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 (0°03’15.4″N 32°31’07.1″E, 0.054279, 32.518631), close to Entebbe, to the Ssese islands. Every day a local boat departs at 1:30 pm, but there are also other boats on various days, which are usually more comfortable. Check further below for the schedule of the various boats.

Please note (just to avoid disappointment): Banda Island is only providing you with the latest transport information on this page and we help you get the latest information at time of booking. We are not a stakeholder of the public transport. If prices or departure times change please inform us so we can update the site.
The boats are moored outside the landing site and you (and your stuff) has 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. Decide on a price with your porter of choice before you are picked up and carried to the boat. If you have a big bag 3,000 UGX for you and your bag is reasonable. We have found a very nice girl in Kasenyi who offered to help our guests get into the right boat. Her name is Brenda. Best is to call her before so she knows you are coming: 0700 182 024 or 0781 735 869. Please give her a tip if you were happy with her service.
Be aware that the risk of Schistosomiasis infection is greatest 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).

Kasenyi Landing Site

Kasenyi is 8 Km before you reach Entebbe, off Abaita Ababiri.
Kasenyi Satellite
You branch on Kampala-Entebbe road after hobbling over a whole array of yellow white painted speed bumps. The signpost for Kasenyi disappeared, but there is still a sign for Jehova’s Kingdom Hall of Witness and recently Eco Resort put up a sign.  Follow the dirt road for like 10 minutes and branch left here:
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After a few minutes you enter the gate to the Kasenyi Landing Site. You can park the car at the police station (after the gate turn right). I have not heard bad reviews of cars parked there. The usual fee is 10,000 for the weekend.
Also remember you are using public transport. We can help you and guide you but if boats don’t go or leave late there is nothing we can do.

Transport with Vincent

The unmatched fastest, safest and most comfortable option is to take the boat with Vincent. On Fridays and Mondays he goes straight to Banda at around midday, returning respectively on Sunday and Thursday. He is a great coxswain, his boat has a roof to protect you from the elements, cushions to protect your buttocks, and he also carries life jackets. Unlike the other public boats where the trip can vary between 3 and 4 hours Vincent only takes 2.5 to 3 hours (if there are big waves). If this option fits into your travel plans, just do it!
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Vincent can also provide 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 400,000/-, which is a very good price and worth considering, definitely if you are travelling with a group. His boat can comfortably accommodate 16 up to 20 people.

Special hire Transport in our speed boat

We can offer transport from Entebbe in our speed boat for only 300 US$ return. It is a thrilling ride of just about an hour. Provided you do not have too much luggage we can take 6 passengers maximum. Call for availability!
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Public transport schedule from Kasenyi to Banda (always check with us to get the latest info!!)
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  •  Weekend trip Friday to Sunday. Come out with Vincent at 12:00 on Friday and return on Sunday. Vincent charges 80,000 return trip and it is the safest, fastest and most pleasurable way to travel to Banda. His boat comes with a roof and life jackets and he makes it to Banda in approximately 2.5 hours.
  • Weekday trip Monday to Thursday. Come out with Vincent at 12:00 on Monday and return Thursday same time from Banda. See further above.
  • Every day there is a boat at 13:30 pm that proceeds to the neighboring island Kitobo,  Ushs approx.  25,000/- per person. From Kitobo to Banda the boat charter will cost Ushs 30,000/-, this is for the entire boat. On some occasions the Kitobo boat did not depart on Sundays. If possible try to avoid the Sunday departure and otherwise confirm if it is going. There is a new boat heading for Kitobo (at the same time) and the owner is so kind to drop our guests off at our beach. Ask for the ‘new’ Kitobo boat. This boat also has a roof and is rather fast.
  • Monday The best option is to go with Vincent. Vincent, our boat driver for the longest time, goes straight to Banda Resort. Departure is usually at 12:00 but earlier or later departures can be arranged. He is a great coxswain and his boat carries the Banda Island Life jackets.  You pay only Ushs 40,000/- per person to  travel to Banda in style! If Vincent is not available another  boat leaves at 12 pm to Banda village (Ushs 25,000/-), transport from the village to Banda Beach is 20,000. Ask for Isaak.
  • Tuesday With great great sadness we have to announce the untimely death of Tom. His 11:00 trip going to Tanzania and taking you to Banda  on route is taken over by someone else for now.
  • Wednesday Isaak departs at around 11:30 straight to Banda Village, cost Ushs 25,000/-, transport from the village to the resort is Ushs 20,000/- for the charter.
  • Thursday an early boat to Banda Village leaves at 10:00, driver is Jon Jon. If you ask him he can drop you on our beach, sometimes for a smile or some UGX.
  • Friday The best option is to go with Vincent. Vincent, our boat driver for the longest time, goes straight to Banda Resort. Departure is usually at 12:00 but earlier or later departures can be arranged. He is a great coxswain and his boat carries the Banda Island Life jackets.  You pay only Ushs 40,000/- per person to  travel to Banda in style! If Vincent is not available another  boat leaves at 12 pm to Banda village (Ushs 25,000/-), transport from the village to Banda Beach is Ushs 20,000/-. Ask for Isaak. Plus there is a new boat leaving at 12:30-13:00 pm driven by James (not yet a fixed schedule, so when you get to Kasenyi confirm if it does leave). This boat is usually not as fully loaded as the 12:00 one with Isaak.
  • Saturday Isaak departs at around 11:30 straight to Banda Village, cost Ushs 25,000/-, transport from the village to the resort is also Ushs 20,000/- for the charter. Also Isaac these days (many times) drops guests straight on our beach.

    Welcome to Banda Island!

    Welcome to Banda Island!

Public transport schedule back from Banda to Kasenyi:

Transport back to Kasenyi is very, let’s say, varied. Below are the indicative times, but always confirm with the staff on Banda which boat to take back on your day of departure especially if you are bound to be back to catch a plane or bus.

  • Boats leave from the beach in front of the camp in the middle of the morning most days, depending on winds and fish catch, and reach Kasenyi around 3 or 4 pm.
  • The daily Kitobo public boat leaves every day at 6 am, so you have to leave Banda at 5:30 and go to sleep early… or not at all!
  • Vincent returns to Kasenyi on Sunday and on Thursday at 8 am. Also here he can accommodate a later departure if you want to stay a few hours longer on Banda.
  • Saturday With great great sadness we have to announce the untimely death of Tom. His 14:30 trip taking you back to Kasenyi has been taken over by someone else – we keep you posted.
  • On Sundays and Thursdays Isaak departs from Banda Village around 11:00 and goes straight to Kasenyi (25,000).
  • On Sunday also James returns to Kasenyi at 9:00.
  • On Monday Jon Jon goes back to kasenyi and passes Banda at 14:30.
  • Wednesdays a boat departs from Banda Village at 9:00 and takes you to Entebbe close to the airport.

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:

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 about 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.

The Entebbe ferry

The Entebbe ferry

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

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