Republic of Uganda
Jamhuri ya Uganda
• Location: East Africa
• Capital: Kampala
• Language(s): English, Swahili, LuGanda, Luo
• Population: 33,112,453
• Total Area: 236,040 sq km
• Currency: Ugandan Shilling
• Curious Alcohol Fact: Here, a local brew made from bananas is the most popular
drink, instead of the exotic wines and beers. It is called the waragee.
• Annual Average Liquor Consumption Per Capita: 11.92 liters
• Most Popular Drink(s): Waragee (local gin)
Also known as the Pearl of Africa, Uganda is a land of outstanding physical beauty. This is very interesting considering the fact that the nation is landlocked. However, as a result of some incredible geographical formations, Uganda is truly on of the finest in Africa. The country is surrounded by other nations such as Rwanda, Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sudan and Kenya. Perched along the southern border of the country is the majestic Lake Victoria. The lake, also called Nyanza Victoria, is the largest on the continent and is also a major reservoir of the River Nile. The capital city is Kampala, and the name of the country is coined from the ancient Buganda kingdom.
Like many other national entities on the continent, Uganda is home to numerous tribes and ethnic groups. But for the ease of description, these groups have been classified into two: the Bantu Southerners and the Nile region Northerners. In the former group, we have the Baganda (more than 20% of the national population), Soga, Inyole, Gisu, Nyankole, Gwere and the Banyarwanda. In the latter group, there is the Acholi (famed for their military prowess), Kakwa, Karamojong, Sebei and Lango. Languages spoken number more than 30 and the most important ones are (apart from English) Swahili, LuGanda, Nyankole, Lugbara, Iteso and Masaba. To much of the outside world, the most popular Ugandan citizen is the late Idi Amin Dada, a former military ruler.
If you happen to visit any African country, you will surely be thrilled with the local cuisine, and that was exactly my case in the East Africa nation of Uganda. The matoke is a dish taken in various parts of the country. It is usually made from bananas, and there are also other dishes made from cereals and cassava. Beef and chicken are important component of the typical Ugandan meal. In the regions close to the Lake Victoria and rivers, fish of various species are destined for the cooking pot.
In Uganda, it is the usual practice to eat and enjoy the meal with a refreshing drink. In many parts of the country, the traditional drink is called the waragee. It is made from fresh bananas and is quite cheap to get. As a matter of fact, you are likely to be given generous quantities by your hosts. In other places, especially in the capital city of Kampala, there are various bars and restaurants that sell imported beers and wines.
Places to Visit
The capital city of Kampala itself is one huge tourist site but there are some other specific places that you have to visit in the country. One is the immensely beautiful Lake Victoria itself and you can enjoy a cruise past some of the most tranquil villages in Africa. The view is better seen than narrated. From there you can go to the Owen Falls Dam in the city of Jinja.
Story By World By Shotglass
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Special thanks to our contributors:
Daniel Krasnopolsky (Woodmere, NY, USA)
Adebayo Ahmed Adebola (Ilorin, Nigeria).
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