

Lunchtime is a chance to try a Gambian classic dish with rice or one of our European daily specials. Gambian food recipes are typically rich and spicy but can be cooked to European tastes. Whether it’s Domoda (thick and tasty peanut sauce), Benechin (flavoursome savoury rice with fish or meat) or Yassa (Onion sauce with a lemony kick), you are sure of a delicious, authentic treat. One of our specials is Soso beans, black-eyed peas in a rich tomato garlic chilli sauce.

Food in The Gambia

Each evening we offer a three-course menu of exciting, innovative European and local options. Some of our favourites are vegetarian Yassa (pictured above) or Tiger Prawns in a zingy lime butter sauce. My personal favourite (pictured below) is deep-fried Calamari served inside one of our homegrown avocados.

Gambian cuisine

Gambia Holidays offer more!

Gambia is the smallest and friendliest country in Africa. On its West coast is the Atlantic Ocean and it is surrounded on three sides by Senegal. Running all the way through the centre of the country is the beautiful  River Gambia, home to dolphins, manatees and hippos. The forest areas offer the chance to see chimpanzees, baboons and other primates including the globally endangered Red Colobus monkeys. It is extremely popular with bird watchers, who appreciate the wide diversity of species to be found in such a small area.

Known as ‘The Smiling Coast ‘, the people are great hosts and always happy to have a chat and share a glass of green tea.

Having been a British colony, English is widely spoken in all but the most rural communities and the country has a fascinating history that can be explored on day trips from the lodge. Gambia and especially its river played a key role, firstly in the movement of enslaved people and then in the abolition of the trade.

Gambias wildlife

Gunjur itself is one of Gambia’s larger villages, with a vibrant daily market and lots of local shops selling everything from meat pies to mobile phones. 10 minutes drive away is Gunjur fishing village, which is a great place to take a stroll and watch the local fisherman at work.

Gambia holiday - Fishing village life

Want to see wildlife in the wild?

The Gambia is best known as a paradise for birdwatchers, offering a huge diversity of species within a small area. Despite being the smallest country on mainland Africa, habitats range from saltwater wetlands, through gallery forests to savannah plains and ricefields.

More than 540 species have been recorded in the Gambia, including some of the birders’ favourites such as Egyptian Plovers, African Finfoots, Pel’s Fishing Owl and different Kingfishers such as the Shining Blue and the Pygmy.

Footsteps Eco-lodge is ideally located for birders to visit the best of the birding in the West Coast Region. Our expert guide, Lamin Bojang has vast knowledge of the local flora and fauna and over 20 years of experience taking guests to the best sites including Abuko Nature Reserve, Tanji fishing centre and bird reserve, Darsalami Woods and Mandinaba shrimp farm. See our Birding page for full details of what is on offer.

Broad-billed-Roller
Wildlife in Gambia- Chameleon

However, in terms of wildlife, The Gambia has much more to offer than just superb birding. One of its highlights is to see the chimpanzees at the River Gambia National Park, but the chimps are just one of six species of primate to be found here. You can also hope to see four other species, including Guinea Baboons, Green Vervets, Patas monkeys and Red Colobus monkeys. Bush babies are also here but are much harder to find. Nature lovers might want to travel upriver to visit the fascinating Communities for Red Colobus (C4RC) project, where you will meet and learn more about this globally endangered species.

Aside from the primates, if you know where to look you can expect to find two types of dolphins, hippos, turtles, crocodiles, hyenas, warthogs, monitor lizards and mongoose. More elusive are the manatees, antelope, wildcats, clawless otters and porcupines.

Recharge your batteries

Sustainability is at the heart of what we do here at Footsteps and we are proud of our social and environmental record.

All of the buildings were designed to minimise the use of cement and other unsustainable materials and the lodge is fully equipped with solar electric and solar hot water. We no longer use any single-use plastics and offer our guests free water refills from our Berkey water filter, so that they too can keep things green. Most of our vegetables are grown in our on-site organic garden, and other produce is, as far as possible from local ethical suppliers. Even our pool is chemical-free, being fresh-water filtered through a reed bed and filter gravel system – the only one in The Gambia and indeed West Africa. It’s a popular place with guests and local birdlife alike.

We recognise that without our wonderfully talented and hard-working team and members of the local community, Footsteps would not be what it is. All of our team benefit from fair wages all year round and we have supported a number of community initiatives, including the Gunjur Village Museum and Gambia Horse and Donkey Trust.

While holidaying at our eco-lodge, you are assured of staying in one of Gambia’s best Eco-hotels and one of the most beautiful, natural environments West Africa has to offer.

All of this means that you can relax and enjoy your holiday secure in the knowledge that your visit is bringing benefits to the local people that you meet along the way.

Let’s discover Gambia

together

Details & Pricing for your Gambia holidays!

Roundhouse interior

Available as single, double, twin, or triple occupancy, all rooms have a fan, wall safe, A/C 2 & 3 pin electricity, open wardrobe and local art painted by Cotton Trail Art

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Self-Catered

Self-catered Villas £90 per night

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Birdwatching from £50 a day.

Let our experienced guides show you the best of Gambia's birdlife

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Fishing

Enjoy 4 hrs beach fishing fr £30

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Yoga from £10 an hr

In our purpose-built Shala

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Things to do on holiday!

There is so much to see and do in The Gambia, from a local cookery workshop to kayaking through mangroves!

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Nicky G
6 February 2024
Verified
This place is a gem As a solo female traveller visiting The Gambia for the first time I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but this eco-lodge was superb. On arrival I was given a tour of all the different areas of the lodge, and the staff, who are all friendly and helpful, took the trouble to learn my name. I stayed in one of the round houses, which was clean, comfortable and spacious. The food was consistently delicious, and I particularly enjoyed trying the Gambian dishes. The evening meal was eaten at a huge round table with the other guests, as well as David and Linda (the owners), and there was plenty of great conversation. I went to The Gambia for the birdwatching and wasn’t disappointed. The lodge’s birding guide, Lamin, really knows his stuff and we saw a fabulous range of birds on days out, and within the grounds of the lodge. I felt really well looked after throughout. What really sets this place apart though, is the ambiance…I truly felt as though I’d just gone to stay with friends and already want to return for a second visit.
meikster
22 January 2024
Verified
Wonderful place, owner and staff! Footsteps is a great place on all sorts of levels. The property is beautiful and well-maintained. Accommodations are super comfy and clean (we stayed in the round-house as well as the villa Kaira Bunga). David (the owner) is an awesome resource when it comes to getting tips for excursions and things to do and the entire staff is amazing, caring and very helpful. They all seem to operate as a family which made us feel right at home and part of the community. The food is delicious and we loved chef Fatou's varied and thought out menus. After each day trip we were happy to return to the Lodge. It really did feel like home. Would go back any time and can only highly recommend!
Bourlingueur*in
20 January 2024
Verified
Perfect for travelers who search for a community! It’s a beautiful and clean place to stay if you search for a community and be surrounded by travelers who want to join group happenings. The Gambian employees do a wonderful job and the friendly owner David tries his best to integrate the nature and its resources in his sustainable lodge as well as the Gambian community! The area around and the villages are very local and wonderful!
Mike
18 January 2024
Verified
Beautiful location, wonderful people, excellent food I enjoyed an excellent week at Footsteps in January 2023*. As a solo traveller who finds meeting new people and socialising challenging, I was made to feel very welcome by the attentive and friendly staff. The food was really fantastic, the people, both guests and staff, were very friendly. It was great to meet a range of people over the week, with old guests departing and new ones arriving. The accomodation was comfortable. My favourite evening of the stay was definitely the weekly BBQ! The local birdlife was simply fantastic. It was my first time visiting sub-saharan Africa, and I was dazzled by the sheer variety of beautiful and charismatic bird species in the lodge grounds and on the short walk to the beach (which is beautiful and very quiet). There is a protected woodland next to Footsteps filled with even more birds. The on-site bird guide Lamin Bojang is very knowledgable and day trips can easily be arranged with him (whether birding or otherwise). If you are looking for a beautiful location away from the hustle and bustle of the main tourist area, I couldn't recommend Footsteps too much! *I couldn't select Jan 2023 as it was more than a year ago, so selected Feb 2023.
Sian C
12 January 2024
Verified
The best place to go in January We just love the place - been 5 times now. Always great hospitality, lovely staff , food excellent and always interesting people to meet . Not to mention the wonderful attractions of The Gambia - such a beautiful country, friendly people and amazing wildlife Plus sunshine!
Marc Eeckhaut
12 January 2024
Verified
An enjoyable stay at Footsteps For the second year in row we enjoyed very much our stay at Footsteps. The roundhouses are very clean and comfortable, good wifi, hot water and a very good bed. We appreciated very much the tasty food they serve, the seafood kebab was the best dinner we had in the Gambia... Especially nature lovers will enjoy the large garden, full of birds... Thanks David and the whole crew for the exellentnservice.
Jackum B
28 December 2023
Verified
An eco hideaway in the Gambian forest. A perfect place to be: peacefully situated in the forest, with gorgeous Gambian birds chattering away in the background. Lovely salads and an excellent buffet dinner. Footsteps has nice rooms, nice staff and an altogether friendly and helpful atmosphere.
alisono27
26 December 2023
Verified
A lovely mature eco-resort, great for relaxing, birding and enjoying The Gambia. We found this fabulous eco lodge, a perfect place to relax and explore southern Gambia. Rooms are individual huts which are spacious and stay relatively cool. David, the lodge owner has been here 25 years and the compound has a lot of lovely mature shady trees and plants. We didn’t miss air con. The composting loo works really well. We had visited The Gambia with birding in mind. The local guide, Lamin Bojang is very knowledgeable and there are a number of local places with an abundance of gorgeous birds. It was the beginning of dry season and surprisingly few biting insects. The staff are very local Gambians, friendly, making you feel very welcome and cared for. We are now looking at all our photos and thinking we will definately plan a return visit one day.
Vigdis J
14 December 2023
Verified
The authentic and peaceful Gambia It is just beautiful to wake up to birds singing and coffee ready just outside the african huts after a good night sleep in a comfortable bed. The staff is wonderful and food is very good. And to walk for twenty minutes to a beach that is quiet away from the typical tourist places is also a bonus. Highly recommended!
Bodyfix B
13 December 2023
Verified
What an incredible week We just arrived home from a magical weeks stay. My sister & I stayed in Tickety Boo lodge for 7 days. It was so beautiful waking up to the birds, the butterflies and the people. Eating breakfast under the trees with all of the other guests is a fab way to start the day. Finding out where everyone is going and what they are up to. We would the. Return to the lodge for dinner all together at the camp to debrief about our adventures! The staff at Footsteps make everything so much more special. Everyone is so so friendly and helpful and will go out of their way to make sure you face what you need. David & Linda were fab hosts and it was lovely to have such knowledge in the lodge about the area and places to see and go. I had a bracelet and a ring made from the silver smith on camp. A beautiful wooden pot from the incredible carpenter and those amazing print trousers from the tailor. I also really enjoy an earlier walk with the Camps bird watching expert Lamin. The camp itself is located in the most beautiful spot, away from hustle n bustle but not too far to reach the village of Gunjur. And the beautiful Sunshine beach bar is a very pretty 20 min walk away. We’ve met friends that will stay in contact and found a place will be 1000% be back to. Thankyou to Osman for being an awesome driver. And thankyou for David & Linda for having such an incredible slice of paradise to share.

A/ We won’t be beaten on price.

B/ If you find a better deal, we’ll price match & discount it by 5%.

C/ Book your next Gambia vacation today with no deposit, nothing to pay until one month before travel & a full refund guarantee up to 2 weeks before travel.

"Simple as ABC", start planning your holiday today with Footsteps Eco-lodge!

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Each year from May 31st until November 1st, Footsteps closes its doors to conduct essential maintenance and for our staff to receive some well-earned time off, ensuring high-quality Gambia holidays each year for our guests.

Explore our website, check out our Gambia holiday deals & see why our guests become friends😀

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