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    Fly to Entebbe, Uganda

    Uganda, the land of lakes.

    Lake Victoria, Lake Albert, and Lake Kyoga are only a few of the beautiful lakes that make Uganda’s scenery truly breathtaking.

    Uganda, Savannah

    The pearl of Africa.

    Savannah plains, mountain ranges, lakes, and more. Uganda’s diverse landscape will truly amaze you.

    Uganda wildlife

    Amazing wildlife.

    Uganda’s parks are teeming with wildlife. Zebras, antelopes, lions, and gorillas are but a few of the amazing animals you can observe.

    Flights to Entebbe, Uganda

    For a relatively small African country, Uganda packs quite a punch when it comes to nature and wildlife. Uganda is home to Africa’s tallest mountain range (the Rwenzori), its largest lake (Lake Victoria), and the world’s longest river (the Nile). With its misty mountains, lush forests, sprawling savannah plains, and unique wildlife, including the rare mountain gorilla, it’s easy to understand why Winston Churchill dubbed Uganda “The Pearl of Africa.”

    Entebbe is one of Uganda’s major cities. It’s located on a peninsula of Lake Victoria about 37 km from Kampala, Uganda’s capital city. Entebbe has a more relaxing atmosphere than Kampala, while still being close to the international airport, which makes it the ideal starting point for discovering the country.

    So what are you waiting for? Book your flight to Entebbe today and discover Uganda with Brussels Airlines.


    What to do in and around Entebbe?

    1. Gorilla tracking: Uganda is one of the few countries where you can still spot the endangered mountain gorilla in its natural habitat. You will need a permit for gorilla trekking, which costs between USD 450 and USD 600, but this truly unique and surreal travel experience is more than worth the price. You can go gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, near the Virunga mountains
    2. Chimpanzee tracking: Mountain gorillas aren’t the only primates you can observe in Uganda. There are several locations where you can view chimpanzees in their natural habitat, but you’ll have the best chance in the Kibale Forest. Keep your eyes peeled for other monkeys such as the black & white colobus, the red-tailed monkey, and the grey-cheeked mangabey while you’re there. Other good locations are the Queen Elizabeth National Park and the chimpanzee sanctuary on Ngamba Island.
    3. Even more wildlife to see: Uganda has much more to see than primates. Elephants, zebras, giraffes, lions and even white rhinos can be found in the Pearl of Africa. Head to one of Uganda’s many national parks, managed by the Ugandan Wildlife Authority, to see your favourites; Queen Elizabeth National Park, Lake Mburo National Park, Kidepo Valley National Park, Murchison Falls National Park, and the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary are but a few of the most important parks for wildlife viewing.
    4. Rafting or kayaking on the Nile: Watersport enthusiasts will love Uganda! Whether you’re an experienced rafter or kayaker, or a complete novice, the Nile will welcome you. There are wild and challenging rapids for the thrill seekers and gentle flows that are perfect for scenic waterside experiences.
    5. Scale Uganda’s tallest mountains: The snow-capped Rwenzori, also known as the legendary mountains of the moon, are Africa’s tallest mountain range and a great challenge for hikers and climbers. You can also climb Mount Elgon, an extinct volcano with the world’s largest mountain caldera.
    6. Unwind on the Ssese Islands of Lake Victoria: This archipelago of 84 islands (only 43 of which are inhabited) are located in the northwest of Lake Victoria. They’re a popular weekend getaway for the locals living in Kampala and Entebbe. You’ll find many accommodating resorts and guesthouses there, offering you the best paradise island experience in the world. For more information, visit visituganda.com/ssese-islands.

    Practical information and travel advice for your trip to Entebbe, Uganda

    • Brussels Airlines flights arrive and depart from Entebbe International Airport, which is 5 km from the city of Entebbe and 44 km from Kampala. A taxi ride from Entebbe to Kampala costs USD 30-40.
    • Current local time in Entebbe:  
    • Currency: The currency in Uganda is the Ugandan shilling, though US dollars are accepted by large hotels and some tourist activity organisers. Visa cards are accepted by all ATMs; other credit cards are rarely accepted.
    • Telephone calls and Wi-Fi: The dialling code for Uganda is +256.
    • Electric sockets: Sockets have a standard voltage of 240 V and are type G (British plug). If you use European or American plugs, you’ll need an adaptor.
    • Travel information: A visa is required for Uganda, which can be obtained on arrival (USD 50). If you plan on visiting Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda in the same trip, you can also obtain the joint East Africa visa (USD 100). For more information, visit www.iatatravelcentre.com. A foreign driving permit is valid for 3 months in Uganda. Drive on the left, not the right, in Uganda.
    • Vaccination: A yellow fever vaccination is mandatory in Uganda, but if you’re not vaccinated, you can have this done at Entebbe Airport. The following vaccinations are also recommended: Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, Tetanus, and Typhoid. It is also advisable to protect yourself from mosquitos, as malaria is present in Uganda. For more health information, go to www.iatatravelcentre.com.

    What to do and what not to do in Uganda

    • Dress modestly and don’t show public affection.
    • Members of the LGBTI community should take care when travelling to Uganda. More info.
    • Avoid swimming in lakes as there is a risk of bilharzia.
    • Don’t wash your hands in front of a Ugandan before your meal. It’s seen as rude and might make them feel like they’re unclean.
    • The official language in Uganda is English and most Ugandans prefer to speak English.

    Cultural events in Entebbe and Uganda

    • Nyege Nyege Festival (September): Uganda’s answer to Tomorrowland! From Arab techno to Afro house, from Swahili trap to Zouk bass, this music festival is where you’ll find the best African beats.
    • The Nile River Festival – Kayak the Nile: Africa’s largest and longest running annual white-water kayaking and paddleboard festival. This four-day event makes the most of some of the biggest rapids in the world and celebrates the Nile River and its surroundings in Uganda. Each year, the Nile River Festival attracts some of the best athletes worldwide.
    • Milege World Music Festival (November): This annual music festival takes place in the Botanical Gardens of Entebbe. It’s a celebration of world music, cultural dances, poetry and much more. The Repainting Uganda Project also exhibits and sells its art pieces during the festival.
    • Ndere Troupe cultural performance: Want to experience Ugandan culture? Then the lively traditional dances performed by the Ndere Troupe are an absolute must-see. Available each Wednesday, Friday and Sunday in the Ndere Cultural Centre in Kampala.

    When to travel to Entebbe, Uganda

    Uganda has a tropical climate. It is generally rainy, with two dry seasons (December – February and June – August). However, due to its large variety of landscapes, temperatures will vary depending on where you are.

    In general, temperatures range between 21°C – 25°C, except for in the mountains where it is cooler and the mountain tops are often covered with snow.

    The best time to come to Uganda is during the dry seasons, especially for wildlife viewing. Keep in mind that for primate viewing, the forests are always humid and rain is hard to avoid.

    What to eat in Entebbe, Uganda

    Ugandan cuisine is not to be missed. Meat or chicken stews are popular dishes and often served with rice, ugali (a stiff maize porridge), or matoke (plantain/banana mash). If you have a sweet tooth, try mandazi (a fried dough pastry). Fish dishes are abundant due to Uganda's many lakes and rivers. The beef, goat, and pork are all of excellent quality.

    Uganda, the Pearl of Africa: the unique safari experience

    Texts and pictures by Noëmi (@mixedpassportstories), who works in social media at Brussels Airlines. She has lived in Uganda for 10 years and is passionate about travel.

    Horse Riding

    Having lived in Uganda for more than 10 years, I’m always excited whenever I get to go back. After having checked my bags for the third time, to make sure I wouldn’t forget anything, I finally went to bed around midnight.

    After an excellent and comfortable flight with Brussels Airlines and a smooth immigration check, we headed to Kampala from Entebbe International airport a little after 8:00 p.m. The smell of wet soil and plants overwhelmed me: it felt like coming home again!

    Knowing we had to get up early the next day, we decided to turn in early so we could get as much sleep before our African Safari adventure started.

    Strolling through the savannah on horseback, becoming one with nature: Mihingo Lodge.

    Our first stop was Mihingo Lodge in Lake Mburo, one of Uganda’s many national parks. The great thing about this park is that it’s only a 3 hour drive from the capital, Kampala.

    Upon arrival at the reception, which is also the dining area, we were warmly welcomed with a cool towel and a refreshing homemade passion fruit juice. While our bags were taken to our rooms we enjoyed a delicious lunch overlooking the breathtaking nature. The staff was very kind and treated us as if we were family, truly making us feel at home.

    One of the main reasons why we were so excited to visit this lodge, were the many diverse activities offered to guests as well as non-guests. We, for instance, chose to explore the beautiful environment via a horseback-riding safari. Don’t worry: You don’t need to be an experienced horseback rider to be able to do this, the staff is well trained and the horses are chosen according to your riding experience. This activity truly makes you feel one with nature as you gallop through the savannah surrounded by giraffes, zebras, impalas, buffalos and many other animals.

    The luxurious tent we stayed in had a magnificent view on a small salt pond where we could spot animals at night and in the early morning, while having a cup of coffee.

    On our way out of Lake Mburo National Park we spotted giraffes, zebras, topis, warthogs and various types of birds. Because they hardly have any natural predators, they feel at ease and are by no means startled by our presence.

    Gorilla

    Still excited about the amazing nature of Lake Mburo and the abundant wildlife, we continue our journey to our next destination Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, situated in the South West at the Ugandan-Congolese border.

    In search of a Silverback: Gorilla Lodge Ruhija

    The road to Gorilla Lodge Ruhija in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is long and winding but of exceptional beauty. Driving down mountainsides dotted with tea and banana plantations and passing through several Batwa villages, which were the original inhabitants of Bwindi forest, we arrived at second destination. As the lodge is situated at 2400m above sea level, we could definitely feel the difference in temperature.

    Waking up at a quarter to seven and after having a quick but hearty breakfast, we drove to the main briefing area where the park rangers explained us the do’s and don’ts of gorilla tracking in Bwindi Forest, which is home to 400 gorillas.

    Next, we started our climb in search of the famous mountain gorillas, accompanied by several rangers and armed guards. We quickly understood why this place was called Bwindi (which means darkness) Impenetrable Forest. The hillsides were misty and very densely covered with high trees and thick vegetation. The rangers had to slash their way through the thick bushes buzzing with insects. After about an hour, they suddenly stopped and warned us to be quiet and vigilant; we were approaching the gorillas! The tension was rising and we barely even dared to move when all of a sudden we heard a gorilla coming in our direction. We knew instantly we had finally reached the location where the gorilla family was staying. To accommodate us, the rangers cut down some branches so we could have a closer look at them. They were so close we could almost touch them. There they were: huge and powerful, impressive but at the same time very peaceful and friendly.

    Once they got used to our presence, it was as if they forgot all about us; the little ones started playing with each other and the Silver Back and his partner relaxed after eating a luscious meal. We were allowed to stay for one hour before heading back to the briefing site.

    Overwhelmed by this fantastic experience, we were granted a certificate stating that we successfully completed our gorilla tracking mission.

    Still deeply impressed by this adventure, we headed off to our next destination: Enjojo Lodge in Ishasha.

    Enjojo Lodge: where elephants meet tree-climbing lions!

    Enjojo Lodge is a relatively new lodge on the border of the Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park. Ishasha is mostly known for its unique tree-climbing lions and other mammals such as leopards, hyenas, hippos, buffalos and elephants. The name of the lodge wasn’t chosen randomly, as Enjojo means Elephant in Rukiha, referring to the regularly spotted elephants on Enjojo land.

    We arrived at Enjojo Lodge around 4pm, giving us enough time to freshen up in the outdoor shower adjacent to our bungalow before heading to the restaurant for a sundowner. After a delicious 3-course dinner we relaxed by the campfire listening to the sounds of nocturnal wildlife. I’m sure I heard a couple of hyenas laughing.

    The next day we signed up for a game drive with one of the local guides in the Enjojo Lodge open-roof safari Land Cruiser better known as “Da Monsta”. We chose to leave around noon instead of early in the morning, because the famous tree-climbing lions like to relax in their favourite fig tree after their morning hunt.

    Lodge

    After having seen an impressive lion couple dozing in the boughs of a shady fig tree, we drove to the Ishasha River on the border of Uganda and the D. R. Congo to go hippo spotting. Not only did we see hippos there, but we were also surprised by a family of baboons jumping from a tree into the river and swimming to the other side. Our safari adventure didn’t end there. Heading back to the lodge, we also had a close encounter with a herd of elephants crossing the road.

    Overall, we had a wonderful trip with great food, beautiful wildlife and lots of adventure. It’s a pity that we couldn’t stay longer and visit other lodges as each and every one of them offers a unique experience.

    For more information about Uganda and their beautiful lodges, you can have a look at following websites:

    www.ugandawildlife.org - www.visituganda.com - www.ugo.co.ug - www.safaris-in-uganda.com

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