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Uganda Boat Excursions – Boat cruise safaris in Uganda

23/11/2023 202 Views
If you are planning any trip to Uganda soon or in the near future, ensure to put a boat excursion on any of the days. It is such a memorable encounter that you deserve not to miss at any point.

Sailing the waters of the Pearl of Africa with Beyond Remarkable Journeys. 

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Imagine missing a boat excursion safari during your trip to Uganda, what will you ever tell? Located in the Eastern part of the African continent and crossed by the equator is the beautiful country Uganda. This medium-sized country is home to multiple tourist attractions consisting of national parks, mountains, cultural sites, lakes and rivers. Uganda’s major and minor water bodies are the backbone of the country’s wildlife, plants and human beings. It is from these beautiful streams of waters that all life in Uganda and other parts of the continent finds its survival. Where would Uganda be, had it not been the existence of her water bodies! Almost three quarters of Uganda’s major water bodies offer splendid boat cruise excursions/boat cruise safaris. 

These safaris are usually combined with wildlife and cultural tours and thus make a wholesome beautiful Uganda safari package. However, if you are the kind of a person that likes sailing the waters, playing around with the waves and enjoying the breeze, it is high time you embarked on a Uganda boat trip. The boat cruise experiences in Uganda are characterized by spectacular views of animals, birds, rolling hills, to point out but a few. 

If you are planning any trip to Uganda soon or in the near future, ensure to put a boat excursion on any of the days. It is such a memorable encounter that you deserve not to miss at any point. 

Top Places do Boat excursions and Boat Cruise Safaris

For tourists and many other travelers in the world, knowing what to do is not the major problem always, but knowing where to do it from and when to do it can be a nightmare. Are you looking forward to doing a safari to East Africa and Uganda to be specific? The following paragraphs might be the only thing missing for you to start your journey. Hope you find them helpful.

  1. Lake Victoria Boat cruise safaris

Lake Victoria is the biggest Lake in Uganda and Africa at large. Whereas this Lake has quite a number of tributaries such as River Mara, River Kagera, River Yala, River Nyando, River Bukora and River Katonga, River Nile is the only river that flows out of Lake Victoria. Little wonder, it is the longest river in the world. 

Lake Victoria is shared by three countries that is Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania. Having a boat cruise on this amazing lake gives you a memorable experience. 

What to expect during Lake Victoria Boat excursions

  • Visit Ssese Island beaches

We cannot talk about all the islands of Lake Victoria since there are many but Ssese Island is outstanding. Comprising wonderful beaches, Ssese Island shapes Lake Victoria’s beauty for all kinds of travelers. Solo travelers, backpackers, honeymooners, researchers, name it. They all gather at this amazing Island for remarkable experiences. On this Island, activities such as swimming, fishing and beach soccer are carried out. During your Lake Victoria boat cruise safari, spending time on one of the lodges would not be a wasted time. 

  • Visiting Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary on a boat cruise 

Ngamba Island is a project of the Chimpanzees Sanctuary and Wildlife Conservation Trust (CSWCT) which was established in 1997. The reason for its establishment was to act as an orphanage for chimpanzees. Currently the island provides a home to over 40 orphaned chimpanzees. The chimpanzees are taken care of until they are mature enough to survive on their own in their natural habitats. This project has played a bigger part in educating visitors and communities about conserving nature, especially the endangered species such as chimpanzees. 

Visiting this site during your Lake Victoria boat trip can give you an opportunity to have a glimpse of chimpanzees. This becomes the best experience for travelers who may not need to do chimpanzee trekking in Kibale national park or Kyambura Gorge in Queen Elizabeth national park or even Budongo Forest. 

Additionally, the forest is full of multiple bird species some of which are rift valley endemics and can be found nowhere else in the world.

  • Experience at Uganda Wildlife Education Center (UWEC)

This is a small destination near Entebbe international airport which is a home to almost all species of Uganda. Be it snakes, lizards, crocodiles, lions, giraffes, elephants, zebras, Ankole long-horned cows, tigers, leopards, mountain gorillas, to mention but a few. This is a zoo from where you can get a chance of seeing all these species at a lower cost in terms of money and time. Unlike in their natural habitats where you struggle to see them.

During your Lake Victoria boat trip, it is good that you spare some time and visit this amazing site. It is cheap in terms of money but not experience.  

  • Visit Mabamba swamp on a Boat cruise 

One of Lake Victoria’s major tourist attractions is the magical Mabamba wetland. The island is spectacular in a way that it blesses travelers with special experiences including views of multiple bird species, butterflies, Sitatunga and several fish species. You can as well visit the craft shop there for an additional memorial experience. All these are proof that your boat trips in Uganda are not just a walk on the waters. 

While on Mabamba wetland, you can be part of the spectacular spot fishing and grab yourself one of Lake Victoria’s fish species. You will enjoy the activity as you land on a Tilapia, mudfish, lungfish and the large Nile Perch. All these are the reasons why the local communities are still surviving economically. If you are an expert in spot fishing, you may come with your own equipment but do not worry if you have not carried one, you may use the ones for the fishermen around or use a basket. 

Spare some time and participate in a village walk and learn more about Lake Victoria. During the walk, you will get an opportunity of having an interaction with the locals whose hospitality, artworks and stories turn moments into memories. 

  1. Murchison falls national park Boat cruise safaris

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Deep in the northwestern parts of Uganda lies the world’s strongest waterfalls – the Murchison falls. These falls have been here since time immemorial and they do attract thousands of travelers from all corners of the world. No scientist or topologist has ever discovered the magical movement of the long and big river Nile getting through a gorge of such a small size.

Down the waterfalls, different companies provide boat cruise and excursion services. This is where your Uganda water experience becomes special with boat cruises starting from the Nile Delta stretching towards Lake Albert. Boat cruises in Murchison falls national park take four to five hours both in the morning and in the afternoon. Morning boat cruises in Murchison falls national park start at 9:00 am while the afternoon sessions begin at 2:00pm. All the sessions provide spectacular views of water animals such as crocodiles and hippopotamuses. 

  1. Kazinga Channel Boat cruise safaris

Many people wonder why we say that Uganda has the best boat cruise safaris. Different water bodies have different water experiences. This is why you should experience the waters of Kazinga Channel differently. Kazinga Channel is the water body that connects Lake George to Lake Edward. It is part of the popular Queen Elizabeth national park, particularly the Kasenyi sector. 

Having a boat excursion on Kazinga channel introduces you to multiple animal species such as hippos, elephants, buffaloes, zebras, warthogs, antelopes, to mention but a few. 

Boat trips on Kazinga Channel take place both in the morning or afternoon. If you are someone who is passionate about birding, Kazinga Channel should be part of your plan since it offers great views of hundreds of bird species, some of which are restricted to the areas. Some of the birds found at Kazinga Channel Include but not limited to the following; kingfishers, African shoebills, yellow billed stork, African skimmer, falcons, saddle bill stork, black great white and pink backed pelicans, open billed stork, black crake, great and long tailed cormorants, darters and  jacana. 

  1. Lake Mburo Boat cruise safaris

Lake Mburo national park is the smallest national park in Uganda. However, do not be mistaken, its size has nothing to do with what the park offers. It is currently the only national park offering horse riding safaris in Uganda.  Lake Mburo national park is also famous for the large numbers of zebras and the Ankole longhorn cows owned by the locals make the park a prime destination. When we talk of birding, talk about Lake Mburo since it has some of the elusive and rift valley endemic bird species. 

Having a Boat cruise on Lake Mburo national park will introduce you to hippopotamuses, crocodiles, zebras, giraffes, warthogs, to mention but a few. Boat trips at Lake Mburo start from 9:00am in the morning or 2:00pm in the afternoon and last for 2 to 3 hours. 

  1. Lake Bunyonyi Boat cruise safaris

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Located in western Uganda in Kabale district, Lake Bunyonyi is one of the best places one can have a boat trip with a memorable experience. This is the deepest Lake in Uganda and was named after a bird as the name Bunyonyi means small birds in the local language. The lake offers amazing boat experiences characterized by views of the many islands and the rolling hills of Kabale and Kisoro. 

Boat safaris on Lake Bunyonyi provide travelers with a chance to interact with the local members of the community. This means enjoying local foods, beers, coffee and learning about their ways of life such as hunting and crop cultivation using simple tools. 

  1. Lake Mutanda Boat cruise safaris

Small as it may be, Lake Mutanda offers one of the best boat excursions in Uganda. The lake is located in the western part of the country – Kisoro district. Boat trips on Lake Mutanda are best done in the morning hours since the waters are always cool and calm. They provide scenic views of the surrounding areas such as mountains, rolling hills, plantations, etc. 

  1. The source of River Nile – Jinja boat cruise 

Boat trips in Uganda are incomplete without visiting the Source of the Nile. We are talking about the source of the longest river in the world. The uniqueness of Jinja city is itself unimaginable. 

Embarking on a Nile midday cruise or Nile sunset cruise will give you an opportunity to turn moments into memories. Imagine watching the beautiful sun rays being reflected in the fresh waters of the Nile as the sun sets. This is the moment where you can take a beautiful picture which will always remind you of your trip. Such pictures can easily be turned into portraits and displayed in the living room or bedroom. 

Leisure Boat cruise safaris in Uganda

  • Sunset cruises

  • Cheese and Wine cruises

  • Private and Specialist excursions

  • Bird watching excursions

  • Fishing safaris 

What to carry for a Uganda Boat cruise / Boat excursion trip

  • Sunglasses

  • A pair of shorts

  • Simple / easy open shoes

  • Camera 

  • Spare battery for your camera

  • Light clothes with shining colors or white 

  • A smart phone 

  • Gadgets that do not easily get destroyed by water

Frequently Asked Questions about boat cruise excursions / Boat cruise safaris in Uganda.

  1. Can I do a boat trip when I do not know how to swim?

Yes, boat cruises in Uganda do not require any professional experiences unless it is a self-ride. This is because the captains are well trained and knowledgeable. 

  1. What will I see mostly during my boat trip?

Birds, hills, mountains, forests, plantations, people and animals

  1. Is it possible to come with a wheelchair for a boat trip to Uganda?

It all depends on the size of the boat and the number of people it can contain. Remember, sailing on the waters requires a certain degree of weight. Get in touch with your tour operator so that you confirm whether wheelchairs are allowed on a boat cruise in Uganda

  1. Can I bring my dog / pet during a boat safari to Uganda?

For some destinations you may be allowed but protected areas such as national parks, entering with pets in prohibited. Remember some of the boat cruises take place inside the national parks for example Kazinga channel boat trips happen within Queen Elizabeth national park. 

  1. Do you serve food on a boat cruise?

Depending on how you have planned your trip, food can be served during the boat cruise. Usually, drinks such as wines and coffee are the ones served on the boat cruise. 

  1. Does the boat trip continue even if it rains?

In Uganda, captains are usually equipped with daily weather forecasts. This implies that only heavy rains with storms can stop a boat trip from taking place. 

  1. Does the boat have a roof?

Yes, many boats have roofs to protect sailors from direct sun rays and rain during the trip. 

  1. Where do I park my vehicle when going for a boat cruise in Uganda?

All landing sites have enough parking for visitors. Do not get stranded with your vehicle. 

  1. Can the boat come back for me in case I delay reporting to the station?  

It is difficult for a boat to return for anybody once it has set off. Unless it is hired privately but you may incur additional costs. 

  1. What is the best time to arrive for a boat cruise?

It is good to read your itinerary carefully otherwise, you will miss your boat cruise even when you have paid for it. The best way to avoid this is arriving 30 minutes earlier than the stipulated time. 

Conclusion 

A safari to Uganda is incomplete without a boat cruise / boat excursions. You do not have to have them all at once but including one or two on your Uganda safari makes it a remarkable experience. Now that you are everywhere you want to be regarding Uganda Boat safaris, Book yours Now and get an extra-ordinary safari experience.
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