A visit to the Crater Lakes in Uganda

I am an active person. At least I am thinking about myself this way. But not to use big words like active; I believe, trying not to stay much time in the same place would sound better. Because it seems I get bored pretty fast and in certain circumstances can be a good thing.

Around Fort Portal, the place where I am volunteering, there are many things to be done during the free time. Free time is considered weekends because during the week is the volunteer time.

First stop : the crater lakes near Fort Portal. In program would be included the climb of the “Top of the World” top; at 2-3 hours hike to a high point of a hill. The boda-boda crash was not included; but at least was free; except the $2 paid on the medicines both at the local pharmacy.

Local Fish Shop

There are around 63 crater lakes of volcanic origin. Are young in geological age as being just only 10.000 years old.  The craters lakes are extinct, but it seems it is still lava underneath some of the lakes. It is a perfect place to relax after a hard working week. From Fort Portal is only 20 km ride to the crater lakes. No more than 10.000 USH with a boda-boda or 5000 with a shared cab which are available next to the local hospital and the Mosque.

Local  House

P1020518Crater Lakes Uganda
Top of the World View

The lakes where the CVR Lodge is located is named Nyabikere; in translation; the Frog Lakes. After the sunset a incredible concert begins. If you don’t like the noise, this is not the place to sleep. They keep the noise up to 2.  If you are lucky we can see different types of monkeys just crossing in front of you. And if you have more money to spend, the Kibale Forest Natural Park and the Chimpanzee Sanctuary are located near by. The price for the track is $150 and you have to book it one day in advance.


Friendly Monkey

For backpackers like me, you can have a small tour of 3 lakes up to the “Top of the World” hill. There are 2 rounds; the easy one, accessible by car too, and the hard way within the forest and the bushes. The nicest one is the second one, but alone you can get lost because is not marked very well. You can hire a guide for $10.

The trip takes you throw local gardens, where banana plantations (actually there are 3 types of banana: for cooking, for the juice and for eating it), coffee bushes, maize and not at lest tea plantation. It’s impossible not to encounter children on the way and they’re greeted: HOW ARE YOU, repeated sever times.


If you are lucky and I haven’t been you can spot the  only hippo from the second lake on the route. Its real and not a myth and you can see the tracks he made during the night when he is out of the water.


The slopes and the climbing is not difficult at all. But with a broken hand it was a little bit taught and the final ascent even harder. Try not to wear slippers because after a rainy night you can fall; happened to me only once.

Crater lake Uganda

The view is amazing from the top. On a clear day you can see the Elizabeth Park, the Rwenzori Mountains and the 3 lakes along with the tea plantations.


Tea Plantation



Despite the boda  fall it was a nice weekend away. I wanted to relax more, but I was in pain the  night after it so the relaxing was gone.




by Sorin

Sorin is a freelance travel writer. He is an experienced travel writer and traveller. Since 2012 he explored more than 60 countries on 4 continents: Asia, Europe, Africa and North America. Currently is based in Romania after spending the last 7 years in Myanmar.