A Vacation For The Soul



 

It’s quite amazing how we think there is very little we as human beings can do alone. You do not picture yourself taking adventures and having fun without your family or friends.

You do not give yourself the benefit of the doubt that you will enjoy your own company and not miss other people, because you are so used to doing a lot of things with others.

index

Credit:  Google

Before you embark on anything you should know that, there is a difference between lonely and being alone. One can only be lonely because they do not feel the presence of those they love in their life. While alone is something you choose to do; being away from people. As human beings, it is important to embrace being alone, it cannot be avoided. You will not always be surrounded by people you love, there are times when you will not have them around you. And that is not a bad thing.

 

Every once in awhile, we all need to get away. We need time all to ourselves and not because we can’t stand the ones we love or our jobs. But only because, we need some “me time” to appreciate the most important person in our lives, ourselves. You can choose to do it for a day or even go as far as flying out of the country to some island to discover new things for yourself. Getting away from everything does not necessarily mean that you have to pack your bags and run away. It means giving yourself enough time to grow you.

 

As adults, we spend our lives going through the motions; graduate, get a job and everything becomes scheduled for us. We forget how it feels like to take time off and breath without worrying about the next problem or those we love. But once you take a moment to breath, give your mind and heart time off to just relax and get there, your body appreciates you for it.

We never appreciate the free time we had when younger till the years seem to be rushing by.

So why wait for the later years to celebrate your life? Do it now; go for that road trip, try new things, go dancing, spa day, read those books or even try something extreme like kayaking and give your soul the vacation it deserves.

 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

Advertisements

Here’s What You Should Know Before Thrill Seeking


 

 

Deep down most people love living for the thrill, from childhood the ideas of jumping into lakes from cliffs to swinging on tree branches. We all love the feeling that comes with thrills, the only difference is some people are more daring than others.

Thrill seekers are people who are eager to take part in exciting activities that involve physical risk. They are always aware of the underlying dangers of the activities they will undertake but they will do it anyway. But before you throw care to the wind and embrace danger, here are some of the things you should know or do.

 

What Are Your Limits?

Not everyone can handle some activities and just because everyone is doing something does not mean you have to do it too. Everyone’s body has a level of pain and what it can handle so before you do something, understand your body. Understand how flexible you are to swing on cliffs, how strong your limbs are for mountain climb and if your chest can handle high altitudes. Go for checkups.

 

Where Are You Going?

For every location you pick, you should tailor it to your body and by this it means you pick a challenge you can handle. If you are a good swimmer, you can choose extreme kayaking or whitewater rafting, it would do you a big disservice to choose an activity that you are not well versed with. Location research helps you understand what regulations local authorities have on what activity you will be engaging just to be on the safe side of the law. Lastly, when you do research on your destinations it helps you plan properly especially with the budget and what equipment you will need.

 

Emergency Kits

Wherever you go, it is advisable for any traveller to have an emergency first aid kit with them especially when headed into remote areas where medical facilities are not easy to access. You can find an emergency kit in medical supply stores or camping gear stores.

 

Necessary Equipment

What trip are you planning to have? Where are you planning to go to? This helps get to know what equipment you will need for the trip. The equipment you will need for mountain climbing is different from that for sky diving. You would have to look for it from sporting equipment dealers or stores. To be on the safe side, make sure you look up everything you will need even the small things you think might not be that important.

 

Practice Makes Perfect

After purchasing your equipment, you need to get better at using it. Take it for test-runs to get familiar and make sure it works very well. If you have not been a regular mountain climber, try practicing on a small hilly place that is easy for you to scale and with something that can easily break your fall.

 

Professionals

People have been mountain climbing/ sky diving or any other thrilling adventure should be the first people you talk to before you do so.Their advice is most important since they know the thrills and dangers that come with that very activity.

 

Keep Fit

One thing about most thrill seekers is they are fit enough to undertake whatever activities they know will satisfy their urge for adventure. You can not do things that other people are scared of doing when you are not fit for it. Try taking your body through full body exercises depending on what you will be engaging in, so that it is ready for the strain that will be imposed on it later on.

 

Communicate

Always have your immediate family and friends informed about wherever you will be headed to no matter what time it is. Try investing in a satellite phone for locations that make communication difficult.  Incase of emergency, have your IDs and information cards for contacts who can be notified since accidents are very common during such activities.

 

Get Insurance

Having the right travel insurance is very important especially if you are frequent traveler. Choose your insurance provider carefully from the packages and what countries the covers are offered.

 

Please note that as much as thrilling seeking involves a lot adventure and fun, you are not advised to undertake such activities without professionals.

 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 

 

Foodie-cation Guide To The World


 

 

A foodie is any person that loves food. Everyone in the world qualifies to be one, but an actual foodie is that who will go the extra mile for good food as well as willing to be adventurous with the tastes of the world.

There are countries whose cuisines are a delight to the tongue, so what better way than to travel the world and discover the delectable goodness it offers?

 

China

There are very few countries you go to and do not find a Chinese restaurant or take- out place. The Chinese have a cuisine that has registered its place on the foodie map. Visit China and let your taste buds tour the big provinces from the hot spice of the Sichuan & Hunan cuisines to the light fresh sea and mountain cuisines of the Fujian province. China is an adventure waiting to unfold.

 

Jamaica

You might know Jamaica as the headliner for reggae, dancehall, and ragga music or the home of legendary musician Bob Marley; but is also one of the best destinations for foodies. The best way to experience Jamaican food is visiting the country and visiting some of their best local food eateries. The hot and spicy flavors in jerk chicken or pork, commonly known as the “national dish.” Or maybe try the spicy seafood platters, Ackee & Saltfish made plus delectable sauces made with local fruits from the island.

 

Nigeria

Probably one of the most famous African countries and for very many good reasons, one of them being the good cuisines. With Nigeria, food is an extra hot adventure and it is not just about fufu and jollof rice. Start with the delicious edikagikong, add some agbono, pepper soup with moimoi and top it off with egusi or lla alasepo to mention but a few.

 

Thailand

If you have never tried Thai food, it is very important that you hand in your foodie card. Thai food is among the most healthy foods in the world with fresh ingredients and little or no frying. Some of the best dishes you will need to try out are gang jued, a clear vegetable soup with pork strips; delicious comfort food kai jiew moo saap, and of course some street foods like moo dad diew and gai yang.

 

Italy

First thing that comes to mind when you think of visiting Italy is pasta and Pizza. Yet the country has a vast food basket ready to be explored once you visit. Taste your way through cities with their prized dishes such as ossobucco alla Milanese from Milan, panzanella from Tuscany, Focaccia from Liguria, and top it up with Pizza Napoletana from Naples or Friuli.

 

India

Where else will you get authentic Indian food but in the country itself. Although most people assume all Indian food is hot and spicy, traveling through the regions will give you a new taste of India. Try some thali when in Gujarati, seafood in Kerala, biryani in Hyderabad and when you get a chance, stop by someone’s home for the best home cooked Indian food.

 

Uganda

Recently named one of the most welcoming countries in the world, you have not lived till you try some of the best food on the African continent. Ugandan food is a mixture of cuisines representing the different regions of the country. You will be mesmerized by the many dishes ranging from ataapa, malewa, malakwang, matooke, eshabwe, katogo, and many green vegetable stews like egobe and bisunsa. While in Kampala, make sure to try the street food too such as the rolex and muchomo.

 

Mexico

Well, what is a foodie-cation without authentic mexican food? Travel to the country with one of the most famous foods around the world. Sit in local restaurants and enjoy some of the best enchiladas, tostadas, tamales, all the best made guacamole, chiles en nogada, chilaquiles and of course do not forget to try the elote. You will love it.

 

When you choose to visit other countries for their cuisines, make sure to document it so that everyone else gets a chance to see how good and delicious the food is. You might inspire another foodie while eating your way around the world.

 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 

 

Plan Ahead For Your Easter Holidays


 

 

Easter is around the corner, that means there are going to be many deals popping up for the holidays just for you to travel. So why not use this long holiday to get away or do something with the family. We bring you some of the best travel packages for your Easter season around Uganda and discover some gems.

Ihamba Lakeside Safari Lodge

For Easter, the rates for Ihamba are going down in weeks before the holidays. The lodge offers private accommodation consisting African styled rooms with extensive living areas overlooking the magnificent Lake George. Each room features an en-suite bathroom, a pair of slippers, a working desk and a private deck. The bathrooms boast of large glass windows, offering a unique game viewing of breathtaking Lake George. Since its a drive from the Queen Elizabeth National Park, your Easter might consist of game drives and boat rides on Lake George.

65693381

ihamba lakeside Safari Lodge photo credit Google

 

Imperial Resort Beach Hotel

images

imperial Resort Beach photo credit Google

Long drives to the village can get tiresome sometimes, so why not spend your Easter in a little gem off of Lake Victoria in Entebbe? The resort is a walking distance from the Uganda Wildlife Education Center commonly known as the Zoo filled with wild animals. You can book one of the spacious rooms overlooking the Victoria before Easter at a huge discount.

 

 

Simba Safari Camp

Treat your family to a relaxing trip to Queen Elizabeth National Park this year and catch a glimpse of the famous tree climbing lions of Ishasha. Simba Safari Lodge is located near the national park making it easy for you to have those game drives and forest walks. The lodge has cottages, ensuite family rooms, dormitories with enough space for your loved ones to be comfortable during your stay.

 

Wild Waters Lodge

If you are looking for a wild thrilling weekend on the Nile, this might just be your place. One of the most visited lodges in the country will give you a rush with the roaring waves of the Nile right next to your room and poolside. For activities, you can choose to go white water rafting, bungee jump over the Nile or maybe just relax and enjoy the soothing sounds of nature around you.

 

TV and Order In

And if you are one of those people who have decided that Easter is for “me- time,” you can also catch up on your TV programs and stay relaxed with food being brought at your doorstep. Sometimes all we want is a long weekend indoors with the ones we love or alone shedding off the stress of the first quarter of the year.

 

About Town

For those who will not be traveling, there are a lot of Easter plans happening through Kampala. From concerts, to Easter egg hunts at hotels like the Kampala Serena and discounted movie offers at the Cinemas. Go to the spa, visit a couple  of friends/ family and enjoy every bit of you the holidays.

 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 

 

 

Tips For Traveling While Pregnant


Pregnancy is one of the most beautiful miracles of nature and with a bundle of joy on the way, you are always going to be handled with care.

 

Of course, just because one is pregnant does not mean they should not go about their business, it only means now you have to do everything else with extra sense of care. It is now common for most expectant couples to go for a “baby moon” before the baby comes; meaning there will be traveling involved. So how does one travel with special cargo on board?

What-to-pack-for-a-holiday-while-pregnant

Opt Domestic Destinations

Especially when you are a few weeks away from delivery, traveling near home is a better plan than flying off somewhere further. Traveling within your country means that when the baby makes a surprise appearance, you know where to rush off to during the emergency.

 

Stay Hydrated

Being that temperature levels in pregnant women always seem to be a little higher than normal, it’s important that you hydrate wherever you go. Carry water or juice on you but avoid fizzy drinks since they usually contain caffeine which is not recommended for pregnant women. Good hydration is essential in helping to replenish amniotic fluids and breast milk production.

 

Time Your Travel

If you are going to travel, plan it according to what stage of the pregnancy you are in. The first trimester usually comes with crazy storms that leave you too weak but it varies in many women. Use the second trimester to enjoy yourself, plan a trip and relax before you become too heavy to move about.

 

Choose Your Destination Well

If you are jetting off to a far off place or just traveling within, make sure the destination has emergency medical services at all time. Ensure the weather is also suitable for you and your pregnancy (not too hot or too cold). You need to weigh if the trip is worth it and why you are going to that destination in the first place.

 

Plan Ahead

In case you are in your last months of pregnancy, be ready for anything. Not all babies arrive at their scheduled time, some come early and others a little later. Carry your prenatal card with you, and a few baby things to be on the safe side.

Snack Away

Do not be embarrassed to snack your way through the holiday. Everyone knows that you are eating for two or more so, pack healthy snacks to keep those hunger pangs and cravings away.

 

Stretch

Don’t restrict yourself especially when you are flying since you need to stretch. Leave the window seat and take the one next to the corridor since it gives you legroom and doesn’t inconvenience your neighbor during those frequent bathroom runs.

 

Slow Down

Before you got pregnant, you might have been engaging in a number of activities. This time, do not mind sleeping through the day by the pool or just doing yoga whilst everyone else is off doing something adventurous. Enjoy this lone Mummy and baby time.

 

Enjoy Yourself

Whatever holiday you choose, enjoy yourself. Look for activities that will work well with your condition and make memories.

 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 


 

 

With the rapid growth of technology every passing year, many developments in different sectors of the economy emerge; creating employment opportunities and ease of which some of the work is done.

Online Travel Agencies are part of a wave of e-commerce businesses that solely operate online but usually have partners they work with in the travel and hospitality industry all over the country or the world.

OTAs are travel websites that offer travel planning sources and booking services to travelers. Some agencies can focus on hotel or flighting booking and at the same time there are others that for more than one service; flight, hotel and travel packages for the countries they are in.

 

Depending on the countries they are centered in, OTAs have had a major increase in business when it comes to the countries they are based due to; internet growth, liberal and suitable company/ tax laws, good political environment among other factors. The reverse is also true, in that some companies will fail due to low technological growth, high taxes or lack of investor incentives, poor management etcetera.

Travelers prefer using OTAs whilst planning their sojourn due to some of these reasons:

 

  • Huge Database

Most OTAs especially the commonly used ones have a big database of hotels, airlines that you can easily browse through according to the destination you want to go to. This makes it easier for you than bookmarking several hotel websites or waiting to book on arrival.

 

  • Price Comparability

The good thing about having several hotels/ airlines on one site is being able to compare their prices for the same services offered. So instead of rushing to booking without checking for other affordable options and hence helping you make a less costly decision.

  • Discounted Packages

Most online travel agencies such as Jumia Travel usually have different travel packages on the site available to travelers and at times with huge discounts. Even better, you can ask for tailormade packages when you do not find one that suits your needs and if possible the OTA gets them for you.

 

  • Real Customer Reviews

It is always best to look through hotel/airlines reviews from some of the guests/ flyers who have been there before you book due to the wallet friendly prices. The good thing about OTAs is that users are able to post a review whether glowing or harsh about the advertised airline or hotel.

 

  • Flexible Dates

Instead of stressing about getting another booking after your travel dates change, all you have to do is change your dates on the site. The agency will handle the rest; call the hotel and reschedule your check in date or find you another place within your budget.

 

  • Good For Planning

It is easier to make a budget and plan for your itinerary when using OTAs since they have most of what you are looking for on one page. You get to book a hotel, book a flight, and schedule activities.

 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 

African Music Festivals That Are Worth Traveling For


 

Music is an art that brings souls together. It is what binds hearts, speaking the deepest of languages that is understood by thousands around the world.

Now, imagine mixing music and travel, the two will give you adventure and joy. Although music festivals are not that big of deal to some people, they create one of the most diverse interactions for so many people across the globe. They travel from wherever they are just to attend some of the biggest music festivals in the world.

Clear your calendar this year for some of Africa’s biggest music festival.

 

  • Bushfire Festival- Swaziland

The festival supported by MTN is going into its 11th year of being one of the most celebrated festivals across Africa. Bushfire festival has a line up of over 100 artists reportedly coming from over 45 countries all over the world. Each with a diverse genre of music for the revelers to enjoy. The festival lasts two days and gives the proceeds of the event to charity in Swaziland. This year, the Bushfire festival will take place from the 26th – 28th of May which will mark 11 years and growing strong. The event brings together arts, food, and music for people who attend.

 

  • Mawazine Festival- Morocco

The festival which takes place in Rabat, the capital of Morocco, attracts some of the world’s biggest artists such as Wyclef Jean and Christina Aguilera. The festival has been running for over 16 years and is founded by Maroc Group. Its name “Mawazine” means Rythm of Music and this year it will be happening from the 12th – 20th of May with five stages for different genres of music where one of the stages allows revellers to attend the concerts for free.

 

  • Festival des Musiques Urbaines d’Anoumabo- Ivory Coast

The festival was created in 2008 and since then it has grown to attract crowds beyond the West African nation of Ivory Coast. The festival takes place in Anoumabo, a site that is in line with the founders (Magic System) of the festival whose history is rooted in the area. FEMUA as it is commonly known will take place from the 19th – 24th of April with artists representing the best of French speaking Africa.

 

Sauti Ya Busara- Zanzibar

Meaning “sounds of wisdom” the festival came into inception in 2014 and is organised by a Non- profit Organisation called Busara Promotion with the goal of promoting East African music. 11 years later, it has grown to hosting artists from all over the world and showcasing the beauty of live East African music. Although the event already took place this February, you can still plan for it next year.

 

  • Enkuuka Ya CBS- Uganda

You might laugh it off as just an event you wouldn’t attend but this is one of the biggest music festivals to come out of Uganda that promotes some of the country’s talent. You have artists from Afrigo, Ronald Mayinja to Navio and Keko all performing courtesy of the Buganda Kingdom. The festival attracts thousands of music enthusiasts all over Uganda for over a decade and happens every 31st of December.

 

  • International Jazz Fest- South Africa

In the heart of Cape town every year, is one of the grandest festivals on the continent. The jazz festival attracts some of the biggest music acts in the world to grace the industry all performing live on five different stages. The show boasts of a diverse attendance of music lovers from all over the world as well as catering to acts from South Africa. The jazz fest will take place from the 31st – 1st of April this year in Cape Town.

 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 

 

 

 

Lodges In Uganda That You Need To Visit


 

 

If  you are among the many people who take weekends away from Kampala to visit some of the hidden wonders far away from the fast life of the city, or maybe you are new in the country and on a sojourn through Uganda; these are some of the lodges you should make sure you at least book a night. But since most of them are really hospitable you might have to stay longer than expected.

Lodges and hotels are quite similar because both provide accommodation/ food to their guests but the biggest difference is that the former tends to have less rooms compared to hotels, and in most cases found in parks although in Uganda, some are not.

 

Arcadia Lodges

One of the newest in the market, but still top when it comes to what the customers want with prices which don’t leave your wallet wanting. There are two arcadia lodges of which both are strategically located in two of the best and scenic destinations in the country. Arcadia Lodge Lake Mburo is located in the vast Lake Mburo National park right on the shores of Lake Mburo, with beautiful forest walks. On the other hand, Arcadia Lodge Lake Bunyonyi can be found right on the shores of Lake Bunyonyi with beautiful views of the many islands lazily swimming through the lake. All the arcadia lodges have rooms and cottages with on call staff ready to give you an adventure of a lifetime.

 

Mweya Safari Lodge

There is a way this lodge stands out beautifully in proximity to some of the best views in Queen Elizabeth National Park; crater lakes, beautiful hills, and wild animal treks which include lions, buffalo, giraffe, crocodiles, and elephants among others. Mweya has a pool that overlooks the lake, a fitted wellness center with professional staff and the rooms have a rustic feel to them; which you can book for as low as UGX 720, 000 resident price.

 

 

 

Primate Lodge Kibale

Maybe you have never heard of this one, but Primate Lodge Kibale seems to be a hidden hideaway for some the stars who visit Uganda, and want to relax as well as go chimpanzee trekking in the Kibale Forest National Park. With attractive facilities that avail you with camping space and rooms you can book for as low as UGX 283,000, the lodge recently made it as #16 on Essence Magazine’s black owned hotels, resorts, and bed & breakfasts.

 

The Kipling Lodge

Deep in the heart of Jinja on your way to Kangulumira is a little haven perched on a cliff over the roaring falls of the Nile. Barely two years old, The Kipling Lodge has become one of the most sought after properties on Jumia Travel. Made up of cottages scattered all over, the property can be booked for as low as UGX 375, 000 with the pool as a centerpiece or the open massage foyer where you can view the Nile while your body receives the therapy it needed. The lodge organises boat rides on the Nile and upon request you can yourself into a white water rafting excursion and even bungee jumping.

 

Lodge Bella Vista

Right over the Nyamiteza crater lake in Kabarole district is where you go when you have a long and lazy holiday so that you can take in all the beautiful views around you every morning. The lodge was built on top of one of the ridges that surrounds the crater. Just in the distance you will see the big Rwenzori mountains towering off in the clouds, beckoning you to go for a climb up the peaks. You can book a stay at the Bella Vista for as low as UGX 233, 000 resident fee.

 

Paraa Safari Lodge

Owned by Marasa, this lodge is one of the top luxury lodges in Uganda with rooms that can be booked for as much as UGX 661, 000; it gives you a peak of comfort in the wild. Paraa is located in Murchison Falls National Park, where elephants lazily cross through the forests and beautiful views of the Nile so close you can here Murchison falls roaring in a distance at night.

Kyaninga Lodge

They couldn’t have picked a better and more stunning location for this lodge. Standing over the calm and beautiful Kyaninga crater lake in Fort Portal, the Kyaninga lodge will give you a sense of paradise with its cottages spread out on hilly ground; each with a view of the lake is perfectly gorgeous. The lodge is well equipped with a spa and a vast pool to relax you through your stay and when you want to go for a night around Fort Portal town maybe tour the palace or visit the “Amabeere Ga Nyinamwiru” caves there are cars available including a helipad.

 

The Rainforest Lodge

Located deep in the heart of the Mabira Forest, the rainforest lodge lives up its name, enveloped in canopies of thick trees that are over hundreds of years old.  The lodge fits in with its earthy and rustic designs which were planned to flow with the beauty of the Mabira. Mabira is one of the biggest forests in Uganda and home to over 80% of Uganda’s bird species which makes it ideal for the the best birding experience and forest treks. Any nature lover would fall deeply for this lodge which is a 15 minute drive from the Nile and an hour or so to Kampala.

 

The above named lodges are not listed in any particular order, but are among the many beautiful lodges available across Uganda.

 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

There are people that were blessed with intellect that surpasses the ordinary, people that easily see through how something works and create an even better accessory. These very people create gadgets that will make traveling such an easy breezy hat you even forget the fatigue that comes after; some of these gadgets are very important especially when it comes to long journeys.

 

Fitness Tracker

You love traveling but also are a regular gym buddy which makes it hard to keep up with your exercise regiment; not all the places you will travel to will have gym access meaning you will need something to keep you on track. Gadgets like fitbit, samsung’s smartwatch, and Apple’s 8th generation iPod Nano are among some of those gadgets fitted with fitness apps which can help you stay on track while traveling.

 

Smart Suitcase

Its 2017 so forget about losing your luggage or being told that you over packed your way beyond the flight limit. Of course it being a smart suitcase doesn’t mean it will carry itself through the check in section at the airport but it means it will help you charge your phone, tell you what your luggage limit is, only be unlocked by your phone and even make it easy for you to track your property whilst on your journey. You can find these smart suitcases on Amazon.

 

Solar Charger

This one of the best inventions one can have especially when traveling to remote areas where it will be hard for you to charge your other vital gadgets such as phones and laptops. Solar chargers are not as new but because very few people realise how important they are. All you need is to put it in the sun for a day and you have charging power for almost a day depending on how many gadgets you have. Be careful not to purchase the roadside ones, look through tech shops and solar energy centers for genuine products.

 

 

E- Readers and Tablets

For anyone who loves reading books, you can go through a 600 page in hours meaning you are going to need a new book to replace the excitement of the previous, so you will need to carry your “preciouses” wherever you go and they can be quite many. E- readers like Kindle can give you over a 1000 books all easily accessible whilst your Tablet can act as a surrogate laptop, camera worktop and phone for any urgent business ideas. These can be easily found in gadget shops around Uganda at variable prices.

 

Unlocked Mifi

The growth of social media and other modern communication tools makes it easy for you to stay in touch with your family even if you a thousands of miles away from them. All that needs internet connections and with so many service providers who can avail you with portable mifis, it makes it easy for you to get in touch. It is only easier to move with one across borders if you unlock it.

 

Portable Bluetooth Speakers and Headphones

Everyone needs music in their life wherever they go. So why not get yourself portable speakers/ headphones for the time when you need a theme song, maybe going for a run or when you are watching a good movie and need good sound. Check Jumia for the best prices.

 

Solar LED Lights

These are so easy to find around Kampala so you do not have to stress yourself on where to find these since they are almost available at every petrol station. These lights can shine can last up to 16 hours if fully charged.

 

Smart Padlock

All it needs is an app on your phone and you will be able to secure your luggage as well as track it through the journey.

 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 

 

 

 

Gulu: Wanderlust Destination


 

We all traveling and oh yes!! adventure is part of learning so this week we present to you GULU district

Background

Yes, the first mention of Gulu conjures up images of horror, terror, and bloodshed but that is even far from it. The district located in Northern Uganda is just 6 hours from the capital city of Kampala, and is just what you will need on a weekend or maybe a whole week.

Gulu is the commercial and administrative headquarters of Northern Uganda and for a district that was in turmoil over a decade ago, it is amazing how fast the residents picked up and turned Gulu into a lively-bustling town.

images

source google pics

The biggest population of the residents of Gulu are the Acholi tribe and the common languages spoken in the area are Acholi, Kiswahili, Luganda, English, and Luo.

Gulu is a district rich in history, culture and vibrant enough to keep you busy throughout your visit. So what do you do when in Gulu?

 

Ajai Game Reserve

Originally set aside to protect the white rhinos in Northern Uganda, the game reserve was under the management of Chief Ajai (of whom it derives its name) is located on the banks of the Albert Nile an hour or two away from the Gulu town center.

The Rhinos are extinct in the region but you will find animals such as; leopards, zebras, Uganda kob, warthogs and if you visit at the right time you might spot you a python or crocodile. There are several bird species that can be found in the reserve of which most are indigenous to Uganda; weaver birds, Karamoja apalis, and breasted barbet among others.

 

Fort Patiko

Also known as Baker’s Fort, was established in 1872 by Sir Samuel Baker and commissioned by the Queen as a military base during the colonial administrative days. Prior to that, the fort was used as a slave resting and sorting area by the Arabs and Indians due to the strategic location of the fort on the trade route connecting to Egypt via Nimule in now South Sudan.

Take a day and learn more about the deep history of slave trade and the early years of colonialism in Uganda through the caretakers.

travel001pix

Fort Patiko source Google images

Craft Markets

Nothing beats going through thrift markets and seeing beautiful and amazing pieces made in Uganda by very talented artisans. Going through the market places in Gulu you will find so many cute antiquities from wood carvings, paintings to clothes made from colorful beautiful fabrics that will make you fall in love with Ugandan prints. Most of the artisans are under charity organisations that have been helping people get through the trauma of war.

 

Acholi Delicacies

You cannot visit a new place and not try their delicacies when you visit the restaurants, where is the fun in all that? When in Gulu, walk away from the hotels and go deep in the market places where you will find makeshift restaurants serving foods such as; malakwang, millet bread, odii, and maybe snack on some ngwen later. Discover the taste of Acholi land very well by visiting a home to one of the residents and learn how to prepare their favorite delicacies.

 

St Joseph’s Cathedral

Maybe one of the oldest well maintained landmarks in Gulu would make the best last stop on your tour, but it is a worthwhile “need to see.” Built in 1941 by the Comboni Brothers, the Roman Catholic church was consecrated in 1947 and has been standing since. The most interesting bit about the church is the architecture as is for most Roman Catholic churches, and how towering it is even from a distance.

 

When done visiting Gulu, you can fly or drive back to Kampala since there are flights that operate twice a week and several buses/ taxis coming in daily from Kampala.

 

Credit: travel.jumia.com