Return to site


Cycling into Uganda

I 'enjoyed' cycling up and down the rolling hills of the east, inhaling toxic fumes from lorries and being harrassed by a Ugandan teenager on a bicycle... 
Dodging baboons
As I pedalled towards the Ugandan border I was hit with a plethora of emotions, the strongest being a feeling of apprehension as I cycled through a very run down, dirty and unwelcoming border town on the Kenya-Uganda border. For me it was very strange. My experience of Kenya had been mostly positive up until now, meeting friendly people along the way, but here I was greeted with stern looks and intimidating stares. A shock in comparison to the smiley greetings I have recieved everywhere else. I am not sure why the residents of the border town didn't have the same positive attitude as the rest of the Kenyans I have met, but I can only assume its something to do with living on the border...
So despite the rather cold welcome, the border crossing was quick and easy and after 15 minutes I was officially stamped into Uganda.
broken image
Crossing into Uganda
The following 60km to my rest stop for the night was made up of some easy cycling through lush green agricultural land. Even though this road is the main trucking route between Nairobi and Kampala the roads were surprisingly quiet with the odd lorry driving past and leaving plenty of space (unlike Kenya). However the serene cycling was soon cut short... As I approached a junction near to the town were I was planning to sleep I noticed a lot of small moving dots ahead. As I cycled nearer I realised that the junction was crawling with a troop of baboons! Excited as I was to see so many magnificent primates in one spot, I was very keen to carry on cycling at a good pace because I have been told that baboons can be very aggressive and are even known to get inside vehicles, so I was not ready to stop for photos on a bicycle! (I also needed my bananas for breakfast...)
broken image
Avoiding baboons... 
The proceeding days to Jinja (the source of the Nile) invloved similar cycling conditions (minus the baboons..). The traffic did pick up on the esy to Jinja but the roads also offered a nice hard shoulder for motorcycles and bikes. This was a big relief after my experience in Kenya.
Before reaching Jinja I 'enjoyed' cycling up and down the rolling hills of the east, inhaling toxic fumes from lorries and being harrassed by a Ugandan teenager on a bicycle because he didn't agree with the social practices in the UK that are considered taboo in Uganda... However finally after around 500 tough kilometres from Mount Kenya I had reached Jinja and the source of the river Nile, a major landmark on my trans Africa expedition, and after navigating a dirt track with some steep climbs I reached my campsite on the banks of the Nile. The friendly camp staff showed me where to pitch my tent and soon after I was off for a well earned HOT shower!
That evening as I sat down with an ice cold local beer my biggest adventure so far began to unfold... 
broken image
The resident cat at the Nile Camp

Find out about my big adventure in the next post :)