this is one of the best hotels around the area, it's lovely, the scenery is amazing. its a really warm and friendly welcoming place too. the lake is lovely and great to have a little swim in or take/hire a wooden canoe! I loved my time as a missionary in Uganda, and this was a great place to take a break and some time out! also a little bit of a...more
I really never expected to see this type of scenery in Africa. But we did, here we were in Uganda traversing high mountains on dirt roads looking out at some spectacular scenery.Driving towards Lake Bunyoni from either direction you are sure to encounter this type of scenery.more
The Ugandans on a whole are such beautiful people. But a memory which sticks in my mind is when we were on the way to the Lake and almost there, we stopped on the side of the road to take some piccies of the spectacular scenery and out of nowhere these kids in my piccie arrived - so friendly, so happy - always smiling.more
The lake is safe enough for swimming - its actually really refreshing too!You can hire boats here and take a boat out onto the lake for an hour or two as well - People I know hired these from the campsites.Otherwise its just nice to sit along the lakes edge and enjoy a book and a cold beer!more
Lake Bunyonyi is the second deepest crater lake in Africa, at 900 metres deep there are 29 islands and the name also means 'the place of little birds'. There are more than 200 species of birdlife in the area. It is a great spot to camp, very relaxing, and on the lake you can take a canoe, or go for a swim. Nearby there are markets, and all around...more
Just before lunch the heavens open and we get soaked going up to the restaurant, but we soon dry out in the warm Ugandan afternoon. By the time we have finished our pasta, it has stopped raining and we spend the afternoon bird watching on the terrace in beautiful sunshine. Later in the afternoon a boat trip has been arranged for us, around the...more
Ordering the food for tonight’s meal, Sue is undecided and the following conversation ensues: Sue: “I‘ll have either the potato or the cauliflower soup”. Waitress: “You decide”. Sue: “OK, make it the cauliflower”. Waitress: “we have no cauliflower”. Ho hum. Dinner is very nice – a tasty African beef stew with rice, but I really don’t feel well and retire to bed early. The bed is very comfortable and it is surprising how light it is outside with just the moon illuminating the scene. The evening soon cools down; we are still nearly 1000m above sea level. I am glad I brought a fleece to the restaurant for dinner, even though there is a roaring fire in the bar. I wake in the night absolutely frozen, but after wrapping myself in the quilt, I eventually thaw out and go back to sleep.
We have decided to get up at 5.30 this morning to make the most of our time here for spotting the birds, but I didn’t take into consideration that it would still be pitch black at that time in the morning! Still, it is a wonderful experience sitting there in the dark, just listening to the world of birds and animals coming alive and waking up to another day. A constant and progressive hum ensues, almost like a generator, purely from the various birds and insects that are greeting the new day. We don’t really see any birds at all, as it is still only just getting light when we depart from the island!
We share a boat to Bushara Island Camp with three Germans who we met the very first evening in Mbarara and their humerous guide David, who is terrified of water and wears the only available life jacket!
The Lake Bunyonyi Markets I think are held Monday and Fridays... not far from Lake Bunyonyi. We woke one morning to see an endless barage of canoe boats crossing from the 29 Islands and surrounding districts of the Lake to the Market place so we figured we had to check it out.
A small local market it is a great one to see how the Ugandans of the area put together some of their crops for a local supermarket on the street. You can get some great food bargains, and not only that there is also some clothes, local crafts and jewellery.
This market is more aimed at locals selling to locals, so it is a great taste of a traditional market that is essential to the local communities survival and not made to benefit just tourists. It is a true traditional market in the sense that it is now how it always has been - something for the community to prosper on and hold together. Or at least this is the feeling I got.
It was great to bargain for yummy fresh food, see the women with baskets on their heads and just wander through this culture.
What to buy: Definately buy some food... Agriculture is a huge part of the surrounding area, and you can get some real bargain bites.
What to pay: Depends on how well you bargain... but i guarantee you no supermarket can probably match it.
At dinner we learn that Sue and Gordon had a visitor to their tent when they got back from the boat trip, asking them if it would be possible for them to move to another tent much further down the island (the other end in fact). A South African family had booked a self-contained cottage for their 88-year-old grandmother, but their reservation had been messed up. They didn’t think she’d be able to walk to the other side of the island, so asked if she could have Sue and Gordon’s tent which is the one nearest the restaurant. We see the grandmother later at dinner, and I am very surprised indeed that she managed the steps up from the boat! It seems to me a little irresponsible to take someone of that age and ability on a journey to a place like this!
Fondest memory: With some time to spare before lunch, we sit on the terrace watching the many colourful birds that flit in and out of the trees. There are paradise flycatchers, bulbuls, various colourful bee eaters, eagles and cormorants, iridescent sunbirds, spectacular mousebirds, lots of very bold wagtails, woodpeckers, weavers, kingfishers, herons, a very noisy bird called fisco, kites, starling, buzzards and many, many more birds which go unidentified. David spots a large lizard scampering in amongst the undergrowth and there is a gerbil climbing up a stem. We have a terrific view of the lake and I feel so contented just sitting here observing the wildlife. The air is still and the only sound is the chatter, shrill, babble, trill, shriek, squeak, twitter and wail of the various birds found on this gem of a nature island.