The Gambia Experience has launched its new brochure marking 32 years of operation to West Africa. Offering the widest choice of UK flights, with a flying time of around 6 hours between London and Banjul, the operator presents an extensive collection of holidays and adventures enabling visitors to experience more than simply the country's sunshine and golden sands.
Catering for all tastes and budgets, accommodation ranges from value beach hotels, all-inclusive and spa resorts to indulgent luxury hideaways, floating river lodges, wildlife and nature reserves within Luxury, Unique and Classic collections. Boat trips, overland excursions and home cooking days in a typical Gambian household are among experiences available through the company for private parties and groups.
Key locations to observe species of exotic birds and wildlife are included – from hotel gardens, nature reserves, the riverside or in the African bush, guided tours can be tailored for a minimum of two people.
To further showcase the region's waterways, The Gambia Experience has added a Rivers of West Africa mega yacht cruise, with four and seven-night itineraries departing early 2020 from Banjul.
For a memorable safari experience observing game, the company presents Fathala Wildlife Reserve in neighbouring Senegal, offering day trips and overnight stays or longer.
Featured hotels in beach resorts of north and south Senegal are now integrated within Gambia hotel collections and can provide a perfect add-on to a Gambia holiday or, as a stand-alone holiday with flights in and out of Dakar.
The Gambia Experience's product manager Karen Durham commented: “Capturing this colourful country through our collection of holidays, excursions and tours we can provide our customers with the perfect introduction to unspoiled Africa. We are thrilled to present some great multi-centre options alongside holiday extensions and excursion opportunities, including a Rivers of West Africa Cruise which adds another dimension to our exciting range of experiences."
More information at www.gambia.co.uk
The first Canary Islands lighthouse hotel has opened on the island of La Palma. After three years of extensive renovation, the 152-year-old lighthouse has opened its doors for guests seeking an off-grid experience.
Faro Cumplida sits on the most northerly part of La Palma offering undisturbed views of the Atlantic Ocean. The lighthouse which is still in nautical use, accommodates up to eight guests in the light housekeeper's house, located directly below the watchtower.
Offering a modern architectural style within a historical structure, guests can appreciate the history of the building in a modern context. Facilities include four rooms, four bathrooms, a roof terrace, an infinity pool, 36m high watchtower and Canary-Islands garden. The two suites sleep four and two people respectively and both offer their own private terrace to appreciate the spectacular surrounds.
The traditional patio with its pergola made of local Tea Wood leads to the lighthouse entrance and the 158 steps to the top of the tower. Guests can also enjoy a glass of wine or refreshment from the Sky High Mini Bar, a rewarding treat after the climb.
A HOTEL WITH HISTORY
On 28 October 1942 during World War II a German submarine sunk the British battle ship Pacific Star near La Palma. After three days, the castaways spotted the light of Faro Punta Cumplida, came onshore and managed to reach the coast of Barlovento, where locals took the 97 sailors into their homes. Today, Faro Punta Cumplida is the only lighthouse in the Canary Islands which offers accommodation and is still in nautical use.
ABOUT LA PALMA
La Isla Bonita (The Pretty Island) is the most north-westerly of the Canary Islands. It has a network of more than 1,000 kms of marked trails, making it the ideal place for hikers and nature lovers in search of an off-the-beaten-track destination.
British tourists have had a love affair with Benidorm since the fifties, charmed by its sun, sea and generous helping of home comforts. While the Spanish resort will always hold a special place in the hearts of many, other destinations are giving it a run for its money.
According to dealchecker's latest data, destinations including Tunisia and Portugal have had a 126% and 35% increase respectively in holiday searches over the last year, proving that appetites for sunny all-inclusive getaways remain high among Brits. Dealchecker has listed the top seven resort destinations that will be popular, budget-friendly hotspots this summer.
As Tunisia's largest resort, Hammamet's white sandy beaches are a main attraction. Visitors can enjoy the town's bustling medina before heading back to one of the value for money all-inclusive resorts.
Portugal's Albufeira is fast becoming a go-to package holiday destination. Like Benidorm, Albufeira offers bustling nightlife and warm temperatures.
Faliraki, Rhodes, began life as a quiet fishing village, This family friendly destination is a quieter alternative to Benidorm, with space to sunbathe on its blue flag beach.
Morcco's Agadir offers traditional souks and hammam baths alongside laid-back beaches, perfect for sunbathers and surfers It has excellent golf courses too.
Gibraltar, lying off the southern coast of Spain is a British Overseas Territory, meaning visitors don't need to change currency or worry about a language barrier. It even has its own Marks & Spencer.
Playa de las Americas, Tenerife's most popular resort, is popular with windsurfers and waterskiers. Nightlife? Absolutely, Las Verónicas is one of Europe's best party strips with nightclubs, cabaret bars and live music venues.
Gumbet, Turkey, appeals to both party-goers and those in search of a more relaxing escape. In mid-summer, holidaymakers can party on the beach while come September, guests enjoy a more relaxed vibe.
Founded in 2005, dealchecker is a UK-based travel comparison website enabling customers to compare flight, holiday, hotel, cruise and car hire prices, alongside reliable and unbiased money-saving deals. Visit www.dealchecker.co.uk
I'm Gilly, award winning journalist, travel writer and author of 11 books. My byline appears in national and regional newspapers and magazines. Website gillypickup.co.uk