When it comes to Islands, Uganda is a home to numerous small but beautiful Islands with verdant tropical rainforests, wildlife, birds and butterfly species that will capture your attention and blow your mind. Dolwe Island is one of the beautiful places you would love to visit during Uganda safaris and when you discover what it offers, you will contend that it is one of the must-visit destinations within the country.
Dolwe is undeniably one of the largest of the many small rocky Islands found within the eastern part of Lake Victoria-Africa’s largest Lake by area, found within Uganda. This water body has a surface Area of 68,800 square kilometers (26,600 square miles) thus making it the World’s largest Tropical Lake and the World’s second largest freshwater Lake by Surface Area after North America’s Lake Superior. The Island is naturally breathtaking and comprised of spectacular Rocks that makes it one of the most interesting tourist sites to explore during Uganda safaris. It is endowed with a number of aquatic bird species such as kingfishers, pelicans and the African fish eagles among others.
The word Dolwe is said to be the corruption of the Luo name “Lolwe” which means Lake Victoria named by John Hannington Speke after Queen Victoria of United Kingdom
Due to the rich fish breeding zones in the past, Dolwe Island was every fisherman’s dream and referred as the Dubai of Uganda because fishermen would make quick money due to the abundant fish but that is now history due to overfishing that reduced the fish stocks and made the former fish tycoons paupers.
Extending for about 12 square kilometers, it has two popular congested Towns-Golofa in the west and Singla in the east, but the latter comes from the World signal because it used to have a light house with a signal that warned the approaching ships against rocks. However, the vandals that were at the time looking for mercury pulled the light house down. Golofa is a Luganda word meaning storied building because the rocks are piled on one another like storied houses and is occupied by over 20,000 people.
Other smaller Towns within the Island include Mwango and Kandege and are both occupied by the Jaluo of Kenya and are believed to be some of the first inhabitants who named the Island Lolwe. Dolwe Island is naturally endowed with beautiful attractions and when you visit, you will agree that God took his time to create it.
While here, you will learn more about the gods of the Island such as Kaliisa Mugozi, Lubanga, Mukasa, Ndaula, Ddungu, Nakayima, Musaayi, Kanywa and many others.
Other spectacular cultural sites at the Dolwe Island that include the shrine-locally known as Byoto (fire) and contains a basket containing coffee beans, pot of water and a calabash am0ng others. It is said that fishermen who experience the rough waters of the Lake while fishing visit the site to pray to the gods thus the next time will be fishing on calm waters. The resident god of this shrine is Mukasa but it is said that the most powerful gods in this Island are Kanywa Musaayi and Kaliisa because are believed to have the ability to create calamities.
In conclusion, Dolwe Island is one of the most interesting tourist sites within Lake Victoria with beautiful bird species such as Kingfishers, pelicans and African fish eagles among others but also inhabit several gods as well as other cultural sites.