Safety Precautions for Tourists Visiting Uganda

These are some personal security and safety tips for staying safe and secure in Uganda. Uganda is the safest countries in Africa. This country might even be safer than your country of origin most especially if you are on safari. You will find much information on various websites as regards how safe Uganda is for travel. The websites are outdated and don’t understand the current state in the pearl of Africa. This country is also one of the friendliest countries in Africa. There are no terrorist attacks in this Uganda.

You should never act lost even though you are actually lost. This might sound a bit funny but when you act and look lost, they make themselves very vulnerable and a great target to the thieves. In case you are lost, always a police officer or go into a shop and ask for the directions. The other option is to jump on a boda Boda Motorcycle Taxi and then have them take you to your final destination. These thieves also look in any town in Kampala for the people who seem lost, disoriented and in case you are lost, act as if you know where you are going. You can also ask the right people and you will be helped and be fine.

Always remember to keep your jewelry at home; take the inexpensive jewelry with you. The gold chains and the jewelry can be torn from you. Avoid the expensive watches and in case you are wearing one. Have one preferably with a leather strap bag that can be tightened and safely worn. Get chance to buy some of the local products and support the local artisan and their families and you will safe keep your expensive items at home and at the same time that makes a difference in Uganda through your purchase of the local hand crafted items.

Remember to keep your money out of sight; it’s better to carry your money in the front pocket where you can be able to put your hands over it and not in a back pack were it can easily be stolen. Don’t put on belted packs for money and valuables that are worn on the outside of your garments. Always don’t flash money, pull out what you need and pay and never carry large amounts with you. Leave the much money and the valuables in your hotel safe box.

Always don’t carry your passport on you. In case of anything, make a copy of it and leave the original in the hotel to be safe. In case you are going for the safari, keep all the things in a small back pack that you can easily carry with you. Even though you are going for the game drive, always carry the back pack with you.

Always protect your photographic equipments. Keep these in the bag and strap it to yourself. Ad when taking pictures, hold it with hands and roll strap around your hands so no one can take it from you. Never put the camera over the shoulder on a strap, the same with the binoculars if you should take them into town.

Protection of your mobile cell phone is so important; keep your mobile cell phone in your pocket and don’t carry it in your hands. In case you carry it in your hands, someone might tale a cigarette burn your hand and you drop the phone when pain strikes and its gone. Don’t put ii on the table in the restaurant or bar since again someone might just come and grab it. The mobile phones are stolen on a daily basis in Uganda so you need to hold it tightly. This is the most common thefts in the country. The smart phones are the most sought after by the thieves and they will steal them in a restaurant.

Mind yourself when walking at night; keep it to a minimum and its usually safe on a crowded street, and its best to be with a Ugandan or someone who knows the country and anyways. Don’t walk alone in most of the neighborhoods to be on the safe side.  It’s always not common to rob a visit in Uganda but it’s better to be wise and smart to avoid walking at night in a place, town that you don’t know.

About visiting the slums; the slums in Kampala happen to a place of misery and you can find a few people who wouldn’t have the best intentions in mind when it comes to dealing with you. Most of these people that live in the slum don’t like it but it’s due to the circumstances of life. Visiting these slums is not advised unless you are visiting a school, an NGO, a charitable organization like an orphanage.

About the gay travels in Uganda; recently the anti gay bill was passed and 97% of the Ugandans concurred with the decision. The country has been in the news for many years about the anti-gay bill and it had an impact on Uganda’s image in the world even though it is one of 38 African countries and over 80 worldwide with strong anti-gay laws. This also means that the guy people are welcome to Uganda as long as they keep the culture and traditions of the country up.

Any woman traveling on her own is quite safe and in Uganda, a no to some flirting by the men will usually stop any further irritations. You can be proposed to and take it as a compliment and a firm no thanks will work well. In case you travel with us, you will surely be safe as a women.

You need to use some common sense at times. Most times, you need to keep aware and watch each other. Always think if you would do what you want to do at home, then don’t do it here in Uganda. Also keep your guard up when on your own along with common sense. Many of the visitors love their time in Uganda and so will you, along with some practical common sense. Your basic natures will keep you safe and sound in Uganda, common sense can be your only guide.

The self-drive tours in Uganda; in case you want to rent a vehicle in Uganda and drive yourself, our great advice is you to forget it because Uganda has got the second highest accident rate in Africa. The country has got many international traffic laws, but the problem is that not everyone follows them this means that you leave the driving to professional guides who are used to these roads.

When using public transport; always avoid eating from the buses especially from the strangers since most of these are thieves. Even the US Embassy advises against taking food or drinks on bus. You are probably mush safer taking the roadside food being offered as the bus pulls over for the pits stops or the fuel. The buses are also involved in simply bad accidents in Uganda due to the high speeds that they travel at.

Having a night out in Kampala; going out in Kampala is usually safer and always keep your drink close to you and watch that no one puts something in it.  There are always incidents where people have been robbed after being drugged in a bar where they were enjoying from the night life in Kampala. The tourists in Uganda are much safer since tour companies put in much efforts in protecting them. You will also find much information on internet about the safety in Uganda.

5 Essential Tips to Successful Gorilla Trekking in Uganda

To many visitors, gorilla trekking in Uganda is not easy as compared to the activity done in the Virunga Region. This is largely due to the terrain. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is characterised with many hills and valleys. The hike to the gorillas involves several climbs and sloping! For those who are preparing to carry out a gorilla trek in Uganda, below are some of the vital points that apply.

Before the gorilla trek

There is only a maximum of only 8 people that are also allowed to visit a give group of the habituated gorillas per day. This also helps in reducing the exposure to human borne diseases. Also wash your hands before going into the forest to track the gorillas.

Along the way to tracking the gorillas.

As you are in the forest, keep your voices low so that you avoid scaring away the mountain gorillas and many other animal species. You shouldn’t leave rubbish in the forest, whether you come with into the forest should be carried back with you when you are leaving, the ranger will also be able to take you where the gorillas were the previous day and from here you will be able to follow the trail. Also as soon as you meet the gorillas, the guide will give you an alert to get ready for the activity.

When you are with the mountain gorillas.

You also keep a distance of about 7 to 9 m away from the gorillas so that to make them feel relaxed, when you face the gorillas, you must also stay in a group and always don’t stay alone in order to avoid risking, you also have to keep you voice down as you can but don’t fear of asking the guides questions you feel like, you are also not allowed to smoke, drink or eat when with the gorillas, this could also increase the risk of transmitting diseases.

You must follow the instructions of the guide when with the gorillas. When the gorillas charge, just squat down and then avoid looking directly into its eyes, you are also not supposed to use Flash camera when taking photos and remember to move slowly and carefully to avoid irritating the gorillas. You are also not allowed to touch the gorillas since they are wild animals, you are also only allowed 1 hour with the gorillas as you observe their behavior and taking the photos. You should also keep your voices down and 200m away from the gorillas.

The General health Rules:

Try to respect the time limit for the tourists to spend the mountain gorillas and this will also help in limiting the risk of transmitting the diseases, avoid going for the trek when sick, always keep a distance of about 7m from the gorillas, and you shouldn’t leave rubbish in the forest

Congo Gorilla Permit Discount Extended Through 2018

In the interest of tourists and all gorilla fans, one gorilla permit costs only $200 in low seasons giving back $200 to every tourist who chose to track gorillas in Congo. Gorilla permits in Congo cost $400 but are discounted from mid-March to mid may or Mid October–Mid November as a way of boosting gorilla tourism in the country. Congo is a home to both low land and mountain gorillas so the choice is yours to decide where to the trek and which type of gorillas to see. Congo gorilla safaris are the best for any one travelling on budget and Virunga National Park and Kahuzi Biega National park are always open for any one above fifteen years provided they have reserved their trekking gorilla permits a gate pass to the forested jungle home of gorillas. The Big thanks goes to the conservationists who protect and fight for the lives of the endangered primates.

If you are a big fun of gorillas why not reserve your gorilla permit earlier and experience the wonderful life of primates in the jungle, save big and carry home memories. Booking a Congo gorilla permit doesn’t need your presence; just dedicate all the responsibility to a tour agent in charge of your safari tour. One needs just 2-3 days to track gorillas in Congo in either Virunga National Park or Kahuzi Biega National Park. However, if you planning to track gorillas in Congo in any other month of the year, a gorilla permit costs only $400 dollars.

Congo Gorilla Safari Essentials

On top of that tracking gorillas in Congo requires a few essentials that make it worth for one to enter the country and enjoy his or her vacation without any inconveniences. Among these essentials is the Congo tourist Visa, Accommodation, transport and choosing a right travel agent.

Congo Tourist Visa

Every tourist to Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) needs a tourist visa to enter the country. However, there are some must have visa requirements to qualify for a tourist visa in Congo. Gorilla trekking permit or volcano hiking permit, or a confirmed tour itinerary and accommodation booking. With all the above mention in place it’s very easy to secure a tourist visa in Congo. Once you have all your trip essentials booked with a confirmation of your payments, then you can proceed with online visa processing.

Trip Accommodation and Transport

When planning to track gorillas in Congo, better to choose among Rwanda Gisenyi accommodation because they are affordable and cost friendly and give visitors a chance to stay in a place in line with their budget as planned. Am not saying staying in Congo is bad but Congo accommodation facilities are limited and quite expensive compared to those in Rwanda. When you book a private gorilla safari to Congo, no need to worry about transport and accommodation because tour constants and experts organize it all.

Book Budget Gorilla Treks in Uganda from US$900

Uganda doesn’t have lots of mountains but the hilly vegetation of rain forests make it the best gorilla safari destination in the world. Though it shares mountain gorillas with Rwanda and Congo still Uganda has the highest population half of the entire population living on the planet with even appealing gorilla permit prices all year. Looking at holiday package prices, Uganda gorilla treks have value for money in every aspect, accommodation, gorilla permits and transport. Even in the peak season months Uganda gorilla permits cost only $600 dollars. The fact is that you book your gorilla safari tour with budget safari experts who have plenty of budget trip options including backpacking. Uganda serves as the best budget safari country in Africa so visitors find it cheap and affordable in all aspects. Those planning to track mountain gorillas on budget, you can only enjoy every moment of your stay and experience the best in either Mgahinga Gorilla National Park or Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.

Mgahinga Forest National Park

The most famous mountain gorilla park to see gorillas, golden monkeys and also hike the volcanoes. To the fit and experienced hikers this is your place to be because it offers too much beyond your imagination. The gorillas are wonderful and the way up towards them is a real experience. It’s a difficult trail for the sick and un fit though it’s something you wouldn’t have to miss on your trip to Uganda. The guides are excellent, and ensure that you have the most awesome gorilla trekking experience. Believing in what they are doing makes the trek more fantastic. Seeing the magnificent gorillas is an experience of life and spending an hour with them, watching their interactions with each other and with the silver backs is a dream comes true in just hour duration. The baby gorilla games around trees make it even more fun and priceless. However, would recommend an overnight stay in a lodge near the park entrance so that life is very easy as you get started.

Bwindi Forest National Park

The park is beautiful today, tomorrow and forever something that can’t fade out even after a number of years. So why not go gorilla trekking in Bwindi forest and have an amazing day seeing the fabulous mountain gorillas that live in all the four park sectors- Ruhija, Buhoma, Nkuringo and Rushaga. The gorillas look much bigger than all the other primates you might have seen in other wild conservation areas. Gorillas are not shy to be close to people and the big thanks goes to gorilla doctors and conservationists who dedicate time to habituate the primates. Still the guides and porters are great all the time making extremely amazing. During the trek, you will feel how guides love their job and every forest habitant that they come across giving enough memories even before the main day encounter. Bwindi Forest National Park is the best budget gorilla safari park with easy access, cheap accommodation, cost friendly permits and lots of things. However, the time is now to explore the beautiful protected areas of Bwindi and Mgahinga on a budget gorilla trek.