Being healthy during your visit is always everyone’s prayer and wish especially when travelling to another country that you are not familiar with. Therefore, follow the following health tips or information while in a Safari in Uganda and you will enjoy your safari without any health issues.
Make sure to get Travel Insurance to cover for costs of accidents and theft while on a holiday in Uganda.
It is also important to carry a first Aid Kit to contain bandages or plasters of different sizes, gloves, painkillers such as cough medicine, paracetamol and aspirin and liniment to take care of muscle strains that you might get during activities such as nature walks/hiking, mountain climbing and mountain gorilla trekking.
Keep hydrated because of the general weather (sunny) in most places of Uganda especially during the dry season from June to September and December to February
Avoid drinking tap water while on a safari in Uganda because it is unsafe even if for brushing teeth, and also avoid swallowing the water while bathing. Therefore the recommended water to drink is bottled water and should be sealed which is sold in most places across the country.
Not only that, do not drink juice such as passion fruit juice made with ordinary water except if its bottled/packed juice purchased from supermarkets. However, tea or coffee is safe to drink and is recommended compared to locally made juice.
Be aware of bites, bites and more bites-especially insect bites
Beware of mosquito bites that cause malaria, tsetse fly and safari ants’ bites. Tourists travelling to Uganda are advised to carry insect repellents and wear long trousers, long sleeved shirts during most tourist activities in Uganda.
Protection against sunburns
The fact that Uganda is a tropical country, sunburns are inevitable and always affect the skin of tourists to Uganda. It is for this reason that tourists are advised to wear hats with wide brims and some lotions that protect against sunburns.
Always immunize or vaccinate before travelling
Make sure to travel to Uganda with an inoculation certificate against yellow fever, Hepatitis A and B, Rabies, tetanus and Meningococcal meningitis among others.
Most tourists travel from countries where mosquitoes are only read in books and not seen physically but when you travel to Uganda, one of the common insects you will not miss to see are the mosquitoes. You will need anti-malarial drugs such as Doxycycline, Malarone and Mefloquine also known as Larium as well as insect repellants among others. Wearing long sleeved shirts, long trousers and socks can protect you from mosquito bites. However, if you are travelling to areas of higher elevations (at least above 3000 meters/9842 feet above sea level, you are safer because mosquitoes rarely survive in such areas.
It is common for travelers to low developed countries for example Uganda to develop diarrhea from eating poorly cooked foods or with poor sanitary and hygienic practices which contribute to diarrhea, especially tourists who are not used to consuming such foods. Tourists are also advised to carry antibiotics such as Ciprofloxacin to help in extreme cases of dehydration.
HIV/AIDS has always been a critical issue in Africa and Uganda is not exceptional. Even when enjoying the nightlife in urban places such as Kampala, make sure to avoid messing up after getting drunk.
Also avoid swimming in lakes and rivers to prevent Bilharzia
In case of medical emergencies, you can reach the following emergency places;
International Hospital Kampala (IHK) as you slope from Rest corner in Muyenga from Kabalagala, towards Namuwongo. This State of Art International Clinic was founded by Doctor Ian Clark who still resides in Kampala. You can call the Ambulance service on +256 772 200400/1 or +256 312 200400
The Sterling Dental Clinic
This clinic is found on Kampala road within Bhatia House
In case of Surgery, You can reach 2 Acacia Avenue, in Kololo Kampala. Alternatively, you can call on telephone through +256 414 256003 or the 24 hour emergency service on +256 752 756003 and for Ambulance service, you can also call on +256 752 756003.
In conclusion, much as it is a rare case for tourists to fall sick or ill while on safaris in Uganda, it is important to take precaution such as drinking bottled water, HIV/AIDS prevention, having travel insurance, protection against sunburns and malarial prevention to avoid anything that can jeopardize your safari.