Travel Tips: What You Need to Know About Uganda

Billed by the Lonely Planet as the African country that showcases the best of everything that Africa has to offer, Uganda offers much to the adventurous traveller.

Home to the source of the Nile, the highest mountain range in Africa and the majestic and very rare mountain gorillas, Uganda is certainly making its mark as a burgeoning tourism destination.

Winston Churchill referred to Uganda as the ‘Pearl of Africa’ during his visit in 1907. He recognised that the beautiful stunning scenery and the diverse wildlife made this country something special and he’s not wrong.

The national parks have few visitors than Kenya and Tanzania but offer just as much or more to see with the big 6 available in Murchison (except for rhinos). It’s more of a ‘fun’ destination also as it’s not so developed in terms of tourism and therefore is more unspoilt.

The people of this land-locked East African country offer heart-warming hospitality and will smile and say hello to practically everybody they meet. This is attributed to the country being made up of over 50 tribes which have made the people very tolerant and welcoming. Uganda has been carded as Africa’s friendliest country.

The official language of the country is English followed by Luganda which is also widely spoken in the country in addition to several other languages including Swahili.

When it comes to climate, you can’t go wrong. With a daily maximum of between 20°C and 27°C you’ll find that it not too hot to enjoy. Take note that in general the wet seasons run between the middle of September to November and also from March to May. However, in reality it could rain at any moment, most people check the weather forecast regularly. If you’re planning on trekking through mountains or tracking gorillas, you’ll find that it will be easier to do this outside of the rainy seasons.

The local currency is Uganda Shillings, and hotels will accept both Uganda Shilings, and United States Dollars, however you have to be careful and make sure you carry dollars that are above the year 2000, and preferably the newer ones above 2006 as most hotels will not accept old notes, and will levy a charge of 1%. This is a national Bank rule, and unfortunately, nothing can be done about it.

Kampala, the capital city is friendlier and safer than most cities in Africa and can be completely explored from the most central Hotel in Kampala.

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