Uganda is a wonderful country, offering the best of Africa in a manageable size. Known as the ‘pearl of Africa’, Uganda may be compact but it has a good infrastructure and is rich in culture and history with an impressive and diverse wildlife population. It can be expensive but it is home to the highest concentration of primates in the world, including chimpanzees and the mountain gorilla, and any trip to Uganda should always include a gorilla tour where you can see these majestic beasts in their natural habitat. Uganda tours are not just about the primates however – with rolling green hills and impressive mountains, incredible freshwater lakes and thrilling white water rafting experiences, not to mention the culturally fascinating cities, Uganda has something for everyone. In addition, the people of Uganda are some of the friendliest you will ever come across in your travels, welcoming visitors with open arms.
Tourism is increasing in the country and Uganda tours are some of the most rewarding in Africa. It is a country of extremes, boasting Africa’s tallest mountains, largest lake and longest river, in addition of course to the big game that draws visitors from all over the world. It is here that the jungles of West Africa meet the savannahs of the East, resulting in diverse landscapes and micro climates from the mountains to the rainforests. As well as the huge number of primates that live here, there are also elephants, lions, leopards, giraffe, hippo, buffalo and antelope, and therefore most Uganda tour packages will be based around a Uganda safari.
Entebbe is a great place to start a Uganda tour. Often said to be a more relaxed gateway option than Kampala, it is situated on the northern shore of beautiful Lake Victoria which is the largest lake in Africa covering nearly 69,000 km. In Entebbe you can visit the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre, originally established as an animal orphanage but now running as a wildlife education centre where animals rescued from captivity can live in a safe but still authentic location. A hugely popular part of any Uganda tour package is the eco-friendly Chimpanzee Sanctuary at Ngamba Island which was established in 1998 to look after 48 orphaned chimps rescued by the Uganda Wildlife Authority and does sterling work in looking after the primates, most of whom will never be able to return to the wild for their own safety.
One of the most magical places in Uganda is Lake Bunyonyi, which means “place of many little birds”. With steep sides and surrounded by mountains, it is both relaxed and stimulating, offering an immense variety of birdlife in a stunning setting. Of course, no Uganda safari is complete without a gorilla tour. Extremely endangered, there are only around 650 mountain gorillas left in the world and protecting the species is therefore vital. Revenue gathered from permits is used to fund schemes to protect them, so visiting them not only gives you an experience to remember forever, it also helps with their conservation. Trips to Uganda often encompass an exploration of the beautiful Queen Elizabeth National Park, the most visited national park in Uganda and home to 95 species of mammal including elephants, leopards, lion, hippo, hyena and buffalo, along with over 500 species of bird and the legendary black-maned tree climbing lion – a real treat for any wildlife enthusiast.
As if the spectacular scenery, diverse wildlife and impressive primate populations are not enough, Uganda also offers a host of activities for thrill seekers and adrenalin junkies. Jinja is famous for being the source of the River Nile but has also become the thrillseeker capital of East Africa. The lush landcapes and cascading rivers offer a variety of activities from white water rafting to quad biking and bungee jumping for those braver travellers! To discuss any or all of the above, please contact us here at Encounters Travel – we would love to talk you through our small group Uganda tours that allow you to immerse yourself in all the wonders the country has to offer, while letting someone else deal with the logistics.