In its majesty, it is magnificent, regal, breathtaking, and intimidating! Perhaps these were the thoughts of John Speke when he first stepped on the beaches of Lake Victoria in 1858. His search for the Nile River’s source led him to the shores of a vast body of water he named Victoria after the English regal ruler. Even now, the lake continues to enchant and astonish the many visitors who visit its shores. Lake Victoria, also known as Victoria Nyanza, is the world’s biggest tropical lake and the second-largest freshwater lake after Lake Superior in Canada.
With an extent of 68,800 square kilometers (26,565 square miles), it may be considered a small inland sea. It is a freshwater body because it is not part of the Rift Valley ecosystem, unlike most of the alkaline lakes in the vicinity. Lake Victoria is shared by Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda, and has a maximum depth of 80-84 meters (262-275 ft). Rainwater, the Kagera River, and other small streams feed it, and it eventually drains into the Nile River to the north. Although John Speke is credited with the lake’s “discovery,” the Bassese tribe had lived alongside it and on its shores for generations before the arrival of foreign explorers.
Lake Victoria also has another distinction: it is the home to the Ssese archipelago, a group of 84 large and small inland islands that has been named one of the world’s Top 10 Hidden Islands. The islands’ sandy tan-colored beaches, glistening waters, palm palms, and mild tropical breezes, along with the experience of an inland beach holiday in the heart of Africa, captivate discerning travelers looking for something out of the ordinary.
Each island has a unique ecology that is home to unusual birds, plants, and trees, as well as crocodiles, hippos, monkeys, and other smaller wildlife. The islets nearest to Entebbe are suitable for calm lakeside vacations or a quick stopover on your way home from an adventurous safari tour in Uganda’s parks and reserves. The lake’s proximity to Entebbe international Airport, the country’s principal entrance point, makes it easily accessible to the majority of the population.
You’ll have no desire to leave the lake after spending time there! Look closely at the floating water hyacinth, papyrus reeds, and marsh plants for a hidden hippo. Lake Victoria is a birdwatcher’s paradise. You’ll be able to see numerous uncommon bird species with bright colors and patterns if you take a trip out to the little islets and along the banks of Entebbe. If you enjoy fishing, rent a boat and try to catch a 2 kilogram (4 pound) tilapia or a giant Nile perch. These may weigh anywhere between 8 to 80 kg (17-176 lbs). These fish have indeed broken records, with maximum weights pf up to 227 kilograms (500 pounds).
The lake once had 320 species of cichlids, a vividly colored tropical fish, of which only eight remain. This is mostly owing to the introduction of the Nile perch by British colonials in order to increase commercial fishing. This resulted in the extinction of the endemic species. Enjoy the sights of the lush green islands, which stand out against the pure blue of the lake waters and their bird and aquatic life. To top it all off, meet the locals in the picturesque, rural villages that dot the islands.
Lake Victoria, also known as Victoria Nyanza, is home to one of the world’s top ten hidden islands, the Ssese Islands. This archipelago consists of 84 islands, both tiny and huge. Each has a unique ecosystem with a wide range of exotic flora and animals, including crocodiles, hippos, and 450 different bird species. Visit the islands to see breathtaking meadows, lush rainforests, and swampy swamplands.
Spend some of your holiday time on a nature walk touring the islands in search of the wonderful variety of bird life. Always keep a look out for small island species like as monkeys, monitor lizards, otters, sitatunga, bushbuck, and others. Share a drink of the best fresh pineapple juice you’ve ever tasted with your family and friends, or sip excellent cocktails while watching the sunset from one of the islands’ rocky crags. Bulago Island, one of the principal islets, is at the heart of East Africa’s sole freshwater marine reserve. The Lacustrine Protected Area (LPA) was established to help restore fish populations and covers an area of 200 square kilometers
Even better, watch the majestic fish eagles descend from the skies into the lake in search of an evening meal. Admire their grace and perfection while mentally committing to doing the same whenever you go fishing! You might also see some of the migratory species that nest here, such as Abdim’s stork, Eurasian bee-eater, and white-throated bee-eater.
Ngamba Island, about 27 kilometers southeast of Entebbe, is one of Lake Victoria’s most visited islands. Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary is home to 50 orphaned chimps rescued from all over East Africa. The sanctuary is operated by The Chimpanzee Trust, an NGO that aims to protect chimps in the wild while also providing captive care for chimps that cannot survive in the wild. There are half-day and full-day visits to the refuge available, and chimpanzee enthusiasts can even stay overnight at Ngamba Eco lodge.
This marsh is located on the northern side of Lake Victoria and is Uganda’s most important birding destination. Over 300 bird species live in Mabamba, including the intriguing Shoebill. Birding in Mabamba is an unforgettable experience. You’ll board a traditional boat, and a local expert will lead you through the maze of waterways, informing you about the local ecology and the best photography opportunities. The Shoebill is more likely to be seen in the early morning, but you may also expect to see other fascinating species such as the African marsh harrier.
Most Laba Africa visitors to Uganda spend a couple of days in Entebbe or Lake Victoria to recover after long international flights or after a rigorous gorilla trek safari in Bwindi impenetrable national park. The inland lakeshore beaches and Ssese Islands offer opportunities for rest and relaxation before or after exhilarating, action-packed safari expeditions and game viewing in the country’s many parks and reserves. Uganda also receives a large number of business travelers who use Entebbe International Airport as their primary entry and exit point. The town’s proximity to Lake Victoria and its many tourist attractions makes it an ideal stopover.
Lake Victoria is best visited during the peak season of June-October for birdwatching, fishing, and bicycling. During the dry season, there are fewer water sources inland, causing a greater variety of birds to congregate around Lake Victoria. During these months, paths and bicycle trails will be drier and safer. The long wet season from March to May, on the other hand, can be an interesting time to explore Lake Victoria. If you don’t mind the rain and rougher waters, you can see Lake Victoria be revitalized by fresh blooms, grasses, and bird chicks.
Lake Victoria Information
The continent’s largest freshwater lake. The location of one of the world’s ten best best-hidden islands. The Nile River’s source. Lake Victoria is all of these things and more. It is a beautifully gorgeous body of water that covers an area of 68,800 square kilometers and may be considered a tiny sea due to its 3,440-kilometer-long shoreline. As you will discover on your safari holiday in Uganda, the lake draws over 85% of its water supply from rainfall in the region.
Furthermore, several tiny streams, as well as the Kagera River, contribute to the filling of its 80-84-meter-deep basin, which has a volume of 2760 km3. Lake Victoria’s water only exit through the Nile in Jinja. The river flows over the famous Murchison Falls and into Lake Albert after a 500-kilometer journey. Following its exit, the river acquires the name Albert Nile before continuing north to Sudan and then Egypt.
Lake Victoria, lying between the three crucial East African nations of Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania, became the center of dispute in Europe in 1858, when John Speke claimed that he had discovered the source of the Nile. Until his trip and eventual discovery, the origin of the famous river was unknown. Interestingly, in the 1160s, Arabian traders made maps showing that Lake Victoria was the actual source.
Beautiful Factual Natural Beauty
Geologists believe the lake is approximately 400,000 years old, but because its volume is reliant on rain and evaporation, its growth is subject to the whims of climate change. According to research, the lake vanished 17,300 years ago and resurfaced 14,700 years later. Today, it is an enchantment for tourists who come to enjoy the amazing natural splendor. The communities that surround Lake Victoria and the 84 Ssese Islands that dot its waters are home to a stunning mix of flora and fauna. This interior archipelago is known for its unspoiled beaches with tan sands and dazzling waterways teeming with Nile perch, tilapia, and other freshwater fish.
The islets, which vary in size, also support lesser animals and more than 200 bird species. Keep an eye out for hippos lounging in the shallows and crocodiles searching for an easy meal near the shoreline – keep an eye out!
Today in Lake Victoria
Lake Victoria, which serves as a supply of water, electricity, and a source of income for thousands of individuals in three nations, is also a subject of concern for environmentalists and naturalists. The Owen Falls and the Kiira Dam were erected to create hydroelectricity, and the lake’s resources are being strained as the huma population grows. By introducing the Nile perch into its waterways, European colonists unknowingly set off a chain of ecological events, the consequences of which naturalists are still assessing. While vacationing around the lake, you will most certainly observe a large carpet of aquatic plants floating on it.
Although it adds to the natural beauty of the lake, it is not native to the area and was imported from Brazil. The hyacinth weed has recently become more of an issue, clogging sections of the shoreline and affecting the fish population. Despite these obstacles, the lake has retained its beauty, reacting well to conservation efforts to conserve and preserve it.
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We have experienced adventurous gorilla trecking, chimpanzee tours, safari accompanied by waterbuffalo, pumba, giraffe, antilops etc encounter that has made our trip supercool I appreciate to have Martin as a… read more local fixer/guide/driver who was familiar in topics, flexible in unusual clients requests and cheerful guy that is soooo needed when travel long hours in a van.Samuel also was cooperative and reliable too
18 days with tent on top of the car with driver. Our driver Alonso helped us and guided us at all times! Good tips for sleeping, where to eat… read more and buy!!! In the safaris he knew all the parks very well and was passionate about birds!!! Agustin and Silvia from Spain we return in love with this country and its nice people!!! Thanks Alonso and Samuel!!! from Laba Africa Expedition!!
We had a 8-day wonderfull travel in Uganda, so well organized by LABA Africa. If you want to discover Uganda, choose this company, and you will have the… read more best experience ever.
We visited Bwindi Forest National Park with gorilla trekking – unforgettable -, beautiful Lake Bunyonyi – with a refreshing swim -, cykling safari between zebras, giraffes, antilopes and birds and finally boat trip to the source of the river Nile in Jinja.
All guides were knowledgeable and took very well care of us, espacially Robert, our excellent driver and guide for the whole tour.
The accomodations were perfect, confortable rooms, helpful staff and good food.
It’s amazing to be able to get so close to the animals, and experence the beautiful landscape and scenery of Uganda.
Thank you so much, Samuel and Robert.
AMAZING journey with Laba Africa all around Uganda for 21 days !! – We’ve had the chance to travel with ALONSO from LABA AFRICA for 21 days all around Uganda. We have met a lot of turists along our trip and I can… read more assure you one thing… LABA AFRICA is THE best company to discover Uganda.
Communication is really easy with Samuel (Laba’s Boss). He will take care of the itinerary, chimps and gorilla’s permits and will advise you perfectly on what to do, what to expect, and will make sure to answer all of your questions before your arrival.
Samuel even bought a Sim card for us to make sure we could get internet data as soon as we arrive in Entebbe Airport.
Our guide was Alonso.
Alonso is our best guide ever… We’ve traveled in a lot of countries, but I can assure you Alonso knows his country better than any other guide. He is very open minded and is able to talk for hours about everything related to his country (way to live, politics, economy, religion, local us and beliefs, etc.).
Alonso is also a true legend all around his country, he knows someone at every places we have been.. he knows perfectly all the natural reserve and taught us many things about the animals during our safaris.
He is an excellent driver.
If your are planning to come in Uganda and do self driving… Please don’t.. The roads are terrible and I wouldn’t advise anyone that is not used to it to drive on these roads by himself.
The car that Laba Africa provided us was amazing. Big SUV with 4 wheel drive with an open roof and a tent on the roof (amazingly comfortable).
The car is very comfortable and safe. Laba Africa even provided us sleeping bags (for the roof tent), cooler, camping chairs, cooking gaz and all the ustensiles we needed to cook ourself.
Alonso and the company has always been attentive to our wishes, needs and desires and is really customer focused.
During our trip, we’ve met a lot of locals, and it has been an amazing human adventure. Uganda is not only a destination to see animals and wildlife, it’s also a beautiful country that has so many to offer (waterfalls, landscape, tea fields, lakes, mountains, volcana, natural reserve, culture, traditions, people, local dance, music, crafts, hikings, cycling, rafting, boats trip, etc.)
Here are the main places we’ve visited : Kidepo National Park, Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, Murchinson Falls National Park, Queen Elisabeth National Park, Bwindi Forest, Bigodi Village, Kibale, Lake Mburo National Park, Sipi Falls, Jinja, Kampala.
Among our best memories, we will remember for ever our homestaying with a lovely local family within the Bigodi community, our night safari in Queen Elizabeth NP with the Lions turning around the car, and the quiet Jinja city on the Nile.
We really wanted to spend some time with locals and share a night with them. Laba Africa never organise Homestaying before. We’ve asked Alonso if it was possible. Of course, he made it possible because Alonso would make anything possible for you. So i wanted to thank him again because he made this trip amazing for us and now we keep this experience as our best memory from this trip.
Our trip was supposed to end on the 31st of December as our flight was very early in the morning on the 1st of January.
Alonso drove us to Samuel’s house. Samuel and Morgan (Sam’s GF) cooked for us for lunch and have spend the 31st of December with us. They’ve made a city tour for us, drove us to the craft market in order to buy some gifts for our family before our departure.
And the cherry on the cake… They took us with them in a party to show us “how we celebrate new year Eve in Uganda”. It was on the best rooftop of Kampala, to watch the midnight fireworks.
Honestly, do you know some company that can offer you such experience?
Don’t make a mistake and hire Laba Africa for your journey in Uganda, and please, stay at least 2 weeks if you want to discover most of the things this country has to offer.
Thank you again Samuel, Morgan and Alonso.
I will not forget you guys and I wish you the best for the future, you deserve it!!
Hope to see you again.
we keep in touch
We experienced a very well organized 9-day trip with a driver& guide (Robert) filled with amazing experiences like game drives, chimpz and gorilla tracking and boat safaris. The communication… read more with Laba Africa was very smooth and they tailored the trip according our wishes. The guide was very flexible and came up with ideas and options while on the road. We really appreciated him being with us. The Laba Africa guide had a vast knowledge about flora and fauna and was happy to answer all our questions. The accomodations chosen and booked by Laba Africa were absolutely stunning with very helpful staff.
Laba Africa planned a (4 days, 3 nights) trip to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest with a stop in Lake Mburu (Uganda’s smallest national park). We had a great and friendly guide… read more in Alonso, who was very organized and patient. Making a stop in Lake Mburu breaks up the long drive to Bwindi, and is a great opportunity to get very close to giraffes and many other animals in the park. The gorilla trek itself was amazing and surreal getting very close to a gorilla family. All the lodges booked by Laba Africa, were in beautiful and serene locations with nice rooms, friendly staff and good food! After my third trip with Laba Africa, I would recommend them to anyone any day!
Great 3day trip go Murchison national park and falls! Also passed by rhino sanctuary on our way there. Really liked our driver and guide (Robert) who drove is there safely… read more and found tons of animals for us to see in the park.
Robert was a great guide. We went on Safari at Murchison and to the rhino sanctuary. The bGreat food and company. 10/10
On the way to the safari we went to the rhino sanctuary which was a cool experience. We slept at Fort Murchison which was a really good place to stay… read more in. The next day we went on the safari trip and a boat trip which was amazing. We saw so much animals.
Our guide, Robert, really gave us the best experience one could get.
Really recommend going with Laba!
I certainly got way way more than I imagined on this trip. I seen it on YouTube but not many indulge how fantastic the service this company has provided. My… read more guide Patrick was 10 out of 10. Friendly, informative and never refused an activity I wanted to see or do absolute gentleman. Then little did I know I was going to be provided with bony a top top quality chef. I was expecting package meals but no the food was excellent that I actually gained weight on this trip. I travelled the world but must say this company really exceeded my expectations.
Sam put together a perfect itinerary for our mother-daughter trip. Alonso took us around Kampala and showed us the main sights (Buganda kingdom, the mosque and bustling downtown Kampala), and… read more Robert took us to Murchison Falls National Park, then to Jinja and our final destination Entebbe (4 days). We had such a wonderful time and loved every minute of it: the roadside life, the food, the nature, the magestic animals, the friendly people – everything. They say that once you have experienced Africa, you will always feel a tug to return. Be prepared Laba!
My mom and me went on a two nights trip to Murchison Falls for safari and it was amazing! Sam organized a great trip for us and the communication was… read more very smooth the whole way. Our guide Robert was so nice and we saw so many animals each day. Sam also organized a city tour in Kampala for us and we also went to Jinja on a boat trip to see the source of the Nile, the local markets, and ate Ugandan food. Every part of our holiday was amazing and I would recommend Laba to anyone travelling to Uganda (and elsewhere)!!
I went on a two day Safari in Lake Mburo with Laba Africa Expeditions and it was an amazing trip. Everything was organized very well and our guide Samuel was… read more wonderful and came with suggestions during the trip and listened to our wishes as well. I would recommend this to everybody who wants a fun, safe and amazing safari. Even the rangers at Lake Mburo was great. I had not expected a safari to be such a incredible experience but it really was!
Samuel is the real fixer in Uganda! Within a week he got me the Gorilas permit to Bwindi. He also advised me in anything else I needed.
Adam, my… read more driver who took me from Kigali (Rwanda) to Bwindi, crossing Uganda’s border, became a friend. Is the best guide to move you around! Truly recommend both of them. Laba africa is the best!
We rented a car with roof tent for three weeks and I can highly recommend Laba Africa.
Great advise for trip preparation and replied instantly to all our (many) question… read more by whatsapp. Also arranged for gorilla trekking which was very pratical.
Car turned out to be great, no mechanical problems. Our rooftent was never used before it was brand-new.
Uganda is a beautiful country with very friendly population. We had a great time.
We went three friends on a safari to Murchison Falls (2 nights) and we had the best time. Everything was timed and organized to the last detail by Sam –… read more the best guide and the best company. We saw so many animals and it was an incredible experience for all of us. Sam was very knowledgable about the animals and the nature in general, which added to the whole experience. We stayed in a great lodge just outside the park. There was great food and a nice pool! We would definitely recommend this trip to anyone!
Christopher and I have been filming in Uganda for the past week, and the excellent results we got wouldn’t of been possible without Laba Africa. Top professionals who made our… read more work trip go super smooth. We would highly recommend them to other media professionals.
We rented a car from Laba Africa. They are very service minded and nice people. The car was kept in good condition. Recommended
We hired a land cruiser with a tent on the roof. The car and tent were great and pick up and drop off were very smooth- they met us at… read more our hostel each time.
We had a wonderful time with Laba Africa. From the beginning till the end of the trip we felt welcomed and very comfortable.
The accomodations we‘re well chosen and they… read more even prepared a surprise for our honeymoon :).
Samuel and our driver Alonso know a lot about the country and their way of presenting it to us was very pleasant.
The gorilla trekking in bwindi forest was definitely the highlight of our trip. Only after 30 minutes of walking we met the gorilla family and the rangers made sure that all of us could take nice pictures of the animals without disrespecting their personal space. We can really recommend the Bakiga Lodge for the Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi. The staff was really friendly and the food was great. The view from the top is breathtaking and the lodges are lovely decorated.
All in all a trip we‘ll never forget.
The gorilla trekking with Laba Africa was absolutely gorgeous. We were lucky to find the family after just 20 minutes of walking through forest. The rangers were always helping us… read more to get great pictures and they knew much about the animals.
Our driver Alonso was also very kind and gave us many valuable information on the pearl of Africa.
We really enjoyed every single moment that trip and can recommend it to everyone else.
An amazing experience! We saw so many animals, so many incredible landscapes. We also have the chance to discover the local cultures.
The guides were very nice… read more and we learned a lot!
Every lodge we slept in, was perfectly chosen. Uganda is worth a visit! Go there!
Did a great weekend tour visiting the Mundari tribe near Juba, South Sudan. Everything went well, I really enjoyed the trip.
Traveling with Laba Africa was a great experience!
We saw amazing landscapes and animals in different national parks and spent the nights in beautiful lodges. The guides were extemely… read more nice and fun to be around.
Especially the planning of our trip was amazing. We had some special requests because I wanted to visit some friends in between our Safari tours. That was no problem and got nicely included in our plan for the trip. Whatever we requested was made possible!
I can only recommend traveling with Laba Africa. We will definitely return!
My family and I just came back from a three-week-customized roudtrip of Uganda with Laba Africa. It was a tremendous experience!
Starting with chimp tracking in Kibale, we saw lions… read more the same day in Queen Elizabeth NP. Then on to Ishasha, Lake Mburo NP and jinja, where we had a short break. Then we went to a small village near Soroti to visit friends of our daughter. From there we went on to Karamoja, Kibale NP, Murchison Falls NP before we came back to Entebbe.
It didn’t matter what special requests we made, Laba Africa made them possible, sometimes even more!
But the most important thing is this: The planning of this trip startet in autumn 2019 and it was mostly paid for in January 2020. It should have taken place in March 2020, but then the pandemic destroyed our plans. Through all the insecurities for that 18 months peroid until we finally could make the trip, Laba Africa held contact, took care that our chimp tracking permits did not to expire und charged nothing additional – except for some new requests we had.
So Laba Africa is absolutely the best and most reliable partner for visiting Uganda or any of the other countries they are offering tours to! We will return to Uganda and to Laba Africa for sure!
The best part was definitely chimpanzee tracking, that was an incredible experience! Next amazing part of our trip was community walk, where locals showed us their traditional beer, gin, coffee… read more and basket making. It was great to have time to talk to them :) Game drives through savanas was so amazing, our guide Alonso did everything to try to find the best parts of the park and to find every animal there is to see, but you can never be sure, you’ll be lucky enough to see them all. We also saw Murchison falls, that was so nice, although the boat ride to see them from the river was kind of boring, too long for too little of experience. But overall amazing trip!
We really enjoyed out trip through Uganda with Laba Africa. The tourguides took good care of us and they showed us so many fascinating things! Furthermore, it was very… read more easy to change or add additional things to our already existing program.
I can really recommend a trip with Laba Africa to everyone! :)
Thank you very much to Samuel and his team! We really enjoyed our time in Uganda and with you.
Amazing experience!! Very serious and friendly team!! I really advise this company to travel in Uganda!!!
My friend and I did a 10 days Safari through Uganda which was one of the best things we‘ve ever done! Laba Africa organized an amazing tour and we really… read more enjoyed all of it. They took very good care of us. We also got to know local communities such as the Batwa tribe. Thanks to Samuel for this unforgettable adventure.
The trip was simply amazing! Had an experienced guide(Alonso) who showed is not only ugandian nature, but also explained many things about culture of this country. I would aspecially recommend… read more visiting community near Kibale NP.
Naprosto skvělý výlet. Zkušený průvodce, skvěle vybrané cíle i ubytování! Mohu jen doporučit.
White Water Rafting
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