Jinja City is a town in the Eastern Region of Uganda, located on the shores of Lake Victoria and lies in the North of the Lake. The origin of the name “Jinja” comes from the language of two tribes (the Basoga and the Baganda) that lived on either side of the River Nile in the area.
In both languages “Jinja” means “Rock”. There is a sense of timelessness when you visit Jinja city. The magical confluence of beauty, nature and the people can be experienced here as you can see layers of history unfold in every nook and corner of city.
There are so many reasons for you to visit Jinja from it’s rich industrialization, cultural diversity, source of the Nile, to it’s bustling markets and architectural buildings, from the delicious food to the vibrant local life, from the hospitality of Jinja people to the cheap yet classic hotels.
The rich tapestry of history can be seen in the sights and sounds and in the many places to visit in Jinja city. There is something special about Jinja and personally it is unlike any other town that I have been to;
lets check it out;
Source of the Nile. The second longest river in the world starts from Jinja city. It is about 2km away from Jinja town.
Marketed as discovered by the European explorer John Speke, the source of the Nile provides a pretty focal point to the flow of water from Lake Victoria’s only outlet.
The beautiful scenery here is pretty amazing!
These falls offer the best rafting activities in East Africa. And not forgetting the bungee jumping adventures.
Itanda falls also offer bird watching, camping and picnic outings.
Like a coin, Mabira forest has two sides. There is the side that a passerby may see through their car or bus window; this will usually be the sight of many trees along the Kampala-Jinja highway.
Behind this stretch however, is a second side, a whole different world of its own. It is flora and fauna coexisting and bringing forth the largest surviving tropical rain forest that has come to be called Mabira Forest.
It has been gazetted for 84 years now since 1932 and sits on 306 square kilometers.
Activities in Mabira forest
What do you do when you find yourself placed in this vast green beauty? There is so much you will do because the activities and attractions are as infinite as the forest itself.
The attractions are sights and sounds and the activities are both adrenaline rising as well as soul soothing.
The forest is teeming with a variety of Butterfly species. Butterfly identification will be an activity to keep you engrossed as you search and try to identify all the 218 butterfly species found in Mabira.
You will also learn about and sight the 97 moth species that are found in the forest. Your guide will lead you on different trails which will give you the best chances for sighting a variety of butterflies and moths.
Forest hikes/Nature walk
Taking a hike through Mabira forest will bring you to a variety of trees in this forest with vast uses especially for the local population that collect medicines from them.
The forest has over 312 tree species some of which include the Warbughia, Mililia Exclesa, Cordia Millenii and the Ugandans.
These are a treasure for medical researchers because of the components contained in these age old trees such as the Ugandans which has medicinal properties known to cure almost 40 ailments!
The forest hike will give you the much needed rest and nature will soothe you as you enjoy the cover of the forest canopies.
Mangabey tracking in Mabira forest
The most popular primate tracked in the forest is the Mangabey, a grey cheeked primate that is unique to Uganda and also known as the Flophouses Uganda.
It is a tree dweller and seeing it will usually depend on the time, season and the availability of food.
This activity can only be done in Mabira forest in the whole of Uganda and this particular mangabey is endemic to Uganda.
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