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Trip of the month: Bakau

My Magazine 2022/08
1 min
Bakau, known for its famous crocodile pool, fishing tradition, craft market, and the Gambia's only football stadium, is the destination for our trip of the month. The old settlement, also regarded as the third largest town in The Gambia, is well visited by local and international travellers for various reasons, activities and attractions.

The first stop is at the Independence Stadium, where you can enter and get the feel of this regularly frequented place, which hosts big football matches, wrestling and athletic competitions, political events, trade fairs, national celebrations and concerts. Opened in 1984 and named to praise the nation's independence, it can hold 40.000 people. 

The next stop is at one of the most famous tourist sights in The Gambia; the crocodile pool - Kachikally, one of three sacred pools used as sites for prayers and fertility baths for women as well as other rituals. The other two are Folonko at Kartong in Kombo South and Berending on the northern bank of The Gambia. This pool is the only one where people can touch crocodiles and take pictures with them.

Legend has it that these crocodiles were given to the first settlers in the town of Bakau as a gift from a spiritual family, thus making them tamed from the beginning. The place is regarded as a religious and national relics centre with nature trek and a small private ethnographic museum showcasing the culture, dance, colonial era, masquerades and customs of The Gambia. 

As we approach the coastal area of Bakau, we will be able to enjoy the intimate and old vibe of the town by enjoying a refreshing drink at one of the restaurants on Atlantic Boulevard.

We continue our exploration by stopping at the Methodist Church and then taking a turn down to the beach, where you can experience the authentic vibe of the fishing market. 

Our next stop is at the Bakau craft market, which is full of colours and inviting handmade souvenirs that will fit perfectly into your suitcase or travel bag. 

Lastly, we hide in the shade of the botanical garden, where we get familiar with flora typical for The Gambia. 

Depending on the time of the visit, you are most welcome to prolong your stay in Bakau, grab dinner and experience the night atmosphere in one of the restaurants regularly hosting live music shows. 

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Bird of the month: Red-winged Pytilia
Herb of the month: Nana
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