Uganda travel guide

Uganda Tourism | Uganda Guide

You're Going to Love Uganda

Bounded by vast jungles, Uganda is home to some of the most elusive wild animals, such as gorillas, baboons, and leopards. The dynamic sprawling landscape features sections of Lake Victoria and the Nile's basin, offering fantastic opportunities for boat tours and unforgettable sunsets. The capital Kampala is rapidly developing a strong arts scene and has a spread of bustling produce markets.

What to do in Uganda

1. Spot Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

The enormous 124 sq mi World Heritage Site has close to half of the world's critically endangered mountain gorillas roaming around the lush rainforest.

2. Gaze Across Lake Bunyonyi

A mystifying expanse of 29 islands makes up the freshwater lake located in the southwestern corner near the border of Rwanda.

3. Visit the Kasubi Tombs

The spiritual site has four kings of Buganda, referred to as kabakas, buried in remarkable thatched dome buildings.

4. Witness the Murchison Falls

In between Lake Kyoga and Lake Albert, the Nile dramatically shoots between a narrow opening of rocks to spill 141 ft down.

5. Take a Trip to Ssesse Islands

Eighty-four islands spread out across Lake Victoria and offer sublime white-sand beaches. The local economies are largely based on fishing, with daily catches available down on the docks.

1. Spot Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

The enormous 124 sq mi World Heritage Site has close to half of the world's critically endangered mountain gorillas roaming around the lush rainforest.

2. Gaze Across Lake Bunyonyi

A mystifying expanse of 29 islands makes up the freshwater lake located in the southwestern corner near the border of Rwanda.

3. Visit the Kasubi Tombs

The spiritual site has four kings of Buganda, referred to as kabakas, buried in remarkable thatched dome buildings.

4. Witness the Murchison Falls

In between Lake Kyoga and Lake Albert, the Nile dramatically shoots between a narrow opening of rocks to spill 141 ft down.

5. Take a Trip to Ssesse Islands

Eighty-four islands spread out across Lake Victoria and offer sublime white-sand beaches. The local economies are largely based on fishing, with daily catches available down on the docks.

When to visit Uganda

Uganda in April
Estimated hotel price
C$ 7
1 night at 3-star hotel
Uganda in April
Estimated hotel price
C$ 7
1 night at 3-star hotel

The temperate climate is best between June and September as the rain stays away and daily temperatures sit around 79-81°F.

How to Get to Uganda

Entry requirements

It is recommended to apply for a 30-day tourist visa, which costs roughly 185,700 UGX (50 USD), online before traveling; however, it is possible to obtain one upon arrival. Citizens from a small list of nations, including Hong Kong, Ireland, Singapore, and Zimbabwe, can visit visa-free for up to 3 months.

Plane

Carriers such as Qatar Airways, Emirates, and KLM help operate nonstop flights to Entebbe Airport from cities that include Johannesburg, Amsterdam, and Cairo. A non-stop 4h 30m service from Cairo can be purchased for approximately 1,115,000 UGX (310 USD).

Car

The most common border crossing from Kenya is through Busia, while many travelers from Rwanda pass through either Katuna or Cyanika. The smoothest route from Tanzania is along the western side of Lake Victoria (Masaka – Kakuto Road).

Bus

Direct buses can be caught from several cities in neighboring countries, including Kigali, Goma, Nairobi, and Juba. A fare for the 12h commute from Nairobi to Kampala costs roughly 80,000 UGX (21.50 USD) and can be taken overnight.

Entry requirements

It is recommended to apply for a 30-day tourist visa, which costs roughly 185,700 UGX (50 USD), online before traveling; however, it is possible to obtain one upon arrival. Citizens from a small list of nations, including Hong Kong, Ireland, Singapore, and Zimbabwe, can visit visa-free for up to 3 months.

Plane

Carriers such as Qatar Airways, Emirates, and KLM help operate nonstop flights to Entebbe Airport from cities that include Johannesburg, Amsterdam, and Cairo. A non-stop 4h 30m service from Cairo can be purchased for approximately 1,115,000 UGX (310 USD).

Car

The most common border crossing from Kenya is through Busia, while many travelers from Rwanda pass through either Katuna or Cyanika. The smoothest route from Tanzania is along the western side of Lake Victoria (Masaka – Kakuto Road).

Bus

Direct buses can be caught from several cities in neighboring countries, including Kigali, Goma, Nairobi, and Juba. A fare for the 12h commute from Nairobi to Kampala costs roughly 80,000 UGX (21.50 USD) and can be taken overnight.

Popular airports in Uganda

Popular airlines serving Uganda

Lufthansa
Good (4,704 reviews)
KLM
Good (832 reviews)
SWISS
Good (964 reviews)
British Airways
Good (4,682 reviews)
Delta
Good (4,546 reviews)
Turkish Airlines
Good (2,230 reviews)
Iberia
Good (1,611 reviews)
Air France
Good (985 reviews)
Emirates
Excellent (2,109 reviews)
United Airlines
Good (4,978 reviews)
Qatar Airways
Good (2,405 reviews)
Air Canada
Good (6,075 reviews)
Brussels Airlines
Good (228 reviews)
Finnair
Good (843 reviews)
Singapore Airlines
Excellent (932 reviews)
Alaska Airlines
Excellent (5,823 reviews)
Etihad Airways
Good (839 reviews)
Ethiopian Air
Good (413 reviews)
Egypt Air
Good (189 reviews)
Malaysia Airlines
Good (188 reviews)
Show more

Where to stay in Uganda

In addition to comfortable hotels in major cities, budget hostels can be found in Jinga, Kisoro, and Mbarara. Look for a Bed & Breakfast or cozy resort in the jungle if visiting the southwestern tourist region.

Where to stay in popular areas of Uganda

Most booked hotels in Uganda

2 Friends Beach Hotel
4 stars
Excellent (8.6, Excellent reviews)
C$ 137+
Best Western PREMIER Garden Hotel Entebbe
4 stars
Excellent (8.5, Excellent reviews)
C$ 190+
Fairway Hotel & Spa
4 stars
Excellent (8.4, Excellent reviews)
C$ 165+
Kampala Serena Hotel
5 stars
Excellent (9.6, Excellent reviews)
C$ 181+
Sheraton Kampala Hotel
4 stars
Excellent (8.1, Excellent reviews)
C$ 274+
Speke Resort and Conference Center
4 stars
Good (7.7, Good reviews)
C$ 291+

How to Get Around Uganda

Public Transportation

The easiest way to get around cities is in minibuses referred to as taxis. A trip from the airport to the centre of Kampala or across town is priced at approximately 37,000 UGX (10 USD).

Trains

It is possible to travel between Kampala and Namanve on one of the country's only railways. The trip takes around 45m and costs roughly 2,000 UGX (0.50 USD).

Bus

Direct services link Kampala to Kabale, Kasese, and Gulu, among others. Departure times are mostly followed in Kampala, though buses will wait until they reach capacity when leaving from smaller cities.

Plane

Aerolink Uganda and Eagle Air schedule domestic flights between cities that include Bugungy, Chobe, Kampala, Kisoro, Gulu, and Pakuba. The 1h service from Kampala to Bugungu costs roughly 984,2000 UGX (265 USD).

Public Transportation

The easiest way to get around cities is in minibuses referred to as taxis. A trip from the airport to the centre of Kampala or across town is priced at approximately 37,000 UGX (10 USD).

Trains

It is possible to travel between Kampala and Namanve on one of the country's only railways. The trip takes around 45m and costs roughly 2,000 UGX (0.50 USD).

Bus

Direct services link Kampala to Kabale, Kasese, and Gulu, among others. Departure times are mostly followed in Kampala, though buses will wait until they reach capacity when leaving from smaller cities.

Plane

Aerolink Uganda and Eagle Air schedule domestic flights between cities that include Bugungy, Chobe, Kampala, Kisoro, Gulu, and Pakuba. The 1h service from Kampala to Bugungu costs roughly 984,2000 UGX (265 USD).

The Cost of Living in Uganda

A three-course meal at an upscale restaurant can be bought for around 20,000-30,000 UGX (5.40-8 USD) per person. A bottle of water can cost around 1,000 UGX (0.30 USD), while a beer can be bought for less than 35,000 UGX (1 USD). Credit cards are rarely accepted outside of hotels.

Popular cities in Uganda