Planning a safari to Congo? A hike at mountain Nyiragongo should not be missed. Mount Nyiragongo is an active stratovolcano with an elevation of 3,470m in the Virunga Mountains associated with the Albertine Rift. It’s located inside Virunga National park, in DR. Congo, about 20km north of the town of Goma and Lake Kivu and just west of the border with Rwanda. The main crater is about two kilometers wide and usually contains a lava lake. The crater has two distinct cooled Lava beeches within the crater walls, one at about 3,175m and a lower one at about 2,975m. Nyiragongo’s lava lake has at times been the most huge known lava lake in recent history. The depth of the lava lake varies considerably. The maximum elevation of the lava lake was also recorded at about 3,250m.
The volcano partly overlaps with two older volcanoes, Baratu and Shaheru, and is also surrounded by hundreds of small volcanic cinder cones from Flank eruptions. The lava emitted in eruptions at Nyiragongo is often unusually fluid. Nyiragongo‘s lavas are made of Melilite nephelinite which is an alkali-rich type of volcanic rock whose unusual chemical composition might be a factor in the unusual fluidity of the lavas there. Its lavas flows might race downhill at up to 100km/h. This is because of the extremely low silica content, but the Hawaiian volcanoes are broad, shallow sloped shield volcanoes in contrast to the steep-sided cone of Nyiragongo, and the Silica content is high enough to slow the flow to a walking pace.
About Nyiragongo Eruptions:
There have been about 34 eruptions that have taken place around the Nyiragongo volcanic mountains and these include; the 1977 eruption, which happened when the crater walls of the volcano fractured which led to the draining of the lava lake within an hour. This led to the flooding of the lava down on the edges of the volcano and on the higher slopes which resulted in killing over seventy (70) people in the nearby villages. This 1977 eruption that took place tried to raise awareness about the dangers of this volcano and it also created a fresh small volcano called murara which is a few kilometers away from Nyamuragira.
The second eruption took place in 2002 and this happened after several processes of Fumarolic and seismic activities which happened on this volcano. There was a fissure that was released in the southern flank and was about 13km spreading from about 2800m to 1550m of elevation hence reaching the town of Goma which is the capital along the northern shores of Lake Kivu. The lava greatly streamed towards the city of Goma and about 400000 people had been vacated from the city to the border of Rwanda in Gisenyi town. Lava run and covered Goma airport raising the threat that it might release larger amounts of Carbon-dioxide as well as Methane. This 2002 eruption killed over 147 people and the city of Goma collapsed due to the fact that the building was falling apart leaving over 120000 people without homes. Many more buildings in the city of Goma continued to fall due to the massive earthquake that continued to happen for close to 3 months following the eruptions.
There are also ongoing threats of mountain Nyiragongo including the Carbon dioxide that killed many children up to recent times. In places where gas was released from underground and dispersed in the wind had many deadly effects on the lives of the people. just recently on the 8th of March 2016, the Goma observatory discovered yet another vent that opened at the northeastern side of the crater; there is a possibility of this bringing yet another eruption in Goma town.
About the Nyiragongo Hike- 3 days
Transfer to Gisenyi; upon your arrival, you are picked from the airport by your travel guide and taken to Gisenyi Rwanda. On this day, you have a number of optional activities ranging from enjoying a Kigali city tour and visiting the Iby’ Iwacu cultural village, enjoying a boat ride on the Lake Kivu, or even visiting the Volcanoes National Park. You will also have your dinner and spend a night in Rwanda.
The second day is for hiking Nyiragongo Mountain; you will get up early in the morning and enjoy your early morning breakfast after which you are to head out. You will cross the border and then head to the Virunga National Park at the Kibati Ranger post where you will be briefed on the dos and don’ts of the hike. The Meals, sticks, and rain gear will be provided to you but you can as well carry your own. Porters will also be available for those who would like help in carrying their luggage. While at the top, get to enjoy the breathtaking view of the lava and the active volcano. You will then spend a night inside the mountain huts at the volcano top.
The last day is for descending the Nyiragongo Mountain; Have an early morning breakfast and thereafter descend from Volcanoes Mountain while enjoying the views of Lake Kivu, the Virunga National Park, and the city of Goma, later on, you will be transferred back to Kigali, Rwanda to either catch your departure flight or enjoy another day’s stay in the land of thousand hills.Read More
It’s so amazing that Kenya has got a number of wildlife parks which accommodates a vast wilderness and bird species. But before narrating my experience for our long Journey to Kenya from Uganda. Due to the recommendations I got from my colleagues who have ever traveled to these countries, we were recommended to use a local Uganda car rental based tour company known as 4×4 Car Hire Uganda under Moses’ management who is so much knowledgeable about the regions and he can advise and you fill you are already on trip before you start it.
This was/is the best company that could/can provide us with advisory services regarding tour activities and destinations in the whole of Africa, it’s the same company which hired us a Toyota land cruiser with nevertheless, we arranged a tour in Kenya where our major aim was to enjoy a holiday while in Africa. In Uganda, Moses advised us to first tour some of the Uganda’s source of the Nile and Mountain Elgon National Park which are located on the way towards Kenya in the eastern Uganda.
We sent Moses the all amount of money that he calculated for us that was covering the costs of all the utilities and even accommodations. On reaching Uganda, we were given the car we had rented after signing an agreement. Since we reached late, we slept at Hotel Africana and early in the morning next day, we drove ourselves to Jinja about 80km from Kampala, this took us around 1½ hours, we staged at Tulina Riverside Treat near the river, we had our lunch from here and after we went to the main point which is regarded as the major source of the Nile.
Stones were piled up here plus walkways which permitted us a chance to cross to the different points as we were peeping the Speke monument alongside the river, besides is the old bridge for both the cars a train, downwards is the Owen falls dam where electricity is generated, all this was done under maximum and strict guidance from the source operators.
In the evening, we went back to the hotel for an overnight and early in the morning we headed to Mbale which took around 4hours on the way, we rested at Mbale Travelers Inn, this had a restaurant, roof top bar and evening entertainment. Free private parking on site among others, early in the morning we went to the park’s headquarters for briefing and also take on our activity.
Here we did mountain biking and it started from Sipi trading centre to Chema hill in Kapchorwa town, this took us 2hour, but here we had to hire our own equipments from the service providers. Equipments included, bikes, and gloves, we hired these from Sipi River Lodge this was a guided one since we couldn’t easily locate the starting point and the ending point, this activity gave us an opportunity of viewing the various waterfalls around and up it was an elastic view of the Karamoja areas.
This was so fantastic since we did that brief but hectic exercise from this park, Bamasaba who are the main occupants of the area with their banana and coffee plantations on the steep slopes of the mountain were also seen here. After here we went back to the hotel to have fun and also to relax. The next day we woke up and transited to Kenya via Malaba border up to Kisumu near Lake Victoria. The reason as to why we went to Kisumu is that we had to go to Ndere Island National park, to access this park we were charged $… per person.
Since we reached late, we parked our vehicle at Scottish Tartan Hotel due to the fact that we wanted to access the park using water transport. We got a speed boat which used 45minutes to the park but it was so nice due to the cool weather conditions on water. This provided us an experiential view of the different bird species while sailing on water. We reached late and we couldn’t do anything more therefore we camped at Bao campsite. The next day we started off our activities, we watched hippopotamus, monitor lizard, Nile crocodile, several fish species and snakes especially pythons, puff adder, aardvark, butterflies and vipers are also evident. We also saw troops of baboons, monkeys, impalas, the rare sitatunga antelopes, water bucks, Zebras and warthogs.
This was so wonderful and it added on what we had observed from Uganda, since we had hired a speed boat, we didn’t sleep here instead we went back to the hotel where we had left our vehicle. We slept here and the next day we proceeded to Nairobi which is the capital city of Kenya and here we stayed at Kima Hotel from here we went to Mountain Kenya national park and here we wanted to do mountain climbing here we paid $208 USDs per person for a four days package since we were foreign non residents.
We accessed the park through Nanyuki-Isiolo road approximately 175km from Nairobi and we entered the park through Marania. Since we reached at midday, we camped, but we were advised to go with the following items due to the weather conditions this mountain receives, Drinking water, Walking boots, Warm clothing, training shoes, socks, sandals and gaiters. Binoculars, camera, hat, sunscreen, sunglasses. Fortunately Moses had already briefed us all this and we hired all the equipments from his company in Uganda.
The next day we climbed the mountain but it was a hard task, because of the rugged terrains and the sharp paths to the top of the mountain, this took us three days to reach the summit. What made us wonder was while on top one can think that he/she can touch the sky due to the tallness of this mountain being the second tallest mountain in Africa with 5199meters. On top we got opportunities of seeing the dense forest, tarns, glaciers and mineral springs. We also observed animals such as black fronted duiker, mole rat, bush bucks, water buck and Elands and leopards down in the caves.
Having enjoyed all this, we went back to Nairobi for a rest at Kima Hotel and the next day early in the morning, we drove our car to Uganda but due to the long distance, we reached Uganda at midnight and we went straight to Entebbe airport since our flight was scheduled at 8am in the morning, from here we handed over the car to the company representative in good conditions.Read More
4×4 Uganda car hire offers self-drive to clients to drive for themselves depending on your destinations, what to do and what you want see without any restriction unless the clients is crossing boarder. The client has to inform us earlier so that we can write to him/her an authorization letter that allows vehicle crossing. It’s very possible to do a city tour on a self –drive safari. Kampala is Uganda’s capital and largest city and it’s known as the busiest and most entertaining places for tourists and urban dwellers, few tourists to Uganda find it hard to leave minus going for a city tour. The city hosts very many entertaining places including night clubs, historic sites, luxury hotels, cultural sites, road site bars among many other interesting sites. All these places are interesting to visit; you can hang out with your friend in the ever raging night clubs if interested. You will be astonished by what you will find in the city. Below are some of the interesting places you will explore on a city tour with a self-drive car.
Kasubi Tombs: this is one of the heritage Buganda sites which are located just about 10kms from Kampala city. So if you want to learn more about the background and history of Buganda, this is one of the most easiest cultural site to visit when on a city tour, it’s a burial site for over four kings of Buganda. The kasubi Tombs was burnt in 2010 but this does not limit visitors from visiting the place, its reconstruction is almost through and reopening of the tombs might take place this year.
Kabaka’s Palace: you can also take a visit to the Buganda palace which is located a few kilometers from the capital city. Uganda is a home to over 50 tribal groups and it’s known as a cultural melting spot. The Buganda kingdom is the largest among many other tribes with a pleasant history and language used everywhere not only in Kampala but also in the whole country. Kampala is highly dominated by baganda tribe, so a visit to the kabaks’s palace will give you opportunity to learn more about the history and culture of the people Buganda.
Night-clubs: if you want to night club around the city, Uganda is a place to very many night clubs including Angenoir, Ambiance, comrades, Gavnor, Amnesia among many others. A visit to one of these disco clubs will give you a memorable experience on a city tour. You will see how Ugandans dance to the African beats and vibes. Enjoy with your friend, it’s always good to finalize your safari or day in the night club and have fun from there, you can meet new friends and just enjoy the night.
Christian churches: you can also visit the religious places once on a city tour, visit the Namirembe and Lubaga cathedrals biggest Anglican churches among the catholic and Anglicans. The Anglican and catholic are the largest religions in Uganda consisting over 70% of the total population. The care takers of the places will feed you with more informative information about how religion was brought in the country. The cathedrals are well built and designed by the Europeans in the late colonial era and still stand to this day. Visit these holy places for a great experience.
Namugongo shrine: this is another interesting place to visit on a city tour in Kampala; it’s located just about 12-15 kilometers from the capital Kampala. It’s where the Uganda martyrs where killed for failure to renounce their faith on the orders of kabaka Mwaga. You will learn more about the Uganda martyrs and the braveness they showered to die for their faith.
Visit the Uganda museum; visit the Uganda national museum to learn more about the history of Uganda and the people, with you r self -drive car you can easily visit this places its located just a few kilometers from the capital Kampala.
You can also visit an exciting entertainment places like the Ndere center in Kampala, see how amazing dancers jiggle their bodies to the cultural beats of the traditional instruments.
Other places to visit include the cultural sites, market places, the Bahai temple and many other places depending on the time availability. However with the curtesy of our well-maintained car you can explore all these places. If you need a driver they are available and very knowledgeable with each and every corner of the city so they can drive you with a lot of easy if you are not well conversant with some of the places.
For more information contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org we will get back to you ASAPRead More
When you live in foreign African country for long, you really have to learn to survive the set duration either on holiday, work or business. In East African countries like Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya and Tanzania, spending a few days expose you to the great warm weather each day, friendly people, and meeting up with foreign nationals on business and holidays. People are always outdoor working and moving from one direction to the other especially in business centers. Internet cafes, restaurants and bars become active in the evening hours as many leave work for home. Public transport works 24 hours though not highly recommended for foreign tourists at night. The weekends become long and boring if you don’t embark on short trips to see the other beautiful side of the country.
Many vacation safaris are run across the region for groups and sole individuals depending on one’s interest. Those in love with wildlife Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda are the most visited for Africa wildlife holidays. While exclusive primate trips take place in Rwanda and Uganda especially those interested in seeing mountain gorillas and chimpanzees. Make your Africa visit special and wonderful by signing up for a short trip to any place or park of your interest. Backpacking is open if you want to cut costs as well as budget holidays or group safaris.
First thing first if you have a day off in any capital city is to have a look at the city’s best known attractions which are always in close distance. Some are walk-able and don’t need any transport expenses. For Example if one wanted to visit Kampala city, the business center only can fill up your day because there is really a lot to see, learn and explorer. Kigali same as well as Nairobi but would recommend foreigners to move with local guides that live within the city for easy identification of places and attractions.
If religion is your hobby a number of churches welcome you in without hesitation and here peace and joy reigns.Checking out different retail and wholesale shops on different city buildings and streets is free of charge in all East Africa cities. Find out the city trendy latest designs in clothes and goods. If you have plans of becoming a country’s inventor use the opportunity to identify the best field for investment. You seriously can’t walk more than a few blocks without spotting a bank or ATM machine in case you run out of petty cash. Don’t forget to pick up something that will remind you of your cool day city tour in one in Africa. Also go on nightlife adventures as one of most Africa city highlights. Nightlife in Africa is fun and sets out as soon as darkness pops in and road security lights start lighting up the city.
After about hours, you will find every night club, bars and restaurants busy and you will be surprised. Many spend hours eating, chatting and drinking until time to go back to their residing locations. The whole experience is one of those fantastic moments where you just have to pinch yourself deep inside whispering that am really here in Africa.
Why not go and relax at one of the best beach close to the city and get your mind set by the lake cool winds. Beaches are very popular spots for all week days due to favorable conducive warm weather that feels up the most Africa countries. There is a lot to engage in while there and boredom is one of misplaced moments of Africa beaches.
Islands are located close with nice dinning and affordable accommodation for all year guests to the countries. Are you tired of the city noise? A number of Africa beautiful islands like Ssese need only ferry crossing to your next relaxing ambience in Uganda. You can plan this treat with friends for a delicious meal at restaurant set close to sand and water. The island also has great nature walks, perfect beach setting plus the lovely foods. The ferry sets off every day from Entebbe at 2.00pm one of Uganda cities and leaves the island next day in the morning at 8.00am.Therefore, you should catch up with its schedules’ if you to travel.Read More
Lake Kivu is one of the African Great Lakes lying on the boarder of Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo with in the Albertine Rift, the western branch of the East African Rift. Lake Kivu empties into the Ruzizi River, which flows southwards into Lake Tanganyika.Lake Kivu is found in the Northern Province of Rwanda and can be visited on Honeymoon Adventures.
As well as boasting a number of delightful beach resorts, this beautiful lake is also a great place to cycle the Congo–Nile trail.
Running along the Congolese border for 90km, the 2,370km² Lake Kivu is one of a string of ‘inland seas’ that submerge much of the Albertine Rift floor as it runs southward from the Sudan to Zambia. It is very a beautiful lake, hemmed in by steeply terraced escarpments containing several peaks of 2,800m or higher, including the smoking outline of volcanic Nyiragongo in the far north, and it has long served as a popular weekend getaway for residents of this otherwise landlocked country.
Kivu has a smaller surface area than the two most expansive Albertine Rift lakes, the more southerly Tanganyika and more northerly Albert. Nevertheless, a maximum depth of 480m and total water content of 333km3 places it among the world’s 20 deepest and 20 most voluminous freshwater bodies. In addition, the 285km² Idjwi Island, which falls entirely within Congolese territory, is the second largest inland island in Africa and tenth largest in the world.
A shallower and larger incarnation of Kivu probably formed about two million years ago as a result of the same tectonic activity that created the Albertine Rift and other associated lakes. Back then, Kivu would have been contiguous with the lower-lying Lake Edward on the Uganda. About 20,000 years ago, however, a natural dam created by lava from the Virungas isolated Lake Kivu from Lake Edward. As a result, Kivu’s surface rose to its present-day altitude of 1,470m, the Rusizi River which had formerly drained out of Lake Tanganyika into the southern tip of Kivu reversed its flow, and the lake became part of the Congo Watershed.
Kivu supports an impoverished fauna by comparison with other large Rift Valley lakes, as a result of an unusually high level of volcanic activity. The geological record suggests that the release of methane trapped below the lake’s surface has resulted in regular mass extinctions every few thousand years. As a result, fewer than 30 fish species are known from the lake and, while this does include 16 endemics, it pales by comparison with the many hundreds of species recorded from Lakes Victoria and Tanganyika.
High methane levels probably also explain the complete absence of hippo and croc, and are also cited by those who claim that the lake has no Bilharzia. Kivu’s attractively irregular shoreline, with its verdant slopes and sandy beaches, is served by three main resort towns. The most northerly of these, Rubavu/Gisenyi, has the best tourist facilities, partly because of its proximity to Rwanda Volcanoes National Park .
Karongi/Kibuye, further south and with the advantage of being far closer to Kigali, also has a few decent lakeshore hotels. At the southern end of the lake, overlooking the exit point of the Rusizi River, Rusizi/Cyangugu can easily be visited in conjunction with Nyungwe National Park and Huye/Butare, and has recently gained its first hotel meeting international standards.Read More
The biggest story from Kenya, the East Africa region’s biggest economy has been the attack on Uber taxi operators by the traditional taxi operators. Uber runs on a mobile app that allows you to submit a trip request and a nearby Uber driver responds.
Uber was started in 2009. It is 2016 and the traditional cab operators in Nairobi are feeling the pressure and have decided to go rogue by luring the Uber drivers then thumping them or vandalising their cars. It is a turf war and the traditional cab fellows are threatening mass action that will ‘shut down’ Nairobi.
What the traditional cab guys failed to do is to adapt to the ever changing environment so that they don’t become obsolete. It is 2016 and if you still want to do business the same way you were doing it in 2009 when smart phones were only in the hands of a few rich old men and women who only used them for calling and SMS, then I really pity you.
In 2016, power is literally in people’s hands. We now carry around smartphones and have data plans that make us almost invincible. We can order for food, make bank transactions, scan documents and send them to people miles away before seeing reminders on when our next flight is due and how the weather is like in the city we are flying to.
Disruption is the buzzword everywhere in business today. Young aggressive people all over the world now spend their time trying to figure out how to provide services more efficiently and thus kick out the older non-adaptive laggards. I am sure you know of food distributing companies that do not even cook a single meal, or that Uber owns no cabs just like AirBnB owns now hotels.
Ladies and gentlemen, the future is coming at us at a much faster rate and so the pace at which we should be changing our attitudes needs to be enhanced. Failure to adapt to new realities always leaves one with tougher lessons to deal with. Kodak enjoyed its days at the peak of the photography table until it was swept into irrelevance by the advent of digital photography. Interestingly they had researched about the magic of digital photography but were hesitant to make the move because well, they were still enjoying their (wait for it) – Kodak moment.
The tourism industry in East Africa is also undergoing its own moment of truth. The spate of terror attacks in Kenya drove away the tourists leaving operators all over the region staring at empty hotel beds and shrinking bank balances. The mistake has been that their understanding of a tourist has been limited to that person from Europe, America or Asia.
Some of the well-to-do locals revenged by flying out to South Africa, Mauritius and the United Arab Emirates for their holidays. Hoteliers and other tourism operators are now waking up to the reality that domestic tourism is something they should not have overlooked at all. The potential here is immense.
Some of the operators are just like the old school Nairobi taxi drivers, unsure of how to deal with new realities. In this case, many tourism operators are struggling to change their attitude towards the domestic tourist. Few of them have the skills to woo the domestic tourist because they have spent years in the business with a mindset locked at only the foreign tourist.
Luckily, the East African Tourism Platform is around to help guide the private tourism players as well as government down the road of attitude change aimed at seeing a rise in intra- and inter-regional tourism. It all starts with a flexible mind that embraces change instead of fighting it. It is time to adapt or die.Read More
When hiring a vehicle in Uganda please be aware that the driver / guide must have a valid license permitting him or to drive that particular vehicle. This is required for when stopping at police road blocks and also for your safety while on the road. An international Driving permit is required for self drive in Uganda by international tourists and you should always consult the car rental agency that is organizing your car hire before traveling to Uganda.
Uganda self drive and tourism services have been in operation for a long time and they are located in all parts of the country. They have a wealth of experience in planning the best vehicles for safaris in the whole of East Africa countries like; Tanzania, Rwanda, Congo, Kenya. The cars range from 4×4WD, tour buses, small cars for around town; mini vans and bicycle for traveling in Uganda. The fees charged on hiring vehicles are very affordable. Also on offer are highly skilled guide / driver with vast knowledge around East Africa and the cars are fully insured and any damages done by the clients are handled by their insurance company.
They can also offer you the most exciting and comfortable safaris throughout the East African region.
With a lot of experience on car hire these car hire companies have skilled staff which are highly educated from driving to well trained customer care, where safety and enjoyment comes first to all clients.Read More
Located in central Africa and it’s also known as ‘’a land of thousand hills’’, Rwanda is the principal tourism destination that attracts tourists from different parts of the world. Like its counterpart Uganda, Rwanda is also a landlocked country and has no seaport, this central African country lifts as one of the few countries where a person can go and have a life changing experience especially when next to real nature of Africa. It has many tourism fraternities although a few people especially foreigners don’t really know what precisely makes this small country unique that almost everyone wishes not to miss visiting it. A number but some of the most interesting tourist activities one should not miss while on Rwanda safari include;
Gorilla tracking;- This is the leading attraction in Rwanda, over 80% of travelers to Rwanda visit the volcanoes national park for gorilla tracking, the park houses over 400 individuals out of 900 mountain gorillas left worldwide and Rwanda is known as the best gorilla safari destination in the world. Spending some excellence time with the gorillas in their natural environment a moment in life very difficult to forget and trust me, you will always want more of a gorilla tracking safari. A gorilla permit is a passport to anyone to see these animals in their natural habitat and you are advised to book your gorilla permit prior to your tracking dates at least 2-5 months as permits are at a very high demand the earlier to secure your permit the better to avoid inconveniences. Rwanda gorilla permits costs USD 750 per person per tracking including park entrance and a ranger guide.
Wildlife Tours;- Game drives through Akagera national park provides a great opportunity to view various species of wildlife some of which are rarely seen. Game drives can be carried out either in the morning or in the evening and some of the games expected to meet include lions, leopards, elephants, giraffes, kobs, wild pigs, buffaloes, zebras, antelopes, and many more. A wildlife safari to Rwanda is one of the most thrilling tours one will ever have as it comes with different nature wonders on top of wildlife encounters.
Cultural Tours;- Culture is certainly Africa’s best tourism lure, cultural encounter with the local people is really magnificent, especially for those who are interested in knowing how the African people live. A walk through some of the villages in the country gives visitors a chance to meet and interact with some of the elders from different cultural background. The local people will perform their traditional dance and music to foreigners and if interested they can join them through their music and dance, it’s really a great experience and I trust before getting back home you will get to learn some of the locally used words. A cultural safari to Uganda gives them a chance to find the truth by themselves and also have a remarkable experience in Africa.
Chimpanzee tracking; for primate lovers, Rwanda is a best country to go on a safari, it houses over 13 species of primates coupled with chimpanzees the most close relative of man sharing 98% of human genes. These chimpanzees are fabulous fan to watch when playing in fruitful trees or tree blanches not only chimpanzees that can be seen in the forest of Nyungwe national park, but other primate species can also be seen like the black and white colobus monkey, baboons, red colobus monkey, civet monkey the list is endless.
Other tourism activities one can think of while planning for a trip to Rwanda include; – hiking adventure, nature walks, city tours, boat ride, and more.Read More
Located in East Africa, Uganda is among a few countries on the planet that offer ultimate and very satisfactory wildlife safari experiences. The country’s wildlife range from mammals, primates, reptiles, birds, a variety of flora and so much more which gives tourists an opportunity to explore more about the pearl of Africa and also appreciate the country’s beauty.
While on a Uganda safari, you cannot stop to be amazed by the sightings of various wildlife species and relief features. The best wildlife safaris can be experienced in Uganda’s major national parks all with a number of wildlife species.
Kidepo valley national park located in northeastern Uganda has the true African wilderness. This national park is located in a semi desert area but it’s a home to wildlife species like the cape buffaloes, zebras, giraffes, lions, ostriches and many other bird species. Most of the wildlife species in this national park can be best viewed from the Narus valley where there is an oasis where most animals gather to get water for drinking and the herbivores like the zebras to get fresh pasture.
South of Kidepo valley is mount Elgon national park located in eastern Uganda. While here, you get to view the volcanic mountain with the largest base on earth as well as one of the biggest calderas. The adventurous tourists can visit the mountain for hiking while others can go for nature walks viewing a number of attractions like the Sipi falls, birds species or go for cultural visits to the Bamasaba people who have unique traditional practices like the male circumcision ceremony that enables a transformation of boys from childhood to manhood.
In mid western Uganda is Murchison falls national park that stretches up to northern Uganda. This is the biggest national park in the country and among the most visited by tourists seeking for ultimate wildlife safari experiences. The national park is a home to the big four animals (elephants, buffaloes, lions and leopards), hippos, Nile crocodiles that usually live at the banks of river Nile, giraffes, hartebeests, Oribi, warthogs, baboons, primates like monkeys, and a number of bird species. Tourists here can engage in a number of activities including a visit to the Murchison falls that forms a permanent rain ball, go for boat trips along river Nile viewing a number of aquatic animals, go for game drives or primate tracking in Kaniyo Pabidi forest reserve.
Also in the west are Queen Elizabeth national, Kibale forest national park, mount Rwenzori national park, semuliki valley national park and lake Mburo national park. Queen Elizabeth national park has the highest hippopotamus population in east Africa which inhabit the banks of Kazinga channel, elephants, crocodiles, tree climbing lions in the Ishasha sector, chimpanzees in the Kyambura gorge forest, a number of antelopes and many others. Kibale forest national park is commonly known as the primate capital of east Africa because of the high number of primates especially chimpanzees the national park has. Kibale forest national park is the best place for chimpanzee tracking in Uganda. Mountain Rwenzori national park is also blessed with a number of wildlife but first is the mountain itself. The peaks of mountain Rwenzori are snow capped and therefore good for hiking. The wildlife species the national park has include the three-horned chameleon, forest elephants and a number of birds endemic to the Albertine region. Semuliki valley national park has hippos, forest elephants, and birds some of which are from the central Africa while lake Mburo national park has zebras, warthogs, giraffes, Topi’s, waterbucks, buffaloes among others. Tourists in lake Mburo national park have a chance to view the wildlife while riding horses.
Lastly are the gorilla parks located in the southwestern Uganda, the best places to enjoy gorilla safaris in Africa. These are; Bwindi impenetrable national and Mgahinga gorilla national park – homes to mountain gorillas some of the greatly endangered apes on earth. Mountain gorillas offer unique wildlife experiences and can be trekked at any time of the year. The mountain gorilla trekking permits are usually sold at $600 during the peak season and $350 during the low seasons. Uganda is indeed a very unique country and therefore all those seeking for ultimate wildlife experiences should not look further.Read More
Having one of the fastest growing tourism economies, Rwanda is a landlocked country located in east Africa. Its one of the African countries that suffered cases of political instability and it took many years for tourists to start visiting the country freely without fear and actually even today some people still have that perception thinking that Rwanda is still insecure which is very wrong. The insecurity in Rwanda ended back in 1993 and since then the country has been fighting hard to reboot its tourism industry that it has successfully done.
Today a number of tourists from different parts of the world visit Rwanda for wildlife safaris visiting any of the four national parks in the country while others go for tours visiting the city, genocide memorial sites, major cultural centers and many other outstanding tourist attractions. Lets look at the major reasons why tourism is thriving a lot today in Rwanda.
Peace And Security
Whenever there is peace, tourism definitely thrives. Rwanda ever since the genocide ended has not had any kind of insecurity. The government has maintained peace and security for over two decades now which has stabilized the Rwandese economy boosting activities especially tourism.
The Mountain Gorillas
Half of the mountain gorilla populations in the Virunga massif live in Rwanda’s volcanoes national park located in the northwestern part of the country. The national park has a total of 18 mountain gorilla families 10 of which are habituated and open to tourists visits. Many tourists love to see the mountain gorillas in their natural environments and for that reason a number of them head to Rwanda for wildlife safaris as they trek these magical animals. The mountain gorilla trekking permit for Rwanda compared to Uganda and Congo is a little expensive ($750) but this has never for once discouraged adventurous tourists interested in viewing the mountain gorillas. These rare animals are therefore among the core reasons for the thriving tourism in Rwanda.
Improvement In The Hotel Industry
The hotel industry is a very important aspect of tourism because when tourists visit a certain place, they have to get where to eat and sleep. During the 1993 Rwandese genocide, a number of hotels that were available by then were destroyed. The good news is that things have greatly changed today as many hotels have been built and the once destroyed renovated. There are a number of hotels in Kigali Rwanda’s capital city and in the major national parks offering standard hospitality services for example hotel des mille Collines where some Rwandese took refuge during the genocide, flame tree hotel, golf hills residence, Kigali Serena hotel, the manor hotel, the mirror hotel, hotel chez Lando and so many others which are located in the city center just a few kilometers from Kigali international airport.
When you get to Rwanda’s national parks, there are also a number of lodges providing tailor made services to the people for example in Nyungwe forest national park there is Nyungwe forest lodge situated in the middle of a tea plantation surrounded by the famous Nyungwe forest, Nyungwe top view hotel, in volcanoes national park there is le Bambou lodge, gorilla view lodge, Sabyinyo silverback lodge, Virunga lodge and many others. In Akagera national park, there is Akagera game lodge and the eco friendly Ruzizi tented camp. This clearly shows that while in Rwanda even in the remote national parks, one cannot fail to get where to eat and have a good night sleep and its among the reasons why many tourists are visiting Rwanda today.
The City (Kigali)
Kigali is a very organized city and a center for most business in Rwanda. Modern structures are now being built including a number of luxurious hotels but most importantly it’s always kept clean and it’s among the cleanest cities on the African continent. Kigali has some tourist attractions including the Kigali (Gisozi) genocide memorial where a number of people were killed during the genocide back in 1993. This genocide memorial site has audios and video plays depicting what the genocide was like back in days, a mass grave where a number of people were killed plus a list of names of people who are died and some who are still missing and a chamber with cupboards full of skeletons of people. This is a dark tourism site that many tourists do not miss while in Kigali.Read More