Entebbe is a pleasant town built on the shores of Lake Victoria in Uganda. Entebbe offers a relaxed stop-over alternative to Kampala if you’re flying into or out of Uganda, as the air is clean, the streets are safe to walk, and the old colonial gardens and parks with the lake in the background make for a serene atmosphere. Despite its quiet exterior, you view the State home and some beautiful wildlife at any turn if you’re not in a rush to the capital city, it’s worth a stay.
Entebbe is also a major town in Central Uganda. On a Lake Victoria peninsula, approximately 37 kilometres southwest of the Uganda’s capital city, it was once the seat of government for the Protectorate of Uganda prior to independence, in 1962.
Entebbe is the location of Uganda’s International Airport, Uganda’s largest commercial and military airport. It is also the location of State House, the official office and residence of the President of Uganda.
Entebbe sits on the northern shores of Lake Victoria, Africa’s largest lake. The town is situated in Wakiso District, Wakiso District is a district in the Central Region of Uganda that partly encircles Kampala, Uganda’s capital city.
Wakiso District lies in the Central Region of the country, bordering with Nakaseke District and Luweero to the north, Mukono District to the east, Kalangala District in Lake Victoria to the south, Mpigi District to the southwest and Mityana District to the northwest. Wakiso, where the district headquarters are located, lies approximately 20 kilometres, from the road, northwest of Kampala,
The olden times of Entebbe
It first became a British colonial administrative and commercial centre in 1893 when Sir Gerald Portal, a colonial Commissioner, used it as a base.
The word Entebbe came from Luganda language entebbe which means ‘seat’ / ‘chair’. Entebbe was the seat of the colonial governor in the early 1900s, when the country was a British protectorate, and is now the location of the official office and residence of the President of Uganda, thus the name Entebbe is the seat of power in the country
Entebbe is perhaps best known to Europeans as the home of Entebbe International Airport, the main international airport of Uganda, which was first opened in 1929.
Tourist Attractions in Entebbe
1. The extensive National Botanical Gardens.
The National Botanical Gardens of Uganda, commonly known as the Botanical Gardens Entebbe, are located in Entebbe, Uganda. They were laid out in 1898 by the first curator, A Whyte, close to the shores of Lake Victoria. The gardens are divided into different zones, including a rain forest zone.
2. The Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI).
The Uganda Virus Research is a medical research institute owned by the Uganda government that carries out research on communicable diseases in man and animals, with emphasis on viral transmitted infections. UVRI is a component of Uganda National Health Research Organization (UNHRO), an umbrella organization for health research within Uganda.h Institute (UVRI).
3. The Uganda Wildlife Education Centre (UWEC)
The Uganda Wildlife Education Center is a fun and exciting place to see and learn about the animals of Uganda and the ecosystems in which they live. Take some time to learn how they live, eat, play, and talk.
Originally founded in the 1950s to accommodate confiscated and injured wildlife and to look after orphan animals that have been taken away from smugglers it has grown considerably in recent years. Many say it is destined to become the most important showcase for wildlife on the African continent.
Created by the government of Uganda with the help of the Wildlife Conservation Society in New York and managed by a Wildlife Trust, it never fails to delight. At UWEC you will come across free ranging Vervet monkeys and a family troop of DeBraza monkeys in the jungle of our hillside forest. Over 120 bird species can be watched ranging from the famous African fish eagle, over the Great Blue Turaco to Hammerkops, Giant Kingfisher and even the smallest sun birds.
UWEC is not a zoo in a conventional sense and neither is it a Safari Park but it is a center where wildlife education is combined with leisure. Our main aim is to model the main ecosystem of this country in open range exhibits. Not only can you observe many of our most exciting indigenous species here, but comprehensive interactive interpretation and briefings on them are also given. (UWEC)
4. Entebbe is the location of Nkumba University
Nkumba University (NU) is a private university in Entebbe, Uganda. It was established in 1994 as part of a group of schools and colleges that originally grew from a kindergarten set up in 1951. The University is dedicated to the promotion of excellence in applied business education. Creativity, Confidence, Competence and Character. The university is not affiliated with any particular religious organization, but it accommodates several religious associations, which allow the students to fellowship along religious beliefs and to devote adequate time to God.
The university campus is located on Nkumba Hill, in Wakiso District, approximately 10 kilometres, by road, northeast of Entebbe International Airport, along the northern shores of Lake Victoria, the second-largest fresh water body in the world.
5. The State House.
The President of the Republic of Uganda is the head of state and head of government of Uganda. The president leads the executive branch of the Government of Uganda and is the commander-in-chief of the Uganda People’s Defence Force.
6. Entebbe is also home to the historical site in Kigungu
where the first catholic missionaries Brother Amans and Father Mon Maple Lourdel landed to establish the catholic faith in Uganda.
7. Entebbe is home to the oldest golf course in East Africa called Entebbe Golf Club, which was established in 1900. Entebbe Golf Club is surrounded by the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre, (formerly Entebbe Zoo), on its south side.
8. Entebbe International Airport
Entebbe International Airport is the principal international airport of Uganda. It is near the town of Entebbe, on the shores of Lake Victoria, and about 41 kilometres by road south-west of the central business district of Kampala, the capital and largest city of Uganda. The headquarters of the Civil Aviation Authority of Uganda have been relocated to a new block off the airport highway.
9. Lake Victoria.
Lake Victoria (Nalubaale in Luganda) is one of the African Great Lakes. The lake was named after Queen Victoria by the explorer John Hanning Speke, the first Briton to document it. Speke accomplished this in 1858, while on an expedition with Richard Francis Burton to locate the source of the Nile River.
And lastly Entebbe is the home of beaches on the shores of lake Victoria.
Government and infrastructure
10. The head office of the Ministry of Works and Transport is in Entebbe.
The Ministry of Works and Transport is a Cabinet level government ministry of Uganda, that is mandated to plan, develop and maintain an economic, efficient and effective transport infrastructure, and transport services by road, rail, water, and air. The ministry is also mandated to manage public works including government structures and promote standards in the construction industry. The ministry is headed by a Cabinet Minister. The current Minister of Works and Transport is Engineer Monica Azuba Ntege
The headquarters of the ministry are located at the corner of Jinja Road and Old Port Bell Road, in Kampala Central Division, in the Industrial Area of Kampala,
11. The head office of the Ugandan Civil Aviation Authority.
The Civil Aviation Authority of Uganda (CAA) is the government agency responsible for licensing, monitoring, and regulating civil aviation matters. It is administered by the Uganda Ministry of Works and Transport.
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By Kabagambe Gerald.