Choosing the right Lodges for your Safari – Uganda – Rwanda

Posted by on November 23, 2016


Practical Ways heling you in Choosing the right Lodges for your Safari

Picking the Right Lodges in the Planning Stages of your Safari saves you grief on Safari

Lodges-chooseChoosing the right Lodges for your Safari – Uganda – Rwanda?

It comes down to the saying of old- You get what you pay for when it comes to Hotels – Lodges in Uganda and Rwanda.

You cannot go on the internet – to a lodge website and really know what you are getting when it comes to quality, service, cleanliness, food, even the nearness to the park that you want to visit. 

Today you can book lodges on line. One problem, it may not be in the best location for your safari or in the case of Gorilla Trekking you may book a lodge not suited to your gorilla trek by being the in the wrong location

We know Uganda, Rwanda beyond the internet, we live here and we create memorable Safaris, we will give you  the lodging choices, selected with you in mind, based on your preferences and budget.

Choosing the right Lodges for your Safari – Uganda – Rwanda.  The Major source of complaints about a Choosing the right Lodges for your Safari - Uganda - Rwandasafari in Uganda are hotels, lodges, resorts, tented camps where visitors to Uganda stayed and it did not meet their Standards.

Here are some simple ways that you can improve the quality of your stay at hotels and lodges during your time on Safari in Uganda and Rwanda.

It all begins with doing your homework in the form of Research:

  • Research the Lodge that we suggest – Hotel – Resort – Tented Camp including the reviews on TripAdvisor
  • Lodge Website – take a look at what the Lodge – Hotel has to say on the Internet.
  • Safari Tour Operator Input –  We for example take the conditions of lodges, hotels, resorts, tented camp quite seriously based on client feedback, our driver-guide input, personal visits and TripAdvisor reviews.
  • Check pricing:  Do remember that lodges are often in the bush, it costs more to operate a fully functioning lodge in wildlife parks.  Uganda has a 18% VAT Tax on all lodges -rarely you will see a price without the Tax included.
  • Look at pictures of room, cottages, and see if it meets your needs – pay attention to nightstands, reading lights, closets if any.
  • WiFi Access and 24 hour Electricity:  WiFi availability is hit and miss on Safari.  Newer lodges are making it available, but often too many people on one router.  Electricity is getting a lot better, in most cases it is Solar, meaning that you have to charge your times in the main office of the lodge.

Choosing your Lodges-Camps- Hotels for your Safari The Reality – You are in the African Bush:

Realize that you are in the bush where there are limits, where there are no power grids for the most part, where one realizes on solar power, generators, inverters, where your bath water might be heated in a 50 gallon drum and piped to your room, cottage, tent, where baking is done in a bush oven and charcoal is used, where the nearest store is miles away.

Where the staff does its best to accommodate your need but there is always the unpredictable – no sun and rain all day, the solar power system does not work then and you have a Kerosene lamp instead…enjoy the experience.

More and more lodges are turning to solar power and that is making a big difference.  In Rwanda you are most often in or near a town and are on the power grid.

Customer Service:Customer-Service-in-Uganda

Customer Service is an emerging art in both Uganda and Rwanda and the quality of service, of customer service you get, depends on the training the staff has received.

Ugandans and Rwandans are the friendliest people in Africa but there are cultural differences and there are ways to complain and get results but it is not with the usual straight on confrontation as for example “There is no hot water.”

Staff, unless trained are not pro-active (culturally you do not barge onto a table and ask – “is there anything else?”- just look at our traffic police standing there passively while there is mayhem all around and one of the major complaints you see on TripAdvisor -are complaints about service with words like indifference, insensitivity and the like – unfair.

Use our driver guide – who is not only a driver, interpreter at times, but in such cases a cultural mediator who knows how to obtain results in our culture to your satisfaction.  Simply state – “I have a problem and need your help”  – never use anger – speak softly and most often what concerned you will be resolved.  At most up-market and better budget and moderate lodgings that we pick you most often get your problems resolved in the most gracious of manners.

Safari-Lodging-food-meals Safari Meals and Food in Uganda – Rwanda

What will I eat while on a Safari Uganda – Rwanda? What do lodges and Accommodations offer for Breakfast – Lunch or Dinner to their Guests?

One thing is for sure – most will not lose weight on a Safari in Uganda – Rwanda unless you jog along all the wildlife game tracks in the various national parks on safari.

Food especially in the up-market lodges is restaurant quality.  Meals are a most enjoy part of the Safari and being in a lodge with lousy food spoils a safari.


Drinks and Refreshments in Uganda 

The various Drinks & Refreshments available in Uganda and Rwanda.  Bottled Water, Juice, Sodas, Beer, Wine,  Liquor available and consumed in both countries

You will not go thirsty , there are many choices with which to quench your thirst while visiting  Uganda and many of the offerings you will have will be quite new to you.

Be sure to have a Stony Soda also called Tangawizi, the amazing ginger based soda in East Africa.


Getting a good glass of wine on Safari in Uganda

The Wine List in Rwanda’s or Uganda’s Lodges is getting longer and longer.

Practical Advice – to have that perfect glass of wine as you watch an African Sunset in Uganda or Uganda – number one – BYOB – bring a bottle of wine from your country or buy a few in Kampala and save.

One of our clients was on Safari with us during the Holiday Season – He was looking forward to spending New Year’s Eve with his safari mates – the lodge ran out of wine at 10.  Here are some ways to get a good glass of wine on safari in the Pearl of Africa.

coffee-no-instant-350Our Coffee Lovers on Safari Suvival Kit:

Uganda, Rwanda, great Scenery, Primates, Wildlife, Friendly People, lousy Coffee  in countries that grow some of Africa’s best.

It is the coffee that visitors complain about.  I came across this on TripAdvisor in a review by a visitor to Uganda “The coffee is weak.”

The other complaints are along the lines such as the coffee is instant and that to us is like dancing without music.

Neither Rwanda or Uganda consume a lot of coffee at home, it is sent overseas, you can buy it at Starbucks, but here you get instant, except in better moderate, and upmarket lodges.


Breakfast in the African Bush of Uganda

There is nothing like an Early Morning Bush Breakfast Experience the African Bush during an early morning breakfast in the African Wild Safaris are about experiences in the African Wild, creating memories that will stay with you for a long time.

There is nothing like a Bush breakfast – it will cost more and is normally only available in up-market lodges – it is however one of those experiences that will remain with you.

Things to remember about Choosing the right Lodges – Hotels for your Safari in Uganda – Rwanda

  • You are in the African Wild – it is not easy to operate a fully functioning, lodge that meets your needs in Clouds-Mountain-Gorilla-Safari-Lodge1the middle of nowhere.
  • Supplies have to be trucked in over some rough roads in some places.
  • Some lodges have better trained chefs than others.Up-Market usually give you the best  variety and have the best trained chefs.
  • Do not expect to eat exotic meats like Zebra, Antelopes, Buffaloes and the like.  Sorry, Fish, Beef, Chicken it is and usually nicely done.
  • No safari company can guarantee you that your lodging experience will be exactly they way you would want it. Along those lines – we may have to adjust the lodges on the initial itinerary according to availability.  A client will always be notified along with various choices.

Lodging in the Parks of Uganda – will for the most part pleasantly surprise you – as you enjoy your time in the African Bush in Uganda – Rwanda…as tourism has increased in both countries – so has the quality of Hotels, Tented Camp and Lodges.

hakuna-matata-kabizaChoosing the Right Lodges:

Each day, 7-days a week, we create Safaris with you in mind.  We place someone into a lodge based on the activities they are doing and the proximity of lodges to that activity.

If you are Gorilla Trekking in the Buhoma Area of Bwindi, we do not put you into a lodge in Nkuringo. If you are in the Mweya region of Queen Elizabeth Park, we do not use a lodge in the Ishasha region.

We create memorable Safaris, that is all we do, that is all we are about and it takes thoughtful planning, including the pick of lodges to reduce drive-times.

After your Driver-Guide – the lodging choices are one of the most important factors for making your safari a success – will advise you with the best choices that are right for you.

We love to help you make a safari in the Heart of Africa – a reality.  Feel free to contact us.

Choosing the right Lodges  for your Safari – If you have any question about Lodging, hotels, please contact us.