Atlantic ocean

Caretta in The Gambia: nature in the raw!

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Who: Marie, Michel and Timothé 

Where: The Gambia River, West Africa 

Boat: Eclipse 472


We anchored for a few days in front of Lamine Lodge, run for the last thirty years by Peter, a German who is now quite old. He washed up here on his yacht and the wreck can still be seen next to the lodge!  It’s quite a basic place but it is charming and full of… monkeys, who steal the bottles of soda. But not the beer as they don’t like it! It’s a lovely place, but there isn’t much current, so Tim got an initiation in paddle boarding. Now he sets off alone into the mangrove to see the monkeys and the birds. We took almost a week to cover 400km (250 miles) into the hinterland, as far as the Gambian National Park near Georgetown. Sailing isn’t difficult and we were able to do some hit some impressive speeds, as the trade winds had returned.   Only the entrances to the creeks were complicated, as the sandbanks aren’t marked - and are in fact invisible. We anchored in front of a lodge at Bintang Creek where the bedrooms were built on stilts in the mangrove, followed by Mankori Creek, totally isolated and surrounded by untamed nature. The noise was impressive, particularly at night, and we didn’t even recognize a quarter of the birds. Finally, we anchored off the village of Kutand Tenga, where Ibrahim accompanied us in a dinghy out to hippopotamus country: we saw around 15 of ...

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