Canoe Trek in Uganda

Blog from Sarah P.

Hello friends and family!
We are now in Rwanda after an amazing few days on a canoe trek around Lake Bunyonyi.

On the canoe trek we spent the first day canoeing and exploring the islands around the lake. It was really beautiful, and nice to be back on the water. We were in dugout canoes that are made by hand by various people around the lake. After canoeing all day, we landed at the island where we spent the night. We were staying with Mama Bena. Mama Bena and her family made a fire and made us dinner and allowed us to stay on their wonderful island. We were up on a hill, so the view of the lake was amazing. We were all sleeping in tents and after dinner went right to sleep because we were tired from the day on the water, and wanted to rest up before our trek.

The next day we had our big hiking day. First we walked about an hour to a Batua village where the people there usually do a shooting (bow and arrow) demonstration, but they could not do it that day because they had lent out the bow and not gotten it back. They did have some crafts for us to buy, so we made introductions, talked about their history, and bought some crafts. Then we really started hiking. We hiked up a trail that was super steep to get to the top of one mountain. The worst part was the first 45 minutes, but the whole ascent was really challenging. When we got to the top the view was breath taking. We could see mountains all around us, as well as most of the lake. Wow. After resting and taking tons of pictures, we walked across the ridge to the top of another hill and ate lunch. We had a picnic with all sorts of snacks and sandwiches which tasted amazing after a whole morning of hiking. Then we went down the hill and at the bottom rested at a house where the family there sang and danced for us, and at the end we got to dance with them. It was really fun and high energy. It made me wish that song and dance were more a part of our culture. Then we walked up and around another mountain and then across a peninsula to get to the spot where we met the canoes. Overall, we were walking/hiking from about 9 AM – 6 PM. It was a long day, but afterward I felt incredible and proud that I was capable of doing all that. We stayed at Tom’s Place that night and went to sleep almost immediately after dinner because we were exhausted.

The next day we got in the canoes and explored some more islands around the lake before going to a fancy restaurant for lunch. We had a delicious buffet lunch that we all agreed seemed far out of our price range. We also decided that this meal was probably going to be the closest thing we got to a Thanksgiving dinner. It was amazing. That ended the trip and we went back to Kabale after a great couple of days.

Until next time,
Sarah Paulson