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Is Gambia safe for a single female?

Brighton
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Is Gambia safe for a single female?

Im really interested in going to Gambia for a week holiday in March - mainly to relax with a day trip or two thrown in, but... I will be going on holiday by myself.

I need an honest opinion on whether it is safe for me to go. If it is which resort should I go to? Will it be safe for me to go out of the hotel for dinner?

From all of the posts I have been reading I realise that the bumsters are a prevalent but generally harmless feature of Gambia, but as a female by herself would I be attracting less innocent attention.

I really want to go but safety has to be my primary concern, and whether I should wait to go another time with a friend.

Any thoughts or comment would be really appreciated.

Thanks, Maria

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Gambia
Gambia
Africa
Stockholm
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269 posts
34 reviews
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1. Re: Is Gambia safe for a single female?

You don't state your age. Is 78 your age or date of birth? You will probably be safe in Gambia as regards to physical safety as the crime rate is relatively low in the Gambia.

However if you will have a good time or not is debatable. To the bumsters you will be fair game as you are:

1. A tourist

2. A woman

3. Alone

You will be harrassed from pillar to post every time you leave the hotel, or indeed even by the staff at your hotel once they find out you do not have male company. Probably the only way around this is to accept the attentions of a Gambian who's company you find acceptable who can act as your chaperone and/or minder for the duration of the trip.

As to Gambians having respect for women, well that might be true for their own women, and even Gambians in general, but the sort of Gambians you are likely to meet have only contempt for tourists. All they are interested in is getting some of what you have got. And a British residence permit.

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Gambia
Gambia
Africa
Brighton
3 posts
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2. Re: Is Gambia safe for a single female?

Im 28 and blonde. I have travelled to a number of african or arabic countries, such as Egypt, Tunisia, Turkey so I am familiar with the type of attention I attract but typically I have travelled with a male companion.

I did travel to Turkey by myself and was expecting hassle but didnt really get any at all. I think getting 'adopted' by the hotel staff helped!

Bristol, United...
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3. Re: Is Gambia safe for a single female?

Yes it is Safe to go alone.

I would suggest the Senegambia/Kololi Area for starters, plenty of Whitey's about,

Mind you, if you promise not to run too fast I could chase You..! :-)

Thinking about it, pehaps that should be walk too fast....... :-(

There are quite a few trips that can be obtained locally when you get there.

Rich..

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Senegambia Beach Hotel
Senegambia Beach Hotel
1,359 Reviews
Serekunda, Gambia
Kololi
Kololi
Serekunda, Gambia
Northamptonshire...
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330 posts
305 reviews
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4. Re: Is Gambia safe for a single female?

Have been going to Gambia for nearly 14 years now and due to go again in February 07. I think to really enjoy the atmosphere, and different culture and get out into the markets, and experience different restaurants not tied to one hotel should be shared as it is much more fun.

However, if you are desparate for a holiday and must go it alone this time, I would say yes, it is safe. Just find a decent guide and/or taxi driver who is not too young, and act as if you have been going their to see friends all your life and it will be a doddle.

It's the same old story, if you wear shorts up to your armpits and cleavage heaving in the sun dripping in gold etc. etc. then you will attract the obvious.

As far as only wanting residency in this country, come on, they all have a go. This is how we started our 'mission'

Our sponsored lad is now 30 has a wife and son who he has named after my husband. We clubbed together here with friends had car boot sales etc. etc. bought them a plot of land, and then enough to build a house. His whole family and I mean whole (about 30 ) of them live there now complete with garden and welland he has managed to secure a job because instead of offering to bring him over here we paid for him to go on a computer course in Serrekunda. So please don't tar them all with the same brush.

It can be a magical place (poor man's Barbados) or a nightmare

if you dont take the right precautions which when you think about it are all common sense.

Go for it, have a great time.

Incidentally who are you going with, as First Choice work out much cheaper than Gambia Experience.

We have always stayed at the same hotel, but this year are trying a smaller one run and owned by an African family. But I would as the other respondee said, go for a bigger hotel in the middle so that you have more chance of meeting others and more trips etc. etc.

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Gambia
Gambia
Africa
Bristol, United...
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5,442 posts
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5. Re: Is Gambia safe for a single female?

Wow..!! Time Travellers' Wife..

Excellent Post, You practically have it all there..!!

Glad to see someone else doing it the sensible way, and helping Gambians..

Rich..

Northamptonshire...
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330 posts
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6. Re: Is Gambia safe for a single female?

Rich: Thanks for that, as you can see we love going there and have never had any problems whatsoever. The only thing one can be sure of is that we always have a warm welcome and the sun will shine. I dont think we could ask for more really. Rest is up to us!

cardiff
1 post
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7. Re: Is Gambia safe for a single female?

It seems to me that nobody who is reassuring Ms Bunny regarding the suitability of a 28 year old female travelling to gambia alone has actually been in that position .ie a single female on holiday. Myself I am not so sure. I have been in the gambia several times with my partner and on those occassions when I have ventured out alone I felt a bit like a lamb thrown into the lions den.

I shoud add that I am an experienced traveller and used to being harrassed but the constant calls of " Boss Lady" and "Princess" plus the absolute refusal to take no for an answer ground me down in the end. As other contributors have suggestd , her only chance is to employ the services of a local guide to keep the wolves at bay. But then you might have to fight off the attentions of your guide.

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Gambia
Gambia
Africa
cheshire
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12 posts
3 reviews
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8. Re: Is Gambia safe for a single female?

Just go you will be fine! I went to gambia in january with my husband and we hardly spent any time together we were both off out on our own. I walked down the beach loads of times by myself after the first time its fine and i didnt feel threated at anytime.

I am hoping to go back in march with my three kids and will be leaving my hubby at home!

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Gambia
Gambia
Africa
Bristol, United...
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9. Re: Is Gambia safe for a single female?

Have a look at :-

My trip to gambia, by bbramble.

Think that will settle your mind a bit....

Rich..

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Gambia
Gambia
Africa
england
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10. Re: Is Gambia safe for a single female?

Ricgrey is the man when it comes to useful advise keep up the good work

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