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Travel Info


Quick Facts
CapitalBanjul
Governmentrepublic under multiparty democratic rule
Currencydalasi (GMD)
Areatotal: 11,300 sq km
land: 10,000 sq km
water: 1,300 sq km
Population1,455,842 (July 2002 est.)
LanguageEnglish (official), Mandinka, Wolof, Fula, other indigenous vernaculars
ReligionMuslim 90%, Christian 9%, indigenous beliefs 1%

The Gambia is a country in West Africa and is the smallest country on the continent of Africa. It has a North Atlantic Ocean coastline in the west and is surrounded by Senegal so that it is almost an enclave. The country occupies the the Gambia river valley and surrounding hills.

Regions

Administrative divisions 
5 divisions and 1 city*; Banjul*, Central River, Lower River, North Bank, Upper River, Western

Cities

  • Banjul - Capital


Understand

Climate

Tropical; hot, rainy season (June to November); cooler, dry season (November to May); Natural hazards : drought (rainfall has dropped by 30% in the last 30 years)

Terrain

Flood plain of the Gambia river flanked by some low hills

Highest point 
unnamed location 53 m

History

The Gambia gained its independence from the UK in 1965.

Independence 
18 February 1965 (from UK)
National holiday 
Independence Day, 18 February (1965)
Constitution 
24 April 1970; suspended July 1994; rewritten and approved by national referendum 8 August 1996; reestablished in January 1997

It formed a short-lived federation of Senegambia with Senegal between 1982 and 1989. In 1991 the two nations signed a friendship and cooperation treaty. A military coup in 1994 overthrew the president and banned political activity, but a new 1996 constitution and presidential elections, followed by parliamentary balloting in 1997, completed a nominal return to civilian rule. The country undertook another round of presidential and legislative elections in late 2001 and early 2002.

Get in

Gambia is becoming a popular vacation destination for Northern Europeans. Therefore, many charter and holiday operators offer reasonable airfare and accommodation if desired.

By plane

By car

By bus

By boat

Get around

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Eat


Sleep

  • Malawi Guest House (393012/ 392227 Fax). 18 rooms
  • Wendels Guest House stub and needs your attention. Plunge forward and help it grow!