Home » Africa » Snappy Collection From The Smiling Coast of Africa: Part Two

Snappy Collection From The Smiling Coast of Africa: Part Two

by sheilanewton on 25/04/12 at 5:07 pm

A Tourist’s experience of Cruising the River Gambia and visiting Bijilo Forest Park.

Our ‘brief of pelicans’ weren’t just lazing about on the river: some of them were perched on the branches of the mangroves, waving about in the air to regain their balance!

As we disembarked and waved a fond farewell to our very special crew, Hattib drove us back to our hotel via Kunta Kinteh’s restaurant where we had drinks and raised our glasses to a fine day out on the river.  It was unforgettable.


We met up with Hattib in the early morning and walked along the sands from Kotu beach toward Senegambia where all the hotels stood in a row to capture the sea view.  Barefoot in the shallow surf, we walked for about forty-five minutes; talking to the hawkers along the way; followed by a faithful wading bird – until we reached a sign on our left for Bijilo Forest Park.

We paid a small fee at the park entrance and went in to a stunning rainforest nature reserve, set atop the cliffs,  housing ancient trees, an abundance of birds, lizards and…MONKEYS!

What a magical experience, treading on the sandy, leaf-adorned pathways, being climbed on by monkeys galore. 



 And what was even more magical was our rare sighting of Red Monkeys, a shy and beautiful long-furred breed.  My neck hurt as I gazed up at them watching us curiously  from the lofty heights of huge gnarled tree branches.

Hattib pointed out the fascinating parasite tree, branches entwined to create a stunning pattern.   I could see where the original tree had been killed off as the parasite tree gained in size and strength.  We were treated to sights of lizards basking on the walls at the cliff tops as we left that fabulous forest trail.

We headed along the shore back to our hotel as quickly as we could.  This was our last day: it was midday and we were leaving on the coach at 6pm.  As well as doing our last minute packing, we had to seek out our Gambian friends to say goodbye.

But when we arrived at the hotel entrance, there they were, waiting for us – Aziz the bird man; Amadou our waiter and the guy who introduced us to Hattib; Jouf our taxi-man driver; Omar the ciggie man; Aruna my ‘I-see-you’ security man – to name but a few!

We had a great final afternoon hanging with our brand-new Gambian friends-for-life, drinking Malta and juice and beer – and then it was time to leave.  Farewell, Gambia – rest assured, we’ll see you again – soon.


If you missed part one of this two-part series, here’s the link:

Snappy Collection from the Smiling Coast of Africa: Part One


 You can take a look at any of my publications on various Triond sites by linking to my profile at:


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My blog, ‘Writing for my Life’ is at:


…and my website, ‘Write Angles with Sheila’ is at:


Liked it

Martin Kloess

Apr 25th, 2012

don’t miss “sarah’s door”

Lisa Marie Mottert

Apr 25th, 2012

Wonderful pictures, and excellent article! sounds like a heavenly and serene vacation:)


Apr 25th, 2012

Fascinating, great pics too. Looks like you had a wonderful time.


Apr 25th, 2012

I make me envy you for your great trip. I;m glad you had such a great time. I sounds & looks amazing.


Apr 25th, 2012

Absolutely brilliant trip you’ve taken everyone on. Congratulations!


Apr 25th, 2012

Wow so descriptive great article.


Apr 25th, 2012

Amazingly done with captivating pictures. You’re quite adventurous and a proven photographer. Nothing short of an excellent piece for it was one of the best stories written for Triond.

Wrath Warbone

Apr 25th, 2012

What a terrific experience! Looks like a gas, and fantastic photos as well. I’d love to see it all myself. Thanks.

Ruby Hawk

Apr 25th, 2012

It sounds wonderful.


Apr 25th, 2012

Thanks for sharing more photo’s. It seems like a very relaxing and peaceful holiday.


Apr 25th, 2012

Looks like you had quite an adventure!


Apr 25th, 2012

sounds wonderful


Apr 26th, 2012

Nice article, i want to make a trip

Aroosa Hermosa

Apr 26th, 2012

This is great.I like it

Nick Bagnall

Apr 26th, 2012

A pleasant read, sounds like you’ve had a lovely time


Apr 26th, 2012

More fabulous photos. Looks like you had a great time!

Lady Sunshine

Apr 27th, 2012

Finally, part two! Love your photos. LOL @ Kloess and Erwin. :D


Apr 27th, 2012

I wish I had time and money to travel like you do. Untill then I will live through your articles. Keep them up.

Thanks for post.


You are not alone! Or will you be?


Apr 28th, 2012

wow!!! great share dear…i m not surprised u made so many adorable friends…. u really are irresistable u know

:) :)

Jsqc Writer

Apr 28th, 2012

Lovely and enchanting! Thanks for sharing your endless amazing adventurous experiences :)


Apr 28th, 2012

Glad you were able to experience so much beauty :-)

Val Mills

Apr 28th, 2012

Your travels give you so much to write about, remember me if you ever make it to this part of the world!


Apr 29th, 2012

good one..


Apr 29th, 2012



Apr 29th, 2012

Second time I’m visiting your article. Such a great trip you had. Thanks for sharing those amazing photos. Fantastic article.

Martin Kloess

Apr 29th, 2012

i got a 30K article!


Apr 30th, 2012

am jealous:)!just joking. Glad you had a fantastic time

Dee Gold

Apr 30th, 2012

I would love to have a trip like this,sheila.
Thank you for reading my two part fic.Your comment was inspiring.

Melody SJAL

May 1st, 2012

Thanks for such a wonderful tour.


May 3rd, 2012

Awesome! I like travelling so much that I read it as though I was there. One day or another we’ll have to plan a really life-time journey. Good share!

J. Anorue

May 4th, 2012

Looks like youve had you share of fun and enjoyment on this trip, thanks for sharing


May 6th, 2012

Glad I am going back in November. I’m actually thinking of buying a place there too, and am a booking agent for the apartments I stayed at also. I just love the place.

Elove Poetry

May 6th, 2012

Hi Sheila… now that you have come to Gambia, Kenya is just the neighbour next door… I am waiting for you… Tell me a month prior, I rearrange my travel schedule

Martin Kloess

May 7th, 2012


Lisa Marie Mottert

May 8th, 2012

Revisiting this wonderful piece!


May 9th, 2012

wow, nice pictures and wonderfully written article.makes us feel like we are on vacation too. :-)


May 10th, 2012

Awesome share.


May 10th, 2012

Like article, and good article

Billy Ellis

May 12th, 2012

Lovely article. Super pix.


May 15th, 2012

Briliant again my friend and such a great sequel to the first part.
Take care and enjoy your day.

Christine Ramsay

May 15th, 2012

What a fantastic experience, Sheila. It must have been a trip of a life time and you describe it so beautifully. Wonderful photos too.

Martin Kloess

May 15th, 2012

stopped by


May 16th, 2012

this is beautiful…


May 20th, 2012

What a lovely “verbal tour” as I felt as though I was right there with you!


May 22nd, 2012

Wonderful post and sure you have a fantastic experience.


May 30th, 2012

Liked it :)


Jun 4th, 2012


Lisa Marie Mottert

Jun 8th, 2012

Visiting, Thanks for this wonderful share!

Vinaya Ghimire

Jun 13th, 2012

Never been away from Asia, Africa looks fun.


Aug 4th, 2012

Amazing, you give more information about africa

Kristie Claar

Aug 4th, 2012

Fantastic article!


Aug 5th, 2012

Sounds so refreshing. I really need to experience something refreshing right now!

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