White Water Rafting is done on the River Nile which originates from Lake Victoria in Uganda and is one of the fascinating activities done by tourists.
Lake Victoria is the largest fresh water lake in Africa and second-largest in the world covering an area of about 68800 square kilometers. Lake Victoria is located in eastern and central Africa and is bordered by three East African countries namely Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda. In Uganda Lake Victoria flows out into the Nile River which is the longest river in the world and flows into Egypt and the Mediterranean Sea. Lake Victoria harbors about 84 different islands which act as attractions to visitors and they include Ssese Island, Buggala Island, Bukasa Island, Musambwe Island, Ngamba Island among others. Lake Victoria was first discovered by a British Indian army officer John Hanning Speke in 1858 and he later named it after Queen Victoria the Queen of United Kingdom.
White water rafting is an adventurous and most exciting outdoor activity where visitors on a Uganda safari tour in the pearl of Africa use a paddle raft to navigate the waters on Lake Victoria.
White water Rafting on Lake Victoria is done on the stretch of rapids by use of a paddle raft where each person joins a member of a team with a professional guide who instructs the team on how it rafting should be done. White water rafting on Lake Victoria starts with a briefing or orientation on the guidelines to be followed while rafting and is graded depending on the rapids which range from grade one level to grade five. White water rafting on Lake Victoria begins slowly on the calm water as the guides train the rafting team on the aspects and guidelines of rafting keeps on involving strange falls across the rocks later becomes more adventurous especially in the area where one rapid follows swiftly after another. After completing each rapid level, the guides give you an option of whether you want to go the hard way or the easy way so it’s the choice of the team to decide which way to go.
White water rafting on Lake Victoria takes about three hours and requires a maximum number of four people so as to operate and also allow travelers with their families to engage in rafting so as to explore the water and enjoy the safari. During white water rafting on Lake Victoria, there are trained safety kayaks who cruise ahead of the rafts with the small boats through the waves of each rapid so that when the rafts turn upside down the safety kayaks are nearby to offer support by getting you back to the raft boat.
White water rafting on Lake Victoria has several guidelines and rules that visitors have to follow while rafting on the water such as
- Wearing a life jacket or personal flotation device for safety while rafting on the water
- Listen to your guide during safety talk and on the water so as to go through the rapids safely.
- Keep the protective gears on at all the levels such as the helmet
- Hold the paddle properly while on the water, for example, one hand should be at the base of the paddle on the shaft and the other hand on the end of the shaft over the grip.
- Wear the right outerwear while going for rafting such as closed shoes, sunglasses, wet suits among others.
- Don’t panic when paddling on the raft but instead enjoy and explore the cruise.
Lake Victoria offers other amazing and fascinating activities to clients on a tour in Uganda including
- Boat cruise, Lake Victoria offers sunset boat cruise which starts from the water front pier and continues all the ways crossing the equator line. Sunset boat cruise takes about 2 to 3 hours and visitors get an opportunity to relax while on the boat, view landscapes, visit the fishing islands, view different bird species and animal species such as hippos, different otter species such as spotted necked otter, African clawless otter among others which gives visitors memorable experiences on their safari in Uganda.
- Sportfishing, this is an activity on Lake Victoria where visitors take part is fishing using the catch and release method with trolling with lures and fly fishing method. Lake Victoria is the nearest destination for sport fishing travelers in Uganda and it is done near the islands on the water banks with an engine boat or canoe. Sport fishing can be carried out either in the morning at 9:00am or afternoon at 1:00pm and takes about 4 hours for the half-day and 8 hours for long day. There are different fish types caught by visitors during sport fishing such as Nile perch, Tilapia among others.
- Bird watching, birding on Lake Victoria is carried out in Mabamba swamp which is located on the edges of Lake Victoria. Mabamba swamp is a great destination for birders in that is harbors the elusive shoebill stork and other bird species such as Papyrus gonolek, Blue-breasted bee-eater, Pied kingfisher, Grey crested crane, White-winged warbler, Egrets, Plovers, Malachite kingfisher, herons among others. The bird species in Mabamba swamp give unforgettable moments to the visitors on a safari in Uganda.
- Ngamba Island tour, Ngamba Island is located in Lake Victoria and is a home of the homeless and orphaned chimpanzees that were rescued by Uganda Wildlife Authority from East Africa. Ngamba Island is harbors about 49 chimpanzees and Visitors who visit the island get an opportunity to interact with the chimpanzees by observing the chimpanzees feeding, playing, moving around the sanctuary among others.
- Village tour, Lake Victoria is surrounded by local communities and visitors will get an opportunity to interact with the local people by learning about their cultures, traditions, local dishes and being entertained through traditional songs, dances among others hence gaining experience about the local peoples’ way of life.
- Visiting Ssese Island, Ssese island is located in lake victoria and is one of the most visited islands on the lake due to many attractions and activities that people can engage in such as quad biking where they ride the bikes along the lake and local communities on the island, sport fishing, monkey viewing, bird viewing, nature walks around the island which gives you favorable atmosphere for relaxation and scenic viewing.
Lake Victoria is the largest fresh water lake in Africa and offers a wide range of interesting and adventurous activities like white water rafting which is the most done activity on the lake and others like Bird watching, Boat cruise, Sportfishing among other. The activities provide you with lifetime memories on your tour in Uganda hence Lake Victoria should be a must-visit destination when on a safari in Uganda.