OVERVIEWThis trip takes us north of the country to explore the culture and way of life of the karamojong people. After an early morning breakfast we leave for a scenic walk through the lush valley of Mt Moroto, the highest mountain of Karamoja. During which we shall interact with the So Tepeth mountain people (Authentic Karamojong Village Experience) as they will be sharing with us their way of life, food, among others which is amazing and very educative. After lunch, we set off to an authentic Karamojong village where you will immerse yourself in the daily life of the community like participating in traditional games, daily activities as preparing staple foods, harvesting, beading, learning, dance, how to shoot bow and arrow and traditional friendly wrestling. A Night with Uganda's Nomad Warriors Experience typical Karimojong pastoral life by bush camping a night with the nomadic warrior shepherds in the kraal and participate in their daily life like bringing the cows to the kraal, share stories around the campfire, play games with the warriors and learn more about the nomadic way of life. DAY 1: NOMAD WARRIOR EXPERIENCE 1. Morning: Mt Moroto, Community Nature Walk 2. Noon: Lunch at Kara-Tunga Guesthouse in Moroto Town 3. Afternoon: Participate in daily life in the Manyatta (village) 4. Evening: Bush dinner with the Nomad Warriors 5. Evening/night: A Night Bush Camping with Uganda's Nomad Warriors 6. Morning: Breakfast and refreshing at Kara-Tunga Guesthouse in Moroto Town
Kasubi Tombs site is situated on Kasubi Hill- Nabulagala, it is strategically located 5kms from Kampala city center, along the Kampala-Hoima Road. From kampala city center, pass Makerere University (the oldest and the first University in Uganda), head to Nakulabye town. When you reach Nakulabye round about, go right onto Hoima Road, drive 1 kilometer and turn left to go up the Kasubi Hill. At the top of the hill, turn left onto Masiro Road and follow it to the entrance of Kasubi Tombs, which is marked by a thatched hut. The trip is approximately 15 minutes drive from Kampala city centre when the road is free from traffic jam. The Kasubi tombs site is an active religious place in the Buganda kingdom. Its place, as the burial ground for the previous four Kabakas, locally known as the “sekabakas” of Buganda. The graves makes this place a very important religious centre for the royal family, a place where the Kabaka and his representatives frequently carry out important rituals related to Ganda culture. It should also be noted that, the tombs fetch a lot of foreign exchange to Buganda kingdom and to the country at large. It is now four and half years since fire reduced Kasubi tombs to ashes. It was painful to see the tomb flaming, this not only affected the Buganda kingdom but also to the entire country because it resulted into the reduction of the number of tourists who used to visit this world heritage site. The coronation of the new prime minister of Buganda – Charles peter Mayiga washed the tears of many Baganda since he initiated the reconstruction of the tombs through his project known as collecting “ Etofaali” meaning soliciting funds for the restoration of the tombs. Mayiga started the fundraising campaign for the reconstruction of Kasubi Tombs in many regions of Buganda and those out side Buganda but wishing the best to Buganda like Ankole and Busoga. He also went a head to move abroad to states like Arab emirates – Dubai and so on to meet the Ugandan in Diaspora. All in all, the Katikkiro has been successful and the reconstruction is soon to be accomplished. Kasubi Tombs Entrance From Kasubi tombs, its 8 hours drive to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park therefore, it is wise to visit the tombs for cultural experience and on the same safari, experience gorilla tracking event in Bwindi N.P. It is on record that Bwindi impenetrable National Park hosts almost half of the world’s mountain Gorillas. Ten Gorilla families are habituated here and they include Mubare, Habinyanja, Rushegura, Bitakura, Oruzogo, Kyaguriro, Nshongi, Mishare, Kahunje and Bushenje group.The kasubi tombs at Galace: Four Buganda Kings (Bassekabaka) are buried at Kasubi tombs and they include: Muteesa I was the first Kabaka to be buried in Kasubi Tomb, the 35th King of Buganda. The dates of the reigns of the Kabakas are only precisely known from Ssekabaka Suuna II, who ruled from 1836 to 1856. Daudi Chwa II, a Kabaka buried at the tombs, Muteesa I (1835-1884), Basamula Mwanga II (1867-1903) Daudi Chwa II (1896-1939), Fredrick Walugembe Muteesa II (1924-1969) The Baganda belong to the Bantu speaking people and date their political civilization back to the 13th century A.D. According to oral traditions, the first Kabaka of Buganda was Kintu. He is said to have come with his wife Nambi, whose hand he won by performing heroic deeds at the command of her father Ggulu, the god of the sky.
Batwa Community Tour Experience Batwa pygmies (Twa in Rwanda) lived in ancient Bwindi forest in Uganda until they were evicted in 1980’s and 1900’s from the Rwanda & Uganda National Parks without compensation. In Uganda the Batwa lived in harmony in the jungle with all creatures including the mountain gorillas thus named the “main gorilla trackers” until Bwindi Rain forest was gazetted as a National park, they lived a hunter gather lifestyle in the forest and here they were known as “the keepers of the forest”.The Batwa lived a lifestyle of gathering fruits, plants and hunting game in the forest using bows and arrows, this was mainly for both medical and food purposes. They roamed the forests for centuries in search of fruits and honey where they lived a harmonious life, they never practiced farming, no charcoal burning not even the shelters they had could destroy the environment but until they were evicted from their former home that’s when they started hunting gorillas, begging and working for others as servants. Non-Batwa cannot marry Batwa women or men but has it been reported that the Batwa women have been raped by non-Batwa men with a false belief that having sex with them would cure “AIDS” and a number of non-pygmy children have been born into their community but the good news is that today different organizations have spoken out for them and are making a difference for them. The Batwa Experience in Buhoma found just outside Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, visitors enjoy this experience after trekking gorillas. This experience has greatly benefited the Batwa communities and visitors are introduced to the culture including traditional dances, clothing and food among others.
Nkuringo cultural center (NCC) is a not-for-profit organisation committed to poverty eradication through conservation. The main aim of NCC is to improve communities’ wellbeing through the use of cultural heritage, eco-tourism and conservation. Currently NCC has three major programs: culture in development and conservation; community tourism; empowerment program. After a long tiring day during gorilla tracking, birding and nature walks in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, tourists can relish some of the interesting cultural activities within the Nkuringo Cultural center. Tourists who visit this Cultural center can engage in a guided village walk during the day to encounter some of the local community members, to learn about their lifestyle in Rubuguri and engage in the making of handcrafts. After this, you can visit the nearby primary school so as to explore the region’s most popular and sough after cultural attraction-“The invigorating kikiga dance” where dancers dance like they are lifted by some force of gravity.
The Ultimate Experience! Are you looking for a place to spend your Sunday evening? Or, do you desire to learn and experience some of ugandas cultural music? Just visit the Ndere Cultural center where Ugandan culture is brought to life and lots of fun is guaranteed. While here, you will see the excited faces of guests exclaiming “wao” after invigorating performances that take their breath away. People who visit this Cultural Center are always treated to lots of dinner-theatre performances that involve the history of the Uganda but also contributes to the promotion of knowledge and skills by the use of dance, music and oral histories to celebrate the rich cultural diversity of Uganda. This site features a 700-seater theater and is and is found within Ntinda in Kampala-the capital City of Uganda, approximately 2 kilometers from the Ntinda Trading Center and was founded in 1986 by Stephen Rwangyezi, a Ugandan Cultural activist who is also the Executive Director with an aim of promoting universal unity through dance, music and drama. The center has for many years performed dances and songs from different tribes in Uganda and the neighboring countries especially Rwanda, Burundi and Kenya and when you are at Ndere Cultural center, your evening will simply be filled with excitement as you catch a glimpse of several performers in traditional dresses charmingly entertaining the audience with unsurpassed skills in dance and use of various musical instruments to entertain the enthusiastic guests The passionate and energy-packed Shows at the Ndere Cultural center are conducted every Sunday from 6pm to 9pm, allowing you to spend your weekend in a refreshing way while Wednesdays are for storytelling and Fridays are for Afro-jazz music from 7pm to 9pm. Prices for the shows are also pocket-friendly for locals as well as foreigners. The Center is however a nerve center bringing together over 1600 Uganda Development Theatre Association Groups across the country as a way of entertaining while educating people through music, dance and drama. Other services offered by the Ndere Troupe members include performances in festivals, dinners, graduations, expos, conferences, Weddings, state functions, launches and opening ceremonies among others.
Day 1: Arrival in Kigali Upon your arrival, You will be met by your tour guide and thereafter transferred to your hotel for dinner and overnight.Day 2: Kigali City and Kigali Genocide Memorial Center After breakfast, you will have a guided tour at the Kigali Genocide Memorial Center. The center is the final resting place for more than 250,000 victims of the Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. It honors the memory of the more than one million Rwandans killed in 1994 through education and peace-building. You will also visit a couple of other places and later retire to your lodge for dinner and overnight. Day 3: Transfer to Musanze After breakfast, you will start with a visit to Ntarama Church, where mass killings occurred during the dreaded 1994 genocide. The church was the site of the deaths of more than 5,000 people and remains a powerful reminder of the horrifying violence that took place during Rwanda’s infamous genocide. While visiting the church, you’ll also learn more about the efforts to reunite Rwanda’s people following the genocide. We’ll then proceed to Nyamata Church, where a further 2,500 people were massacred during the genocide. The church is also closely associated with the barbaric treatment of women during the genocide, and you’ll learn more about the incidences of mass rape, brutalization, and even the horrific use of HIV as a weapon of genocide. Thereafter head to the village of Mayange, where a revolutionary project to reconcile the perpetrators and survivors of the 1994 Genocide by having them live side by side is underway. You’ll be taken on a guided tour of the Reconciliation Village, learning about how the healing process between victims and perpetrators is taking place. You’ll then have lunch with the locals before continuing your tour of the Reconciliation Village with visits to facilities such as the school and health centre, the local plantations, and an art gallery. Day 4: Musanze – Lake Kivu After an early breakfast, you’ll get to meet the youth of Rwanda and see how they’re being prepared for the future by visiting a local school. You’ll not only get to meet and interact with these children, but you’ll also have the opportunity to teach a class or play games with these smiling kids. Once your morning with the kids is done, you’ll drive to the world famous Imbabazi Orphanage where Rosamond Halsey Carr and her staff cared for more than 400 Rwandan orphanages. While the orphanage was closed down by the Rwandan government, you can still visit the homestead and roam its grounds as you learn more about the author of ‘Land of a Thousand Hills: My Life in Rwanda’. You’ll have lunch at the Serena Lake Kivu, and in the afternoon you can pay a visit to a local fishing village as well as a hot springs. You’ll overnight in Gisenyi, Rwanda’s largest port city which sits on the shores of Lake Kivu. You’ll have the opportunity to both explore the quaint colonial town and (if time allows) even take a dip in the vast freshwater lake’s cool waters. Day 5: Visit to the Palace. Have breakfast, and then drive to Nyanza, the historical seat of the ancient Rwandan kings and visit the Palace, then drive to Butare, Rwanda cultural centre and visit the National Museum. Drive to Kigaliand tour the city. Evening experience the cultural performances of the Batwa Pottery Project with an introduction to the life of the first Rwandans, their art of pottery as well as singing, drumming and dancing. Return to lodge for dinner and overnight. Day: Departure After breakfast, you’ll be driven back to Kigali where you’ll enjoy a complimentary city tour including visits to the Natural History Museum and local craft markets. You’ll then to be taken to your hotel or the airport dependent on your travel plans