Place To Visit: Reptile Village Entebbe, Uganda

 

There is a little place hidden straight off the Kampala- Entebbe highway that only the brave dare go to, a place filled with things that the brave love frolicking with. With lush green gardens, you will not expect to be jumped at by something that has been supposedly man’s enemy for generations and generations of the human lifespan.  

It is the Uganda Reptile Village, a place that you would not expect to go for a holiday in Uganda, yet one of the most thrilling places to spend a whole day learning about these misunderstood creatures that usually stay hidden or when seen they incite a terror in most human beings. The founders of the village state that their main objective was to educate people about reptiles and at the same time have a habitat where they can learn about the many different species that can be found in the country.

The village was established in between 2002 by Yasin Kazibwe a Reptile Expert who is also reported to have rescued close to 38 different species of snakes that he relocated to the habitat between 2003 to 2008. Mr. Kazibwe also wrote a “Snake bite” guide book and made a number of reptile documentaries.  

At the village you will be sure to find a number of reptiles indigenous to Uganda such as; snakes, chameleon, tortoises, monitor lizards and of course the crocodiles. The are all kept in their respectives cages with the crocodile enclosed in a huge pond and like most African countries, anytime snakes or crocodiles are found they are either captured or killed and this village provides a safe haven for this poor creature.

Most of the reptiles found on the grounds are mostly rescued from near death and brought to the village to be taken care of. It is even more interesting when you see the several chameleon species in a cage changing colours as they crawl around their home, such a beautiful sight to behold. 

When there almost everyone rushes to the snake section, even when you have a fear of the reptiles you will want to see them out of curiosity and there is a big chance of petting a python and the peaceful tortoises that are children favourites at the village. 

The village will kill your fear of reptiles especially snakes with educational tidbits given by caretakers during the visits about what the animals are and about their nature. The best part about this tour is it is something you do not expect to do, but you will find yourself enjoying the every little information that you did not know about some of the species of reptiles that we have in Uganda, you will be shocked to know that not all snakes are killer snakes.

They have one called the egg eating snake that is non venomous and solely eats eggs and at the same time you will find the beautiful three horned chameleon. The village can be found 3km from the main road and hotels  away from Entebbe town.

 About Jovago

Jovago.com is an online hotel booking service with offices in Kampala (Uganda) Lagos (Nigeria), Nairobi (Kenya) and Dakar (Senegal) founded by Africa Internet Group and has MTN and Millicom as its investors. Jovago.com, Africa’s No.1 booking portal, facilitates the booking process for its users to provide them with the best hotel booking experience with fast, transparent and easy-to-use services. Jovago.com has over 25,000 local hotel listings across Africa and over 200,000 hotels around the world.

 

 

Landmarks That Define Uganda’s Capital Kampala

 

Kampala being the capital city of Uganda is not really the destination most tourists aim for when they visit the country, but it has many beautiful gems that are scattered all over the hills that surround the city. Like in most cities when visiting for the first time, you will need a tour guide to take you around the city. So here are some of Jovago’s most recommended places to visit around Kampala.

The Baha’i Temple

Located up the beautiful green hill of Kikaaya, the temple is a calming and peaceful place to visit. You can get a taxi from the old taxi park in the city center that can drop you right at the entrance of the Temple, you could also use a cab or a boda boda (motorbike) when travelling there. 

Kasubi Tombs

In Kasubi up the drive on Masiro road, is the final sleeping place of some of the Sekabakas (Kings) of the Buganda Kingdom. It is a place rich in history for one of the biggest kingdoms in Uganda and provides a bigger understanding of how the people lived at that time. It is important to note that ladies have to carry wrappers if they are wearing trousers or they will be availed at the site. 

Namirembe Cathedral

With a full view of the rest of the city, Saint Paul Cathedral in Namirembe is a sight to behold. It serves as the main office of the protestants and is the oldest church structure in Uganda, built in 1919. With beautiful architecture that is reminiscent of the 19th century, the church looks like a guardian angel watching over the city.

Owino Market

Owino is located in the city center on the lower side of the city next to Nakivubo stadium, it is the biggest market in Kampala and the best for an ardent shopper looking for unique pieces around Kampala. You have to be good at haggling to get something at a fair price.  

Gaddafi Mosque

Also known as the Uganda National Mosque, it is the largest mosque in Uganda and can accommodate over 15,000 people. It was commissioned in 2006 by the late Colonel Muammar Gaddafi of Libya as a gift to the Muslim faithfuls in Uganda. The mosque is currently the head office of the Uganda Muslim Council.

Lubiri Palace

The palace located in Mengo is the official royal headquarters of the Buganda kingdom where the royal throne sits, the original palace was destroyed in 1966 during a power struggle between the then Prime Minister Milton Obote and Kabaka Muteesa who was the President of Uganda at that time. As with all the cultural landmarks in Uganda, you are advised to adhere by the cultural demands of decency and respect. 

Lake Victoria

Located in the South of the city, Lake Victoria is a vast water body that covers three East African countries; Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania. The lake is also the biggest of its kind in Africa with many islands that are filled with beautiful lodges and hotels. 

About Jovago

Jovago.com is an online hotel booking service with offices in Lagos (Nigeria), Nairobi (Kenya) and Dakar (Senegal) founded by Africa Internet Group and has MTN and Millicom as its investors. Jovago.com, Africa’s No.1 booking portal, facilitates the booking process for its users to provide them with the best hotel booking experience with fast, transparent and easy-to-use services. Jovago.com has over 25,000 local hotel listings across Africa and over 200,000 hotels around the world.

 

 

 

With Over 1,000 Species, Uganda Is A Bird Paradise

 

There are over 10, 000 bird species in the world according to BirdLife International and of those 1,000 species can be found in Uganda not counting the other species that have not been yet discovered. Birds are wondrous creatures that can be found anywhere in the world, but each location has species that are meant for the environment they are.

Uganda being in the tropics has a variety of bird species that can be viewed from anywhere, it does not matter if you are in Kampala where buildings are competing with the skyline, you will still hear birds chirping away in the distance singing songs so beautiful you need to pause to listen.

Apart from seeing the birds all over Kampala, there are so many other places that have rare birds all over Uganda that you can go see, here are our major bird reserve recommendations. Even better, Jovago has hotels in all the major bird watching areas in Uganda so all your hospitality needs within the parks and outside the reserves are well taken care of.

Entebbe Botanical Gardens;

Right off the Entebbe- Kampala highway in the heart of Entebbe you will find a beautifully landscaped area covered with trees till the lake and as you walk through the trees you will find a number of  vervet monkeys in the trees or just walking on the grounds. Carry binoculars to identify a number of the birds that are relative to the Ugandan environment but mostly you will find; Great Blue and Ross’s turacos.

Others are Klaas’s and Diederik Cuckoos , Woodland Kingfisher , Broad-billed Roller ,Black and white casqued hornbill and starling, African Fish eagle and Eastern Grey Plantain-eater, Hadada Ibis and Hooded Vultures, Shikra , Lizard buzzard , Long-crested eagle , Grey kestrel, Black Crake, Blue-cheeked Bee eater, Angola swallow , winding and red faced cisticolas , Grey capped warbler, common wattle-eye , and Green- throated and scarlet-chested Sunbirds.  

Mabira Forest;

The thick forest cover along Kampala- Jinja highway is home to over 315 including unrecorded rare bird species throughout and offers a variable bird list to any bird enthusiast. Mabira forest is also the best place to start your bird tour in Uganda and while there you will be able to see species such as; Yellow White-eye, White-shouldered Titi and African Dusky Flycatcher.

Others are Hairy-breasted Barbet, Barn Swallow, Speckled Tinkerbird, Collared Sunbird, Little Green Sunbird, Yellow-throated Tinkerbird, Yellow-billed Kite (sighted in flight over the forest), Bocage Bush Shrike (Grey-green Bush-shrike), Hooded Vulture, Red-capped Robin Chat, Ashy Flycatcher, African Shrike Flycatcher, Grey-backed Camaroptera and Red-billed Paradise Flycatcher.

You can also see African Harrier Hawk, Great Blue Turaco, Yellow-mantled Weaver, Black-and-white Mannkin, Slender-billed Greenbul, Weyn's Weaver, White-throated Greenbul, Grey-headed Nigrofinch, Viellots Black Weaver, Red-chested Cuckoo, Buff-throated Apalis, Brown-throated Wattle-eye, Chestnut Wattle-eye, Jameson's Wattle-eye, Red-bellied Paradise Flycatcher, African Blue Flycatcher among many others.

Bodongo Forest Reserve;

This expansive mixture of tropical tree species is a true bird paradise is one of Uganda’s biggest forest reserves with over 360 bird species with 22 species that can only be found in that very area such as; Puvel’s Illadopsis, Nahan’s Francolin, and the Chocolate–Backed Kingfisher, White-headed Saw-wing, White Wagtail and Black-eared Ground-Thrush.

Others are Little Crake, Yellow-billed Barbet, Chestnut-capped Flycatcher, African Paradise Flycatcher, Chin-spot Batis, Grey-backed Camaroptera, Lemon-bellied Crombec, African Moustached Warbler, Green-backed Eremomela, Yellow-throated Greenbul, African Citril, African Golden-breasted Bunting, Black-crowned Waxbill. Be sure to even more endangered species all over the reserve. 

Mount Elgon

Mount Elgon is located in the eastern part of Uganda has thick forests with a up to 300 species. The park harbours 43 of the 144 species of the Guinea–Congo Forests biome and 56 of the 88 species of Afrotropical highland biome that occur in Uganda with some isolated records of the near-threatened species, the Taita Falcon. Mount Elgon represents a range limit of some species or races that occur in the highlands of Kenya and northern Tanzania, such as Hunter’s Cisticola and Jackson's Francolin.

You can find the; Cape Robin, Blue-shouldered Robin-Chat, Little Rock-Thrush, Northern Anteater C, Nightingale, Spotted Morning-Thrush, Mountain Yellow Warbler, African Reed Warbler, Little Rush Warbler, Upchers Warbler, Blackcap, Common Whitethroat, Common Chiffchaff, the Uganda and Brown Woodland Warblers, Green Hylia, White-browed Crombec, Yellow-bellied Hyliota, the Stout, Thrilling, and Rattling Cisticolas. Chances of seeing the Banded Prinia, Chestnut-throated Apalis, Northern Double-collared Sunbird, Grey-headed Sunbird among several others. 

Semuliki National Park;

This park has a large number of mostly Central African bird species that are not easily sighted in the rest of East Africa such as; Savanna biome, Piapiac, Red-throated Bee-eater,and Purple Glossy-starling, Blue Swallow, White-throated Blue Swallow, Swamp Palm Bulbul, Spotted Greenbul, White-starred Robin, Lowland Akalat, Red-throated Alethe and Fire-crested Alethe.

Others are Snowy-headed Robin-Chat, Blue-shouldered Robin-Chat, Red-eyed Puffback, White-tailed Robin-Chat, Northern Bearded Scrub-Robin, Capped Wheatear, Common Stonechat, Abyssinian Ground-Thrush, Oberlaender Ground-Thrush, Grey Ground-Thrush, Little Grey Greenbul, Toro Olive Greenbul, Mountain Greenbul, Yellow-throated Nicator, Western Nicator, Purple-throated Cuckoo-shrike, Petit’s Cuckoo-shrike, Black Saw-wing, Eurasian Oystercatcher, Long-tailed Hawk. 

About Jovago

Jovago.com is an online hotel booking service with offices in Kampala (Uganda) Lagos (Nigeria), Nairobi (Kenya) and Dakar (Senegal) founded by Africa Internet Group and has MTN and Millicom as its investors. Jovago.com, Africa’s No.1 booking portal, facilitates the booking process for its users to provide them with the best hotel booking experience with fast, transparent and easy-to-use services. Jovago.com has over 25,000 local hotel listings across Africa and over 200,000 hotels around the world.

 

Ruparelia Group Is Best Tourism Investor

The Ruparelia Group emerged best tourism investor 2015 at the Ekkula Pearl of Africa Tourism Awards recently at Hotel Africana. The Ekkula Tourism Awards recognized and awarded people that selflessly put Uganda’s tourism to better heights.

The Ruparelia Group, started by The Group’s Chairman, Dr. Sudhir Ruparelia, has business interests in banking, insurance, hospitality, conventions and hospitality, entertainment, education, real estate and floriculture. These establishments have made Sudhir one of the most adored entrepreneurs in Uganda.

However the Ekkula tourism award comes as recognition for investments that directly went into supporting the country’s flourishing tourism industry. The Ruparelia Group owns a number of hotels, resorts and entertainment centers.

These include Kabira Country Club, Speke Hotel, Speke Apartments, Speke Resort and Conference Centre, Munyonyo Commonwealth Resort, Dolphin Suites, Tourist Hotel, Forest Cottages and Speke Resort Bujagali Fall.

 "We have a commitment to make Uganda a global brand. Our contribution is by putting in place amenities that make stand out. Our hotels are world class because we believe that Uganda has a lot to offer to the world. We want people who come to visit Uganda to go back and tell a good story so that other people can come to see Uganda.

Getting such recognition from Ekkula Tourism Awards organizers is a great incentive and encourages us to even work harder to market Uganda. We shall continue to invest in the tourism industry because it has the potential and we want to see that potential grow. We are going to do more great things for tourism in Uganda.” explained Rajiv Ruparelia, Director Ruparelia Group.

The Group offers the ultimate in luxury accommodation, leisure facilities and the finest conference and business meeting venues in Uganda, along with related businesses including a rafting company and a radio station that has for years rocked the airwaves in Uganda.

All Ruparelia Group hotels and resorts are situated in the most strategic locations and offer an array of luxury services, intense hospitality, modern amenities and business facilities.

Testament to the good investment job done by Ruparelia Group, Speke Resort and Conference Centre, one of the hotels owned by the Group, won the Ekkula Tourism Award for Best Service Standard Luxury Hotel 2015.

Speke Resort Munyonyo is among the few 5 star hotels in Kampala, Uganda offering the ultimate in luxury accommodation, leisure facilities, finest conference and business meetings. The resort is situated in an idyllic setting in Munyonyo, 30 minutes away from Kampala City- the capital of Uganda, and by the shores of Lake Victoria, you will enjoy our Olympic size swimming pool, equestrian centre, 5 star restaurants, gymnasium and all the hotel sports facilities.

Speke Resort & Conference Centre Munyonyo offers 10 state-of-the-art conference rooms including a 1,000-seat ballroom and 9 multi-functional meeting rooms that accommodate groups of 10-300 people.

Speke Resort Munyonyo Voted Best Hotel At Tourism Awards

 

Speke Resort & Conference Centre Munyonyo emerged as the Best Service/Luxury Standard Hotel in Uganda fending off competition from Sheraton Hotel, Serena Hotel and Imperial Royale Hotel.

The award came at the inaugural Ekkula Pearl of Africa Tourism Awards which took place at Hotel Africana on Friday. The awards recognized individuals and personalities in the tourism sector.

Speaking upon receiving the award, Greg Petzer, the General Manager of Speke Resort Munyonyo, said it was a great honor to be recognized as hotel with the best services and standards in the whole country.

He said they will continue reviewing standards to meet the market needs and make Uganda the best tourism destination. “We are extremely proud for the recognition,” he acknowledged.

“As a team, we work very hard to meet the expectations of our quests. By winning this award it means we are doing something right but we are not going to seat on our laurels; instead we are going to work extra hard and continue being the best.” Petzer said in an interview.

Speke Resort Munyonyo is a 5 star hotel located 12 km from Uganda's capital Kampala. The hotel offers the ultimate in luxury accommodation, leisure facilities, the finest conference and business meeting location in East Africa.

The Resort has 59 Presidential suites with a unique blend of traditional Ugandan décor, furnishings, cottages, apartments and studio rooms. The hotel has a total of 335 rooms.

Speke Resort Munyonyo was built in 2001 and accommodated the visiting Presidents and Prime Ministers at the 2007 Commonwealth Conference (CHOGM).

The judges’ choice was based on a number of factors but most notably the nominee’s contribution to promoting Uganda as a top tourist destination, promote domestic tourism and professionalism.

Other winners

Best tourism blog/magazine

  • Pearl guide

Best supporting tourism photographer

  • Natty dread king

Best travel t.v show

  • Uganda ekkula. (Bukkede t.v)

Best traditional dance troupe

  • Ndeere troupe

Best tourism promotional song

  • Bwojo-Nichoe Kitone.

Best traditional cuisine restaurant

  • Baguma restaurant.

Best cultural center

  • Uganda national cultural centre

Best tourism training center

  • Uganda hotel & tourism training institute. (Jinja)

Best tourism youth initiative

  • Wildlife clubs of uganda

Private wildlife conservation center

  • Kavumba recreation center - Wakiso.

Best tourism initiative

  • Miss tourism pageant.

Best eco-resort

  • Budongo eco-lodge

Most active tourism cluster

  • Busoga tourism initiative.

Best institutional museum and antique center

  • Kikonyogo money museum.

Best community museums/antique center

  • Igongo museum.

Best supporting television

  • UBC

Best supporting corporate company.

  • Madhvani/ marasa africa

Best supporting airlines (business class)

  • Brussels airlines

Best supporting airlines (economy class)

  • Ethiopian airways.

Best tourism role model

  • Amos Wekesa

Most user friendly tourism association

  • U.H.O.A

Tourism event of the year

  • Pope’s visit.

Best supporting hotel

  • Serena hotel

Best service/luxury standard hotel

  • Speke resort /common wealth Munyonyo

Best tourism investor

  • Ruparelia group.

Outstanding tourism achiever?  

  • Amos Wekesa

Emirates Environmental Report Points To Reduced Aircraft Noise Emissions

 

The Emirates Group, comprising Emirates airline and dnata, has released its fifth annual environmental report for 2014-15 audited by PricewaterhouseCoopers.

The report presents environmental performance data across a range of activities including airline operations, dnata’s cargo and ground handling businesses and a wide range of commercial activities on the ground – from engineering to catering.

HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group, said Emirates and dnata continue to invest in business growth in tandem with customer demand and global opportunities. 

“As the scale of our operations expands, we are ever more conscious of our responsibility towards the environment and communities we serve.  We are aware that our efforts to reduce resource use will not only reduce our environmental impact, but will also help build our business resilience.

“When it comes to our environmental stewardship, the Emirates Group has core areas of focus where we believe we can make the biggest impact, but we also know that every little effort counts especially when amplified at global scale. Our annual environmental report is a report card, and also a commitment to continuously improve our environmental performance.”

Airline operations constitute the main environmental impact of the Emirates Group. In 2014-15, Emirates continued to add new aircraft to its fleet, retire older aircraft, and prioritise fuel-saving operational techniques.

Emirates’ flight operations specialists worked with agencies in countries as far afield as the USA, Austria, France, Malta, the Seychelles, Ethiopia, Kenya and Pakistan – as well as Dubai’s neighbouring emirate of Sharjah – to introduce or validate new performance-based navigation procedures, to help reduce fuel consumption and enhance operational safety.

Emirates added 24 new aircraft and retired 10 older aircraft in 2014-15, maintaining an average fleet age of 75 months, or about half the industry average of 140 months.

Key highlights this year include a continued reduction in aircraft noise emissions, a modest improvement in overall fleet fuel efficiency despite external operational challenges, and improvements in ground vehicle fuel efficiency.

All of Emirates’ aircraft* meet or exceed Chapter 4 limits - the most stringent ICAO noise Standards, and new A380 and Boeing 777 deliveries during the year helped to further improve the fleet’s margin below the Chapter 4 limits.

Emirates’ overall fuel efficiency in 2014-15 improved 1% to 0.3057 litres per tonnekilometre, 14% more efficient than the IATA fleet average fuel efficiency (IATA WATS 59th Edition). 

This was despite the impact of airspace closures caused by security concerns in many parts of the world, which led Emirates to fly longer routings to avoid these areas. The 80-day runway closure at Emirates’ hub in Dubai International Airport also meant that flights had to carry more contingency fuel than usual, thereby impacting fuel efficiency.

On the ground, dnata in Dubai took delivery of 30 new electric tractors to replace diesel-powered vehicles for use at Dubai International Airport. The tractors, manufactured by TUG Technologies Corporation and Charlatte America, produce no air-polluting emissions.

A change in the UAE government’s regulations also helped to bring down the amount of pollutants produced by ground vehicles. The Group’s ground transport fleet in the UAE began using low-sulphur diesel following the government’s announcement of mandatory new fuel specifications in 2014.

The fuel contains 10 parts per million (ppm) of sulphur, a considerable reduction from the previous specification of 500 ppm, and will greatly reduce levels of particulate emissions.

Uganda Told To Abandon Oil Exploration Plans Inside National Parks

 

A consortium of over 60 environmental and tourism groups want the governments of Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to stop new oil drilling licences from being awarded in Virunga National Park and the surrounding area.

Groups, including Global Witness, Greenpeace and the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), are warning that a new oil licence, for which the Ugandan government is currently inviting bids, could have a devastating impact on the UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Next month the Ugandan government will receive bids on six new oil licences, all of which include protected areas and one of which shares a lake with Virunga National Park. Lake Edward is at the heart of Virunga’s precious ecosystem, but lies across the Congolese and Ugandan border.

“Drilling for oil in Lake Edward may have a devastating impact on both Virunga and the local people and wildlife in Uganda” said George Boden, a Senior Campaigner at Global Witness and a spokesperson for the group.

“Oil activity in one part of the lake will affect all of it – the wildlife who call the lake home aren’t aware of these national borders. There are also over 200,000 people who are dependent on Lake Edward for food. UNESCO and the governments of Uganda and Congo need to act urgently to stop oil exploration in the entire lake for good.”

The groups are also calling attention to the potential damage to Uganda’s growing tourism sector. Queen Elizabeth National Park, which also forms part of the oil block in question, is responsible for a third of all visits to Uganda’s national parks. Tourism currently accounts for 8% of Uganda’s GDP.

“Drilling in this area is bad for the environment and bad for business. It may cause irreparable damage to one of Uganda’s key tourist attractions and to Uganda’s growing tourism sector,” said Onesmus Mugyenyi, the Deputy Executive Director at ACODE (Advocates Coalition for Development and Environment) Uganda.

“Given the global downturn in oil prices Uganda should protect other growing areas of our economy. Lake Edward could be worth a lot more to both countries as an area of outstanding natural beauty,” Mugyeni added.

Bukenya-Matovu Yusuf, spokesperson for Uganda’s energy ministry, is quoted by africanews.com, saying that environmentalists’ concerns were unjustified.

“How about UK drilling in the North Sea or offshore drilling all over the world … no one is talking about endangering marine life there,” he said.  “The problem is not drilling in a national park or lake but doing it in a responsible and sensitive manner and we’re experts in that,” he said. 

In 2014 British oil company Soco International carried out seismic testing for oil on the Congolese side of Lake Edward, in Virunga, prompting widespread local opposition and an international outcry.

The struggle over their oil licence was recorded in the Oscar nominated documentary Virunga, which was produced by Leonardo DiCaprio. Following the outcry Soco committed to no further involvement in its oil block in Virunga and announced in November 2015 that it no longer owns the block’s licence.

The Congolese government has not commented publicly on the future of oil block 5, which covers Virunga National Park, since Soco’s announcement.

Global Witness and other NGOs are concerned that the Congolese government may seek to re-draw the boundaries of the World Heritage Site in Virunga in order to allow for drilling in this oil block.

Top Five Ugandan Delicacies Loved By Foreigners

 

Food is a huge part of travel because wherever you go, you must eat. It’s not negotiable. What is a trip to a foreign land if you do not sample the local cuisine? Most hotels on Jovago.com offer local cuisine in their restaurants, so once you’re here, you are halfway through your food journey. Uganda has a lot of interesting dishes unique to the region and very diverse, but the following are the must haves!

Luwombo

Oluwombo or luwombo is a traditional dish of Uganda. It is both a royal dish and a fairly common dish cooked especially during the holidays. It is said to have been created in 1887 by the personal chef of Kabaka Mwanga, a king who ruled the kingdom of Buganda at the end of the 19th century. The dish consists of beef or chicken with vegetables like potatoes and carrots, wrapped in banana leaves and steamed to perfection with just the right amount of salt, oil and spices. It is considered a special dish for many reasons including the way it is presented; wrapped in leaves like a gift. In some variations, smoked fish is added to the beef/chicken. 

TV Chicken

The first question you may have is, “Why is it called TV Chicken?” The name comes about because of the way it is cooked. The chicken is roasted in a make-shift rotisserie oven that to the locals, resembles a television. This is a very popular meal and is available almost everywhere in Uganda from street-side vendors. 

The chicken is roasted beautifully and served with home fries and salad. A very popular meal amongst the campus students because the portions are huge and it is ready to eat. The best places for TV chicken are Wandegeya Market and Ntinda shopping centre. The vendors get cracking from about 5pm every day. 

Muchomo

An adaptation from the Swahili word “choma” which means roasted, Muchomo can be anything from chicken gizzards to pork chunks and everything in between. Muchomo is the most accessible meal and can be found everywhere; rugby pitches, roadside and even in fancy restaurants. The meat is usually served with Gonja which is roasted sweet plantains which on its own is enjoyed as a snack. 

Gnut sauce

There is no Ugandan meal that is served without Gnut sauce, and with good reason. Gnut sauce is a creamy paste made from sweet red peanuts and serves with meals as a condiment. In other parts of East Africa, like Western Kenya, Gnut sauce is eaten on its own as soup. In Uganda, it is served with sweet potatoes, cassava, matoke (boiled mashed plantain) and even with roasted fish. When you’re in Uganda, there is no buffet that doesn’t include this delicious sauce and with good reason!

Katogo

Katogo is traditionally a breakfast dish though it can be enjoyed at any time of the day. The dish is fried plantains with soup and either beef, beans or offals served with traditional vegetables. If you walk into a café at 9am wondering what the irresistible aroma is, they’re most probably serving katogo. Though considered unconventional to the rest of the world, a heavy breakfast is like this is most popular in Uganda is a great hangover remedy just in case you’ve been exploring the nightlife. 

If you happen to be in Kampala and want to sample some authentic Ugandan cuisine but don’t know where to start, Hellofood.ug has you covered with numerous restaurants at the touch of a button and deliveries until late at night. 

About Jovago

Jovago.com is an online hotel booking service with offices in Lagos (Nigeria), Nairobi (Kenya), Dakar (Senegal) founded by Africa Internet Group and has MTN and Millicom as its investors. Jovago.com, Africa’s No.1 booking portal, facilitates the booking process for its users to provide them with the best hotel booking experience with fast, transparent and easy-to-use services. Jovago.com has over 25,000 local hotel listings across Africa and over 200,000 hotels around the world.

Central Bank Commends Buganda Land Reforms

 

The Bank of Uganda (BoU) has said Buganda Land Board has done right in setting up a land registry system that helps land owners acquire certificates of registration as official documentation and proof of ownership of their bibanja (land).

“I would like to commend the Buganda Land Board for initiating the process of establishing a land registration system, which will not only provide tenure security to the bibanja owners and enable them to pledge their land rights as security for a loan, but will also ease searches of land titles,” said Governor Emmanuel Tumusime-Mutebile.

The Governor’s message to officials of Buganda kingdom was delivered by Dr. Charles Abuka, the Director Financial Stability BoU, at a prayer breakfast where the Buganda Land Board was reviewing their Lease Access Financing Initiative.

The Governor also commended Buganda Land Board for the initiative which it took to assess the land holders’ financing needs in the acquisition of land titles and taking the necessary steps to address these needs by linking up with Centenary Bank and other stakeholders.

 The combined efforts of the Buganda Land Board, the land holders and Centenary Bank led to the formation of the Lease Access Financing Initiative in 2010 which now is under review.

“The outcomes of this tripartite arrangement can have positive and far-reaching effects on the security of land tenure; access to, and use of, financial services; private sector investment; and socio-economic growth and development, if it is managed well. The onus is on each of the stakeholders involved to make the Lease Access Financing Initiative a success.

Despite the progress achieved, the initiative faces some challenges like forged collateral which has hindered land holders’ access to financial services and their acquisition of land titles. In the process financial institutions have incurred losses when loans secured against poor quality collateral have not been repaid on time.

The process of establishing a land registration system will not only provide tenure security to the bibanja owners and enable them to pledge their land rights as security for a loan, but will also ease searches of land titles, Mutebile noted.

“In order to make the certificate of registration and the land title credible and to provide reliable documents that financial institutions can accept as collateral for loans, all necessary steps must be taken to minimize disputes, litigation, forgeries and other land grievances.

He advocated that public education about land registration should be undertaken to facilitate and support understanding of the system by using qualified and skilled survey and registry staff.

Hardware Products Plaza To Boost Uganda’s Construction Sector

 

Kampala traders dealing in hardware products and services have now got a home after city tycoon Sudhir Ruparelia officially opened the Hardware City complex on Entebbe road, downtown the city near Nakasero Market.

Crane Management Services, which is part of the Ruparelia Group, on Monday, at a grand opening ceremony, handed over the multistoried building worth $25m to tenants.

The spacious  Hardware City building was officially opened by the chairman of Ruparelia Group Sudhir Ruparelia, Crane Management Services managing director Rajiv Ruparelia, traders and tenants.

The state of the art building seats on about 27000 square meters of prime land, has 281 shops and 66 residential apartments; the piece of land on which the building that took 18 months to construct cost $7m. Already tenants have taken up shops and residence.

“What we had in mind when starting to work on this project was to provide a one stop center to offer hardware products and services. This would help customers to buy everything in one place. We wanted to create a situation were a customer doesn’t move from one place to another looking for hardware goods or services,” Sudhir told tenants at the grand opening of the multistoried building.

Unlike other commercial buildings in the city centre, tenants at the Hardware City complex will pay their monthly rent in Uganda Shillings and they will face no monthly rent increment for the next two years.

“‘Since it is a new building, we are not going to increase monthly rent charges for the next two years,” Sudhir assured tenants.

Rajiv Ruaparelia the managing director of Crane Management Limited the company behind the development of this magnificent building described the building as modern, safe, secure and of high standards when compared to their neighboring commercial building.

Rajiv, the only son of Sudhir, said they have secured a 500kv transformer to supply the building with constant power and will provide tenants with pre-paid sub meters through which they will be able to buy electricity. He said it will be a private service akin to Umeme’s Yaka system where the customer pays for any amount of electricity at any time.

Rajiv said the building is space with parking space that can accommodate 800 vehicles. Tenants to park their vehicles will pay a monthly subscription of $50; Non-tenants will pay $100 per month. He added that building will be open between 6am to 10pm because people need enough time to do their business.

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