Uganda Safari?? : The Airport “Experience”.

With upgrading works under way at Entebbe international airport and increased traffic along the Kampala – Entebbe road, if you intend to travel using the airport you need to plan your journey prior to the check in time for your flight.

EntebbeAirport

And here are a few tips you may need to follow.
Depending on the time of the day, traffic along the way is most of the time heavy and it will take you an extra 1 or 2 hours more than the 40mins that are advised to and from Kampala.

 

During work hours till 3pm, the journey to the airport will take you a minimum comfortable drive of 45mins to 1 hr from the city centre since there is minimal traffic.

Rush hours (4pm to 9pm) as people leave work, the stretch from the city centre to Zana round about, a distance which normally takes 15 minutes to reach will take you between 1 and 2 hours.
It is not until you pass Kajansi that you will enjoy a comfortable speed to the airport if nothing else happens along the way.

At the airport

Entebbe-International-Airport
At the airport entrance, a security check that normally takes about 3mins is carried out by the airport police but due to the ongoing works, this might take you longer in the afternoon when the airport handles more traffic.

 

On a few occasions, there is an impromptu shift on the check point, in most cases when a VIP is leaving or visiting the country or when the president is flying out or in, the check point will be brought closer to Spenah Beach, causing so much traffic- here you will lose between 30mins to an hour.

On normal days, from 1pm to 4 pm, you will wait for between 5 to 10 minutes waiting to be checked.

After the security check and picking your luggage you will head up to the departure area where a tent has been set up to act as the check in area until the expansion of the airport is complete.
During rush hours, the tent area is crowded and hard to navigate; hence coming earlier is to your advantage. It is at the tent area that you will find a health official (in case your yellow fever card is needed, however it is advisable to have it on you always).
A total of 26 clearing counters have been set up with in the same place, 22 for all passengers and 4 counters specified for the United Nations (UN).

Once you have followed all this to the counter, nothing will stand between you and your flight, enjoy your flight and see you soon for an adventure Of the Pearl of Africa

Mutoto: A Mecca of sorts

What brings the Bamasaba and the Bukusu from western Kenya to Mutoto is one thing — imbalu.  Mutoto is the place where the first imbalu (circumcision) ceremony was officially adopted. All the subsequent imbalu opening ceremonies have taken place here ever since.

Uganda culture tours

Respected historians and elders from Bugisu confirm that indeed, Mutoto is the birthplace of the revered tradition. Mutoto is where imbalu rituals were revived again, in earnest, after a slight lull. “There was a lull in observing circumcision rituals after the circumcision of Masaba, the patriarch of the Bamasaba people.

Imbalu, however, was reinstated courtesy of a man from Mutoto called Fuuya,” says Magombe Wakitonyi, an elder in Mutoto. Going by Wakitonyi’s account, Fuuya was at the helm of efforts to re-establish the imbalu custom in Bugisu. “Fuuya’s strong support for the revival of imbalu was fuelled by the recuperation of his four male children from their incessant sickness after they underwent circumcision.

It was his Kalenjin wife and her brother who prevailed upon him to circumcise his children who had been sick for a while. Soon after the rite, they recovered,” Wakitonyi explains. This marked the revival of imbalu in Mutoto and all across Bugisu. The Bamutoto, Fuuya’s clan, were from then on given special status. It was agreed that they would be the first to circumcise their young men before all the other clans in Bugisu circumcise. Mutoto was also chosen by the elders as the place where imbalu festivities would offi cially be launched every even year. true Where is Mutoto? Mutoto is located near Mbale town in Bungokho south.

Imbalu

Although the place is expected to have a traditional museum filled with imbalu paraphernalia such as kadodi drums, imbalu ceremonial regalia, artefacts, pictures and books about the history of this adored culture, especially for generating income. Mutoto, however, is short of these. There is only a small unroofed house to mark the spot where the first imbalu candidates were circumcised.

The grounds where the imbalu candidates display their dances before guests on the imbalu opening day are used as football fields. Given the influx of foreign visitors and locals during the imbalu opening ceremony, better facilities would promote cultural tourism in Bugisu. Tom Wangota, a Manafwa-based historian, says attractions in places of cultural heritage across the globe are increasingly becoming important in tourism.

“We can, for example, use the imbalu dance competitions at Mutoto and the kadodi drumbeat to raise the profile of our culture,” Wangota says.  According to the World Tourism Organisation, over 40% of international travel has an element of heritage and culture associated with it. With such a rich culture, the Bamasaba stand a high chance of attracting more tourists.