Upriver Gambia Boat Trips

Sample itineraries

Residential River Cruises

A residential River Gambia cruise onboard the Fula Princess takes you deep into the heart of rural Gambia. Falling asleep to the sounds of the nighttime river and waking up to the spectacular African sunrise is an experience that you will never forget. Along the way, you will have a unique glimpse into the traditional lifestyles, culture and nature of The Gambia.

Because we are a private charter, we can design these Gambia boat trips around your particular interests and move at your pace. And because we specialise in small groups (maximum 6 guests), you will enjoy a rewarding and immersive experience of this fascinating country.

Whether you’re into nature, outdoor activities, culture, cooking, music or just sitting and relaxing on the top deck with an iced drink, just let us know and we can arrange the perfect experience.

The itineraries below are just a sample of what we offer. Each of our trips offers the same great food and service but a distinctly different view of what Gambia has to offer.

The Fula Princess

The Fula Princess is a traditional Gambian pirogue that sleeps four people in two full-sized double berths below, with the option of sleeping under the stars on the upper deck. 

She is equipped with a marine toilet, a small sit-down shower, a galley, solar lighting, charging and refrigeration and all the required safety equipment.

Packages include three delicious onboard meals per day, cooked by our own excellent chef. You can join him as he does his shopping at the local markets and even lend a hand in the kitchen if you’d like to learn more about Gambian cooking. 

Meals will mostly be Gambian classic dishes, cooked to European tastes with the finest and freshest ingredients available. 

Whenever possible we use locally grown organic produce and avoid chemicals and processed foods in our menu. Vegetarian and vegan dishes are available on request.

Sample Itineraries

Chimps and Hippos – One night

For nature lovers with only a little time, we recommend our Over-night Chimps and Hippos experience. Journey through one of the most beautiful sections of the River Gambia and hope to see hippos, chimpanzees, baboons, red colobus monkeys, crocodiles and incredible bird life. In the evening take a sunset walk for unbeatable views over the river and great wildlife spotting opportunities.

The next day, after breakfast, you will also have the chance to take a tour of the historic town of Janjanbureh, visit UNESCO’s Kankurang Museum and see a palm wine tapper at work, maybe even sample some of the wine too!

Upriver Gambia

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Monkey Madness – Two nights

Spend two nights around the River Gambia National Park and enjoy all the same experiences as the one-night trip.

In addition, you will visit the famous Wassu Stone Circles, and spend a morning at the Communities 4 Red Colobus project, where you will meet and learn more about the endangered red colobus monkeys that inhabit the local area.

On your return to Janjanbureh, you will also have the chance to feed the green vervet monkeys at Janjanbureh Camp.

Things to do upriver in Gambia

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Janjanbureh to Basse Santa Su – Three nights

Heading East from Janjanbureh to the Upper River Region takes you off the beaten track and deep into the heart of rural Gambia. The first stop is the town of Bansang where you will join your chef as he shops in the market. From there to Sami Karantaba, famous as the place where explorer Mungo Park made his base before heading into the interior of Africa.

You visit the memorial to Mungo Park and the compound of the local chief, who is also a traditional healer. The following day, you will head to a two-compound village at Diabugu Tendala crossing point, where you can be assured a very warm and traditional welcome. Finally to bustling Basse Santa Su with its chaotic market, dusty streets and border town atmosphere.

itinerary for upriver gambia

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Janjanbureh to Bintang – Four nights

This trip covers a distance of around 200km on the river and takes you to all of the highlights of the Central and Lower River Regions. From the cultural and historic town of Janjanbureh, you will visit the River Gambia National Park, with its hippos, chimpanzee, other primates and amazing bird life.

From there, you will head to the wharf town of Kaur, with its morning market and great views over the river. Then on to Tendaba Camp and the adjacent RAMSAR site of the Baobolong Wetlands, a must-see for any bird-watchers and where you have the chance of seeing crocodiles.  Finally, continue West and into Bintang Bolong, looking for dolphins as you approach your destination. 

Sample upriver itinerary

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These are just some of the things to do upriver in Gambia, we hope you enjoy this very Gambian experience.

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