Serekunda Climate & Monthly Temperature Overview – Gambia, The

Temperature and Precipitation

Serekunda’s weather is characterized by a pronounced wet season and a dry season. The wet season spans from June to October, with heavy rainfall and average temperatures ranging from 27°C to 31°C. The precipitation during this period can be intense, with frequent thunderstorms and occasional flooding. In contrast, the dry season lasts from November to May and is characterized by hot and dry conditions. Temperatures during this period can reach up to 36°C, with minimal rainfall.

Humidity and Wind

Serekunda experiences high humidity throughout the year, especially during the wet season when it can reach up to 85%. The dry season brings slightly lower humidity levels, typically ranging from 60% to 70%. The wind patterns in Serekunda are influenced by the seasonal changes. During the wet season, the prevailing winds are from the southwest, bringing moisture from the Atlantic Ocean. During the dry season, the winds shift to a more northerly direction, which is drier and dust-laden. The average wind speed in Serekunda is moderate, ranging from 10 to 15 kilometers per hour.

Average Temperature in Serekunda, Gambia, The

Serekunda, the largest city in The Gambia, experiences a tropical climate with consistently high temperatures throughout the year. The average annual temperature in Serekunda is around 27 degrees Celsius (81 degrees Fahrenheit). The warmest months are April through October, with average temperatures reaching up to 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit). The coolest months are November through March, with average temperatures dropping to around 24 degrees Celsius (75 degrees Fahrenheit).

The high temperatures in Serekunda are attributed to its proximity to the equator and the influence of the warm Atlantic Ocean. The city experiences little variation in temperature throughout the year, ensuring a consistently warm and humid climate. The lack of significant rainfall during the dry season (November to May) further contributes to the high temperatures, as there is less cloud cover to shade the city from the sun’s rays.

Clouds in Serekunda, Gambia

Serekunda is the capital of Gambia, located on the Atlantic coast. The city experiences a tropical climate, with two distinct seasons: the dry season (October to May) and the rainy season (June to September). During the dry season, the skies are typically clear, with few clouds. However, during the rainy season, clouds are more common, as the area is affected by the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ).

The ITCZ is a band of low pressure that encircles the globe near the equator. It is characterized by heavy rainfall and frequent thunderstorms. As the ITCZ moves northward during the summer months, it brings increased cloudiness and precipitation to Serekunda. The city typically receives an average of 1,200 millimeters of rain per year, with most of it falling during the rainy season.

Seasonal Precipitation Patterns

Serekunda, Gambia experiences distinct seasonal precipitation patterns driven by the West African Monsoon. The rainy season typically spans from June to October, with the heaviest rainfall occurring in July and August. During these months, the city receives an average of 200-300 mm of precipitation per month. The dry season, on the other hand, runs from November to May, and is characterized by minimal rainfall. During this period, monthly precipitation averages below 50 mm, and some months may receive virtually no rainfall.

Variability and Extremes

Annual precipitation in Serekunda varies considerably from year to year, influenced by factors such as shifts in monsoon patterns and atmospheric conditions. Droughts and floods can occur, with severe consequences for the local population. For instance, in 2020, the city experienced an unusually dry season, resulting in water shortages and crop failures. Conversely, heavy rainfall events can lead to flooding, particularly in low-lying areas. In 2022, a major storm caused significant flooding in Serekunda, damaging infrastructure and displacing residents. These extreme events highlight the vulnerability of the city to climate variability and the importance of implementing adaptation measures.

Rainfall Patterns in Serekunda, Gambia

Serekunda, The Gambia’s largest city, experiences a tropical monsoon climate with distinct wet and dry seasons. During the wet season, which spans from June to October, heavy rainfall is common, with monthly precipitation often exceeding 200 millimeters. July and August are typically the wettest months, with rainfall averaging around 300 millimeters each. The abundant rainfall during this period supports lush vegetation and contributes to the city’s green and verdant appearance.

During the dry season, which lasts from November to May, rainfall is significantly reduced. Monthly precipitation typically falls below 50 millimeters, and some months experience no rainfall at all. The lack of moisture during this period leads to a decline in vegetation, and the landscape becomes more arid. The Harmattan, a dry and dusty wind from the Sahara, often blows during the dry season, further contributing to the dry conditions. However, occasional thunderstorms may occur during the dry season, providing brief respite from the aridity.

Snowfall in Serekunda, Gambia: An Unprecedented Occurrence

Snowfall in Serekunda, The Gambia, is an extremely rare and extraordinary meteorological event. This West African nation, located close to the equator, experiences a tropical climate characterized by year-round warmth and humidity. Temperatures rarely fall below 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees Fahrenheit), making snowfall a virtual impossibility. However, in January 2022, Serekunda, the country’s largest city, witnessed an unprecedented snowfall, leaving residents and visitors alike in awe and bewilderment.

The snowfall in Serekunda was caused by a combination of unusual atmospheric conditions. A cold front from the Atlantic Ocean interacted with a warm, moist air mass from the Sahara Desert, resulting in a convective event that produced heavy snowfall. The snow fell for approximately 30 minutes, covering the ground with a thin layer of white powder. Temperatures plummeted during the snowfall, reaching a low of 15 degrees Celsius (59 degrees Fahrenheit), which is significantly colder than the city’s average January temperature.

Climate of Serekunda, The Gambia

Serekunda, located in The Gambia, experiences a tropical wet and dry climate. The city is characterized by two distinct seasons: a wet season and a dry season. The wet season spans from June to October, bringing heavy rainfall to the region. During this period, humidity levels rise significantly, and temperatures remain consistently high. The dry season, from November to May, is characterized by less rainfall and lower humidity. Temperatures during the dry season are generally more moderate, with a range of 20-30 degrees Celsius.

Tourism in Serekunda, The Gambia

Serekunda is a popular tourist destination in The Gambia. The city offers a range of attractions, including historical sites, cultural landmarks, and beautiful beaches. One of the most popular attractions is the Serekunda Market, which is one of the largest markets in West Africa. Visitors can find a wide variety of goods at the market, including traditional crafts, textiles, and food. Serekunda is also home to the National Museum of The Gambia, which houses a collection of artifacts that tell the story of the country’s history. The city’s beaches are another popular draw for tourists, offering opportunities for swimming, sunbathing, and fishing.

Astronomy and Observation

Serekunda, a city in Gambia, offers a fascinating observation site for celestial phenomena. The moon, an enchanting celestial body, can be observed with clarity from Serekunda. Due to its proximity to the equator, the city experiences minimal light pollution, providing an unobstructed view of the night sky. During periods of full moon, the luminescent orb casts an ethereal glow over the city, illuminating the landscape with a soft radiance.

Phases and Phenomena

As the moon traverses its orbit around Earth, it presents different phases as seen from Serekunda. The new moon, when the moon is not visible, marks the start of the lunar cycle. Gradually, the moon waxes, revealing more of its illuminated face. During first quarter, half of the moon is visible, followed by the waxing gibbous phase. The full moon, når the entire face is illuminated, captivates observers with its mesmerizing splendor. As the moon wanes, it transitions from waning gibbous to third quarter and finally to waning crescent, completing the lunar cycle. Additionally, Serekunda affords opportunities to witness lunar eclipses, when Earth’s shadow falls on the moon, and lunar transits, when the moon passes in front of distant stars.

Sources of Humidity in Serekunda, Gambia

Serekunda, the largest city in The Gambia, experiences high humidity levels due to a combination of factors. Its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean brings in moisture-laden winds, particularly during the rainy season from June to October. The city’s low elevation also contributes to humidity levels, as warm air tends to rise and cool in higher altitudes, resulting in condensation and increased humidity at ground level. Furthermore, Serekunda’s dense urban environment, with buildings and infrastructure trapping heat and releasing moisture, further elevates humidity levels.

Impact of Humidity on Daily Life

High humidity in Serekunda has a significant impact on daily life for its residents. It can lead to discomfort and heat exhaustion, making it difficult to engage in outdoor activities or physical exertion during certain hours of the day. The high moisture content in the air can also affect respiratory health, particularly for individuals with pre-existing conditions such as asthma or allergies. Additionally, humidity can cause damage to buildings, electronics, and other materials due to corrosion and mold growth. Despite these challenges, the humidity in Serekunda also contributes to the city’s lush vegetation and vibrant coastal ecosystems.

Wind Patterns in Serekunda, Gambia

Serekunda, a coastal city in the West African nation of Gambia, experiences a tropical savanna climate with distinct wet and dry seasons. During the wet season (June to October), the prevailing winds are southwesterly, bringing moisture from the Atlantic Ocean and leading to frequent rainfall. The dry season (November to May) is characterized by northeasterly winds, commonly known as the Harmattan, originating from the dry and dusty Sahara Desert. These winds are often strong and can create a hazy atmosphere, reducing visibility.

Influence of Wind on Local Climate

The wind patterns in Serekunda significantly influence the local climate. During the wet season, the southwesterly winds bring abundant rainfall, resulting in lush vegetation and a humid environment. The dry season, on the other hand, is characterized by dry and dusty air due to the Harmattan winds. The lack of rainfall and increased evaporation during this period can lead to water scarcity and challenges for agriculture. The wind also plays a role in coastal erosion, particularly during the wet season when strong winds and waves can impact beaches and infrastructure.

Best Time to Visit Serekunda, Gambia

Serekunda, the largest city in Gambia, offers a vibrant and diverse experience for visitors. The best time to visit Serekunda is during the dry season, which runs from November to April. During this time, the weather is pleasant, with average temperatures ranging from 25°C to 30°C. The humidity is relatively low, making it comfortable to explore the city on foot or by car. The skies are mostly clear, allowing visitors to enjoy the beautiful beaches and stunning sunsets.

Considerations for Visiting Serekunda

While the dry season is generally the best time to visit Serekunda, there are a few other factors to consider when planning your trip. During the months of May and October, the weather can be unpredictable, with occasional showers and thunderstorms. This can make it more challenging to enjoy outdoor activities. Additionally, the city can be crowded during the peak tourist season, which runs from December to February. If you prefer a quieter experience, it is best to visit during the shoulder months of November, April, or May.

Potential of Solar Energy in Serekunda

Serekunda, the largest city in Gambia, possesses ample potential for solar energy utilization. The city experiences an average of 6-8 hours of sunlight daily, with a strong global horizontal irradiance of approximately 5.5 kWh/m²/day. This favorable climate presents an opportunity for cost-effective solar energy generation, contributing to the city’s energy independence and environmental sustainability.

Current and Future Developments

Several initiatives are underway to harness solar energy in Serekunda. The government’s Solar PV Rooftop Program encourages the installation of solar panels on rooftops, reducing reliance on grid-supplied electricity. The program has been successful, with numerous businesses and households embracing solar rooftops. Additionally, the utility company, National Water and Electricity Company (NAWEC), has embarked on a solar power generation project in Banjul and intends to expand into Serekunda. This project, coupled with rooftop installations, is expected to significantly increase the city’s solar energy capacity and contribute to the country’s renewable energy targets.

Serekunda’s Coastal Plain

Serekunda sprawls along a low-lying coastal plain facing the Atlantic Ocean. The city’s terrain is gently sloping, with elevations gradually rising from the shoreline to a maximum of around 30 meters above sea level in the eastern outskirts. The coastal fringe is characterized by a series of sandy beaches, some of which are backed by dunes. These dunes provide natural protection against coastal erosion and storm surges.

Interior Landforms

The interior of Serekunda is largely flat, with few prominent landforms. However, there are a few small hills scattered throughout the city, including Bijilo Hill, which offers panoramic views of the city and the surrounding coastal area. The city is also bisected by several creeks and waterways, which contribute to its drainage and provide important habitats for wildlife. These include Kotu Creek, which forms the eastern boundary of the city, and Tanji River, which flows through the western suburbs.

Banjul International Airport (BJL)

Banjul International Airport (BJL) is the primary airport serving Serekunda, Gambia. It is located approximately 25 kilometers west of Serekunda and is the main gateway to the country for both domestic and international flights. The airport has a single runway that is 3,600 meters long and is capable of handling a wide range of aircraft, including wide-body jets. BJL is the hub for Gambia International Airlines, the national carrier of Gambia, and offers regular flights to destinations within Africa, Europe, and the Middle East.

Other Nearby Airports

There are several other airports located within a reasonable distance of Serekunda. These airports include:

  • Ziguinchor International Airport (ZIG) in Senegal, approximately 100 kilometers north of Serekunda.
  • Cap Skirring Airport (CSK) in Senegal, approximately 150 kilometers south of Serekunda.
  • Oussouye Airport (OYZ) in Senegal, approximately 170 kilometers south of Serekunda.

However, these airports offer limited flight options and may require connecting flights to reach Serekunda. Banjul International Airport remains the most convenient option for air travel to and from Serekunda.

Serekunda, Gambia: The Largest City

Serekunda is the largest city in the Gambia, located south of the capital city Banjul. It has a population of over 362,000, accounting for approximately a quarter of the country’s population. Serekunda serves as the commercial and industrial hub of the Gambia, with various markets, shopping centers, and manufacturing industries. The city is well-connected by roads and public transportation to other parts of the country and neighboring Senegal.

History and Culture

Serekunda’s history is closely intertwined with the transatlantic slave trade. The area was once a meeting point for Europeans who traded with African merchants for slaves. The city’s name is derived from the Mandinka word “Serekunda,” meaning “the end of the forest.” After the abolition of the slave trade, Serekunda gradually developed into a commercial center, attracting traders from various ethnic groups. Today, Serekunda embodies a vibrant blend of traditional Gambian culture and contemporary influences. The city is known for its lively markets, traditional crafts, and music, showcasing the diverse cultural heritage of the region.