Enjoy a Cultural African Village Stay during your Safari in Uganda
Experience African Life and Cultural Traditions in an African Village in Uganda
An African Village Stay is a Cultural Experience like no other. It is immersing yourself into African life, Ugandan Culture. It does not happen on a typical primate, wildlife Safari which in comparison is dipping your toes into African culture.
Stay in an authentic African Village with no Electricity. No running water. Participate in daily village activities such as going to the garden for vegetables and fruits with your host. Assist in the preparation of breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You are experiencing Village life by being with Africans in a Ugandan Village.
You will find life quite different in an African Village from life back home. Experience Life in an African Village is based on relationships rather than tasks. The world Swahili word Harambee describes it best. Harambee is a community pulling together for the common good of all.
Africans are born into communities, not nuclear families, so the concept of Harambee is easier to understand. Harambee will come alive as you visit and stay in an African Village in Uganda.
Authenticity: That is something to be decided by you. Staged Village Events have become the norm throughout much of Africa, including Uganda. We know the difference and let you know, and you can then decide.
You can visit Africa, but never visit Africans – you can visit Uganda but never meet Africans besides those working in Tourism. You will not be staying in a Four or Five Star Safari Lodge, but in a typical village. A village stay means gong without things you are used too. Electricity is often not available. Internet Access depends if there is a transmission tower in the area.
On an African Village Stay, a traditional dwelling will be your home. Oil Lamps or a solar lamp will illuminate the night. A traditional village toilet will be available, and you will hot water brought to you in a basin to bathe.
You will most likely assist in harvesting what will be served today. You will also help in cooking the meal. The meal may include chicken, beef, goat, or fish. Matooke, a type of plantain bananas, posho, which is made from corn, will be served. Beans, cassava, greens, all things that you either pick or dig will be part of the meal.
For most, the village stay is transformational. It will give you an understanding of how most Ugandans live. If you are on Safari with children or teens, this will be one of the highlights of your Safari.
Experience the Real Africa with an African Village Stay in Uganda
It is part of the Boomu Women’s Self-Help Group, and here you experience life in an African Village.
Stay in traditional African huts, outside toilet, hot water is brought to you for bathing, and lighting is done with Oil-Lamps.
For meals, you do not just eat here, but you gather from the garden, help in the meal Preparations, which is a bonding time with those with whom you are staying.
There is no electricity, no running water, no WiFi unless you have a smartphone with MTN.
Learn how to make crafts, gather flowers for dye-making, a weaving of blankets, visit a school, meet a village elder, and observe life in an African Village.
Ruboni is home to the Bakonzo People, the keepers of the Rwenzori Mountains of the moon. The place to stay in is either the Ruboni Community Camp, which is right in the Village, or the upmarket Snow at the Equator Lodge. From either lodge, you experience what village life is like for Uganda’s Mountain People.
You can even take dancing and drumming lessons here, walk through the Village and meet the traditional healer, a blacksmith making tools like in the days of old. Food preparation for today’s meal. At dinner, see the cultural dancers and drummers perform at sunset. You can take Drumming and Dancing Lessons here.
Be taken to the forest where you learn how to fish with your hands while you see primates, birds, and the three-horned Chameleons that are found here. Ruboni is located near Fort Portal and Kibale Forest and Queen Elizabeth Park.
Ruboni is off-the-beaten-tourist track unless you are planning to climb the Rwenzori Mountains. It is a working Village – Visitors do come here, but not in droves.
Nshenyi cultural Village is 3-hours from Mbarara – which is on the main road leading to parks.
It is a part of Uganda where they Ankole cow reigns supreme. It is an Ankole Cultural Village where the day starts early with milking, watch Ghee being made. Take a walk to the Rwandan or Tanzanian border, learn the traditional ways, staying in a traditional hut, and eat the local food of the area.
Most visitors have a delightful stay here in this African Village where you can visit a school, watch traditional dances, and see an abundance of birdlife.
Please, the Cultural Village was created to give Tourists an understanding of the Ankole Cattle Culture. If you are looking for comfort and all the things you look for in a hotel, then this is not the place, rustic African style would be better to describe. Reviews on TripAdvisor are unfair. They focus on comfort and not on the Cultural Experience. Authentic? Yes, but created for Tourism to show Ankole Traditions and Culture.
Ik People Visit on Mount Morungole:
The Ik People are one of the indigenous tribes in Uganda. They live in the remote northeast Karamoja region of Uganda. To visit them, you have to hike up to Mount Morungole there on the ridges and valleys live the Ik People.
Your mobile phone will not work here. There are no communication towers or masts. You have to communicate in person through an interpreter.
Most find the visit to Ik people one of the most amazing encounters of their Lifetime. Today there are between 11 to 13,000 remaining Ik people. They live in isolated hamlets on the Mountain. They herd goats, and the bride’s price in their community are beehives.
This is one of kind Village in all of East Africa.
Visit a Karamojong Manyatta:
In the remote Karamoja Region, there you find the Karamojong People. They are proud Warrior-Herder People related to the Masai, Turkana, and Toposa Tribes. Cattle is their God-given right. In the past, cattle-raiding was the most common pastime in the area.
The Karamojong live in Manyattas like the Masai in Kenya. The largest Manyatta in East Africa is in the Karamoja region of Uganda. You can visit a Manyatta while you on Safari in Kidepo National Park.
There are about 300,000 plus Karamojong in the region. Internationally they are recognized as indigenous people. In Uganda, they have not been given that recognition by the government. Hopefully, that will soon change in Uganda.
It is another most amazing cultural encounter that you can have while you are visiting Uganda.
A visit with the Batwa People:
You can spend a day with the Batwa, the first people of Forest in Southwest Uganda. The Batwa are conservation refugees that were evicted from the Gorilla Parks in Uganda.
Today some of the Batwa are allowed to take you into their beloved forest. You will see how they lived for thousands of years. It would be nice if the tribe became part of Gorilla Trekking in Uganda. They have the potential of being great rangers guiding visitors into their forest.
They built no villages. They had no field or gardens. The forest was their source for everything that they needed.
The Batwa people can teach us a lot about living in harmony with nature. They left a low ecological footprint in their beloved forest.
A Visit with the Batwa is one of those must-do things in Uganda.
Incorporating African Village Stays or Visits into your Safari:
We know Uganda, Rwanda, we live and work here. You let us know what you would like to see and experience on your Safari and ask to incorporate some village stays along the way.
It is an enriching experience for you, it may not meet Western Comfort expectations at all times, but it is made up of cultural experiences and new friendships.
Family Safaris with Children will also love. We have Village Stays with various levels of comfort that will meet your needs.
We will be adding more village Stays. We have dropped others. The temptations for Africans wanting to benefit from Cultural Tourism is to stage it. They do not realize that in the 21st Century, Tourists are looking for authenticity. For hands-on experiences like teaching for a day, working in a village clinic, planting trees, digging wells, call it cultural Tourism with a purpose.
Discover Authentic Africa with a Village Stay in the heart of it, Uganda or Rwanda.
If you like a Cultural African Village Stay during your Time on Safari in Uganda or Rwanda – please let us know.