Self Drive and Camping Safaris Uganda

Self Drive and Camping Uganda

A safari is usually made out of three main items to move on smoothly; transport, accommodation and meals; in case you have those three settled; everything else will automatically fit in its place. However it never that simple to identify the best accommodation places in Uganda.

Over and over again, many visitors have complained about the high accommodation rates in Uganda but this is usually as a result of demanding a certain accommodation standard which sometimes does not even exist in you; sometimes the only thing you might find matching the accommodation rating is their price not services.

However if you approach a lodge simply ready to experience whatever they are offering, this might save you a lot of frustration. Sometimes you might have to pay higher charges for poor services while other moments you will pay the very amount that you feel fits the price while in other moments; you will feel like you have cheated the service provider for getting such quality services at a low price.

But to avoid all this hustle, some people opt for camping safaris not only in Uganda, but also in Rwanda, Kenya and Tanzania

Self Drive Camping Uganda

Self drive camping is usually broken into two categories; camping with roof top tents and ground camping.

Roof top tent

Camping with a Roof top tent is available both for Land cruisers and small cars like premios and Rav4s, however in Uganda, roof top tents for small cars are not common. It is often available on Land cruisers along with camping gear that includes though not always inclusive of:

  • Sleeping bags
  • Camper Chairs and tables
  • Camp towels
  • Blanket
  • Bug spray
  • Music pen drives
  • Laundry detergents
  • Lamp
  • Kitchen ware
  • Storage box
  • Electric cooler box
  • Cutlery
  • Gas cooker / Cylinder
  • 10L Jerry can (For water)
  • Water Jug
  • A 45 Liter Fridge (24v)
  • Camp pillows
  • Soap
  • Travel mugs

Ground Camping

Ground camping is usually done on two frontiers, camping with a dome tent (usually requires you to carry a mattress) and bush tent (more of a top tent on the ground)

These two forms of camping are slightly cheaper than the roof top tent but if you are the kind that cannot bear sleeping on the ground, you might have to opt for a bush tent since it is a beat raised from the ground.

Uganda Self Drive

There are a few things to put in perspective in case you are considering a self drive in Uganda; your itinerary and season of the year. These will strongly influence the type of car you choose for your safari; for instance you might not smoothly make it through Kidepo with a Rav4, the type of accommodation to choose, that is considering camping or lodges.

All these two choices are rooted in the itinerary you choose for your trip. In case you wish to save more on accommodation, then you might have to go camping most of the day. Camping might cost you not more than US$10 for two people per day yet lodges might cost you not less than US$40 per night.

Camping usually comes with the luxury of cooking your desired dishes and at any day that you feel like not cooking, restaurants are always open. But if you the kind that does not want to worry about local food, then camping is the best way to go.

Self drive safaris only get tricky in case the car gets a mechanical problem, or when you run into an accident that leave the car with a dent or upside down. Towing fees vary from one Kampala to other but they often range from US$1000 to US$1500 depending on the type of car.

Driving From Rwanda to Uganda

It is a common thing these days to start your intended Uganda safari from Rwanda. You can fly in through Kigali international airport, cross over to Uganda to start your Uganda safari with an advantage of about 4 hours that would have been wasted if you drove Entebbe straight to destinations like Bwindi.

It is possible to cross over from Rwanda to Uganda during your self drive by simply presenting the (TIP) the temporary importation permit at the border as well as a Comesa insurance sticker.

Uganda Self Drive Kampala

Kampala is one of the trickiest places to drive in while in Uganda. Besides the traffic jam, there are very many people driving off the road which can be a temptation for you to also follow suit only to land into the hands of the cops.

We advise you keep in your lane while driving in Kampala and avoid parking anywhere in the city center after 6:00pm. You might find all your side mirrors taken as well as the indicator bulbs.