Jinja

Jinja is a city in eastern Uganda. It is the second busiest commercial centre in the country, after Kampala, the capital and largest city. Established in 1907, Jinja lies in south-eastern Uganda, approximately 54 miles (87 km), by road, east of Kampala, the capital. The city is located on the shores of Lake Victoria, near to the source of the Nile River. Jinja is the largest metropolitan area in Jinja District, and is considered the capital of the Kingdom of Busoga.

Jinja city is one of the most blessed cities in the world due to its richness in providing multiple exciting attractions to the tourists. The city contains a variety of lakes, bridges, waterfalls, dams, and offers multiple sightseeing and adventurous opportunities to the visitors.

What to do in Jinja

Source of the Nile

The source of the Nile is one of the renewed attractions located in Jinja town, the adventure capital of Uganda. The river Nile is the second longest River in the world measuring 6696 kilometres long and pours its water to over eleven countries although it’s more centred to Uganda as well as Egypt. Other Countries include Sudan, Burundi, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania, Eritrea and Ethiopia among others.

This famous river and longest comprises of two major twigs, the white and Blue Nile that connects in Khartoum to form the core Nile that is made up of Cataract Nile along with Egyptian Nile. The White Nile is the longest and rises in the great lakes regions of central Africa, which is found in Burundi and Rwanda, flowing north through Tanzania, in Lake Victoria Uganda and South Sudan.

The Nile has contributed a lot to the modernization of countries like Uganda and Egypt. Its history has been the major source as why people visit Uganda. There are a number of activities to encounter and these include-

White water Rafting is an exciting adventure you should not miss on your visit to Uganda. The boat sails gently from the starting point and the speed increases with the flow of the rapids. White water rafting is done in paddle farts, which carry a maximum of six people plus a rafting guide who is well trained in rafting. Each person is given a paddle and the guide keeps instructing on how best to use the paddle to enjoy the raft and how to be safe.

There are different grading of the rapids running from 1-5 where one can choose to go through the middle of the rapids that are larger and higher or go through the edges of the rapids. There is also family rafting an experience that is both rewarding for the parents and the children.

White water rafting is a wonderful activity and a can be done throughout the year since the country straddles with the equator, which means there is no winter and no summer.

Bungee Jumping is one of the most fascinating adventure activities that offer thrilling lifetime experience in the Pearl of Africa. Bungee jumping experience on River Nile requires jumping from raised platform that has a bungee cord, which is connected to your two tied legs. The activity does not require experience, There are different two ways how participants of Bungee jumping are tied; one of them is when only the Ankles are tied and your face looking down whilst the other one is when your whole body is tied and you will float like a butterfly on the water.

Before you jump off the raised platform, the bungee Instructor will count from 1to 3 then he will shout out “bungee” then you go. Bungee jumping activities can be done both in the morning and in the evening although most rewarding experience is during daytime. During the bungee jumping experience, you will feel excited diving down and touch the waters of River Nile, which rewards you with thrilling lifetime adventure experience in Africa. It is important to acknowledge the activity is scary but it offers extremleing intriguing safari experience.

The minimum weight of all participates is 35kilograms and the tower is believed to support up to 260kilograms. Thus, this gives a chance to all participants who fear to go alone to do the activity along with their colleague or friend.

Tubing on the Nile is a fun activity to do in Jinja on an adventure trip. It takes an adrenaline drifting on a tube for 2 – 3 hours long right at the source of the world’s longest river while sunbathing and enjoying beautiful sceneries on both flat/lazy or white water adventure. This trip is suitable for those looking for a relaxing experience or groups with younger children. The session includes a safety briefing a chance to practice and build confidence in small portions of the course before taking on any of the more challenging sections. It is therefore suitable for complete beginners and no experience necessary.

Tubing on the Nile can be tailored to individual, group and corporate bookings and make a great team-building event. Children under the age of 18 years are advised to be under a company of an adult.

Kayaking is a fun activity that involves moving through water in a small water vessel with the aid of a double-bladed paddle. It allows the boat driver to manoeuvre through waterways by sitting face-forward and propelling ahead with alternating side-to-side paddle strokes.

Kayaking on the Nile River in Jinja involves canoeing on the white water rapids of the amazing Nile at a very slow pace. Kayaking or Canoeing on the Nile exposes one to the incredible biodiversity and landscape surrounding the Nile River.

Those who book the activity are always given instructions, basic skills on how to row a boat and defence mechanisms in case of an incident while sailing on the Nile. Life jackets and helmets are provided for everyone at no extra fee.

For inquiries and bookings for kayaking tours in Jinja, get in touch with us via hello@hotanasafaris.com.

Sport Fishing on the Nile. River Nile and Lake Victoria make Jinja city one of the best places for sport fishing in Uganda. The most popular species to go out for is the large Nile perch and the tasty tilapia.

One of the great things about fishing along the Nile River in Jinja is that certain sections are reserved for sporting fishing hence allowing anglers to catch huge specimen. The ideal time to catch fish is in the morning and evening hours. Indiscriminate fishing is frowned upon as is using old-fashioned gear. One has to go for only mature fish.

Before going out to fish, one is briefed about the river and safety measures before being given correct fishing gear. Anglers who do sport fishing in Jinja always complete with happy faces.

Speke Memorial Monument, the monument sits in Jinja at a village called Bukaya, adjacent to the source of the Nile gardens with a river in between. The source of the Nile and Speke monument are both situated on the west shores of the Nile and not actually in Jinja side. The scenery is quite awesome and offers a panoramic view of Lake Victoria and the great River Nile.

The Speke monument commemorates John Hanning Speke, an early white explorer who discovered River Nile. In the year 1856, John Hanning Speke and his partner Burton embarked on a journey to East Africa in quest of the Great Lakes that were claimed to lie in the middle of the African continent. They believed that travel would help find the exact source of the Nile. Speke and Burton had also heard of another lake around the east and it wasn’t long before they decided to search for it while embarking on their way journey back to the coast. Without Burton, Speke embarked on a 48 day expedition measured to be about 463 miles that saw him reach become the first European to discover Lake Victoria and River Nile and drew them on a map. It was through analysis of his notes that the truth was finally established and a monument was erected on the western bank of the River Nile which is today is in Jinja Uganda.

A visit to the monument rewards with beautiful views of the River Nile, there are also many monkeys and birds at the scene. Activities like boat rides are also available at the place.

Wish to visit the Speke monument in Jinja, let us know and we will include it in your itinerary. Besides the Speke monument, Jinja has more exciting places to visit like Jinja Sailing Club and itanda falls for kayaking and rafting among others.

Itanda Falls. The Itanda Falls are rapids on the White Nile River in Uganda about 27 kilometers from Jinja and the drive will take about 45 minutes. Located along the River Nile in Jinja District, Itanda Falls is the hidden treasure that is a must see. Known to kayakers and rafters, including Prince William of Great Britain, this stretch of the Nile is what eluded many visiting Uganda for a long time. Because of the disappearance of Bujagali Falls after a new power dam was constructed there, Itanda falls has gained popularity and the attention has been placed on this jewel of the Nile.

This spectacular scenery comprises of rapids, waterfalls and the hillsides making one of the best places along the Nile that you would wish to spend a day. Stand a chance to look out on the river, view the falls as you hear the rushing waters of the roaring waters with more than three levels of rapids.

The place is still non- commercialized and is considered a sacred site by the locals in the area. Jinja waterfalls such as the itanda falls is one of the great reasons to enjoy and visit the lonely planet Jinja the home of River Nile. Rafters and kayakers are able to spot islands around the falls, numerous bird species, locals who consider the falls a scared site where they come for prayers at the trees surrounding the falls in need of physical miracle.

Visit the falls for amazing activities to encounter like boat rides, rafting, kayaking, Bungee jumping and visit the source of the Nile among others.

Jinja Sailing Club is a newly modern and upmarket luxury renovated restaurant, bar and conference facility on the shores of Lake Victoria, near the Source of the River Nile.  The Jinja Sailing Club has and always will hold a special place in the hearts of the Madhvani family members, who frequently visited the site as it is very close to their home in Kakira. The site was initially chosen for it’s close proximity to the Source of the River Nile, and for it’s beautiful setting on the shores of Lake Victoria.

Located on the shores of Lake Victoria and near the source of the Nile, the club offers activities like a boat cruises to the source of the Nile and on Lake Victoria; enjoy drinks and snacks upon request on the boat to make your trip even better. The club recently introduced early morning Boat Cruise with Breakfast for their guest to spice up their stay. They also offer bonfire nights to their guests providing them with an excellent opportunity to engage in conversation, storytelling, music making among others. Sharing time with friends and family around a cozy bonfire is one of the best ways to escape the hustle and bustle of the fast-paced world you live and work in.

The club has an ideal and breath-taking location to host weddings, parties and private functions. There is ample space in and around their beautiful gardens, as well as in restaurant and bar, and they provide everything to make your event a special one to remember!

The picturesque and tranquil gardens by the lake set the scene for a perfect retreat. Whether it is for that long-awaited, cold beer in the Explorer’s Bar at the end of a hard-working day, or for a mouth-watering meal at The Captain’s Table, Jinja Sailing Club is their to satisfy your requirements!

WhEN TO VISIT Jinja

All Year Round

HOW TO GET To Jinja

Numerous buses (large coaches and small mini-buses, also called taxi buses) run several times a day between Uganda’s capital Kampala and Jinja in both directions. For a bus ride from Kampala to Jinja you should plan about 4-5 hours.