Lake Bunyonyi is one of the most popular lakes in Uganda. The lake is considered as the deepest in Uganda and one of the deepest lakes in Africa. The lake lies in the south western Uganda between Kisoro and Kabale, almost at the border of Rwanda. The lake offers magnificent views for any traveller that visit the area. It is composed of 29 islands which are scattered transversely across the lake. The word”Bunyonyi” is a local dialect which translates to “a place of many birds” and the lake is considered as one of the top most birding destination.
The lake is 7 hours’ drive from Kampala, the capital city of Uganda. And for those coming through Kigali, you spend around 2 hours to get to Lake Bunyonyi. Part of its natural attraction is the fresh water which is disease free and the ever changing temperatures. Morning and evening hours are always cool and cold.
There are so many tourism activities to enjoy once you take a trip to Lake Bunyonyi:
Although it is considered as the deepest lake in Uganda; for those that love swimming, you find it appealing to take part in the activity while at Lake Bunyonyi. The water at the lake is fresh and disease-free- common dangerous water diseases like bilharzia are not found on the lake. Wild creatures like hippopotamus, crocodiles and other scary water living creatures are nowhere in the Lake which makes it a safe destination to enjoy swimming.
Birding is one of the most common activities on the lake. The lake is considered as a place for many birds. This is evident through its name, Lake Bunyonyi. If you happen to do birding, expect to view several bird species as the lake is home to over 200 species of birds. Common species around the area include Baglafetch, egrets, weaver birds, herons, and others.
Canoeing is considered as a popular activity for those who like to visit the Punishment Island (Akampene). The Punishment Island is one of the most popular islands on Lake Bunyonyi. The Island was named punishment island because it used to be the island where unmarried pregnant women where sent and most of them died because of hunger and excessive swimming as they were trying to get back to the shores. Taking a canoe while enjoying the magnificent surroundings of the island gives a deeper experience about the lake Bunyonyi- an experience which worth every single penny.
The nature walks around the highlands of kigezi shall offer you rare opportunities to catch glimpse of several wildlife in the area. Common wildlife to view includes monkeys, zebras and others.
Taking a simple walk to the Bakiga community around the lake shall offer you the much needed knowledge about the Bakiga. You shall be able to learn the historical aspects of the islands and how beneficial the lake has been to the neighboring communities.