Practical Responsible Tourism Travel Safari Tips for Uganda
Simple Responsible Tourism Eco-Friendly Safari Tips that will enhance your time on Safari in Uganda
Responsible Tourism Travel Safari Tips – Advice. Responsible Tourism is simply respect shown to local communities and the culture and Traditions. Along with Conserving Primates, Wildlife, Birds, Reptiles, protecting habitats, and the environment that you will find on Safari in Uganda.
Responsible Tourism is one of our Core Values as a Safari Tour Operators and something we instill in our Staff and Clients, the communities that we visit, and our approach to African Wild that is already under significant threat on many Fronts.
Responsible Tourism translates into sustainable Conservation and an increase of wildlife, primates, birds in the parks of Uganda a such as the increase of Gorillas, Chimpanzees, Elephants, Nubian (Rothschild) Giraffes in Uganda.
Human Encroachment on Forests, Wetlands, Wildlife Reserves, even Park, along with charcoal harvesting, is the biggest threat to Conserving Uganda for future generations. Sustainable Tourism is one way that local communities bordering parks benefit from park fees and jobs in tourism.
Below you will find some ways that you can be a responsible Tourist making a difference. Thank you for taking the time to read below.
Before you arrive for your Safari in Uganda – Learn about Uganda.
- Participate in planning your Safari by taking an active part in planning your Safari by choosing eco-friendly Lodges that use propane gas for cooking instead of charcoal. Lodges that assist the local communities by giving them meaningful jobs and doing community work in those communities so that the communities benefit from tourism and see the wildlife as a benefit and not something to be poached or eradicated.
- Pack for a more meaningful safari. Uganda, by Western Standards, is a country where many people are in need. Children go without, a safari tour company can easily incorporate a visit to a school, a village, an orphanage where the gift of a book to a child will be most beneficial, where a soccer ball will be treasured, a pen, pencil set, a coloring book with crayons and the like. That little gift will have an impact on a child if given in a meaningful manner.
- Read up on Uganda – Our Website is a treasure trove on information about Uganda and Rwanda. Carefully read your itinerary. Look up the places you will be visiting, study the culture, read about the parks you will be entering, and the activities you will be participating in.
Respect Local Culture and Communities:
- Do not treat people like they are another species of wildlife. Meeting people from other cultures and learning their ways of life is a great pleasure. That is one reason why we offer village stays in authentic Ugandan villages where healthy village life takes place.
- Greeting in Ugandan culture is not done by a simple Hi or Hello. Greetings are an essential time of showing mutual respect and a shaking of hands. There is the exchange of pleasantries often followed by invitation to sit or enter a home for a cup of tea. It is a cultural mistake just to say a quick greeting, as is common in the West. Africa, Uganda is relational first, and the greeting and time spent are more important than a tight schedule. Learning a few greetings in the local language would be most helpful and most appreciated by Africans.
- Taking Photos – Always ask for permission before taking a picture – people here in Uganda often think that you will financially benefit by taking their picture, and permission should always be sought before taking photographs.
- Dress respectfully – though Westerners are most often forgiven for dressing in a manner that would be considered improper by many Ugandans, it is best to respect the local style and be dressed modestly. In Kampala, you will most often see both men and women wear quite fashionably, especially if they are middle-classed.
- Though Uganda is a non-Tipping Culture-it is most respectful to do so and most appreciated and, in most instances, will not be used for trivial things but for things such as school fees for children, for rent, or solely for living another day.
- Bargaining is part of life in Africa when buying things like crafts or art – respect the African and pay a fair price, and you are investing in their lives and the local community.
- Do not buy any crafts made from illegal things such as ivory. You rarely do you come across such things. – but you may be quietly approached – also ask if the items you are buying were locally made or imported – for example, most soapstone comes from Kenya and the area around Tabaka and not from Uganda – buy things that will benefit the local community. Ask your driver-guide to assist you that is especially the case as you visit craft markets in Kampala.
Tread lightly, take only pictures, leave only footprints, kill only time while on Safari in Uganda
- No littering anytime in the African Wild – use the garbage bag in the vehicle and hopefully your safari provider has one-if you are on a walking safari do not pick up any seeds, fossils, rocks – unless you are on a dig like at Kabwoya Wildlife Reserve where you can dig for things such as arrowheads.
- The welfare of the wildlife comes first – Your Driver Guide should never go off track, even if you ask him to do so, there is the danger of killing young animals hidden in the grass, separating families and injuring the savannah grass. Drivers are also to keep a respectful distance between the animals and the vehicle.
- Obey all Park Rules – in Uganda, it means a maximum speed of 40 kilometers per hour, but on the game drive itself, a driver-guide should drive at a much slower pace. Also, keep noise to a minimum, when stopped, the driver should kill the engine and please shut off your mobile phone until you go back to the lodge. Never stray from the road or game track or trail. In Uganda, all Nature walks are with Uganda Wildlife Authority Guides.
- Conserve Resources – often lodging facilities use solar energy – which uses a battery system at night – turn off lights when not in use. At some lodges, freshwater is in short supply, so keep your showers short, and that applies to the availability of hot water also.
- Recycle – recycling nationwide in Uganda is in its infancy – yet some lodges have bins where you can deposit plastic drinking water bottles – most sodas and beer is sold in reusable bottles unlike in the West, sadly plastic soda bottles are making inroads. Bring rechargeable batteries for
- Do not buy Crafts or Products made from protected animals. You will rarely see items, but once in a while, they might be there. If you see fur – most likely it will be from goats or cows, drums are covered with cowhides, and the djembe drums with goat skins – even with drums check if the wood was illegally harvested.
Voluntourism also is known as Volunteerism:
- Combine your time on Safari with Volunteering – this is something that can most easily be arranged for your Safari stay in Uganda – the opportunities abound, schools, orphanages, medical facilities, community work, reforestation – a great chance in Authentic Africa – Uganda.
- Donations can also be made – you can also make a direct donation to a school, project, orphanage, and we will assist you in ensuring that the money will reach the intended recipients.
Kabiza Wilderness Safari – our Take:
We hope that the Responsible Tourism Travel Safari Tips helped you. We realize that Africa’s natural resources, including its forest, wildlife, primates, birds, plants, and trees, are under threat. Responsible Tourism, adequately implemented, leads to sustainable tourism where local communities become benefactors. Tourism brings jobs, local farmers grow crops that supply lodges, arts and crafts are manufactured, providing both income and keeping cultural practices alive.
Rwanda has made great strides and today is one of the greenest countries in all of Africa, Uganda has a way of go, the laws are on the books. However, the implementation is lacking, community education programs are making a difference. Sharing of park fees and permit fees with local communities have made a visible impact, and there has been a lessening of poaching. Enjoy your Safari with us in Uganda or Rwanda.
If you have any questions regarding Responsible Tourism Travel Safari Tips – please contact us.