Jinja – Jinja City Council authorities have handed over the source of the Nile site to Excel Construction Limited for the construction of a Shs15 billion viewing deck and Glass Bridge.
The construction of the modern pier which will last twelve months will include a docking place for boats, a vehicle parking yard, restaurants, children playground and entertainment centers among other amenities.
The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities Doreen Katusiime said that the source of the Nile attracts visitors but there is nothing so attractive to entice them to visit it again, adding that the redevelopment of the site is a government-funded project on both sides of Njeru Buikwe district and Jinja city.
She also said that residents owning land near the source of the Nile should not worry that the project is aimed at grabbing their land.
Uganda is the source of River Nile – the world’s longest river from where the Nile starts its 4,000 mile journey to the Mediterranean Sea through South Sudan, Sudan and Egypt. The source of river Nile is located in Jinja city about 80 kilometers from Kampala, the capital city of Uganda.
Jinja is a hive of many other touristic activities for anyone interested in a weekend getaway from the bustle of the city including all year white water rafting, Kayaking, Jet boating, bungee jumping to kiss the Nile, Squad biking, horse riding by the shores of the Nile etc.
The Nile starts its journey to Egypt from Lake Victoria in Jinja city – eastern Uganda. When you drive out to the source of the Nile, your first encounter are the beautiful gardens in the vicinity. Next is the several craft shops with mostly African pieces sourced from all over the country. You can then visit and photograph several monuments which have a historical attachment to the Nile. For example, Mahatma Gandhi requested that some of his ashes be sprinkled in the Nile after cremation along many other rivers in the world.
Once on the shores of River Nile, you will take a motorized traditional boat to where the river waters start separating from the lake waters, the spot is clearly marked with a sign post. Over the years because of several dam constructions downstream along the Nile, the water levels have increased upstream making it sometimes impossible to step on the slab by the signpost for photos. However visitors are still able to take them while in the boat with the sign in the background. In the dry seasons when the rains are scanty it is sometimes possible to step on the slab for personal photos.
There is amazing scenery all along the Nile as it curves through Uganda with sections through communities where you have sightings of fishermen, gardens along the Nile and homes with energetic beautiful children often excited to see boats on the water. Other sections simply have hotels and factories, especially those near the source of the Nile.