We used Arch Tours in December to do their 4 in 1 and Roots tour. Worth noting that if you book more than 1 trip you get a discount, and you pay half up front and the other half when you return (but only if you are smiling!) You can also pay in sterling if you want.
I like that the company offers a "no hassle" rule and will give you a leaflet to take away or are happy to answer questions if you want. They don't try to push you into anything but are helpful if you have questions.
I was impressed with the guides' professionalism. You feel that you are in safe hands, especially in the madness of Serekunda market! On both tours the guides were great fun, really knowledgeable and encouraged questions from everyone.
I was impressed as a day or two after one of our tours we walked past the office and were greeted by name by the guides from the previous day (Lamin and Mohammed Ali). I felt that they made a real effort to talk to everyone on the trip and were open when asked questions about themselves.
The 4 in 1 tour includes food and drink all day (beer, water and soft drinks.) The doughnuts at Lamin Lodge are lovely, but watch out for the cheeky monkeys! On this tour you see a lot and are in an open top Jeep and I would heartily recommend this tour. A tip would be to take wet wipes as you do get really dusty and will appreciate them when you get to Paradise Beach.
The Roots tour is more relaxing than the 4 in 1 and a great experience. The boat we travelled on was captained by Rachel, who is really friendly and her crew really looked after everyone the whole day. Lunch is provided and was varied and plentiful. We also had sandwiches and tea/coffee in the morning on the boat.
We had some great experiences with Arch Tours and cannot recommend them highly enough. They have a good ratio of guides to customers and work hard at making everyone feel involved in the day as well as looking out for the customers. From Abdul's "No smile, no payment" policy to the fun nature and professionalism of the guides, you are in for a good time if you book any excursions. The fact that they are way cheaper than Thomas Cook is an added extra.
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