Are you planning for a self-drive tour to any of Uganda’s rural areas? A self-drive safari in urban areas and rural areas differ from each other in one way or the other. Sir Winston Churchill described Uganda as the pearl of Africa for many reasons. It is in Uganda that you can find nearly all that the African continent offers to world travelers in terms of natural attractions and authentic cultural experiences.
It features the most amazing and fresh, untapped African wilderness with the most humble and warm welcoming people that offer visitors magical encounters of a lifetime. Uganda is credited for its ten most spectacular national parks and other untouched wilderness areas that offer that authentic African experiences and most of these include Murchison Falls National Park, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Lake Mburo National Park, Mount Elgon National Park, Mount Rwenzori National Park, Kidepo Valley National Park, Semuliki Valley National Park, and Kibale Forest National Park.
Each of these remarkable protected areas features unique attractions ranging from savanna grassland wildlife to primate species that offer visitors that rural experience with no influence from urban development. For the most exceptional wilderness experiences, these incredible protected areas can only be reached via rural areas and they widely distributed in almost every part of Uganda and unlike urban areas, most of these rural places have only murram roads that offer you that real African setting.
This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t embark on a self-drive tour to explore these incredible places.
They offer you the opportunity to be adventurous and one of the best ways is for you to contact our receptionist and we shall help you get that dream car for you to set off for your self-drive adventure via the countryside as you interact with nature and the people. You can even rent a car with camping gear and once you reach, you simply set up your camp in the national park of your choice and to have the most memorable private trip in Uganda, we have listed some of the tips and we believe that they will be of great importance to you and anyone who is planning for their next vacations;
Check your speed
Always be careful with your speed limit as you are behind the wheels especially on feeder routes just is the case with the major routes. Most of Uganda’s routes are narrow and you may not find any speed limit posts like is the case in urban areas. While you may find the road empty, you still need to be extra careful and keen when it comes to the speed at which you will be driving to help you make a brake in case there is another vehicle coming ahead of you. The fact is that over-speeding along the murram roads can easily damage some parts of the vehicle as you may not be aware of what is ahead of you and that is why you have to observe your speed limit and slow down as this will help you have enough time to see what is along the road and drive or act accordingly.
Always be cautious
Most of Uganda’s access routes in rural areas are fed by other smaller murram routes and you may not be in a position to see them even well till you get there. In case another user is coming through the same route, you may not know it till they come close to you and this is a bit risky. This still calls for you to check on your speed limit and be cautious while on a road trip in most of these rural areas. In case you come close to the junction, other vehicles or people may also join the same route that you will be using and you are advised to first hoot at least twice to alert the rest that there is a vehicle coming. This may sound funny to some other person but it will be of great help to you and the rest of the people.
Driving in rural areas is more adventurous. In case you get lost, ask the nearby people about the exact location of the place you intend to visit otherwise you will burn fuel to a strange destination, and yet fuel stations may not be near. Some of the places share names and they can be situated in various areas. In case you aren’t sure about which direction or route to follow to your area of interest, you can simply inquire from local resident, most of them can be willing to guide you or if you don’t want to get lost, you can rent both a car and a driver.
Be careful with tractors and heavy turning cars
You will find most of the heavy-duty vehicles like tractors/ATVs in the same route that you will be using despite their narrowness. For this case, ensure that you are driving at a safer distance even if they can be very slow. In case you wish to overtake them, ensure that there is adequate space on the roadside for you to maneuver easily and remember the truck driver has limited views of the road and other users. Make sure that the person on the truck is aware that you need to overtake and where possible, simply put on flashlights.
Be careful with the many livestock
Most rural people rear animals like cattle, goats, and sheep and it is likely that you will be encounter most of them while on Uganda self-drive as they cross the roads while others can be looking for pasture and water. You are therefore advised to make a stop to let them pass then you continue.
Have enough fuel
Note that the further you go off urban area, the lesser you will find a fuel station and worse of it is that, much of the fuel from rural places at times comes with impurities that may reduce on car hire efficiency or simply spoil it. Make sure that your fuel tank is full to take you through your self-drive to and fro and where possible, go with an additional jerrycan of fuel. You can even find out the distance to a destination of your choice and make a comparison with the car consumption rate of that car rental company that you will be dealing with as this will help you ascertain how much fuel to be used.
In conclusion, unlike self-drive in urban areas where visitors can be easily be guided by road signs, most rural areas in Uganda are unique on their own. You may not find any but for those of you who are planning to go for a self-drive tour to most of Uganda’s remotest areas where most of its tourist attractions are found, make sure that you put the above tips into consideration and you have a safer and enjoyable road trip.