Kachikally Crocodile Pool

Kachikally Crocodile Pool

Kachikally Crocodile Pool is located in Bakau, not Banjul. The pool is considered a sacred site by the locals and is believed to possess healing powers. It is home to dozens of Nile crocodiles that are fed and cared for by the caretakers of the pool. Visitors can take guided tours to learn more about the cultural significance of the pool, observe the crocodiles, and even touch or hold a baby crocodile. The pool also serves as a research center for crocodile conservation efforts. While visiting the pool, visitors are advised to respect the cultural practices and beliefs of the locals and to be cautious around the crocodiles.

The Sacred Crocodile Pool at Bakau is believed to have been in existence for over a hundred years. According to local legends, the crocodiles in the pool are sacred and are under the protection of the local people. Crocodiles are believed to possess supernatural powers and are considered sacred animals. The Bakau crocodile pool was also used for religious rituals in the past, and it remains an important religious site for many Gambians today.

The belief in the powers of fertility associated with the Sacred Crocodile Pool is a traditional Gambian belief that has been passed down through generations. Women who are experiencing difficulties with fertility often visit the pool to bathe in its waters and seek blessings from the crocodiles. The belief is that crocodiles have the power to grant fertility and help women conceive. This belief is not unique to Gambia, as similar beliefs exist in other cultures around the world. However, it is an important part of Gambian culture and traditions.

The number of crocodiles in the Katchikally Crocodile Pool is not known exactly, as it varies over time. However, there are typically dozens of crocodiles in the pool, ranging in size from a few feet to over ten feet in length.

The crocodile pool is generally safe for visitors as the crocodiles are considered sacred and have been accustomed to human presence over time. However, it is always recommended to exercise caution and follow the instructions of the local guides to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. Visitors are also advised to avoid any sudden movements or actions that could startle the crocodiles.

Visitors to the Sacred Crocodile Pool are advised to follow these safety tips:

  1. Follow the instructions given by the guide or staff on site.
  2. Keep a safe distance from the crocodiles and do not attempt to touch them.
  3. Do not make loud noises or sudden movements as this can agitate the crocodiles.
  4. Do not wear shiny objects or dangling jewelry that may attract crocodiles.
  5. Do not attempt to feed the crocodiles or throw objects at them.
  6. Do not enter the water without the permission and guidance of the guide or staff on site.
  7. Children should be supervised at all times and should not be allowed to wander off on their own.
  8. Visitors should be aware that they are visiting a natural habitat and should respect the animals and their environment.

It is generally safe to take photos of the crocodiles in the Sacred Crocodile Pool, but it’s important to follow some safety guidelines. Visitors should always listen to the instructions of the tour guide or the locals and stay at a safe distance from the crocodiles. It’s important not to provoke the crocodiles or try to touch them as they are still wild animals and can be dangerous. As for taking photos, visitors should avoid using flash photography as it can startle the crocodiles and cause them to react unpredictably.

While the Sacred Crocodile Pool is a popular tourist attraction, it is important to remember that it is a sacred site for locals, particularly for women seeking fertility blessings. Therefore, it is advised to be respectful of the site and the customs associated with it.

While taking photos is allowed, it is important to always ask for permission first and to avoid taking photos of individuals without their consent. It is also important to be cautious and keep a safe distance from the crocodiles. As for taking selfies, it is best to avoid taking selfies with the crocodiles and instead focus on capturing the natural beauty of the site.

The entry fee to Katchikally Crocodile Pool is around 150 Gambian dalasis (approximately 3 USD) per person. However, fees are subject to change, so it’s best to confirm the current price before visiting.