Walter’s boda tour of Kampala

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I am terrified of bodas.

A boda boda is a motorbike taxi. In Kampala they’re unregulated – any dude with a bike will tout for business it seems. Before Saturday I’d been on three – and had been super scared the whole time. They drive fast and weave in and out of traffic. No-one wears helmets and they have a very high accident rate. The majority of deaths in Kampala are caused by bodas.

Despite all this I decided to brave the bodas by doing a whole day boda tour. I’d heard good things about Walter’s Boda Boda Tours and decided to brave up and give it a go (helped by the fact they provide helmets). I’m really glad I did.

A tour lasting 6 hours covers all the main sites of Kampala and costs 90,000 shillings for one person. If you’re willing to double up on a bike it’s 160,000 shillings for two and there are discounts for big groups. Three of us spent the day zooming around Kampala getting mildly scorched by the sun and covered in dust. We chose to have a bike and driver each as the other two members of our group were large dudes. It was fun and I feel I know Kampala better now.

We started the tour by visiting the Baha’i temple (the only one in Africa).

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Baha’i temple, Kampala

Then we zoomed across town to the Gaddafi Mosque which had amazing views and where I was severely covered up before being allowed to enter. I looked like a blue nun. Or a ghost. I felt this was particularly unfair because the men were allowed to enter dressed however. One dude was in shorts, a vest top and had his pants showing.

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Gaddafi Mosque

Blue ghost inside the mosque.

Blue ghost inside the mosque.

View of Kampala from the minaret

View of Kampala from the minaret

One of my favourite parts of the tour was when we zoomed to lake Victoria and walked around the fish market there.

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Fishermen on Lake Victoria.

Tilapia and chips.

Tilapia and chips.

We ended the tour with the Hindu temple, taxi park and Owino market.

Taxi Park.

Taxi Park.

As we walked through the taxi park on the way to the market a vendor gave us a handful of grasshoppers to try. Reluctantly I put one in my mouth. It was a bit gross – with the texture of peanut shells. I don’t think I’ll be snacking on those anytime soon.

All in all it was a great day. I didn’t fall of the bike (huzah!) and we got a better sense of the layout of Kampala. The guides were friendly and informative. My driver was very kind and slowed down every time I whimpered at him. I’d recommend this tour to all!

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