Setting off from Kampala at around midday, the weather was unfriendly since it had been raining all morning.
That notwithstanding, determined as we were, nothing could stand in our way. We did not give up on our travel plans for the excitement was at its peak to visit one of the best eco-friendly parks.
We are headed to Rweetera Safari Park in the Western town of Fort Portal. I am travelling along with fellow writer and colleague, Ethel Watsemwa.
Rweetera Safari Park is set besides Lake Nyabikere Crater, just outside Kibale National Park, 18km along Fortportal-Kamwenge road.
One can tell that Peter Rujabuka, the owner of the park designed and furnished the place aiming at putting nature at its best; bearing in mind a creation of comfort and relaxation in the chimp and crater lakes region.
By the time we arrive at the park, its already dark, the road is muddy and slippery. Its 6pm in the evening.
The two- tone exotic clicking sound that welcomed us would only be for frogs, it’s so loud you would think they are in a concert.
It’s at this point that my company (Watsemwa) tells me: “If you cannot bear hearing the clicking sound that goes on and on, you better carry ear plugs since it goes on all night.”
A hot cup of coffee from the Park staffers who all wore smiles was part of the welcoming package. Normally it’s a glass of juice, but the cold weather couldn’t allow us.
My room looked elegant but it was still cold. It was for the long warm shower that my fingers stopped shaking.
If you are travelling to Kibale in a rainy season, you might want to carry heavy jackets lest you freeze from there.
After freshening up, we headed to the warm dining hall overlooking Lake Nyabikere.
The chef, Wilberforce Muhangi introduced us to the meals which he said are prepared with fresh organic fruit and vegetables.
We savored an aromatic onion soup for a starter before heading for the main course meal.
Steamed rice and beans; it was truly mind blowing and a yellow banana rolled in the American pan cake courted with honey for desert was yummy.
A campfire is always waiting outside to keep you warm until you retire to your room. We sat around sipping on coffee and a couple of drinks from the bar as we listened to the sound of nature.
My room, Hamerkop, named after a common bird that visits the Park; was fully made out of wood with a sealing made from weaver mats.
With the ground laid out of complete wood, there were beautifully appointed choice of double beds with two feathered soft pillows that give you the comfort of sleeping like a baby.
The rooms had self-contained clean bathrooms with flowing hot water at all time.
Rweetera has one banda, one cottage, 4 wood cabins and 6 secluded standard size types of tents which give a traveler variety of options to choose from.
Very early in the morning we woke up to the astonishing sound of bird’s praising the creator jumping from one tree to another.
Had breakfast near the lake with an early morning breeze; viewing Kibale National Park. We were served with coffee, fresh juice, fruits, toasted bread and Spanish eggs. I must say breakfast was heavenly.
Walking to the top of the world /Village walk
“Rweetera Safari Park is surrounded by four crater lakes,” our guide Wilbert tells us as we prepare for the village walk.
“Carry bottles of drinking water and a light bag, the journey is a long one,” added.
Off we went for our 5km walk that took us almost three hours. The area is characterized by rolling hills, tea plantations and a forest.
There is also a remarkable swamp walk which is between two lakes: Nyamirira and Nyinabulitwa.
At ‘the Top of the World’, a hill 5km from Rweteera town, the fresh air is fantastic with a blissful view of the two crater lakes. Here we got an opportunity to relax.
The locals call it the Top of the World because it has the best view of the two crater lakes and their town.
On Lake Nyinabulitwa, we saw a number of bird species including Hamerkop, Giant kingfisher, Malachite kingfisher, African pygmy kingfisher to mention just a few.
When you visit Rweteera Safari Park, you will go Birding, take culture tour, nature walks, visit the tea estate and go for cold spring tour.
On a market tour, you will watch traditional dancers, craft demonstration and engage in activities of tree planting at the park.