Sir Winston Churchill dubbed Uganda “The Pearl of Africa” for many reasons and one of them are the endless natural wonders evidenced when he visited in 1907. This remarkable destination to awe is geographically placed in the Eastern region of the African continent.
It shares borders with different countries including Kenya in the East, Democratic Republic of Congo in the West, and South Sudan in the north, Rwanda in the South west and Tanzania in the South.
From diverse Wildlife, picturesque spots, lively cities, tranquil shorelines, welcoming locals, culture and enthralling activities offered, Uganda is a destination you should consider for your first Safari vacation to the African continent.
A number of travelers are dropping in for an unrivalled Wildlife Safari holiday, if you wish to join the trail, there are some things listed below you should know before you board to this unique destination.
What’s required on entry; Uganda is amongst the easily accessed countries in Africa, but one will not freely enter without meeting the necessary requirements.
There are three documents required on entry; a valid passport, tourist Visa and valid yellow fever vaccination card. The passport must be valid for six months to its expiration date.
Where to land on arrival; All visitors to Uganda from different parts of the World land at Entebbe, the only international airport in the country. The airport is about 47km from Kampala, the capital city of Uganda.
Is it possible to get the Visa on arrival; Yes, you can get the Visa on arrival though sometimes it is time wastage. You may find a huge crowd at the Visa desk. Though its better when you book in advance.
How to get from the airport; You can get from the airport using a taxi but it is more comfortable, secure and cost friendly when you arrange the transportation with a local tour operator. Airport Taxis are more expensive and not available all the time.
Best time to visit Uganda; You can visit Uganda all year round but basing on activities you are interested in such as Gorilla trekking, Chimpanzee tracking and Golden monkey tracking, it is more satisfying when you plan for the trip in the dry season (June to July & December to February).
In the wet season, you are most likely to miss out on some activities, as the roads tend to be muddy and slippery.
Best option of exploring Uganda; You can explore Uganda with either a customized, tailor-made safari or with a Self-drive. For customized and tailor-made safaris, all logistics including lodge and permit bookings, transportation, airport transfers and guide services are arranged by a local tour operator. For Self-drive, you have to hire a well-conditioned Car and drive yourself to the different places of interest.
The climate; Uganda has a much more favorable climate as compared to the rest of East African countries. It experiences two seasons including dry and wet season. During the dry season there is low rainfall and high temperatures. For wet season, high rainfall drops occur with low temperature rates.
Where to go. Uganda has a lot of picturesque spots to visit on your Safari. These include National Parks, game reserves and sanctuaries located in different regions of the country.
There are 10 National Parks; Bwindi forest, Mgahinga forest, Lake Mburo, Semliki, Kibale, Mountain Rwenzori, Mountain Elgon, Murchison, Queen Elizabeth and Kidepo Valley National Park.
What to see; There are lots to see while on a Uganda safari. Some of these things include; Wildlife, Gorillas, Cultural sites, forests, lakes, Rivers and historical sites.
How secure is Uganda; Uganda is more secure when compared to other countries in the Eastern part of Africa. Tourism Police is scattered in different regions of the country to provide security to all travelers.
Which mode of payment; While in Uganda, you can pay by cash or card. There are also several online platforms you can use to make a payments.
Currencies used in Uganda; Uganda’s currency is shillings but other international currencies like dollar, Euro and Pounds are also accepted. Forex bureaus are available in different towns, you can also exchange foreign to local currency.
Mode of transportation; While in major cities like Kampala, you can take a taxi or Boda Boda to travel around the city though they are not secure. It is recommended arrange a city tour and other transportation around with a local tour operator. This is more comfortable and secure.
Food served in Uganda; Restaurants in Uganda serve both local continental dishes. Enjoy local Ugandan dishes.
Language used; Uganda consists of over fifty tribes and each tribe with its own language. English is the national official language and widely used in all parts of Uganda.
How are the locals; Ugandans are actually ranked to be the most welcoming in Africa. They are There are helpful and vey hospitable and offer the top most safaris.