We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Excellent value hotel” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Ngala Lodge

We can't find prices for this hotel
Our online travel partners don't provide prices for this hotel, but we can search other options in Fajara
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Ngala Lodge
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   64 Atlantic Boulevard | P.O. Box 4091, Fajara, Gambia   |  
Hotel website
  |  
  |  
  |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 4 hotels in Fajara
Norfolk UK
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Excellent value hotel”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

Really pleasantly surprised; my first package tour for 32 years so was not expecting too much as whole deal was pretty cheap.

Hotel clean, with pleasant and friendly staff; with a superb location and good beach arrangements. Decor a bit Harold Steptoe meets Salvidor Dali at a Homebase sale but what the hell.

Our room, No 4, in original building was spacious with a great view, however plumbing a bit dated and terrible "rubber" pillows.

Restaurant well above expectations, both Lunch and dinner good with inventive and largely fresh menues and excellent service; breakfast maybe a bit too basic. The wine list is simple and surprisingly good value though avoid the Pearly Bay unless you need a stain remover. The hotel is a bit overly "chummy" and excessively informative for my liking (e.g. suggesting when and how I might tip) but I suspect this is part of the package deal mentality; like having "reps".

The one really serious downside to this destination is that the only way to get there directly from the UK is by charter flight and, even in so called "premium", this is absolute hell, rubbish seats, rubbish food, rubbish service, ok for two hours to Nice but not for 6+ hours. I would pay a great deal more for a decent comfort flight.

I have every intention of returning to the Ngala as it is one of the best value hotels I have stayed in for years and I also want to see more of the Gambia but will definitely need to find a better way to get there

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ngala_Lodge, General Manager at Ngala Lodge, responded to this review, February 4, 2013
Thank you for your review. We are pleased that you enjoyed your stay and that you found us good value for money. As to your particular comments I shall see what I can do to improve the quality of the pillows before your next visit. (PS. Describing Harold Steptoe, in a positive light, to our Dutch owner was challenging!)
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

269 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
    222
    40
    4
    2
    1
See reviews for
7
219
4
12
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (93)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Woking, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

This was our first visit to Ngala Lodge and to The Gambia. The reviews of the lodge do not lie, it really is this good. We stayed in the Caylani suite (one of the suites in the Atlantic Wing) and it was superb. The setting of the hotel, the gardens and the beach and decking all fuse together to make this a wonderful and tranquil experience.
If you want laid back luxury, relaxing atmosphere and staff who satisfy your every need, sometimes even before you realise you need something then this is the place for you, and as every review says the food is truly wonderful with an excellent variety for every taste.
Habib (the local taxi driver available from the hotel) is the person to use for any trip you want to take. He will show you the real Gambia, ensure that your trips are hassle free and you will receive a much more personal experience than you do in group trips.
Our thanks to every single one of the staff for the care and attention. We really appreciated it.
Keith and Lyn

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ngala_Lodge, General Manager at Ngala Lodge, responded to this review, January 24, 2013
Thank you for your great review! We are pleased that you enjoyed your holiday and look forward to welcoming you back soon!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scotland
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 22, 2013 via mobile

This must be our 6th year here, and am just about to book for our 7th!
Thanks to everyone for looking after us so well, I love being so spoilt!
Jonathan and his team were brilliant as per normal, and the home made ice cream is delicious especially the cinnamon one.
I have been promised rum & raisin next year!!! The cheese soufflé was a masterpiece!
The restaurant staff are fantastic, and do everything in their power to make you have a great experience, their dancing skills are far better than the guests....
Rooms are spotless as per normal, any any glitches we had got sorted immediately!
This is a fantastic hotel to stay at if you want to feel cherished!
See you next year!

Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ngala_Lodge, General Manager at Ngala Lodge, responded to this review, January 23, 2013
Thank you for your great review! We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay with us and that you are already arranging your next visit! The ice cream is indeed delicious. (My favourites are Wonju and white chocolate!) It was fun to have you here and we look forward to welcoming you back!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
shanklin
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2013

Just got home today following another exceptional holiday. A big thank you to our Gambian "Family" for looking after us so well. The welcome we got as we arrived through the gates felt like coming home. Yes the location is fantastic and so tranquil, the gardens looked particularly beautiful this year, but the real beauty of this place are the people.

If you are lucky enough to stay here, please embrace the team, their only goal is to make your stay as happy as it can be, and I have seen personally how disappointed they are when they don't achieve it... by the way that is normally entirely down to the guest attitude and not any inability on their part.

Jonathan, as ususal serves up delicious food, a pure symbiosis of taste and visual delight. A big thank you to Baba, Ansu, Malik, Mariam, Haddie, Dembo, Ebraim and everyone else for making our holiday full of laughs... Baba the new dance king!! See who can take the crown next year.

Mo who runs the bar is now a very special friend and you should try his carparinia.

We are rebooking as I type this for next year and we may well see you again this year.

Going to The Gambia? then there is only one place to stay!!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ngala_Lodge, General Manager at Ngala Lodge, responded to this review, January 21, 2013
Thank you! Your kind words will be much appreciated by everyone here and I will ensure they get passed on. Next time perhaps we will get you on the dance floor?! Take care, enjoy THE island and we look forward to seeing you both again soon!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Winsford, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013 via mobile

Having traveled the world and stayed at some of the best hotels Ngala lodge suite 2 was the best room ever, with its large
balcony with views overlooking the gardens and Atlantic Ocean it was an ideal place for us to sip our evening drinks (bought
from the local supermarket as drinks can be rather expensive from the bar). Thanks to Jonathan and staff for the wonderful
evening meals and perfect breakfast . Special thanks to Jenny and staff for your concern and support for Maureen's slight
mishap on New Years Eve. Keep up the good work , we will return.

Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ngala_Lodge, General Manager at Ngala Lodge, responded to this review, January 16, 2013
Thank you for your kind words. We are very pleased that you enjoyed your stay and look forward to seeing you again. I hope your wife's knee is now fully healed!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
london
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2013

Just back from a lovely, relaxing week at Ngala Lodge. When looking for a winter break I wanted a destination that wasn't too far away. The 6 hr flight was perfect length. The sun wasn't out quite as much as we hoped, but it was always warm enough to sit on the decking or round the pool reading and relaxing.
We stayed in The Rolling Stones Suite, which had lovely views over the garden and out across the sea. When we go back ( which we are already planning ) we think we will opt for one of the cheaper rooms. The only criticism we have was that we were never able to get the jacuzzi up to a nice heat. My husband would put it on an hour or two before we wanted to use it ,but it never got above lukewarm. During the week we had the chance to see a Manor House room and one of the rooms near the pool and these were both huge.
We ate at the hotel 3 nights and had wonderful meals. Each evening the hotel put on some form of entertainment. It was lovely to sit outside, eating lovely food, drinking great cocktails and listening to live music. The band on our last night were really good and made a fantastic end to our holiday.
What really made the holiday special was the staff. The young waiters were super. They all love football and my husband really enjoyed the banter about different teams. Every member of staff was friendly and they always had a smile on their faces.
We ventured out a number of times using Habib as our driver and guide. We ate at The Butchers Shop, JoJos, and Calypso bar on the beach. These were all excellent. We also tried The Clay Oven and this was our only disappointing meal. We booked one trip with GE. We did the Circle of Life trip where you cross the river into Senegal. The ferry was a real experience!! I'm just glad we had guides with us to smooth the way! Part of this trip has the option to walk with the lion cubs. Being a great lover of big cats I couldn't pass on this. It was amazing. We walked with two 9 mnth old cubs. We were able to stroke them and pose for photos with them. This was the highlight of the holiday for me.
I have only been home 2 days and I am already trying to sort out when we can go back.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ngala_Lodge, General Manager at Ngala Lodge, responded to this review, January 16, 2013
Thank you for your review. We are pleased to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us. I am sorry to hear about the Jacuzzi, I didn't know there was a problem but I am rewriting the instructions/guidance and, hopefully, it won't happen again!. The weather was slightly cooler than expected when you were here but it is certainly warming up now - it's 33C with brilliant sunshine today! We look forward to welcoming you back!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cheltenham
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2013

We stayed at Ngala Lodge for our Honeymoon in December and we there for the Christmas period. We can't speak highly enough of this hotel, it was everything we were hoping for and more!
The room are welcoming, well equipped and spotless, real luxury (we stayed in two, rooms 10 and 9), the grounds are tranquil, with relaxing gardens, and the option of catching the rays either by the pool or the lovely and private decking on the beach.
The food is among the best we've encountered, being half board we ate the 10 night in a row and with the fresh and exiting menu and specials every night was a real treat, compliment of an outstanding chef!
However, the best thing about Ngala and one of the main reasons we can't wait to one day return is the people who work at the hotel, never have we met such attentive, welcoming and happy staff, they really do make you feel like you are staying among friends.

Ngala is rightly so highly recommended, and we are thrilled to have spent our honeymoon in such a wonderful place.

Josh and Verity x

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ngala_Lodge, General Manager at Ngala Lodge, responded to this review, January 11, 2013
Thank you so much for your wonderful review!! It was great having you to stay and we are delighted that you enjoyed it so much! We look forward to welcoming you back to Ngala Lodge!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Been to Ngala Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Ngala Lodge

Address: 64 Atlantic Boulevard | P.O. Box 4091, Fajara, Gambia
Phone Number:
Location: Gambia > Banjul Division > Fajara
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 hotels in Fajara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Ngala Lodge 4.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Established in 1995, Ngala Lodge - an intimate, child free, boutique hotel of just 18 unique, magnificent suites, set in tropical gardens, overlooking the Atlantic is the perfect place for a romantic break. Recently voted the 4th most romantic hotel in Africa by TripAdvisor Travelers Choice Awards, with arguably the best restaurant in the Gambia, our guests find it hard to leave.Ngala Lodge – where romance isn’t just for Valentines Day! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Ngala Hotel Fajara
Ngala Lodge Gambia/Fajara

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Ngala Lodge, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.

Bookmark for later
Save Saved
You added Ngala Lodge to your Saves list