LAKE VICTORIA

LAKE VICTORIA

Lake Victoria is one of the natural wonders in Uganda, the largest tropical lake. It is also the largest Lake along the Great Lakes Region with a surface area measuring 68,000 sq.km and depth range of 85 m. It is a shared fresh water Lake by 3 East African countries, spectacularly Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania.

Lake Victoria features plenty of touristic sites in and around it. These include the ports, the Source of the Nile River, the Ssese Islands (84 islands), Equator, Entebbe International Airport. The largest Northern portion of this lake is found in Uganda and the remaining part is shared by Kenya and Tanzania.

Lake Victoria takes its name from the Queen of England –Victoria. The lake was named by John Hanning Speke during his exploration in Uganda. He is the only Briton to ever document the Lake and he completed his exploration in 1858. Richard Burton on the other hand explored the Source of the Nile.

Weather & climatic conditions of Lake Victoria

This is a shallow lake and experiences varying climatic conditions. It experiences tropical kind of climatic conditions, especially in the tropical rainforest areas and also semi-dry climate in some areas. The temperatures fluctuate between 12 and 26 degrees celsius. Much of the lakes water comes from rainfall.

The flora and faunal species

Lake Victoria basin features some patches of evergreen forests, especially around the Western and Northern shores. There are also swamp wetlands in the bays and open landscapes. These are some of the main sources of habitats to most species living in the lake or around it including crocodiles, hippos, bird species, 200 fish species, African helmeted turtle, the giant otter shrew, marsh mongoose, and more.

Lake Victoria & the Source of the Nile River

The Source of the Nile is marked by Lake Victoria. The Nile River has its source right in Jinja, and the River Nile is the longest river in the world. It flows through numerous African countries: Eritrea, Uganda, Rwanda, Egypt, Burundi, D.R. Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, South Sudan, and Sudan.

Exciting activities to do in Lake Victoria

Lake Victoria offers plenty of memorable experiences from adrenaline adventures to simple experiences. Adventures can begin their journey in Jinja and engage in white water rafting, jet boating, Kayaking, bungee jumping, boat cruise, tubing and more.

Mabamba wetland birding

Located at the shores of Lake Victoria, Mabamba Wetland provides incredible bird sightings, especially the aquatic bird species. These include shoebill stork, black-headed herons, common squacco, blue swallow, blue-cheeked bee-eaters, black crake, yellow-billed kite, swamp flycatchers, red-eyed dove, white-throated bee-eaters, great white egrets, cattle egrets, blue swallow, black headed weavers, winding cisticolas, spur-winged goose, long-tailed cormorant, double toothed barbets, long-toed lapwing, and more.

The Ssese Islands

Explore the Ssese Islands, the archipelago comprising of 84 charming islands lying in the Northwestern side of Lake Victoria. Over 43 of the Ssese Islands are inhabited, especially by the Bantu speaking Bassese tribe. The Bassese are closely related to the Baganda and Basoga, but what differentiates them is the language they speak. The Ssese Islands are categorized into 2 groups: the Bugala group located in Southwestern –taking its name from Bugala Island and the Koome group lying Northeastern side- this takes its name from Koome Island.

Bugala Island also consists of Buyova, Bufumira, Bubembe, Bubeke, Funve, Serinya, and Bukasa. Koome’s other main islands include Luwaji and Damba. In general, the Ssese Islands are perfect to explore on honeymoon holiday in Uganda.

Besides, the Ssese archipelago also harbors plenty of animal species, especially primates like vervet monkeys, colobus monkeys, bushbucks, creek rat, colorful butterflies; birds like pygmy kingfishers, turacos, flycatchers, throated wattle-eye, African fish eagle, palm-nut vultures, paradise flycatchers, cormorants, and others.

Visit Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary – located on Ngamba Island is home to chimp sanctuary where over 52 orphaned and rescued chimpanzees survive. The island is surrounded by the calm waters of Lake Victoria. You can embark on half or fully day chimpanzee experience in Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary. This includes observing the daily chimpanzee behaviors, and most important of all, don’t miss the feeding session.

Places to stay around Lake Victoria

The hotels to book for overnight stay around Lake Victoria include Lake Victoria Hotel, Lake Victoria Serena Golf Resort and Spa; Ssese Islands Beach Hotel, Brovad Sands Lodge, Victoria Forest Resort and others.