Uganda, often referred to as the “Pearl of Africa,” has long been celebrated for its breathtaking natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and diverse wildlife. With its game parks, picturesque lakes, majestic mountains, and vibrant culture, tourism has played a pivotal role in the country’s development.
The allure of this nation has not only attracted foreign visitors but also captivated the hearts of its own citizens. As the world prepares to observe World Tourism Day 2023, Uganda’s Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife, and Antiquities is embarking on a campaign to boost domestic tourism, all while emphasizing sustainable practices under the theme “Tourism and Green Investments.”
Over the years, Uganda’s Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife, and Antiquities, in collaboration with the Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) and the Explore Uganda brand, has organized successful campaigns to encourage domestic tourism. These efforts have taken tourists to various regions, from the northern city of Gulu to the eastern town of Mbale. This year, the spotlight is on Hoima District, where a series of tourism activities will be held to mark World Tourism Day 2023.
Lilly Ajarova, the CEO of the Uganda Tourism Board, announced at a media launch held at the Sheraton that the entire month of September will be dedicated to promoting tourism within the domestic market, as well as attracting international visitors. The campaign is designed not only to showcase the country’s incredible attractions but also to foster a sense of environmental responsibility.
Stephen Masabi Sanyi, the Director of Tourism and Business Development at the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA), revealed an exciting incentive for Ugandans to embrace their nation’s natural wonders. In a bid to encourage local engagement, UWA will be granting Ugandans two days in September to visit any national game park of their choice for free. This initiative aims to foster a sense of pride and appreciation for the abundant wildlife that Uganda is blessed with.
As the focus shifts to Hoima District, the heart of Bunyoro, a vibrant array of events awaits. The tourism month will be marked by the inauguration of the Hoima City Carnival, a celebration that brings together the community in a spirit of festivity. The Explore Uganda Cup will allow tourists and locals alike to engage in friendly sporting competitions, fostering a sense of camaraderie. The legacy of King Kabalega will be honored, paying homage to the historical significance of the region.
Exploring Hoima’s various attractions, from the serene lakeshores to the towering oil refinery stations, will be a highlight of the festivities. The month-long celebration will culminate in the grand observance of World Tourism Day on September 27, 2023. This occasion will provide an opportunity to reflect on the value of tourism in Uganda and its potential for future growth.
To amplify the campaign’s reach and impact, a roster of influential personalities has been enlisted. From the melodious tunes of musicians like Pallaso Mayanja and Irene Ntale to the strength and determination of kickboxer Golola Moses, and the visionary leadership of Amos Wekesa, these figures will champion the cause of sustainable tourism and environmental preservation.
As Uganda prepares to celebrate World Tourism Day 2023, the nation’s commitment to showcasing its hidden treasures and fostering a culture of responsible tourism shines brightly. Through this campaign, the Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife, and Antiquities hopes to not only invigorate the domestic tourism industry but also to underscore the vital role that each individual plays in safeguarding the natural beauty that defines the “Pearl of Africa.”