Language & Culture


A common factor in all accounts of time spent in The Gambia is the extraordinary friendliness of its people. There’s no surprise that the country is often referred to as ‘The Smiling Coast’.

When it comes to language, you'll find that most Gambians are at least bilingual, with many speaking more than two languages, and as the country is a former British colony, the level of English is uniformly excellent.

There are many tribes within The Gambia, and the main ones are Mandinka, Wolof, Fula and Jola, each with their own language and traditions. Dress is varied but always bright and colourful and some of the complicated plaited hairstyles are a work of art, often taking up to two days to complete.