Entebbe is the second city of Uganda, but it used to be the first one. Set on the northern coast of Lake Victoria, at the end of a small peninsula, it was the capital city of the Ugandese colony before being replaced by Kampala after the independence. Though it has lost its role, Entebbe is still the seat of the President of the Republic and it hosts the international airport of Uganda. “Seat” is also the meaning of the name “Entebbe” in the local language, because in ancient times it used to be the place where the wise men and judges ruled the people.
As a city, it is large and lively but it misses industries and many economic activities. The population consists of workers who come and go from Kampala (32 km away from here) or employees of the airport and of hotels connected to it. Some people also live on tourism, thanks to the beautiful lake and the safaris in the National Parks. Entebbe is never the main goal of foreigners, but it is a nice place where to stay and a beautiful stop along one of the many itineraries of the lake.
What to see in Entebbe
Those who decide to stop and stay in Entebbe will have a nice time exploring the few monuments of the city. Locals are proud to show you the State House, where the President of Uganda still lives though the capital city is now Kampala. More to see: Wildlife Education Centre, where kids and adults can enjoy news and information about local animals and the Parks.
Do not miss the National Botanic Gardens, a beautiful wild park which also was the set for many films about “Tarzan“. One of the most charming things to see, here, are the Stone Steps – a flight of steps all covered with wild vegetation climbing up in the green. You can also visit: Nkumba University Campus, the lovely beaches over the lake, the small islands off the coast – Lulamba, Kome, Damba – you can reach by local ferry-boats. Visiting the food market along the coast is also a nice experience to do.
What to do in Entebbe
There is not much to do in Entebbe, besides take a walk around and visit markets, the lake, the few monuments. But this is a place where many tour operators organize safaris so you can have all in one. Stay in hotel, organize and do your trip, leave by ariplane at the end of your African experience. In Entebbe you can enjoy the local beaches, anyway, and have a swim in the lake. You can easily reach Kampala, in a 50-minute bus trip, and explore the capital of Uganda with less expenses. Or ask for a short safari to another interesting lake, Wamala Lake, set 110 km west of the city.
How to get there
Of course, Etebbe is “the gateway to Uganda”, the city of the most important airport. So getting there is easy and fast. You land in Entebbe and from there move to your destination. But if you are in Kampala you can reach the city by bus, or even by sailing on Lake Victoria by ferry-boat or local rented boats.