Uganda National Parks
TRAVEL TIPS FOR UGANDA
During the colonial era, Uganda was given the name the “Pearl of Africa Gifted by nature” by Sir Winston Churchill however at the moment it has got another name “Uganda gifted by nature”. Because of its stunning beauty which ranges from the local people with their different rich cultures to the magnificent mountain scenes and slightly rising and falling hills filled with green lush rainforests and vegetation in the south, central and western regions, and flat savannah plains in the north and north eastern regions. The country is has different types of wildlife due to the great conservation plans of the government and Non Governmental Organizations. Uganda has turned out to be a hot tourist destination endowed with attractions ;like mountaineering, mountain gorilla tracking, bird watching, chimpanzee trekking, primate watching, rafting, kayaking, , cultural tourism, bungee jumping, sport fishing, game drives to mention but a few. Because Uganda is a country with people who care about others, AA SAFARIS AND TOURS has the following Uganda’s travel tips to offer.
MEANS OF ACCESSING UGANDA.
Entebbe airport is the aerodrome for Uganda and a number of world class airlines operate on it. For example BA (British Airways), SN Brussels, Ethiopian Airlines, South African Airways, Emirates, Egypt Air, Air Tanzania, Kenya Airways, Air Uganda offering flights to and fro.
You may reach Uganda by road in case your flight ends in the neighboring countries of Kenya, Tanzania, and Rwanda which are on the other hand very interesting tourist destinations
When you reach the Airport
The Uganda’s Customs and immigration members are very friendly, polite and helpful. For those who need a visa, you can acquire it right at Entebbe International Airport or at any border crossing. Forex bureaus for currency exchange and ATM facilities are present at the airport. There are also a number of shops and restaurants for those who would like something urgently at the airport. In case you send in your requisition early enough, a good number of the hotels be it midrange will organize for airport pickups, even the tour operator organizing your safari or tour.
Uganda is in general a safe country. It is necessary for every one travelling to Uganda to have a certificate of yellow fever vaccination. Every person visiting Uganda should take anti-malaria drugs as prevention against this prevalent disease. It is also suitable to drink bottled which are readily obtainable in any of the numerous supermarkets, restaurants and shops other r than tap water. The AIDS scourge which afflicted the nation has significantly dropped because of the strong AIDS awareness campaign by the government and NGOs but one is required to take precaution.
The unit of currency is the Uganda shilling. The majority of tours operators wish that tourist pay in the 2000s US dollars, but Euros and Pound Sterling are also greatly accepted. Hard currency cash may be exchanged for the local currency at any of the banks and forex bureaus in all the towns found in Uganda, even if one will find hard time in using travelers’ cheques outside of Kampala. You can draw the Ugandan Shilling against Visa and other major credit cards at selected bank ATMs in Kampala, Entebbe International Airport, plus in other larger towns outside of the Capital.
Uganda takes English as her official language and the greatest numbers of Ugandans are generally fluent English speakers. Even if the country has more than 36 different tribes who speak other dialects, Luganda serves as something of a lingua franca. The country has also some people who speak French because of the strong influence from Congo and Rwanda, not forgetting the influence of Alliance Francias, a French language teaching school in the city.
Time for visiting Uganda
Uganda is endowed with fantastic climate through out the year and there is no specific time for visiting it. The temperatures range from 21 degrees Celsius to 30 degrees Celsius in the day and about 16-20 degrees Celsius in the night. The hottest months are from December-January yet the wettest and coolest months are March-May plus the mid-September to November. Activities like mountain hikes, gorilla tour which include tracking passed steep slopes with dense foliage and undergrowth and other forest walks are more taxing during the rain, which usually increases over mid-September to November and March to May.
During the day, temperatures are usually warm basing on which part of the country one is at, so carry lots of light clothing. In the Evening temperatures are cooler at mostly high altitudes, so it is better to carry a couple of light sweaters too. For the tourist interested in mountaineering or climb on the mountains, you are required to pack accordingly because of the alpine temperatures. You would do well to bring solid walking shoes and strong clothing, a sun hat, sunglasses, waterproof jackets which are perfect for forest walks, game drives and national park tours.
Items to carry
Guests to country need to have valid passports, and visa requirements should be checked with the customs and immigrations at the Airport when you reach previous to your travel. Binoculars and tour guides will give you a chance you reap the most of game reserves and national parks tours and game drives. Zoom lens for Photographers who are interested to photographing the wonderful wildlife and scenery (70-300 or similar). Printing film and developing is facilities are accessible in Kampala. Toiletries and other important commodities can be bought at any of the various supermarkets and shopping centers in the cities.
Tourists who prefer to do self-drive have to note that driving in Uganda is done on the left side. There are a number of car hire service providers within the city with beautiful rates even if the fuel prices are some how high, due to the fact that Uganda is a landlocked country. For visitors that have never moved on African roads, you are asked to organize for a vehicle with a driver other than opting for a self-drive.
Tipping is not a compulsory practiced that is often done at local hotels, bars and restaurants, but it is usually appreciated. The amount is based on the tourists’ judgment, even if the tour guides and drivers must always be tipped.
In case you want more information, we advise you to read: Footprint guides, the Bradt Travel, Lonely Planet, and Spectrum Guides. There are more guides on the internet that can give more information.