If your dream has been to explore that one magical and secretive island on earth then it is high time you realized it. While many head to Uganda’s parks to see wildlife species or the rare mountain gorillas in Bwindi and Mgahinga National Park in particular, a trip to Bubembe Island ideally rewards travel endeavors with mesmerizing experiences. This spectacular island is one of the 84 beautifully distinct islands in Lake Victoria that make up the Ssese Archipelago. This island lies within Kalangala district, northwest of Lake Victoria. Most of these islands in most cases comprise of fishermen and also feature some stunning forests and swamps which offer ideal habitat for bird species and the notable ones include the whale headed stork, grey parrot, kingfishers, fish eagles, herons, geese a mention but a few thus making these areas perfect not only for one to relax out with their dear ones but also do bird watching. Besides, they are endowed with abundant and yet untapped plant species that are worth exploring if you are a botanist.
Culturally, visitors on safari to this island get a warm welcome from the humble and hospitable locals who live in this area. Mostly, life at this place revolves around religion, fishing boats and trading centers. Religiously, this island is refuge to temple of Mukasa. Besides, there are some wildlife species for you to catch a glimpse while on tour in Bubembe Island and they include among others colobus monkeys, vervet monkeys, hippos, crocodiles, sitatunga antelope, chimpanzees, forest birds such as weavers, flycatchers, turacos, horn bills, fish eagle and paradise flycatcher. This island features among a few visited islands in Lake Victoria. It features many well-kept grass thatched houses, where most rituals are conducted for fortunes. Most locals confine in this area to seek for wealth, fertility and partners for those who are single. Most people from in and around Kalangala visit the sacred trees in the island blessings and there is believe that if someone doesn’t respect rituals linked to these sacred sites, he or she won’t avoid misfortunes. The other significant place to visit is Buwa forest which features a rare and popular stick Damula is named. This forest equally features as significant cultural site and comes with a spring water where the stick is cleaned and it is believed that this stick has been passed on to all Buganda Kings.
How to reach to Bubembe Island
This island is reachable within nine hours especially when you set off from Port Bell or spend 45 minutes using a local ferry from Bukakata. If you are around Buggala Island, you will spend about three hours on a boat ride to Bukasa Island or two hours to Bubembe Island. Banda Island which is also part of the Ssese Archipelago is reachable within three hours by boat on Buggala side.
In conclusion, if you are interested in exploring unique cultural sites while on safari in Uganda, Bubembe Island should be a must to visit and you will have a lifetime experience.