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Culinary – Uganda’s Untapped Tourism Potential

Culinary – Uganda’s Untapped Tourism Potential


Food and delicacies of any place are among the major factors most tourists consider before choosing to travel to any destination of their interest. Uganda the pearl of Africa is not only blessed with unique tourism attractions but also a number of delicacies prepared from locally grown and fresh from gardens food stuffs. While on a safari in Uganda, tourists should not make any mistake of leaving the country without tasting some of the popular foods in the country.

Being a country with great cultural diversity, Uganda’s major food is attributed to various Ugandan cultures of the different tribes. Uganda has over 56 tribes and at least each tribe has a special culinary from which it’s recognized.

Today, many tourists leave their usual places to different tourism destinations with the major aims of changing food and many of the tourists who have tasted Ugandan food always share their experiences and always cite specific foods like Luwombo, Nsenene and the “Ugandan Rolex”. Just as other well recognized culinary tourism destinations like France, Italy and Mexico, Uganda has equal and great potentials for attracting tourists with intentions of just tasting the local cuisines in the country.

Recent research by the United Nations world tourism organization shows that culinary tourism is among the most trending tourism attractions of various destinations because now tourists visit places seeking for unique cultural experiences that are most times experienced in foods and traditional dance and drama. Because of that, most tourism destinations have shifted their focus on creating unique brands basing on the local cuisines available.

An areas local food is one of the aspects you cannot separate from the natives of an area. Many Ugandan natives have different ways of preparing and serving food. All these can be best explained to an interested tourist in homestays or the many hotels and restaurants all over the country.

Just as the saying goes that the easiest way to win a persons heart is through his stomach, Uganda has expert cooks and the leading restaurants and hotels that their works makes people’s mouth watery by a mere thinking about the food or after smelling the aroma from the food.

Ugandan foods are very nutritious and those who taste say it’s very fresh and delicious. This has forced most hoteliers in Uganda to get ways and means of displaying and making the major foods of Uganda known to international tourists.

The major delicacies that a tourist can enjoy in a given tourism destination include Nsenene- seasonal grasshoppers. They are eaten after being boiled or fried with little salt, Rolex – a snack comprised of fried eggs and chapatti sometimes with raw tomatoes rolled. This is prepared in the major towns in Uganda and some leading hotels. It’s a popular delicacy and all tourists to Uganda should at least get themselves one.

There are also various foods according to regions and tribes. While in central Uganda – native area for the Baganda, you can taste foods like smashed bananas (Matooke) with stew such as groundnuts stew, beef or goat meat stew.

While in the eastern region in areas of Mbale, Soroti and many other districts inhabited by the Bagishu and Itesots, one can enjoy Kalamalewa (bamboo shoots prepared as source- they are mostly consumed by the Bagishu), pasted roasted meat or fish and Atapa also known as Kalo.

Alurs, Acholis, Lugbaras and many other tribes of Nilotic and Nilohamite background occupy the northern region of Uganda. They have various delicacies that include Odi – Simsim paste, Malakwang- vegetables, pasted dry fish, Ugali- Posho made from maize flour and many others.

In the west and southwestern part of Uganda, one can enjoy Emonde- Irish potatoes, Ebitakuli – sweet potatoes, yams, smashed bananas and many others. All the above-mentioned regions have fresh fruits grown by many local farmers. They include yellow bananas, mangoes, apples, guavas, passion fruits, jackfruits and many others.

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