Uganda Travel guide

General information  on Uganda

Capital City:

Kampala

Location

Uganda is a landlocked country astride the equator; about 800 kilometers inland from the Indian Ocean. It lies on the northwestern shores of Lake Victoria, extending from 1 south to 4 north latitude and 30 to 35 east longitude.

Uganda is bordered by Tanzania and Rwanda to the south, Zaire to the west, Sudan to the north, and Kenya to the east. With a land surface of 241,139 square kilometers , Uganda occupies most of the Lake Victoria Basin, which was formed by the geological shifts that created the Rift Valley during the Pleistocene era. The Sese Islands and other small islands in Lake Victoria also lie within Uganda’s borders.

Time

GMT + 3

Population:

Just over 30 million people live in Uganda

Area:

236,040 sq km

Climate

The climate is tropical; generally rainy with two dry seasons (December to February, June to August). Average daily temperatures rarely exceed 29 Celsius (84 F).

Ethnic Groups

Uganda’s ethnic groups are most broadly distinguished by language. In southern Uganda, most of the population speak Bantu languages. Sudanic speakers inhabit the northwest; Nilotic speakers, principally the Acholi and Langi, live in the north; and the Iteso and Karamajong in the northeast. The Baganda, who populate the northern shore of Lake Victoria, constitute the largest single ethnic group in Uganda, making up about 17% of the total population. The Basogo 8%; the Iteso 8%; and the Langi 6%. Perhaps 6% of the population (not counting refugees) is of Rwandan descent, either Tutsi or Hutu. Most of them live in the south. Bagisu constitute 5%; Acholi account for 4%; Lugbara another 4%; Bunyoro 3%; and Batoro 3%. The Karamajong account for 2%. Various other groups make up 23%; the remaining 1% is comprised of non-Africans, including Europeans, Asians, and Arabs.

Religions

Roman Catholic 33%, Protestant 33%, Muslim 16%, indigenous beliefs 18%.

Official Language

English is the official language, with Swahili, Luganda and other Bantu languages also spoken.

Currency

The Ugandan shilling, denoted by UGS, is the official currency of Uganda

Geography

Uganda shares borders with Sudan to the north, Kenya to the east, Lake Victoria to the southeast, Tanzania and Rwanda to the south and the Democratic Republic of Congo to the west. Kampala is on the shores of Lake Victoria, and the White Nile flowing out of the lake traverses much of the country. The varied scenery includes tropical forest and tea plantations on the slopes of the snow-capped Ruwenzori Mountains, the arid plains of the Karamoja, the lush, heavily populated Buganda, the rolling savannah of Acholi, Bunyoro, Tororo and Ankole, and the fertile cotton area of Teso.

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