Category: Senegal


Well now that we leave Africa soon (Boo Hoo!) Muni & Molly’s African Oscars are now published.

The categories are : (drum roll please)

1. Best Accommadation / Hotel : Green Turtle Lodge, Dixcove, Ghana
2. Worst Accommadation / Hotel : Pensão Leeta, Mocimboa da Praia, Mozambique

3. Best Meal : La Colombe, Constainia, Cape Town, South Africa
4. Worst Meal : Cafe No Name, Arsi Negele, Ethiopia

5. Best Transport : CTM, Morocco
6. Worst Transport : Burundi

7. Friendliest People : Tied at Burkina Faso and Malawi
8. Unfriendliest People : White Namibians

9. Best Value : Ghana
10. Worst Value : Rwanda

And last but by no means least…

11. Best Beer : Primus 720ml, Burundi
12. Worst Beer : Laurentina Stout, Mozambique

And the most coveted award for biggest tosser in Africa goes to….

The fat, Afrikaner, make-up put on with a cement mixer, hair-do like a bulldog’s arse, manager of the Cat Nap Guest House in Springbok for her inability to take a booking 3 whole weeks in advance. Moan about the check in time, lie about her presence prior to us checking in and then only say that we had booked one night when two were requested. I hope you catch the clap from a toilet seat and you choke on some worm infested biltong again. Congratulations, your golden Oscar is in the post.

We’ve also added some additional categories for those that were worthy of such an acolade.

They are:

Toughest Day : 8th April 2009, Butare, Rwanda after visiting a genocide memorial. (I talk about it HERE)

Most adventerous moment: Boarding a tug boat to travel down Lake Tanganyika en-route to Kigoma, Tanzania

The 5 best highlights (in no particular order):

1. Getting up close and personal with 5 Silverbacks in Parc National de Volcans, Rwanda
2. Being pamered in Madikwe Safari Lodge, South Africa
3. Juming out of a dhow, after spotting Dolphins, onto the best beach in Africa. Praia de Chocas, Mozambique
4. Standing on the precipace of the plateau in Dogon Country, Mali
5. Giggling at the confluence of the Atlantic and Indian Ocean’s at the southern most tip of Africa

Muni & Molly

I just had to do this as it would give those who are interested an idea on our take so far !!!

The categories are : ( drum roll please )

1. Worst Hotel : Baobolong Camp, Jangjangburreh, The Gambia.
2. Best Hotel : Green Turtle Lodge, Ghana.

3. Worst Meal : Fulladu, Basse Santa Su, The Gambia. (nothing but bananas sir..sorry!)
4. Best Meal : Clay Oven, Fajara, the Gambia. Yummmmm!!!

5. Worst Transport : Bani Transport (for pissy seats !)
6. Best Transport : CTM, Morocco.

7. Friendliest People : Burkina Faso.
8. Unfriendliest People : Mauritania.

9. Best Value : Ghana
10. Worst Value : Mali

And last but by no means least…

11. Best Beer : Gazelle
12. Worst Beer : not one – just warm beer !

And the most coveted award for biggest tosser goes to….. Everybody’s loveable friend….( and a taxi driver )….

Mr. Taxi Driver in Takoradi, Ghana.
( for changing the agreed price and taunting the customers afterwards. I hope you are plagued by punctures the rest of your days. )


The Gambia

It was hard to leave the Palmarin area and the wonderful folks at Le Yokam. Some of the most amazing scenery I have ever seen. The Sine Saloum Delta is simply stunning. Largely flat, with towering Baobabs, covered with shallow glass like water at their feet, deep greenery abundant with flashes of brilliant white from the feathers of an Egret as we passed by on the dusty broken roads. It struck me as a place of simple quiet beauty. With more and more wildlife showing up I was a happier bunny. And after 3 days sitting out with Marcel, Edward, Marie-Ann, Silvia and Joseph and the family Yokam, I felt sad to be leaving.

Sine Saloum Delta

Sine Saloum Delta

After blasting through Mauritania we had some time on our hands. So, as a consolation we decided to hit The Gambia. And with English as one of the prime languages it was an easy decision. Visas were obtained easily in Dakar and off we went. The border corssing was fine and upon hitting the Gambian taxi rank there was the usual riot and waltz with our packs to keep the rabble at bay ! We then found our way to Banjul. A small town, quiet and can be navigated easily and hassle free. We immediately loved it. Cold beer and English….what more could a man ask for ? Next was Fajara. By the sea and our last few days with an opportunity for a swim before heading inland. ( We also found a bleedin deadly Indian restaraunt round the way – top scoff was had ! ) 3 Days later, and a bone shaking journey, we were in Bintang Bolong. Not really much to say about this place except that the setting amongst the mangroves was very nice and the odd Striped King Fisher and Abyssinian Roller about. Next, Jangjangbureh (Georgetown) again not much to say about this place either. I did think it would be bigger. But it was just a dusty island in ther Gambia river largely d’void of food, electricity and water.

Fajara Sunset

Fajara Sunset

The situation with food, power and water was worrisome. More and more all three became scarse. We are quickly becoming shadows of ourselves and with the blatent police corruption we have encountered numerous times The Gambia is leaving a sour taste in my mouth. The final straw was being told upon exit that the princely sum of 5000 Dalasi each (about 320 Euro) was required for exit. I nearly flipped. I told the officer, from between grating teeth, that he would not get his money. And ten minutes later we left, no bribe and with our passports. I’m very disappointed with The Gambia. Initial reaction was great with the banter we could have with the “bumsters” and having a swim and general lounging around. But, as time went on we just had not realised that the rot had set in.


Dakar – Ile de Goree – Dakar

The trip down from lovely St. Louis was kinda bitter sweet. The sept-place (7 place ) taxi was an old beat up Renault 5 kitted out for seven….dwarfs! It was uncomfortable at the very best. What made it bearable was the numerous Baobab forests along the route. I’ve never seen such beautiful trees and arranged by, what seemed like, a giant. For those who don’t know Baobabs are, for me, distinctly “African” trees that epitomise all that is old and beautiful about this great continent. click here.

We arrived later than scheduled into Dakar and its traffic. Made it to a hotel and opted to find an eatery nearby. I discovered “yassa poulet”, a kinda spicy sautéd onion goop with chicken….don’t knock it till you’ve tried it folks! That night wandering home three fellas selling their wares decided to grab hold of me pants and refused to let go. A quick thump on his chiseled hands made him release. Meanwhile the two others had surrounded Molly. A not so good situation that could of gone wrong very quickly. The incident put me off kilter (especially keeping in mind that Dakar is famed for its street crime) and we resolved to finding accommodation on Ile de Goree. Goree being and island 3km off the coast of Dakar.

It was like a breath of fresh air. The island being only 900m long and 300m wide. There are no cars, sand streets, extremely friendly people ( alright Paco and Salif ) and adequate accommodation. The island was the administrative point for the West African slave trade starting from the 1700’s onwards until its abolition. Dutch, French, English and Portugese all had a go and all have contributed to its architecture. In some ways there is an erie feel to the island knowing that many people passed through it bound for America. Often the last of Arica they saw was the inside of a small cell and a forboding wooden door (in between the stairs ) leading to a ship.

Maison de Esclaves

Maison de Esclaves

With African Fish Eagles perched upon everything, swooping down to pick a fish from right in front of us, and waking us up in the morn with their cry, I loved the place.

African Fish Eagle

African Fish Eagle

The Inhumanity of Slavery Monument

The Inhumanity of Slavery Monument

We decided to stay for four nights as the Mali and Gambia visas had to be applied for. My kilter now mended were turned to Dakar for the onward journey to Palmarin and then on to The Gambia.


St. Louis

The trip down from Nouakchott was expected to be more of the same; Desert. And for the most part it was. Insidiously the scrubland gave way to Acacia, then more and more grass but less and less sand. Then within a few minutes the landscape changed from parched and desolate to positively vibrant with greenery. Giant palms, acacias, savana, grassland and wetlands. The faces changed; darker, more friendly and far more chilled out. All of a sudden I really felt like Africa and not the mixed up North Africa. I instantaneously felt more relaxed. Plus the prospect of a cold beer had me licking my sunburnt lips in anticipation!

We found a hotel marked in the manual (lonley planet), checked in, gulped down a flag beer and pondered the days ahead looking out over the Senegal river. St. Louis has a wonderful laid back feel with colonial architecture gone to rack and ruin, sticky heat and cold beer. I’m already in love with Senegal – even if I’m here buta day!

Tomorrow we hit the Hotel Diamarek. Directly on the beach, with log cabins, azur blue seas, cold beer and (hopefuly) good seafood. I can’t wait. When I get a shot of it and St. Louis, I’ll post it to make you lot jealous!!!

Our "hut" on thebeach!

Our "hut" on the beach!

ps Obviously I’m enjoying the cold beer part as it’s been non existent in Mauritania and little or none in Western Sahara!!!