Ngamba Island is a 100-acre sanctuary with lush vegetation and many species of food trees. A total of 39 chimps are kept here, and have the run of the majority of the island. Just a small are for visitors is fenced off – as adult chimps can become quite aggressive and have been known to attack humans.
See my Ngamba Island page for further details
- National/State Park
VISA ON ARRIVAL AT ENTEBBE AIRPORT
Do you need a visa for Uganda and can you get it on arrival at the airport. Who knows? The Government of Uganda likes to keep you guessing! If you can get a Visa on arrival - that will be $50 U.S. please. Their London High Commission (Embassy) says you have to get it before you go. Last updated 1999. I went in 2007 with an American & British Passport and got it at Entebbe Airport for $50. A tour company website based in Uganda says I should have gotten it for free. This same website says that information on visas changes daily! Also I had an Ethiopian friend who was told he needed a visa before we flew here from Addis Ababa. When we arrived the friend with the visa was told they could have gotten the visa on arrival!
My suggestion to you? Follow the link below to your local Uganda High Commission and telephone them before you book the ticket if you hold a passport other than US or UK.
US & UK citizens can get them when they land – no problem.
- National/State Park
- Family Travel
- Business Travel
Set on the shores of Lake Victoria, this is a must see for animal lovers. Popularly known as "Entebbe Zoo", the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre was opened in 1952 by the Colonial government of Uganda as a reception centre for wild animals. They started with animals that were sick, orphaned, or confiscated from illegal traders. In the 1960s, it’s role was that of a traditional zoo including species from outside Uganda. In 1994 the UWEC Trust was set-up to take over the zoo and to develop it primarily for conservation and educational purposes. It has 4 stated goals:
1) A conservation education institution
2) Rescue & rehabilitation of animals
3) Captive breeding for endangered species
4) A zoo for the public to come and see indigenous wildlife
The grounds are massive and you can see native wildlife in large natural settings. All the paths are well marked and a free map of the collections is free with the entry fee. You need to plan on at least half a day here and you can combine it with a trip top the Chimpanzee Sanctuary on Ngamba Island.
Just some of the wildlife you can see here are:
Hoofstocks: Giant forest hog, Buffalo, Eland, Waterbuck, Impala, Bush duiker, Bush buck, Bohor Reedbuck, Warthog, Uganda Kob, Bush Pig, Cape Buffalo and White Rhino
Carnivores: Spotted Hyena, Leopard, Spotted Necked Otter, Serval Cat, Lion
Primates: Colobus monkey, De Brazza monkey, Olive monkey,Patas Monkey,
Red-Tailed Monkey, Grey Checked Mangabey, Vervet Monkey, Baboon
Reptiles: Nile monitor lizard, Marsh terrapins, Tortoise, Rock Python, Nile Crocodile
Birds: Owl, Egyptian goose, Shoebill stork, Marabou Stork, African Fish Eagle, Peacock, Helmeted Guinea Fowl, African Grey Parrot, Crested Crane, Ostrich
UWEC is open everyday of the year from 09:00am to 18:30pm, Last admission is 17.30pm
Postal Address:Uganda Wildlife Education Centre, P.O Box 369 Entebbe, Uganda.
- Family Travel
Entebbe at Lake Victoria
Entebbe is a nice city close to Lake Victoria. The road towards the airport pass close to the shore of the lake (see pictures). The shore of Lake Victoria is beautiful, and there are sandy beaches close to Entebbe.
But be careful not to bath or wade in the water. Calm freshwaters in Africa normally carries a parasite called Schistosomes which cause a disease called "Bilharzia". See the warning tips.
- Arts and Culture
The animal orphanage park is what we usually call the zoo. There are not many animal speacies inside the zoo, mostly those whom inhabitating Uganda. The park itself is pretty huge and nice place for a walking tours. I like the idea of orphanage for animals because the animals are trained here to send back to their natural environment, once they are ready and well prepared to survive there.
Victoria Lake looks huge, almost like a sea, and Ugandans (Lugandans) like it very much. It is favourite place for the locals to spend holidays, short excursions or swimming during the weekends. The water, however, isnt advisable for swimming, especially for whites because of mosquitos and other small creatures spreading diseases to which locals are alomost imune.
Crowned Crane is nice looking bird and could oftenly be seen around in Uganda. Actually it is the national bird in Uganda and features in the country's flag and coat of arms. Some locals call it creasted crane. It is about one meter tall and weights up to 4 kg. The body plumage of Crowned Crane is mainly grey, while the wings predominantly white. The head has a crown of stiff golden feathers. It is in particularly interesting to watch for its dancing, bowing and jumping, and has a booming call. The animal does not migrate.
I knew rhino is big, strong, compact and powerful animal but all my previous ideas about crushed down when I saw it in live. Rhino is imposing by all means and my first impression was, gosh its almost as huge as battlewagon is and looks the same way unbeatenable.
Rhino isn't agressive specie and would probably ignore you if approaching close, however, never risk to come closer if baby rhino is around.
Visit the botanical garden in Entebbe
Take a guided tour through the botanical garden of Entebbe. This 1.5 hour tour will cost you a donation of around UGX 10.000 per person. The tour shows you all the amazing green tropical trees and there inhabitants. Birds, butterflies, flowers, dragonflies, ants etc. The story goes that a part of the original Tarzan movie was shot here. Smell the wild nutmeg and cinnamon and enjoy this spectaculair walk.
- Jungle and Rain Forest
- Family Travel
There are lots of bird species that live around the Victoria Lake, mostly storks, ducks and crowned cranes. The Animal Orphanage in Entebbe housing more then dozen bird species but most of them stay on the high trees, out of camera reach.
The Vervet monkey has a black face with a white fringe of hair, while the overall hair color is mostly grey. The males are larger in weight and body length. They live in a large groups and very close to the human settlements. This relatively small monkey could be very aggressive when fighting for the domination positions inside of the group. I have seen couple of them seriously injured after fights with rivals and sometimes this injuries could caused death of a monkey.
The usually aren't aggressive towards humans unless the person gets too close to a group where there are monkey mothers with the babies. In such a case the entire group will attack the intruders.
Showers at the airport
Now it is rather handy if you know you can get a shower at the airport, possibly you have had a long journey to get to Entebbe before a flight. Well there are showers in the departure lounge at the airport but the the sinks along side the showers only had cold water!!!!
Swim at the Resort Beach
Much improved place since a few years ago when I was last here. It costs 5,000 UGX for a swim in the large swimming pool. On the day that I was there it was completely empty for an hour before several bus loads of school kids turned up to make a splash in the shallow end.
Being on the lake shore this is a great place to watch the various birdlife that wades in the lake or flits from tree to tree in the hotel gardens.
I hear the Hotel itself is very smart inside but for me the ghastly blue glass is very off putting.
A right state!
At the end of the old main drag in Entebbe town if you are travelling from the direction of Kampala you head straight to the gates of State House.
In recent years President M7 spends more time in Entebbe than Kampala and has given Entebbe State house more than a lick of paint. At night the whole place is lit up like a Christmas tree that can be seen down below in downtown Kisoro.
Quite often now at this end of Entebbe roads that pass nearby Museveni's gaff will have road blocks manned by army or police especially if M7 is having a bit of a shindig.
Chill at the Lido
On a few occasions whilst I've been in Entebbe if I have just wanted to chill I have headed to the Lido. The Lido in Entebbe is very close to the airport and as you approach the place you will see scrapped aircraft that look like they have been used for practice by the Entebbe airport fire brigade.
You enter The Lido through the ugly main entrance and last time I was there possibly because we are close to the airport the place was heavily armed by two guys with guns. Not unusual for places in Uganda to have guys on the door with guns but one guy had a grenade launcher. I can't imagine why a strip of pebbly beach is so well armed.
Maybe the heavily armed guards is off putting because it has always been quiet while I have been there in the day time. There are the usual lakeside chairs and tables and of course there is a bar that serves drinks and snacks.
In the evenings this place can be quite lively with local bands performing to Entebbians and it must be pretty loud as one evening there was a gig on hear which I could hear while I was sat on the beach on Banda Island twenty odd miles away.