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“Perfect Romantic Break”
Review of Ngala Lodge

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Ngala Lodge
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Fajara
Certificate of Excellence
Bristol, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
94 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Perfect Romantic Break”
Reviewed 23 July 2012

Having lived in Africa for 20 years, I loved returning to The Gambia time and time again. I often stayed in other hotels and had heard many lovely things about Ngala Lodge. I had the opportunity to travel with my new partner, who had never visited Africa and he was unsure what to expect. He is very well travelled and expects a high standard of service, reliability and good cuisine. Luckily for me Ngala ticked all the right boxes. We had requested the Atlantic Suite and we were very pleased to be allocated it. A huge balcony, with private jacuzzi and views out to the Atlantic sea and rolling waves. Romantic candle lit dinners al fresco at the very popular restaurant. I think the staff were very attentive and possibly the best trained staff in any hotel in The Gambia. We will return xx

  • Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Morag63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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442 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (163)
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English first
Banjul
Level Contributor
28 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 July 2012

I am an Englishman who has been living and working in The Gambia for four years now (among other places) and this is my absolute favourite place there. The standards are truly international and easily surpass the so called 5 star hotels available elsewhere in The Gambia. The hotel, with characterful accommodation, the restaurant, with truly outstanding cuisine, and, especially, the gardens. pool and the views, make this a wonderful experience. Jonathan, the chef, is a consummate professional producing cordon bleu style food that is is equal to, or better than, most of the 5 star establishments I have visited around the world. I go there for all special occasions and certainly at Christmas. Lunchtime or evening standards are equally high and very consistent (something of a rarity in Africa I have found) and for English visitors the biggest surprise will be how inexpensive such a superb dining experience is. Luncheon is a bargain and spending £40 - £50 or so in the evening for two will deliver a meal with wine (excellent wine list) that would cost four or five times that in London's West End. Very highly recommended.

Room Tip: All the rooms are unique so it may be advisable to look before allocation.
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  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Robert H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
29 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 June 2012

We returned from Ngala Lodge last week and having followed reviews on Tripadvisor we had high hopes for a lovely holiday. This place did not disappoint and we had a wonderful stay. The location is very special and private and only at low tide can anyone else access the beach, however when they did it was only to wave and smile and wish us a great stay in the Gambia.
We had a manor suite with seperate lounge, large bedroom and shower room all very african styled with lovely sea view where each day we watched the locals setting sail for fish. The gardens are indeed a veritable oasis in comparison with what is found outside the Lodge and full of beautiful flowers shrubs and birds. The decking down on the beach is a great way to soak up the sun and we felt very decadent having lunch served on the day bed. All the food was wonderful and very healthy too - after a week of 3 course meals only a pound on!! Also have the Tiger Prawns if you can I have never seen them so big!
We spent time with Patrica, Peter and their daughter plus Jenny who will return in September to manage the Lodge and we were most welcomed by them all and especially the staff. Nothing was too much trouble and they certainly lived up to the "Smiling Coast" we had been told of.
Mention must also go to Habib who was our guide for a stunning day out. We visited Serrekunda market, the local wood carvers, a wonderful family who have a palm wine compound, Paradise beach and lastly but not least Tanjy fish market. Having been to Kenya a few years ago we thought we knew about the contrasts between those who have and those who don't but seriously we were not prepared for all we saw. We can seriously recommend a day out with Habib, he was wonderful full of information and has lived a large life himself. We also took a taxi to Lamin Methodist School and having been sung to by 3 to 6 year olds in the tiny space they have felt truly humbled and although we had taken pens pencils etc and left a donation this school has no charity to help unlike those in the tourist areas we would urge you to visit and give what you can because anything will make a diffference.
We walked into Bakau a couple of times and were not hassled by "Bumsters" but did have a good time with a local who showed us around without being pushy.
Would we go again - yes we would without doubt and can definately recommend going in the Green Season it was warm around 31 degrees sun shone every day though some thin high cloud on a couple of days and the warm breezes were soporific on the decking.

Room Tip: If you can afford an Atlantic suite these are stunning and Agnes has a fantastic view
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  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Geri N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Halifax
Level Contributor
21 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 June 2012

Having spent a great week at Mandina lodges , our second week was spent in the relaxing and beautiful Ngala, these 2 hotels were a perfect combination for our special holiday. Ngala is situated in a wonderful location , we had a beautiful suite( number 5) with its own garden, food is excellent and staff were friendly....... chillled out for a week, sitting on my sunbed looking out to sea.......

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank AndyHalifax
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Essex, UK
Level Contributor
51 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 June 2012

We have just returned from spending a fantatsic two weeks at Ngala. We chose Ngala and the Gambia as we wanted something different from the normal honeymoon experience - we certainly got it.
Peter has truly achieved something unqiue and very special. The location is great, the Babeth suite was stunning and most of all the staff were without doubt the friendliest we have ever encountered..
We are already planning a return visit next year, what more do we need to say.
One tip though here services are not advertised they have a fantastic woman called Anna who is without doubt the best massage therapist we and all the other guests who used her services have ever encountered. Price is fantastic and would cost at least triple that in England.

  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank FionaKevin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Much Wenlock, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 June 2012

Great place to stay. Food is excellent and staff extremely friendly. Our suite was sea facing and was extremely comfortable. Would I stay anywhere else in the Gambia? No chance, this place is the perfect oasis!

  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank Lizzyjbee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Plymouth, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 May 2012

We have just got back from a 10 night stay and wish it was longer! We had a fab time at Ngala Lodge, we had an Atlantic suite which had a lovely view of the gardens and sea.... and a Hot Tub!! We were on our Honeymoon and I really cant think of anywhere better to spend it! All the staff were superb, nothing was a problem and they were so happy to help! The food was awsome and the chef was excellent! We were lucky enough to share a drink or two with the owner Peter and he too was very helpful! The whole team were great! We took a few trips out of the hotel orgainsed by The Gambia Experiance, lots of people warned us about the 'bumsters' (people that hassle you) but honestly it wasnt that bad! They are mostley friendly and if you just let them know your not interested they leave you alone. The beauty of Ngala Lodge is that there is NO hassle what so ever there, you are pretty well protected by the lovely staff!

Room Tip: If you can spend the extra then go for an Atlantic Suite! The Hot Tub was amazing !
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Stacey S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ngala Lodge

Property: Ngala Lodge
Address: 64 Atlantic Boulevard | P.O. Box 4091, Fajara, Gambia
Region: Gambia > Banjul Division > Fajara
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Fajara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:4 star — Ngala Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Established in 1995, Ngala Lodge - an intimate, child free, boutique hotel of just 18 unique, magnificent suites, set in tropical gardens, overlooking the Atlantic is the perfect place for a romantic break. Recently voted the 4th most romantic hotel in Africa by TripAdvisor Travelers Choice Awards, with arguably the best restaurant in the Gambia, our guests find it hard to leave.Ngala Lodge - where romance isn't just for Valentines Day! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Ngala Hotel Fajara
Ngala Lodge Gambia/Fajara

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