Uganda
Bunyonyi

Here you’ll find travel reports about Bunyonyi. Discover travel destinations in Uganda of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

8 travelers at this place:

  • Day108

    Lake Bunyoni

    August 22, 2017 in Uganda

    It was with some sadness that we left Rwanda and headed into Uganda. Visiting Rwanda has been a bit like visiting Singapore as a break from SE Asia’s chaos. It’s safe, clean, orderly, and seems to work. It has also been educational, emotional, and inspiring given how resilient, hopeful and hard working the people here are.
    The border crossing into Uganda was reasonably straightforward, but not as well organized as it was coming into Rwanda. Fortunately, we are now experienced enough that we can usually make sense of the disorganized group of unconnected sheds and find our way through with minimum stress. As soon as we crossed into Uganda, the road instantly turned to potholed dirt and was crammed with trucks. We also noticed trash/rubbish on the side of the road, which is non-existent in Rwanda.
    We only drove a few hours to Lake Bunyoni, a very picturesque lake, dotted with multiple islands. While here, we took a boat trip and learned about one of the most interesting islands - Punishment Island, where unwed, pregnant girls were sent as ‘punishment’. We gather that many died here, as it’s a tiny island with no shelter, no fresh water and no food. This practice apparently continued up until the 1950s.
    We have definitely hit rainy season. We were hoping we would miss it, but apparently it has come early this year. This means we are likely to experience torrential rain most days – not fun when camping. This also means we will be adjusting our plans in Uganda and Kenya (basically we’re planning to stay in an airbnb for a week or so). A friend of John’s texted him saying she had just spent a month in Japan on a food tour. As we were sitting in our tent in the middle of the afternoon, with deafening rain lashing the tent for hours on end, imagining and looking for leaks, we had to ask ourselves, “what the hell are we doing sitting in the tent in the middle of Africa during rainy season when we could be sitting in some Onsen in the Japanese mountains eating great food and sleeping on dry tatami??!!” Oh well, it’s all part of the adventure!
    You may have noticed over the last couple of posts, that we are tending to stay in guest houses more often and stopping to take a few days off from driving and camping. We’ve definitely had an amazing time and great experiences over the last 4 months, and are looking forward to the next 3-4 weeks, but we’re also looking forward to not driving ourselves, and not camping – especially now that the rains have arrived.
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  • Day48

    Rwanda impressions

    February 18, 2016 in Uganda

    As I sit here along the shores of Lake Bunyonyi, I will attempt to sum up my thoughts on Rwanda. Here are a few points on the country :

    In physical appearance, it ranks among the nicest, prettiest countries I've seen! Everything is so green, thick beautiful vegetation. It's all so well kept also, trimmed lawns, clean... They even have a national cleaning day - last Saturday of the month - where everyone apparently willingly and excitedly cleans...

    Kigali, being their capital , is huge and developed with tons of high buildings and offices and everything you would need with its own bunch of subburbs. They say it's the country of a thousand hills and I believe it! Even the capital is spread between hills and valleys. Most of the other towns consist of one, maybe 2 main roads, never much more then 1-2 kilometres long.

    They have no street food. No street stalls at all. Apparently it's illegal to sell things on the street, you must have a shop. Which makes sense, because we once bought fruit from the first gang of women we saw sitting on the street, and yet 20 minutes later they were all packed up and gone, with a military man roaming around... I guess that's how they stay clean, no one there to dirty the streets.

    Their national park (at least the one we did) was gorgeous and again - clean. Seems silly to say but in Ethiopia, all along our hikes and street sides there were water bottles on the ground. Even our guides would throw their water bottle to the ground during our hikes in national parks. In Rwanda - not a single piece of anything on our hike... I even had a banana peel which I asked if I could throw in the nature (animals will eat it, no?) and I was told to hold onto it until the end for a garbage.

    The people try to be very helpful. Unfortunately language is very limited, be it French or English. They like to give directions when they have no clue where something is, but they try! They ask where do we want to go when we barely hesitate in our step.

    I've actually gotten even more stares in this country compared to all the other ones I've done. Thing is, I really don't think they mean any judgement from it... They just don't see it as a social faux pas. One lady even turned herself over in the bus to have a better view of us, looking without breaking eye contact for about an hour. Kids like to follow, but their lack of English means they follow in silence, or laughing amongst their friends. (I'll attempt to get some videos of this onto Facebook...)

    Many people blame the French and the Belgians for their genocide, basically saying they brought in the thoughts of racism when imposing the Hutu and Tutsi identity cards and then chosing one group as the educated leaders... They are now rebelling against those roots and learning English in school instead of French. The older generation we could communicate with in French, and the younger in English.

    The general feel of Rwandans are, as mentions, very restrained, a certain somber feel for the people... A lack of liveliness. Not as willing to chat or not as many smiles. Serious people.

    That's Rwanda in a nutshell!

    ------

    The lake itself here is absolutely gorgeous. We sat around the dock, soaked our feet, enjoying an outdoor shower with a view, and went for a walk to "town" where someone served us fries in what seemed like their living room. Beautiful, relaxing, and yet we've got ants in our pants so we're probably going to move on tomorrow to something more activity oriented. Unfortunately, a tour we were looking forward to doing on and by the Batwa people is too expensive. Our lovely lonely planet said it was 30$ per person. Turns out it's 60$ per person plus at 45$ transportation fee. Quite the price different. LP failed us again...

    FYI that last picture is of the many voting booths set up outside in Uganda. Line ups at all of them. I wish my voting booth had those views! Also, the government blocked Facebook and what'sapp for the day. Lol yep, it can do that! Apparently a bunch of people were already arrested for trying to buy votes at voting stations. Our shared taxi driver guy stopped in every little town along the way to yell out from his window his support for Museveni's re-election. All the stores and restaurants were closed. Streets are dead. Elections day is a big thing here!
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  • Day22

    Lake Bunyonyi Uganda

    February 21 in Uganda

    One of the largest, deepest lakes in Uganda, formed behind a lava dam. Various view of the lake taken on a boat ride to a pygmy village (see next post). The first pic is anohther boat on its way to the marret in the village The last picture is of the Crowned Crane, the national bird of Uganda.

  • Day22

    Pygmy Village on Lake Bunyonyi

    February 21 in Uganda

    The pygmies had originally lived where the gorilla park now is . When that park was established, the villages were moved out of the park. This is one of the relocated villages. We were welcomed with the village's traditional welcome dance, with everyone participating, even the very young. I'm sure my Cameroonian friends will enjoy the young man's football shirt. There are a couple pics of the village and the chief's home where at least 6 people sleep.Read more

  • Day97

    See der tausend Inseln

    January 7, 2017 in Uganda

    Nach zwei Nächten in Musanze, wurden wir früh am Morgen abgeholt und überquerten die Grenze nach Uganda. Hier beginnt auch die eigentliche Safari durch Westuganda, die Gershom für uns (unter Berücksichtigung konkreter Station, die ich im vorab nannte) organisiert hat. Er ist erfahrener Safari Guide und hat uns drei ganz tolle Unterkünfte rausgesucht, die wir unter normalen Buchungsbedingungen nie so im Programm hätten aufnehmen können. Zudem war durch ihn in den National Parks alles schnell organisiert, da er mit den örtlichen Gepflogenheiten und Auflagen gut vertraut war, sowie oft schon ein persönliche Kontakt zu den jeweilig zuständigen hatte, was vieles vereinfachte und vor allem vor Ort beschleunigte. Wie wichtig das ist, hatten wir (nach vorerst großer Verwirrung) beim selbstorganisierten Trip im Volcanoes National Park selbst erlebt und waren froh, uns ab sofort nicht weiter darum zu sorgen. So erkannte auch ich, dass es schon Sinn ergibt einen eigenen Guide mit dabeizuhaben, auch wenn ich den Aufwand und vor allem den Safaribus für lediglich zwei Personen bis zuletzt als etwas zu großkotzig empfand. Doch aufgefallen sind wir damit gar nicht mal groß, da es diese Konstellation öfters gab, bzw. sogar Einzelpersonen auf diese Weise unterwegs waren, was natürlich immer noch nicht bedeutet, dass es gut und richtig ist. 
    Aber nun zu unserem ersten Ziel auf dieser gemeinsamen Reise, dem Lake Bunyonyi. Er bildet mit seinen 29 Inseln auf einer Länge von 25 km ein außergewöhnlich schönes Landschaftsbild. Durch die Lage von fast 2000 Metern ü.N. ist er klimatisch toll zu genießen, was zusätzlich durch die tolle Lage unserer Unterkunft verstärkt wurde. Mit dem Auto an einem kleinen Schiffsanleger angekommen, setzten wir per Kanu zum Gelände des Hotels über, welches sich zu unserer Überraschung als eigenständige private Insel herausstellte. Zu den einzelnen (innen modern ausgestatteten) Hütten zum Schlafen gab es ein eigenes Restaurant (erhöht in der Mitte der Insel), eine schöne Badestelle, einen Rundweg um die gesamte Insel (mit ca. 20 min Laufzeit) und ein besondere Highlight, die vielen "tierischen Mitbewohner” die frei herumlaufen durften: zwei Zebras, einige Waterbugs, Antilopen und sogar einen Inselaffen (der pünktlich um 8 Uhr morgens sein Frühstück beim Koch abholte). Nach zwei Schwimmeinheiten und einer Tagestour mit Fortbewegung per Kanu sowie zu Fuss zu verschiedenen umliegenden Inseln, mussten die Rucksäcke für die Weiterreise zum Queen Elizabeth National Park gepackt werden.
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