English is Uganda's official language, Kiswahili is commonly used as a lingua franca, Luganda is widely spoken especially in the Central region around Kampala city, and there are over 54 languages and dialects spoken throughout the country.
Kampala has quite a wide cuisine for you to choose from ranging from orient to a variety of western dishes.
Local dishes consist of sweet potatoes, mashed green bananas, groundnut sauce, beef, fish, goat, Irish potatoes, cassava, yams, and lots more. We could be biased but we believe Uganda has the best most tasting fruit anywhere in the world. Pineapples, mangoes, oranges, jackfruit, passion fruit and more.
The wildlife populations in Uganda dwindled due to rampant poaching in the 1980’s but to date with Uganda Wildlife Authority policies in place the numbers have shot up and continue to grow. Uganda has a diversity of wildlife. Mountain gorilla, Chimpanzee, Lions, Leopard, Hyena, Hippo, Crocodile, Impala, Uganda Kob, Warthog, Topi, Oribi, Giraffe, Zebra, monkey and over 1,000 different species of birds - Uganda is a birders' paradise.
Uganda has two main seasons. The rainy season which occurs in March through May and October through November and the dry season which comes December through February and June through September. Although Uganda lies across the equator, the weather is almost ideal. Warm clothing is not very necessary here. Temperatures run between 18-28 degrees C (60 - 80 degrees F). Due to altitude it feels cool here even in the heat of the noon sun. Humidity is low. Sun cream is essential.
Shillings is Uganda's currency of trade. This can be acquired at any foreign exchange bureau. Most business transactions are in Uganda shillings. Exchange rates keep fluctuating.
Getting a Visa for Uganda
Visa's can be acquired on arrival at the airport at the immigration check point or any border crossing point for those arriving overland. For a stipulated fee, this varies according to nationality. Please check with a Ugandan representative in your country before departure.
Ugandans generally like to look 'sharp' in there daily appearance. Impressions are important here. Men usually adorn a shirt and trousers while ladies mostly wear skirt with tops or dresses. Some ladies do wear trousers/pants but this is mostly common in the city. Ugandans generally like to over-dress. One Ugandan leader once stated. "smartness know no weather"
Best time to visit
Uganda can be visited at any time of the year. However mountain hiking, gorilla tracking and other forest walks are more challenging during the rains. These occur mainly in the months of September to November and March to May.
Kampala is a generally safe city, by far regarded the safest in Africa, you could easily walk around the city any time of the day or night without worry. Uganda is generally safe now, the war in the north is no more. We still advice a bit of caution while moving around, you never know.
Our volunteer projects are geared towards helping people live better, we do this through house building, education sponsorship, and through short term volunteer work at abandoned babies homes, youth centers, womens projects.
Frequent flights to Uganda
British Airways, Royal Dutch Airlines(KLM), Ethiopian Airlines, Emirates Airlines, Egypt Air , Kenya Airways, South African Airlines all make frequent landings at the Entebbe International Airport.
This is a common practice in the hospitality industry in Uganda, usually 5% or more of your expense. Tour guides and drivers will get more than this but ultimately the amount depends on you and your pleasure or displeasure in the service.
Charging Phones and Cameras
It is possible to charge phones and cameras in Uganda as most lodges use either solar energy or generator power.