Lakeside Adventure Park Uganda: A classic adventure
Did you know that there are only two adventure parks in Uganda? Opened in 2011, Lakeside Adventure Park is one of the two existing parks and is located on the shores of Lake Victoria in Kyagwe, Mukono District. A peninsular with magnificent scenery, a wide variety of bird life and different species of trees.
Wikipedia describes an adventure as an exciting or unusual experience that may also be a bold, usually risky undertaking, with an uncertain outcome. That’s exactly what I and my two photographers (Joshua and Lauren) got the day we visited Lakeside Adventure Park. As expected we were there to check out the place as assigned. This was our first time to the park so we didn’t know what to expect. To say that it was a great experience is an understatement.
For those that know the Geography of Kampala, the following takes place from Kabira Country Club in Bukoto and Lakeside Adventure Park in Mukono via the Northern Bypass. Our trip started on a Sunday afternoon when Joshua picked Lauren and I from Kabira Country Club in his 1984 model, Toyota Camry. Yes!You read that right, 1984. It’s code name: ‘Iron Mongery’ whatever that means.The car is in good condition only that the Air Conditioning doesn’t work and this was one of the many mistakes that we made as you will soon discover why.
We’d waited for Joshua for almost an hour as he claimed to have taken Iron Mongery to the car wash. Another bad decision for an adventure. Rule Number One of an adventure is to never wash your car when you are going for one. On this Sunday afternoon with the sun scorching hot, we decided to stop by Tuskys Supermarket in Ntinda to get bottled mineral water bearing in mind that Iron Mongery had no Air Conditioning, Which brings me to Rule Number Two as to when you are going for an adventure, always carry some drinking water with you.
The drive to Mukono Town was smooth, we stopped by a gas station and Joshua ‘filled’ up the tank with fuel worth 20,000 UGX which was also another bad decision. Rule Number Three when going for an adventure: If you are travelling with a personal car, always make sure you have enough fuel to get you to and from the destination. I don’t even recall as to what happened on the way. The wind was blowing through my dreadlocks and we were having a nice laugh in the car until it hit us that we didn’t actually know our way to Lakeside Adventure Park. We stopped by Mukono Town to ask for directions but no one seemed to know where the park was. Aren’t we all grateful for Google Maps?
After clearly mapping out our route, Joshua lamented “Ho! Get prepared because there is a lot of dust on that road”. Now remember Iron Mongery has no Air conditioning so in short we were in for quite an experience. We branched off in Mukono town at W’Antoni Stage (Which is on your right) and a few Kms into the journey we descended on a dirt road and to say that we swallowed a few kilos of dust is an understatement. Joshua moaned as to why he had even bothered to take Iron Mongery to the car wash and we were practically filled with dust from the toes to our hair. You could think we had just rolled in dust. A couple of minutes later having swallowed more dust and passed by many small mud houses and fields of green plantation we reached Lakeside Adventure Park which is right next to Lagoon Resort.
We quickly wanted to get on with what it was that had brought us. Josh and Lauren were tasked with taking photos and my job was to get as much information about the adventure park as possible. We met with the manager of the park a certain Mr. Perfect (yes, really).
Facilities & Pricing
Mr. Perfect ran us through the facilities at Lakeside and how much they cost:
On entrance, to your right is a family house that has 2 self-contained bedrooms, a kitchen and lounge area and costs 150,000 UGX per night (Prices are subject to change). In the opposite direction is the obstacle course area which includes activities like jumping, crawling, swinging and costs 10,000 UGX per person.
Next to the obstacle course area are the dormitories. The dormitories are divided into two parts with a lounge in between them. Each dormitory has 15 beds, 3 toilets and 3 showers. They have huge windows, are clean and very neat. The lounge area meanwhile has a small library and is well stocked with interesting books to read and magazines some which are latest copies.
Opposite the dormitories is the parking lot for cars, the restaurant and dining area. For those that intend to order food from the kitchen, Perfect insists on giving a minimum of 72 hours’ notice prior to booking. This because they don’t use refrigeration services so all their food has to be bought prior to your order. They mainly have a snack menu with food ranging from 15,000 UGX – 20,000 UGX while buffet costs between 25,000 UGX – 30,000 UGX (Large groups).
To your immediate left besides the restaurant is a huge lush green compound used for camping. Camping per person each night costs 25,000 UGX and that comes with a tent, sleeping bag & mattress. If you bring your own tent and sleeping bag then it costs a 10,000 UGX charge for the premises.
The only alcoholic beverages served at the park are beers which cost 5,000 UGX each. You are free to bring your own wine and spirits plus juice but for those that want to bring their own beers, they charge a (negotiable) corkage fee of 50,000 UGX per crate.
From the camping grounds, you proceed to the main activity grounds which consist of a climbing wall which is 13 meters high, has 3 routes and costs 30,000 UGX per person. Right beside the climbing wall is the highlight and main activity at Lake Side Adventure Park: The high ropes course. For those familiar with the TV show Ninja Warrior you have a slight idea of what consists of the high ropes course. It basically consists of 2 levels and each level has 11 obstacles and costs 60,000 UGX per person.
Lauren and I decided to give course 1 of the high ropes course a try and see if it was worth the 60,000 UGX anyway. My opinion about it? It’s an experience that provides adrenaline rush, demands control, patience and bravery. Is it worth the 60,000 UGX charge fee? Yes!
Right next to the course is the bar area and down is the beach area where other activities like beach volleyball take place from. Mr. Perfect warns though that swimming in the lake is done at your own risk.
Besides getting there by car, you can also get there using a boat from Gaba provided you make a booking. The small boat (7 people) costs 100,000 UGX while the big boat (22 people) costs 350,000 UGX (Inclusive of all fees, but prices are subject to change).
Lakeside Adventure Park is open from 8AM – 6PM and is perfect for school trips, Youth Camps, Family Day Outs, Corporate Team Building events and Adventure Enthusiasts.
For more information about Lakeside Adventure Park or to make a booking, check the contacts details below:-