Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Day 1 - Kampala

We made it!  After 24 hours of traveling, we arrived at our hotel in Kampla, Uganda last night at almost midnight.  Our route was a 7.5-hour flight from NYC to Amsterdam where we had a 4-hour layover, then a 9.5 hour flight to Kigali, Rwanda where we waited on the plane for an hour, then a 30 minute flight to Entebbe, Uganda where we picked up our baggage and went through customs, then finally we drove an hour to Kampala.  The nice thing about arriving at night is that you can go right to sleep and beat the jetlag.

Today we had the morning free to settle in and then went over to the Makerere University School of Public Health annex which is right across the street from our hotel.  We were introduced to the staff member of the Rakai Health Sciences Program who works to coordinate our internships and given an overview of the orientation week here in Kampala.  Then we set off on a tour of the city with our local tour guide Ronald.  Photos and initial impressions follow.

Kamapla, which means hill of the impala, is a beautiful and hilly city.  Like Rome, it was initially founded to encompass 7 hills.  Too bad there are no longer any impalas here.

We stopped by a urban market place to check out the fruits and veggies - we saw lots of papayas and bananas and encountered lots of shopkeepers who were eager to sell us their goods.

Below is the Kampala Taxi Park - shared taxis converge here to drop off and pick up passengers.

There are motorbikes or boda bodas everywhere.  It makes crossing the street quite an experience.

 Here we are with our fantastic tour guide Ronald.

Uganda gained independence from Great Britain on October 9, 1962.  Below is the statue that the British built to commemorate the occasion - can you tell?  The British are supposed to represent the full-sized person while the baby being uplifted signifies Uganda.  Ah, colonialism.

All photos by Oh MG.

1 comment:

  1. So glad you made it safely. Thanks for sharing the highlights of your first day. Can't wait to hear what comes next on your adventure.