Uganda

Did you know?

*  There are only about 650 individual gorillas left in the whole world. Half of
    these endangered species live in Uganda. Gorilla trekking safaris are
    organised in Bwindi National Park and Mgahinga National Park. Gorilla
    trekking permit in Uganda costs 500 USD per person.. The cost includes
    all the related fees.

*  Only 24 tourists per day are allowed to track gorillas - 18 in Bwindi and 6 in
    Mgahinga National park. Each tracking group is accompanied by a guide,
    3 trackers and military personnel of 4.

*  To expand gorilla trekking safaris in Uganda, work has began on
    habituating another mountain gorilla group in Bwindi Impenetrable
    National Park. Habituation involves gradually exposing gorillas to humans,
    in order to get the highly territorial groups accustomed to human
    presence. Once the gorilla groups become used to humans being
    around, they are much Less likely to get frightened or aggressive during
    safari tours.

*  There are only 4 950 chimpanzees left in Uganda, conserved in the zoos,
    sanctuaries and a few remaining rain forests. Chimpanzees and other
    primates can be seen in Uganda more easily than anywhere else in the
    world. They attract many tourists. Chimpanzees share 98% of the human
    genes, making them our closest living relatives on earth. They give birth 
    every 4-5 years and look after their infants for 10-12 years, before they
    are old enough to survive on their own.

*  Nile, with Lake Victoria as it’s source, is the longest river in Africa.
    Its 6 500km journey to The Mediterranean Sea begins beside Jinja town
    in Uganda and holds the Owen Falls Dam the source of hydro electricity
    for Uganda.

*  At the cultural core of modern-day Uganda lie the Bantu-speaking
    kingdoms of Buganda, Bunyoro, Ankole and Toro, whose traditional
    monarchs – reinstated in the 1990s after having been abolished by
    president Milton Obote in 1967 – still serve as important cultural
    figureheads. According to oral tradition, these centuries-old kingdoms
    are offshoots of the medieval kingdoms of Batembuzi and Bacwezi, which
    lay in the vicinity of present-day Mubende and Ntusi, where archaeological
    evidence suggests, that a strongly centralised polity had emerged by the 
    11th century. Three former kings of Buganda are buried in an impressive
    traditional thatched building at the Kasubi Tombs in Kampala.

*  One of the popular local dishes is matooke, which consists of plantains,
    cooked in a sauce of peanuts with fresh fish, meat or entrails. Matooke
    goewith any relish; except that the most respectable way to cook it is to
    tieup the peeled fingers into a bundle of banana leaves and steam it in
    a cooking pan. When tender, the bundle is removed and squeezed into
    a smooth, soft, golden mash and served hot.