Fast Facts:

1. It is located in West Africa and is the smallest country on the African mainland.

2. Its capital is Banjul. Its largest city is Serekunda.

3. It is surrounded by the country of Senegal, except on its western coast. The peculiar shape and size is the result of territorial compromises made during colonization by Great Britain, which ruled the lower Gambia River, and France, which ruled Senegal.

4. Major languages: English (official), Mandinka, Fula, Wolof, Serer, Jola

5. Major ethnic groups: Mandinka (34%), Fula (24%), Wolof (15%), Jola (11%), Serahuli (8%)

6. Major religions: Islam (95%), Christianity (4%), Indigenous and other beliefs (1%)

7. It gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1965.

8. The name “Gambia” is derived from the Mandinka term Kambra/Kambaa meaning Gambia river.

9. Its called the “Smiling Coast” due to the smiling faces and warm nature of the people.

10. The national and most popular sport is wrestling.          

11. It’s home to Jufureh, the reputed ancestral village of Kunta Kinte, the main character in Alex Haley’s well-known novel Roots.

12. The Stone Circles of Senegambia are a UNESCO World Heritage site, estimated to date between 3rd century BC and 16th century AD. The site consists of four large groups of stone circles that represent a concentration of over 1,000 monuments in a 62-mile wide long band along the River Gambia.

13. Tourist attractions include markets, beach resorts, Abuko Nature Reserve, James Island and the village of Jufureh, Kachikally Crocodile Pool, Makasutu Culture Forest, Gambia River National Park, Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Project.

Map of Gambia
Map of The Gambia
Video credit: Top Tourist Places
Video credit: Sweet Sour Travel