Top 5 Popular Lakes in Uganda
Situated in the Great Rift Valley region, Uganda is no exception to the presence of large lakes. We have amazing lakes in Uganda with record breaking lakes such as Lake Victoria and Lake Bunyonyi.
The African Great Lakes region includes Kenya, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Malawi, Uganda and Tanzania. All of these countries are located along the Great Rift Valley, which stretches from Israel to Malawi.
Not only the lakes, but the African Great Lakes region has some of the the highest mountains in Africa and around the world too. These include Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Kenya.
In all safari in Uganda, most itineraries include visiting one or two lakes in Uganda. Lakes constitute a large part of Uganda’s heritage and beauty.
Most popular lakes in Uganda
It is the largest lake in Africa and the second largest freshwater lake in the world, with an area of 68,800 km² and an altitude of 1,100 m above sea level. It is shared by three major East African countries, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. In Uganda, it is found in the eastern part of the country.
Lake Victoria is home to many beaches and resorts where travelers and guests go to swim, sunbathe, relax, party, have picnics and also retreat to their preferred accommodation.
Fishing is also practiced at Lake Victoria, where visitors have the opportunity to dine on a Nile perch, one of the most delicious fish one can eat. On this Jinja lake is the source of the Nile, the longest river in the world. There is a rich history to visualize at the source of the Nile.
It is one of the economic resources of the three countries, where locals go to catch different types and species of fish. As an economic resource, it provides local water transport between Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.
Between Kisoro and Kabale in southwestern Uganda, Lake Bunyonyi, also known as the “place of many small birds,” is close to the Rwandan border.
Some evidence shows that Lake Bunyonyi is significantly deeper, at around 900 m (3,000 ft), which would make it the second deepest lake in Africa. Research often cites a maximum depth of 40 m (130 ft).
Lake Bunyonyi is one of the safest lakes in Africa. There are no crocodiles or hippos and no danger of schistosomiasis in Lake Bunyonyi. The word Bunyonyi in Buganda means “place of small birds” and the lake is home to around 200 different species of birds.
It is an excellent place to observe weaver colonies and the nearby marshes are home to a wide range of waterfowl. The crowned crane, herons and egrets are the biggest favourites.
There is also a diverse assortment of aquatic species in the lake, including the African clawless otter and the spotted-necked otter.
Swimming is a great approach to explore and immerse yourself in the surroundings.
Alternatively, you can visit some of the 29 islands that Bunyonyi comprises. In a canoe, glide down the shimmering rivers and admire the breathtaking landscapes.
This is another Ugandan lake that owes its name to British royalty when it was discovered in 1864 by Sir Samuel Baker. The waters of this Rift Valley lake extend to the borders of DR Congo from western Uganda as the Upper Nile (Victoria Nile) continues its course.
Today, the lake basin is famous for its recent oil and gas explorations in Uganda. Off Lake Albert are sights like Murchison Falls and numerous small rivers that feed the lake and surrounding marshes. Besides oil exploration on the shores of the lake, the lake provides a good fishing area.
Ndali-Kasienda crater lakes
These lakes are believed to be the result of volcanic activity that occurred in southwestern Uganda around 100,000 years ago. The vast lake has more than 50 small lakes and streams that overflow during the rainy season. The surrounding area offers views of monkeys, butterflies, birds and fishing activities.
Lake Edward And Lake George
Lake Edward is shared by Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo and is located on their respective borders.
Lake Edward is the smallest of the African Great Lakes, with its northern coast located just a few kilometers south of the equator. The 32 kilometer Kazinga Canal drains Lake George into Lake Edward. Boat trips on the Kazinga Canal are a popular activity in Queen Elizabeth National Park.
The lake was named after Prince Albert Edward, son of Queen Victoria, by British explorer Henry Morton Stanley in 1888. However, the lake was named after the Ugandan tyrant Idi Amin in 1973. After the After the fall of Amin in 1979, the old name was reintroduced. .
Lake George is smaller (250 km2), shallow and bordered by swamps. It is silted up and the silt coming from the Rwenzori threatens its existence because it does not exceed 2.4 m. The two are connected by the 40km Kazinga Canal, which is a winding silver thread that runs through the Queen Elizabeth National Park.
It is not elongated but has the most distinct characteristics of all the lakes in Uganda. It undulates sharply from most of the lake and recedes, undulates again and recedes, then finally undulates and recedes. Its three branches almost look like tentacles.
Besides the beautiful view it offers and watching fishermen bring in their catch, it is close to the Bugondo Forest Reserve. What if you killed two birds with one stone? In a figurative sense of course!
Spectacular waterfalls occur at Murchison Falls (Kabalega) on the Victoria River Nile, just east of Lake Albert. At the narrowest point of the falls, the waters of the Nile pass through an opening just seven meters wide. One of the Albert Nile’s tributaries, the Zoka River, drains the northwestern part of Uganda, an area still known as West Nile, although this name was not officially recognized until 1989.
Other major rivers include the Achwa River (called Aswa in Sudan) in the north, the Pager River and the Dopeth-Okok River in the northeast, and the Mpologoma River, which flows into Lake Kyoga from the southeast.