UBC Online

Top 10 Budget Destinations To Visit In Uganda

Planning a budget safari in Uganda? The pearl of Africa has got tapestry landscapes, beautiful wildlife, friendly people, different historical and cultural attractions all packed in one small country. Uganda’s top attractions and experiences can be achieved at relatively cheaper costs. Here are some of the cheap but rewarding places to travel to while in Uganda.

Kampala city

Uganda’s capital city boarders Lake Victoria and most trips by international tourists start from here then to other destinations elsewhere. Just an hour drive from Entebbe International airport, the city will give you a great impression. The city can be toured on foot (Walking tours) or Boda-Boda (Motorcycle tours). It offers a multitude of historical and cultural attractions for a visitor to explore and they include Bulange Mengo parliament also known as the “New Scottish parliament” because it was built in the same design as the Scottish parliament, Kasubi Royal tombs, Uganda national museum, Bahai temple which is the only one in Africa, Gaddafi national mosque that will give you 360 degree view of the city in its tower, among others, all at incredibly low prices.


Jinja doubles as the second largest town and busiest commercial and industrial centre in the country after the capital (Kampala). Lying 87km from Kampala in the South Eastern part of the country on the shores of Lake Victoria. The town is also a home to the source of the world’s longest river (River Nile). Its proximity to the shores of the lake (Victoria) and the source of River Nile got it ranked the adventure capital of East Africa.

Get thrown and soaked in the hardcore rapids of the  wild and stunning waters of the Nile and enjoy cruising , rafting and stories about the Nile and the town all under the African sun rays being reflected on the Nile. Nowhere in Uganda, that you will get such an experience.

Lake Mburo National Park

Driving to the park is no problem, because you will drive on smooth tarmac to the first gate of the park (Sanga gate). Lake Mburo National park is the nearest park to the capital city. The park is about 3-4 hours drive from Kampala. The savanna park contains an extensive wetland area and harbors variety of species both mammals like the Elands, impalas, Burchells Zebras, buffaloes, hippos and bird species (313 species).

It offers different activities like forest walks in Rubanga forest, launch cruises on the lake, game drives that will take you to wildlife and give you a better view, walking safaris in the park where you will encounter wildlife and nature on foot, sport fishing, among others. So why not spoil yourself and experience a night or two in the park? Hanging out in the park can be the most relaxing times of your trip.

Murchison Falls National park

Visit one of Uganda’s top-notch national parks.  Murchison falls national park is a safari jewel in Uganda due to its different game views as well as the stunning Murchison falls from which the park’s name was derived. The park shelters a number of wildlife animals like four of the big five, which include Leopards, buffaloes, elephants and lions, which are among the 76 mammal species that are found in the park.

The park used to have rhinos but in 1983 they were no more due to poaching and guerrilla wars that rocked Uganda in the late 1970’s as well as the early 1980’s; however they were later introduced and can be tracked in Ziwa Rhino sanctuary that is just meters off the route to Murchison falls national park.

A trip to Murchison falls national park will not be a disappointment. Winston Churchill described the Murchison plains as Kew Garden and the zoo on unlimited scale and once you visit it you will be bound to agree.

Fort portal

Located in western Uganda, 320km from Kampala, the town is a seat for both Kabarole District and Tooro Kingdom palace. Located on the edge of equatorial rainforests the “land of Empako (pet name)” is full of enchanting crater lakes, grasslands, marshes and forests.

Most visitors come not only to enjoy Fort portal but also varied sights that surround it. Like, Kibale national park that is famous for primates mostly Chimpanzees, Queen Elizabeth national park and the town is a perfect get way to the remote Semuliki National park.

Ssese Islands

The islands are a compilation of eighty four islands which are situated in the north western part of Lake Victoria in Uganda. These islands form an L shape and they also vary in size comparing the square kilometers covered by each island in Ssese.

Bugala Island is the largest, covering an area of over 40 kilometers in length. However, there are other small islands such as Bulago, Bukasa, Banda, Bubeke and Bufumira islands. Most of the times, people travel to Bugala Island using ferries which work on specific days and hours, therefore to enjoy the cheapest travel services in Uganda the islands are recommended.

Things that can be done during your stay in the islands include: during the weekend nights there are party scenes along Kalangala bay that are performed to meet the travelers needs and also get them activated, enjoying the pounding water that hits the lake shores on the beach as well as overnight trips to the different regions of the islands. However due to the island’s biodiversity, visitors can also get an opportunity to spot some wild rare animals like the vervet monkeys, occasional large snakes and vast bird species around.

Lake Bunyonyi

The lake is situated in south western Uganda and it is the second deepest lake in Africa known as the place of many little birds. The lake has the best scenery in the whole world which is therefore a good place for travelers who have been on their long safaris within East Africa as a rest and relaxing place. The lake has numerous islands which include: Bushara, Akampene, Kyahugye, Bwama and Njuyeera and many other islands that total up to 29 islands all together. They are concentrated in the central part with no particular settlements but only dedicated for tourist activities.

At Lake Bunyonyi, activities such as swimming, hiking, fishing, boat riding, birding, local tour and pygmy village tour provide jolly moments to the travelers and more so at cheaper and affordable rates.

The experience at Lake Bunyonyi is breathtaking making it a good place to visit on a Uganda safari. The place facilitates tourist activities for all kinds of tours, including adventure, relaxation, cultural, leisure or romance.


Located in the Eastern region of Uganda the Pearl of Africa, Mbale has got a lot of key attractions like Mount Elgon national park, Sipi falls and cultural / heritage sites like the Semei Kakungulu tombs and the Mutoto circumcision site and the popular Imbalu circumcision ceremony, making it a cheap place to visit in Uganda.

Ngamba Chimp Island

Ngamba Island is located on Lake Victoria and a home to about 49 orphaned chimpanzees from all around East Africa. The sanctuary was established in 1997 to act as a home to these orphaned chimps and also to live out their lives due to impossibilities of returning them to their natural habitats as well as sensitizing both the travelers and local people about the importance of conserving the forest habitats of these highly rare and endangered species.

The place is very cheap depending on the activities done within a particular day especially viewing of the chimps as they’re being fed in the morning, swimming, bird watching, wildlife encounters, fishing and as well as relaxing and sun bathing by the shores of Lake Victoria. This makes the sanctuary one of the best cheap places to travel to in Uganda.


This is a town located on a peninsular of Lake Victoria in central Uganda. Just a few kilometers away from Uganda’s main airport, making it a first prior as a cheap place to travel to. The numerous beaches around call for so many tourist activities like swimming, sun bathing, horse riding, beach games, scenic viewing as well as nature walks around the place. The famous beaches around Entebbe town include: lido beach, white sand beach, aero beach including the botanical garden which has diverse plants and numerous bird species, monkeys, among others.

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