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I am Uganda, Land of Opportunity
by Jerry W. Bird
Editor, Africa Travel Magazine

I am Uganda, Land of Opportunity -- a land of 101 shades of green, whose balmy temperatures are matched by the warmth and hospitality of its people. I straddle the equator, yet thanks to my average altitude of 4,000 ft. above sea level, instead of blistering days and steamy nights, you'll enjoy an amazingly mild and pleasant climate all year round. Speaking of people ... who else could have performed such a miracle in the past decade. With their faith, dedication and perseverance, I have become an example of progress, a showcase for all of Africa. My borders are shared with Sudan on the north, Congo on the west, Tanzania and Rwanda on the south and Kenya on the east. Immediately south is Lake Victoria, world's second largest fresh water lake- and a phenomenal asset for tourism growth. It's waters teem with fish, and its shoreline and islands are a paradise of wildlife, with an abundance of boating, watersports and cruise possibilities. This immense waterway is the major source of the Nile, world's longest river. From Uganda, the Nile flows north via Sudan and Egypt to the Mediterranean Sea.

My history as a tourism destination goes back over a century, being one of the first popular destinations on the African continent. What do today's visitors' have to say about me? Muguette Goufrani of Africa Travel Magazine gave her impressions:"So many highlights marked our month in Uganda, one hardly knows where to begin. The Kampala portion of our visit had its own high spots, such as a visit by army helicopter to President Museveni's ranch, followed by dinner at the State House on our return. During this eventful trip, decisions were made to hold two more ATA events in Uganda, including our international congress. It is said that the President knows every one of his Ankole long-horned cows by name. wouldn't doubt it for a minute. At the Skal 10th Anniversary gala, we shared a table with the newly formed ATA Uganda Chapter and met many of the country's large travel-tourism fraternity. The event was held in a huge tent on the lush grounds of the Nile Hotel (soon to be the Serena Kampala).

Uganda is truly the pearl of Africa."
Winston S. Churchill,"My African Journey"

I will cover the ATA Cultural Ecotourism Symposium later. It was truly a winner thanks to the dedicated group who staged it, and full government support.

Our flight via American Airlines and SN Brussels says a lot for their new alliance, which allows access to Africa from over 30 U.S. locations. We boarded in Vancouver on Canada's Pacific Coast and had one of the most perfect, seamless trips ever, even though we touched down in Dallas and Chicago en route to Brussels. U.S. customs was cleared in Vancouver, and our luggage was checked through all the way to Entebbe, a further convenience."

Among the 20 or more airlines flying to and from Entebbe International Airport near Kampala are Air France, Air Tanzania, Anova Air Cargo, British Airways, Challenge Air, Dair Air Service, Eagle Air Ltd, East African Airlines, Eqypt Air , Emirates, Ethiopian Airlines, Kenya Airways, Martin Air, Precision Air, Rwanda Air Express, SN Brussels, South African Airways, West Nile Air and United Airlines


To be continued