Most action lies in the 10 km stretch of coast from Bakau to Kololi. This is also the stretch that has the liveliest restaurant and nightlife scene, so I would recommend sticking to this area. Since you’ll spend most of your time here hopping from packed beaches to bars, I’ve left the time less structured. I’ve simply made a list of recommendations that you can check out over the 2 days.
This is one of the best areas to dine in all of West Africa. There’s no shortage of places to eat and some real gems to tickle your tastebuds. Here are the top picks:
La Paillote, Fajara: Choose between the African dish and the European three-course meal. Both are delicious and great value for money.
Keur Bouba J & Cotton Club, Fajara: Great spot for dinner while enjoying live jazz and salsa.
Butcher’s Shop, Fajara: A must-do. Run by Driss, a Moroccan celebrity chef, this place is known for grilled pepper steak.
Flavours, Fajara: Imaginative dishes and great service and atmosphere.
Francisco’s, Fajara: Great tasting mixed seafood platters and grills served in the shade of giant palm trees.
Yok, Fajara: Another must-do if you’re willing to have Singaporean, Thai and Chinese fusion cuisine while you’re in Africa.
Ngala Lodge, Fajara: One of Gambia’s most renowned restaurants also run by a celebrity chef. Sumptuous and lovingly presented meals served with an impeccable sea-view.
Solomon’s Beach Bar, Kololi: Excellent grilled fish in a youthful atmosphere.
Ali Baba’s, Senegambia Strip: A fast-food joint during the day. At night it serves dinner with a live show (mainly reggae) in its garden.
Jojo’s, Senegambia: The saltimbocca chicken with olives and parmesan is said to be divine.
Green Mamba, Senegambia: A must-do. Pick the raw ingredients for your personalized stir-fry, then relax over a local fruit cocktail while the attentive staff brings over your plate.
Safe Way Afra King, Serekunda: More local than the other joints I suggested, this popular haunt serves tasty afra, sandwiches, fufu, ‘cow foot’ and other African dishes.
Bars: Head to Chapman’s (Bakau), Weezo’s (Fajara), Come Inn (beer garden in Fajara), or Paparazzi (wine bar in Kololi)
Aquarius, Senegambia Strip, Kololi: Heavy beats, touristy crowds, expensive drinks but a great party vibe.
Destiny, Kotu Beach: A sparkling palace on three floors, this is where parties go on late and the beat is thumping. Great for glittering parties.
Jokor, Serekunda: An open-air club with a raucous local vibe. Possibly the most entertaining club of all, it is packed every night of the week.
Teranga Beach Club often has live performances by reggae and Gambian music bands, but it’s not clear whether the club is still operational.
Chosaan is also a popular live music spot which is highly rated.