About Uganda

Uganda is the Pearl of Africa, a country with fantastic natural scenery and a rich mosaic of tribes and cultures.
Travelling through Uganda you will be captivated by its beauty, overwhelmed by the friendliness of its people and intrigued by all that Uganda has to offer.

Location

Uganda lies astride the Equator in Eastern Africa between longitudes 29%° East and 35° East and between latitudes 4 ½° North and ½° South, at an average altitude of 1,100 meters above sea- level.

The total area is 236,580 sq. Km. We are bordered by the Republic of South Sudan to the North, the Republic of Kenya to the East, the Democratic Republic of Congo to the West, and the United Republic of Tanzania and the Republic of Rwanda to the South.

Overview

Ecologically, Uganda is where the East African Savannah meets the West African jungle.

Weather and Climate

Uganda has the gift of holiday weather all year around! There are two reasons: one is its location on the Equator and the other is its elevation. Both of these give Uganda the gift of perfect weather.

The majority of the country has a tropical climate which varies according to altitude. The hottest months are from December to February when the temperature reaches 29 degrees Celsius while rainy seasons are from April to May and October to November.

The wettest month is traditionally April (although global warming is making this less predictable). Even during the two rainy seasons, the sun is out most of the time and rain often occurs with a most delightful thunderstorm. When it rains, it pours - but soon the sun's rays have dried up the earth once again.

Temperatures in some parts of the country can be quite cool owing to the country’s high altitude, despite its position on the Equator. The mountain areas become much cooler and the tops of Mount Elgon and Rwenzori Mountains are often covered in snow. Other parts of the country are much warmer.

Population

Uganda has the world’s youngest population with a median age of 15. The country’s estimated population in 2010 was 33 million.

People and Culture

Uganda has a very strong cultural heritage. It is composed of many regions, each with different cultures. The recent restoration of kingdoms has boosted cultural sites.

These include Buganda, Busoga, Bunyoro and Toro. Ugandans hail from a diversity of rich cultures and life styles and are remarkably hospitable. Each tribe has its own traditional dance; the Banyankole perform their Kitaguriro dance, the Banyoro have their Runyege, Acholi have the Bwila and Otole dances.

The Alur have the Agwal dance and the Bagisu have the Imbalu dance during the biennial circumcision ceremonies.

Culture and traditions are also expressed through a wide range of arts and crafts made from wood, papyrus reeds and local materials.

These include blacksmith implements, beaded jewelry, wood carvings and batiks. They can be found all over the city in village bazaars, gift shops, hotels, urban galleries, the National Theatre and Baganda Road craft markets.

While on your Uganda travel or safari, consider taking a cultural tour. Community tourism involves local people and your tourist dollars can go a long way in helping lift them from poverty. Just contact us for ideas of where to go!

Security and Safety

Uganda is increasingly developing to one of the top safari holiday destinations in the world. With the improvement of infrastructure and political stability, the tourism industry is soaring to greater heights. The country is very safe both in cities and remote areas.

However some common sense precautions should be taken. Do not flaunt your wealth by wearing expensive jewelry or carrying large wads of money openly. Avoid changing money in the streets. Likewise avoid overcrowded streets. Leave your valuables with the hotel for safe keeping.

You will come across misleading information on various websites regarding as to how insecure Uganda is for travel. They are however usually outdated and do not reflect the present state of Uganda.

Health

Travelers are advised to contact the Uganda representative in their countries or regions to determine whether vaccination is necessary before entry into Uganda.

A yellow fever certificate is required if you have been transiting infected areas. Malaria is prevalent in Uganda and it is advisable to take anti-malarial and to utilise mosquito repellents. Malaria Prophylaxis is recommended. It is not recommended to drink tap water.

Boil it or buy bottled water from the shops. The equatorial sun can be deceptive even on overcast days. Sun glasses, sun creams and hats are recommended to avoid sunburns.
Security and Safety

Uganda is increasingly developing to one of the top safari holiday destinations in the world. With the improvement of infrastructure and political stability, the tourism industry is soaring to greater heights. The country is very safe both in cities and remote areas.

However some common sense precautions should be taken. Do not flaunt your wealth by wearing expensive jewelry or carrying large wads of money openly. Avoid changing money in the streets. Likewise avoid overcrowded streets. Leave your valuables with the hotel for safe keeping.

You will come across misleading information on various websites regarding as to how insecure Uganda is for travel. They are however usually outdated and do not reflect the present state of Uganda.

 Banks and Money

The Banking Sector in Uganda is growing stronger every year with local and foreign owned commercial banks and forex bureaus in Uganda. The Central Bank is Bank of Uganda.

Working hours for most of the Banks are 8:30 to 4:00 pm every Monday to Friday while on Saturday they operate half day. Most Forex bureaus are open on weekends and some run for 24 hrs.

The Uganda shilling is the legal currency in Uganda. There are no restrictions on money transfer in and out of the country.

The Uganda shilling is divided into denominations of 1000, 2000, 5000, 10,000, 20,000 and 50,000 for paper notes, while coins are in the denominations of 50, 100, 200, 500 for coins.

Food

Uganda offers a range of dishes ranging from continental, Italian, Chinese, Ugandan, Indian and more. The finest restaurants and hotels in Uganda are located in Kampala, the capital city, although 4 and 5 star lodges in the National Parks boast excellent cuisine.

No visit to Uganda is complete without trying local food. High in carbohydrates, you will not go hungry! Staples include: Matooke (steamed green banana), Posho (maize flour porridge), sweet and Irish potatoes, chapati, cassava, yam, rice, goat stew, bean or beef stew, fried chicken and groundnut sauce.