9 Useful Tips For Travelling in Uganda

9 Useful Tips For Travelling in Uganda

From the source of the River Nile, to rolling hills, to rainforest and savanna, endangered mountain gorillas and giraffes, Uganda is truly the pearl of Africa. 

After visiting Uganda in the summer of 2016 with the East African Playgrounds charity, Chelsea Smith almost feels as if she left part of herself there, and ever since has been aching to return.

Uganda is a country that will steal your heart, but before you leave for the adventure of your life, check out Chelsea's recommendations for things to do and a few tips to make sure your trip runs a smoothly as possible.


1. Travel Safe

Typically, Uganda is a safe country with a large tourist industry. However, occasionally disputes in neighbouring countries mean travel is advised against along certain borders. Check the FCO travel advice before departing to make sure you won’t get caught up in anything.


2. Visit Your GP Before Departing

Like many trips, it’s advisable to go to the doctors in advance to make sure you have all the vaccinations recommended for the country you’re visiting. When I arrived in Uganda my yellow fever certificate was checked, so double check with your GP if you’ll be needing this. 


3. Pack Sensible Clothing

Depending on what you’re planning on doing, you’ll want to invest in some appropriate clothing. If you are going to book a tour of Uganda and go trekking into the rainforests, I would definitely say those expensive walking boots and trousers are worth it; trust me, anything that will make the hike a little easier is a god send. Also, long-sleeved tops are great for stopping the mosquitos eating up your arms. In Uganda it’s best to keep your shoulders covered and wear garments that fall below the knee to be in keeping with the local culture


4. Volunteer

Uganda Useful Travel Tips

If you are looking to volunteer in Uganda, there are plenty of opportunities and a variety of UK-based charities out there, whether you want to work with animals or people. Have a little research – One World 365 has a handy search tool to help make sure you find the perfect volunteer program in Africa. I would personally recommend East African Playgrounds, a small but amazing charity that looked after me from the minute I stepped out of the airport.


5. Get Gorilla Permits

If you travelling in Uganda you cannot miss out on this. Heck, I would even say go to Uganda even if it is just to see the gorillas. The early morning starts, and the fast-paced tracking of these endangered creatures is 100% worth it. Seeing such incredible animals up close – close enough to hear them chew on their morning round of leaves – is an experience that fills you with such an amazing mix of pure excitement, adrenaline and fear.  However, it does take some planning: you need permits to see the gorillas and must go with official guides, which must be sorted months in advance so make sure you’re organised and don’t miss out! Search gorilla safaris today.


6. Spend Some Time With Locals

All the people I met in Uganda were so welcoming, so friendly. When it was my time to say goodbye to the people I’d met, it was hard to keep back the tears! This is why volunteering is so great as it allows you to give something back to the people who have been so welcoming to you on your trip.


7. Experience the Boda Bodas

Bodas are motorbikes commonly used as taxi services in Uganda and they are so much fun. It’s a great way to get around and is cheap, but always make sure you agree on a price before you hop on. Plus, you get the added bonus of a cool breeze to give you a break from the stifling heat!


8. Have a Rolex

Rolexes are a staple Ugandan street food. They are essentially a wrapped omelette, traditionally with tomatoes and onion although many variations can be found. It sounds like a pretty simple and uninspiring dish, but after you’ve had your first Rolex there is no going back, and you’ll be forever hunting down a traditional recipe like me.


9. Kayak Down the Nile

The Nile in Uganda has some of the world’s best white waters. I was scared to death and came so close to backing out when I was faced with the first grade five rapid, but I got in the kayak and I paddled for my life, and I would do it all again. The exhilaration and the satisfaction of completing the rapids is unrivalled and cannot be missed. Plus, the calm waters in between rapids offer a chance to see some of the wildlife on the banks. If you do plan on trying out some extreme sports, you need to make sure you’ve got the right insurance that covers them.


By Chelsea Smith



Related Pages

Related Opportunities

Gorilla and Volcano Trekking Holiday in Uganda

Experience Mountain Gorillas and volcanoes on this exciting 4 day trekking trip in Uganda.

Gorilla Trekking Holiday

Spend a magical holiday seeing exotic mountain gorillas in Uganda on this 3 day trip.

Kenya and Uganda Gorilla Adventure Trip

Travel overland and experience Kenya and Uganda on this wildlife tour where you will get to see mountain gorillas.

East Africa Overland - 22 Days

Track the Big Five in three different ecosystems, meet mountain gorillas, tempt fate with adrenaline-inducing activities, view wildlife in our 4x4 safari vehicles in Tanzania, discover Zanzibar's spice plantations and crystal-clear waters.

The Dublin Pass

Planning a trip to Dublin? Buy the Dublin Sightseeing pass and save big on tourist attractions.

1 Week Scuba Dive Packages in the Bay Islands of Honduras

Looking for a scuba diving destination and center in the Bay Islands of Honduras? Utila Dive Center offer week long packages including dives, meals and accommodation.

Gorilla Overland Wildlife Trip in Uganda

Join this thrilling 8 day tour of Uganda and get to experience a 1 day guided mountain gorilla trek.

Uganda Mountain Gorilla Adventure

Often referred to as the "Pearl of Africa", travel through Uganda offers a unique experience that is not to be missed! Famed for its equatorial mountain forests, island-dotted lakes, colourful vibrant cities and dramatic wildlife encounters.

Medical Elective in Uganda

Placements include working in hospitals, mobile clinics, and medical centres. Choosing an elective in Uganda will open your eyes to the challenges locals face, giving you a truly memorable and rewarding experience. ​

Nairobi to Lilongwe (40 days) Apes & Lakes

From the majestic Mountain Gorillas to the wildlife on offer in our 3 parks experience (Serengeti, Manyara and Ngorongoro Crater) - you will captivated by the marvels of the animal kingdom. 

Captivating Africa: Travel Through Uganda's Beautiful Biodiversity

Get off the beaten track and experience the unique depth that Uganda has to offer.

Gorilla Conservation in Uganda

Come face-to-face with the enchanting and critically endangered mountain gorillas of Southern Uganda.

Gorilla Trekking Experience

Visit remote mountain gorillas in Uganda and on the border with Rwanda on this one in a lifetime wildlife experience.

African Safari & Gorilla Watching

This 4 day Gorilla Experience is the best way to see all of the top wildlife spots in Uganda if you are squeezed for time.

Gorilla Safari and Volunteering

African volunteer and safari experience wrapped in a stunning cultural and wildlife adventure in Uganda. Take up the challenge and fundraise for the Kids Club Kampala and help support the community project in rural Uganda.

Peru on a Shoestring - 15 Days

Conquer the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, meet the locals at an Andean homestay, spot soaring condors at Colca Canyon, sip pisco sours and eat ceviche.





About  |  Disclaimer  |  Privacy Policy  |  Company A-Z  |  Advertise  |  Press  |  Contact

One World 365 © 2007 - 2017