‘Little known’ tourism treasures in eastern Uganda
Well, lets start it this way.
“NIGHT FISHING on Lake Victoria. For generations, people on the shores of Lake Victoria in East Africa have been using kerosene lamps for night fishing according to Wisions. The fishermen begin work at 6pm in the evening and finish at 6am in the morning braving the long cold nights.
“Kidepo Valley National Park has been voted the third best tourist attraction on the African continent by CNN Travel 2013.”
“Uganda was declared Africa’s preferred Birding Destination in 2013 by Africa Bird Club swelling with 1050 bird species- more than three-quarters of all the birds ever recorded in sub-Saharan Africa.”
“World War II grave yard in Jinja”. The Daily Monitor in a recent article describes the cemetery as a “Well kept “piece” of England in Uganda. The Monitor further states; The place was meant for Black Africans, who had served with the King’s African Rifles (KAR) and died in the course of defending the interests of Great Britain during the two World Wars. It, however, currently holds, along with the KAR members, the remains of Europeans. The majority of the remains here are of those who died in the Second World War.
Wait, then there’s the Mountain Gorilla’s. We are blessed with having the highest number of these rare creatures in the world.
The above are among the first web search results that loaded on my screen on click searching, “top tourist destinations in Uganda.”
“The Kintu Shrine”…Kintu is a famous ancestral story taught in Ugandan schools. The family exists.” Kintu is a mythological figure who appears in a legend of the Baganda of Uganda as a creation myth . According to this legend, Kintu was the first person on earth , the father of all people.
When you talk about Safaris, Kenya comes to the fore. Kilimanjaro is synonymous with Tanzania; The Pyramids is easily identified with Egypt and many more.
For the case of Uganda, it’s not just about Gorillas and Bird watching, Kidepo, this country is littered with an abundance of cultural riches.
“Acting Busoga Kyabazinga (KING) Isabalangira Daudi Kaunhe Wakooli posing for a picture at the balcony of the Kingdom’s palace in Jinja. The palace is currently closed due to ongoing hereditary wrangles.”
There is a faint ray of hope though. The UNDP has embarked on creating a tourism catalogue of Uganda with greater emphasis laid on ‘little known’ tourism spots. In this post are some of those destinations i visited in eastern Uganda.“The site where the first Vice President of Uganda, William Wilberforce Kadhumbula Nadiope III was buried in Kamuli.”
“Khauka cave in Wanale Ridge is spectacular. Historically used for shelter and livestock.”
“A vintage point in Buyende from where River Nile meets Lake Kyoga.” Its at this point that you can clearly see the border points of five districts of Nakasongola, Kaberamaido, Lira, Buyende and Palisa.”
“A great great great great grandchild of Semei Kakungulu at home in Mbale. Kakungulu was a warrior and statesman of the powerful Baganda tribe. During the 1880s he was converted to Christianity by a Protestant missionary who taught him how to read the Bible in Swahili. Because he commanded many warriors, because of his connections to the Bugandan court and because he was a Protestant, the British gave Kakungulu their support”
Wanale Ridge.One of the many spectacular Mt. Elgon ranges from where you can have a 360 view of the neighbouring lands-plus Kenya.
Sisiyi Falls: The New Vision called it; The “Magnificent Spectacle” What more can i say? The New vision further adds…”It stands out from a distance as you take the highway from Mbale to the districts of Sironko, Bulambuli, Kapchorwa and Moroto. The apparent white patch running down the side of the rock outshines a luscious green backdrop covering this section of the Elgon mountains.”
The East African Civil Aviation Academy or Soroti Flying School: Millions of Ugandans to date are still ignorant of the institutions’ existence. The East African Civil Aviation Academy was established in 1971 to train pilots and aircraft Engineers for the East African market. With technical assistance from the UNDP-ICAO training programmes were appraised, equipment provided and the academy was linked to other institutions outside East Africa. Soroti Flying School is also credited for training Rwanda’s first female pilot.
NYERO ROCK PAINTINGS: A guide explains the origin of the Nyero rock paintings. According to UNESCO, The Nyero Rockpaintings site is a three tiered rockshelters with primitive paintings on their inner surfaces. Archaeologically the site is of a Later Iron Age period. The makers of the paintings cannot be traced but the ingenuity in which they were painted demonstrates a high degree of appreciation of their aesthetic values.
A boy rides a bicycle next to the Nyero Rocks in Kumi
PHOTO COPYRIGHT: UNDP UGANDA and EDWARD ECHWALU.