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Overlanding through Uganda will inevitably bring you into contact with places other than the country’s national parks and reserves. It’s a small country by African standards and you’ll be stopping off in towns and villages to restock, get information on local conditions and so on. Listed below are the destinations you are most likely to visit on a Uganda Overland adventure.
Home to Uganda’s international airport and gateway to Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary, the relaxed town of Entebbe lies on the shores of Lake Victoria 43km from Kampala.
Entebbe serves as the jump-on point for either a slow Sese canoe or a faster motorised boat to Ngamba, which actually lies across the equator a short distance from Entebbe. Jump out and swim over the equator if you dare!
The capital of Uganda, Kampala, is one of East Africa’s most laid-back and friendly cities. is situated 40 kms north of Uganda’s international airport at Entebbe on Lake Victoria, and is spread haphazardly over seven hills.
Its name comes from a Kiganda expression – kasozi k’empala – meaning the hill of antelopes (impala) – not that there are any impala in those there hills today.It You will undoubtedly pass through it overland, en route to other Ugandan destinations and national parks.
Jinja & Bujagali Falls
Jinja has become Uganda’s adventure capital in a similar vein to Victoria Falls. Lying on the banks of Lake Victoria, this overland-friendly town is best known as the location of the source of the River Nile.
Most people move on to Bujugali Falls, 8kms upstream. This is a spectacular scenic spot with 1 kilometre of thundering rapids, forested islands in the Nile and an abundance of bird life. There are a couple of lively campsites overlooking the rapids and a number of adventure activities and community projects to keep you occupied.
Kabale is a small rural town in south-west Uganda that you will undoubtedly pass through en route to gorilla trekking at Bwindi or Mgahinga national parks. Kabale and the nearby picturesque Lake Bunyonyi are popular overnight stops, and there’s no shortage of accommodation.
Kabale is also where the Kampala road from the north joins the road to the borders with both Rwanda and the D.R.C. With its dusty streets lined with goods sheds, precariously overloaded haulage trucks, fuel stations and roadside mechanics, it has a distinct frontier-town feel.
Lying close to gorilla-trekking destinations Bwindi and Mgahinga, island-studded Lake Bunyonyi is undisputedly one of the most beautiful areas of Uganda.
Lake Bunyonyi is around 6 500 feet above sea level and is the deepest crater lake in the country, having started life a few million years ago as a volcano. It’s also one of the few lakes in Uganda that is bilharzia-free – though watch out for leeches if you decide to go swimming.