Lake Bunyonyi, Kisoro and the Virungas of Uganda

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Explore the South West of Uganda, the area around Lake Bunyonyi, Kisoro and the Virunga Mountains that separate Uganda, Rwanda and the Congo.  Here you will see some of the most stunning, spectacular scenery on the planet.

Visit and you will be instantly enchanted by the magic and serenity that this friendly country has to offer. 

One of these magical places is Lake Bunyonyi, situated in the south western region of the country, the name translates to “Place of Many little Birds” and it truly is an ornithologist’s paradise.

Lake Bunyonyi is so vast that it has 29 islands in its midst, one of these islands is called Punishment Island and history has it that unmarried girls were sent there if they became pregnant!  Look out ladies!!

 

You can hire a traditional dugout canoe and paddle around various parts of the lake or stop and have lunch on one of the islands.  The locals catch fresh fish from the lake including tilapia and crayfish. 

Otters frequent the reeds around the shores of the lake and they can be seen on occasion. 

There is a community of Batwa Pygmies located around the shores of the lake; they are believed to have migrated from the Congo hundreds of years ago and now live amongst local Ugandan communities and have partly intermarried with the local Bakiga tribe. 

From the mud huts that are perched on the hill sides you will see wisps of wood smoke rising slowly up into the air as inside the houses food is being prepared and the fire is lit.

There is a high chance of rainfall which makes this area so vividly green.  Sometimes on a cool damp day, heavy clouds are so low that you actually drive through them on the roads or they hang in the valleys.

This lake is a real traveller’s paradise, there are plenty of campsites around the lake, which can be reached easily from the nearby town of Kabale.

The entire lake is surrounded by terraced hillsides and it is possible to see traditional farming carried out here, kilometre after kilometre of undulating hillside covered in terraces that the locals farm extensively. 

Some of these hillsides are extremely steep and farming them is a precarious venture.  With just a hoe in hand, the farmers set to work to cultivate the rich soils and plant crops on the narrow terraces. 

The roads that bisect this area are narrow and in places impassable to oncoming vehicles, dirt roads that become treacherous in the rains; these roads wind their way from town to town, connecting some of the most remote villages on earth.

The further west you go, the scenery becomes even more breathtaking as you get closer to the Virunga Mountains; their high peaks visible on a clear day.  A chain of volcanoes shared between Uganda, Rwanda and the Congo; the Virungas are home to some of the last remaining mountain gorillas in the world.

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