Transport to Banda


You can get to Banda in a variety of ways suiting your level of adventure and the level of cash in your wallet. The best value is to take one of the local boats that traverse from Kasenyi landing site (click here for info). close to Entebbe, to the Ssese islands. The poshest option is to travel with one of the Nyanza Evergreen speed ferries or MV Brovad and from there take a special hire to Banda.

Please note (to avoid disappointment): Banda Island is only providing you with the latest transport information on this page. We are not a stakeholder of the public transport. If prices or departure times change or boats don’t go at all all of a sudden we are also at a loss. But we will help you to get the latest information at time of booking and find you the best boat. We also organize the special hires for you.

Kasenyi landing site

The boats are moored outside the landing site and you (and your stuff) have to be carried into the boat if you do not want to wade yourself through the murky waters at Kasenyi. The porter is not part of the transport and also not under the control of Banda Island. So you have to pay the boat and the porter.

There will be a lot of hustle and bustle and porters offering to carry you and your luggage to the boats. We know a very nice guy in Kasenyi who is helping our guests get into the right boat. His name is John. On booking we will inform John and connect you. He will take care of you and also carry you to the (right) boat.

Be aware that the risk of Schistosomiasis infection is highest at populated places – like Kasenyi. So if you get some lake water on you while being carried to the boat wipe it off immediately once you are in the boat. Also read our page: (Bilharzia/Schistosomiasis).

 
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Every day boats are going from Kasenyi to the islands. The best option is the boat at around 1:30. It has a roof and the coxswain is not overloading the boat. But always get in touch with us and we can advise you. Flat rate is 40,000 per person. You can make it in 3 hours (if the lake is reasonably calm) , depending on the time for the stop-over at Kitobo.

When on the island discuss with the staff on site the best option to return to the main land.

Reaching Banda from Masaka side via Bugala Island

If you are coming from Mbarara/Masaka you can also take the ferry from Bukakata (Main land) to Luku (Bugala Island) and drive to Lutoboga and from there take a special hire to Banda.

The ferry times are not cast in stone. At the time of writing the schedule is:

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Oddly there is no public transport between the main island Bugala and the other Ssese islands so we will pick you with a special hire. The special boat hire is Ushs 150,000 – each way for the entire boat from Lutoboga to Banda. If you can board at Mwena (just a short Boda Boda trip across the peninsula) the charges are 130,000. The crossing from Lutoboga takes about 45 minutes to an hour depending on the wind and waves and is a beautiful boat trip, passing between the lush islands with the sun setting behind you.

MV Kalangala ferry from Entebbe-Nakiwogo to Bugala-Kalangala:

From Nakiwogo (Entebbe) to Lutoboga on Bugala

The 14:00 ferry MV Kalangala takes you from Nakiwogo, Entebbe to Lutoboga where you can be met by a Special Boat Hire. The ferry crossing costs 15,000 for first class and 10,000 for second class seating and takes at least 3.5 hours.

The ferry back to Entebbe leaves in the morning at 8:00 from Lutoboga so you need to be on the special hire leaving Banda preferably 2 hours before.

You can take your car with you and proceed to Masaka/Mbarara after (or before!) your Banda visit.

The Entebbe ferry
The Entebbe ferry

Nyanza Evergreen speed ferries (MV Vanessa and MV Nathalie)

The fastest way and a really exciting trip is with one of the speed ferries. They reach Lutoboga in 1 hour 45 minutes. The other good thing is departure times: 16:00 from Nakiwogo and back at 14:00. Weekend returns are 100,000. We will organize a special hire boat to pick you and take you to Banda. A lovely trip over calm waters in between the islands.

MV Brovad

A similar trip is done by MV Brovad. Departure is from Entebbe Waterfront.

Special hire

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We can organize a special hire service and can pick you whenever you want from wherever you want.  If you leave from Kasenyi to Banda the charges are Ushs 500,000/-, which is a very good price and worth considering, definitely if you are travelling with a group. The boat can comfortably accommodate 20 people.

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  1. Trackback: Romantic in a rustic sort of way | soulofwander

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