Embark on the Ninki Nanka Musical Trail, a captivating 7-day journey that invites you to discover The Gambia through the enchanting realm of music. This unique expedition combines awe-inspiring sights, deep dives into history, rich traditions, vibrant culture, and soul-stirring heritage. Feel the rhythmic beats of traditional drums and the warmth of Gambian soil beneath your feet as you dance, and share a piece of your heart with the welcoming people you’ll meet along the way.

Picture yourself singing melodies, swaying to infectious rhythms, and immersing yourself in the melodies of Gambian instruments. Listen intently as griots weave tales of centuries past and join in spirited dances with diverse ethnic groups. Experience the thrill of jam sessions with local musicians and Gambian artists, exchanging knowledge and creating unforgettable memories.

For those to whom music is more than a passion—it’s a way of life that ignites joy, inspires exploration, and fosters a deep connection with diverse cultures—the Ninki Nanka Musical Trail is a journey like no other. Let the melodies guide your footsteps, and the harmonies of The Gambia’s musical tapestry become the soundtrack of your unforgettable adventure.

We Encourage You To:

Bring your instrument and join musicians in The Gambia in their performance, collect donations for the solar lights project, bring football props as a donation to the football academy, bring instruments for children in school, and collect empty plastic bottles during your trip.


From Kombo to Janjanbureh


7 days and 8 nights Musical Trail + 1 or 2 weeks of volunteering

Available Dates


Number of vacancies


Type of Travel

Responsible travel + volunteering


Various accommodations along the way.


Various timings: pick up from the airport
2 pm: Lunch
4 pm: Orientation and Beach (optional*)
7 pm: Dinner
8 pm: Kora storytelling with famous griot

As you settle into your accommodation, our orientation walk ensures that you’re well-equipped for your Gambian adventure. From practicalities like currency exchange and SIM cards to exploring local markets and relaxing at the beach, Day 1 sets the stage for an immersive experience.

In the evening, delve into the soulful melodies of the Kora, a quintessential Gambian instrument, and unravel the cultural tapestry woven by griots. Gain insights into Gambian history and traditions, enriched by storytelling that transcends time.

Giving back to the community: Your journey goes beyond exploration; it’s about sharing the beauty of The Gambia. Capture moments and share them on social media, showcasing The Gambia’s allure and supporting its tourism, a vital pillar of the country’s economy.

Accommodation: Family House in Kerr Serigne (shared room with bathroom)
*Please note that accommodation and meals before and after the Musical Trail can be arranged for additional costs.


8 am: Breakfast
9.30 am: Nursery school visit with musical workshop
11 am: Gambian Family Compound and Traditional Cooking
5 pm: Presentation of Skill Centre
7 pm: Dinner
8 pm: African Dance Workshop

Accommodation: Franco Inn, Tanji

Begin your morning with a visit to the local nursery school, a charitable institution providing free schooling to over 100 children through international sponsorships. Here, you’ll prepare and conduct a lively musical workshop for the students, fostering creativity and joy through music.

Next, your journey takes you to Tanji Fish Market, a bustling hub of activity where you’ll source fresh ingredients for a traditional Gambian lunch.

Continue to a family compound, where you’ll immerse yourself in traditional Gambian life. Learn firsthand how to prepare lunch and engage in daily chores typical of a compound without electricity or running water. Experience the unique sounds of music created through the use of cooking bowls, a delightful accompaniment to your shared meal from communal bowls with the family.

As the day unfolds, visit a skill centre dedicated to supporting local artisans and their projects, gaining insights into the vibrant craftsmanship of The Gambia.

After a delicious dinner filled with authentic Gambian flavours, partake in an African dancing workshop. Led by skilled instructors and accompanied by rhythmic drumbeats, you’ll learn new dance steps and immerse yourself in the lively spirit of African dance.

Giving back to the community: Your interactions throughout the day extend beyond experiences—they create meaningful impact. You will contribute by sharing your musical expertise with the nursery school children and through the musical trail providing support to the local family through economic empowerment and contributing to the livelihood of Gambian musical artists. Each interaction is a step towards fostering positive change and strengthening community bonds.

You can support more by:

  • Sponsoring a Child: Consider supporting a child in the nursery school by covering their yearly school fees or providing monthly allowances for their basic needs. Your sponsorship can make a significant difference in their education and well-being.
  • Generous Tips: Show appreciation to everyone involved in creating the musical trail experience by giving them extra tips. This includes musicians, instructors, guides, and anyone who contributes to making your journey memorable.

These additional gestures of support not only enhance the impact of your visit but also contribute directly to the community’s welfare and livelihoods, fostering a cycle of positive change and mutual benefit.


8 am: Breakfast
9 am to 1 pm: Sunrise kayaking
2 pm: Lunch
3 pm: Green Sea Turtle Protection Project
5 pm to 7 pm: Djembe drumming Workshop
7 pm: Dinner

Accommodation: Dalaba Lodge

Begin your day with a nourishing breakfast before embarking on a sunrise kayaking adventure along Tanji Creek. Immerse yourself in the serene natural habitat, marvelling at the colourful array of birds and gaining insights into the mangrove ecosystem while mastering the art of kayaking.

After a delightful lunch, delve into the realm of conservation at the Green Sea Turtle Protection Project. Learn about the vital role of sea turtles and their conservation efforts as you observe these majestic creatures in their head start tank.

Later in the afternoon, immerse yourself in the rhythmic beats of Djembe drumming. Discover the diverse drumbeats and their cultural significance in a lively workshop.

As the day winds down, enjoy a delectable dinner before attending a captivating live music performance by a local musical group, adding a melodious finale to your day of exploration.

Giving back to the community: During day 2, you will give back to the community in meaningful ways. By participating in the sunrise kayaking adventure along Tanji Creek, you not only support local eco-tourism initiatives but also contribute to the preservation of the serene natural habitat and the protection of diverse bird species. Your engagement in the Green Sea Turtle Protection Project not only raises awareness about the importance of sea turtle conservation but also directly supports the efforts to safeguard these majestic creatures and their habitats. Additionally, your participation in the Djembe drumming workshop fosters cultural exchange and appreciation, supporting local musicians and preserving traditional arts. By attending the live music performance by a local musical group, you celebrate and promote Gambian culture while also providing support and recognition to talented local artists. Overall, this trip encourages responsible tourism practices and creates opportunities for travellers to actively contribute to community development and environmental conservation efforts in The Gambia.

You can support more by:

  • Support Local Conservation Efforts: Consider making a donation or contributing directly to the Green Sea Turtle Protection Project to aid in their conservation initiatives.
  • Environmental Responsibility: Practice responsible tourism by minimizing waste and respecting natural habitats in The Gambia.
  • Extra Tips: Show appreciation to everyone involved in creating the musical trail experience by giving them extra tips.

7 am: Breakfast
12 pm: Reforest the Future Project with Soap Making Workshop
1 pm: Women’s Initiative Project
2 pm: Wassu Stone Circles
3 pm: Lunch
4 pm: Boat trip to Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Project Site
7 pm: Dinner

Accommodation: Kairoh Garden Lodge

Embark on a scenic journey through picturesque landscapes with several short stops en route to the North Bank of The River Gambia.

Upon arriving at Njau, immerse yourself in the Women’s Initiative Project, where traditional soap-making techniques come to life. Engage in the artistry and ingenuity of local women as they share their craft. Learn about the dance of the Wolof people and participate in a welcoming ceremony.

Next, delve into conservation efforts at the Reforest the Future Tree Nursery Project. Discover the vital role of sustainable forestry in preserving The Gambia’s natural heritage. Donate empty bottles to be used as building material.

Explore the ancient mysteries of the Wassu Stone Circles, a UNESCO World Heritage Site steeped in history and legend.

After a satisfying lunch, embark on a boat trip along the River Gambia National Park, where thrilling encounters with hippos, exotic birds, and the Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Project await.

Conclude the day with a delightful dinner at Kairoh Garden Lodge, nestled in a calm environment next to the majestic River Gambia. Unwind and enjoy a jamming session with regional artists, adding a musical touch to your memorable day.

Giving back to the community: It’s important to recognize the meaningful contributions you’ve made to the local community. Your participation in the Reforest the Future Project directly supports sustainable forestry initiatives, preserving the natural heritage of The Gambia for future generations. Engaging with the Women’s Initiative Project empowers women through economic opportunities. By visiting cultural sites like the Wassu Stone Circles and supporting conservation efforts at the Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Project, you contribute to the preservation of cultural heritage and wildlife conservation in The Gambia. Your presence and engagement not only enrich your own journey but also leave a positive impact on the communities and environments you explore.

You can support more by:

  • Volunteering with Reforest the Future Gambia: Extend your impact by volunteering with the Reforest the Future Gambia initiative. Your hands-on participation in tree planting and conservation activities can significantly contribute to preserving The Gambia’s natural environment.
  • Giving Tips Along the Way: Show appreciation for the experiences and services provided by locals, guides, and artisans by giving tips along the way. Your generosity not only supports individuals directly but also acknowledges their efforts in making your journey memorable.

8 am: Breakfast
10 am: Fulani Community Visit
2 pm: Lunch
4 pm: Janjanbureh City Tour
7 pm: Dinner
9 pm: Cultural Evening

Begin your day with a hearty breakfast before immersing yourself in the soulful embrace of Jamali Village. Engage in hands-on activities like groundnut pudding making and witness the artistry of local woodcarvers. Learn about the Fulani riti, a traditional Fula instrument, and participate in the cultural dance of the Fulani People. Dance with the hosts and learn new dance steps.

Cross the river to Janjanbureh Island, where you’ll check into the lodge and enjoy lunch.

Step back in time with a tour of Janjanbureh, where echoes of the past resonate in every corner. Visit the Kankurang centre to learn about the various masking traditions of the ethnic groups in The Gambia, marvel at the Baobab Sacred site, and gain insights into local craftsmanship at the silversmith’s workshop.

As dusk descends, immerse yourself in the rhythms of The Gambia with a Cultural Night Performance by the enigmatic Mysterious Jambanjelly. Allow the music and dance to weave tales of tradition and modernity, creating memories that last a lifetime.

Giving back to the community: Your journey has had a significant impact on the local community. Your visit to the Fulani Community supported cultural preservation and exchange, while your exploration of Janjanbureh Island contributed to the preservation of local heritage. Attending the Cultural Evening and supporting local artists further enriched the cultural vitality of The Gambia. Your engagement and appreciation for Gambian traditions have made a positive difference in the community’s cultural landscape.

You can support more by:

  • Purchasing Locally Made Crafts or Products: Support the Community by purchasing locally-made crafts or products in Jamali and Janjanbureh. This directly benefits local artisans and additionally contributes to the local economy.
  • Giving Tips: Show appreciation for the experiences and services provided by locals, guides, and artisans by giving tips. Your generosity not only supports individuals directly but also acknowledges their efforts in making your journey memorable.

8 am: Breakfast
10 am: Rice Fields and Solar Light Project
2 pm: Lunch
3 pm: Jola Community Visit and Bougarabou
7 pm: Dinner

Accommodation: Family House in Kerr Serigne (shared room with bathroom)

Start your day with a delicious breakfast before heading to Kerewan Samba Sira, where sustainable practices and community initiatives take centre stage. Explore the impact of solar light installations (hand out sponsored solar lights via the musical trail) and experience the vibrancy of rice fields.

Savour a traditional lunch at Ndemban, relishing the flavours that reflect local culinary traditions and the richness of the land.

Embark on a village visit, where you’ll meet the village chief and learn about traditional salt production. Explore oyster collection sites and gain insights into the fading art of bougarabou, a traditional Jola griot drumming style. Try your hand at playing four drums simultaneously, immersing yourself in the rhythmic traditions of the Jola people.

As the day concludes, bid farewell to the countryside and journey back to the lively coastal scene.

Giving back to the community: your engagement in the Solar Light Project has contributed to lighting up rural communities, promoting safety, and enhancing livelihoods. Additionally, your exploration of Bougarabou traditions supports heritage preservation, celebrating and preserving the rich cultural heritage of The Gambia. It’s worth noting that every person who contributed to the musical trail received instant financial benefit from it by being paid for their services on the spot, directly supporting local individuals and businesses.

You can support more by:

  • Additional Donation for the Solar Lights: Extend your impact by making an additional donation towards the Solar Light Project. Your contribution can help provide more solar lights to rural communities, improving safety and access to sustainable energy.
  • Giving Tips: Show appreciation for the local guides, artisans, and community members by giving tips. Your generosity not only supports individuals directly but also acknowledges their efforts in making your experience memorable and contributes to the local economy.

8 am: Breakfast
9 am: Serekunda Market
2 pm: Lunch
5 pm: Zimba show
7 pm: Dinner

Accommodation: Family House in Kerr Serigne (shared room with bathroom)
*Please note that accommodation and meals before and after the Musical Trail can be arranged for additional costs.

After a leisurely breakfast and a bit of rest, we’ll journey to the country’s largest market, offering a vibrant tapestry of colours, scents, and tastes that embody The Gambia. Follow your guide through the craft market, fish market, black market, vegetable market, local shops, second-hand shops, and more, indulging in the diverse offerings and honing your bargaining skills, a customary practice in market shopping. Don’t forget to pick up souvenirs to commemorate your journey.

Following lunch, unwind on the beach until the afternoon Zimba show, a captivating display of the Wolof Tribe’s traditional masking tradition. Prepare to be amazed by the Zimbas’ performances, showcasing the rich cultural heritage of The Gambia.

As our musical trail concludes, the next day marks the beginning of your volunteer work in your selected field, allowing you to continue making a positive impact in the local community.

Giving back to the community: You have directly supported the local community in multiple ways. By purchasing souvenirs and goods from local vendors at the market, you’ve contributed to the local economy and supported artisans. Attending the Zimba show has also provided financial support to the Zimbas, as this traditional performance is their means of income. Your responsible travel approach and cultural appreciation further strengthen positive connections and mutual understanding between visitors and the local community.