Once in a while, take on a solo trip

The writer at Sipi. Photos | Courtesy 

What you need to know:

  • Self-discovery. Embarking on a solo trip can be an exhilarating and transformative experience, offering an opportunity for self-discovery and exploration. Recently, Hilda Victoria Namulwana embarked on a memorable solo journey to Kapchorwa District in the eastern region of Uganda. From the adrenaline-pumping activities to the serene natural landscapes and the warm local hospitality, the trip was an adventure of a lifetime. 

My journey began as I hopped onto a boda-boda from home, to Nakawa Taxi Park. There, I boarded a taxi that set off at 7pm, ready to embark on an overnight journey to Sipi Falls. After a long and adventurous ride, I arrived at the Traveler’s Lodge at approximately 1:30 am, weary but excited for the days ahead.

The following morning, I was greeted by my friend Ramathan Naibei from Elgon Trekkers, who would be my guide and companion throughout the trip. We started the day on a high note with a delicious breakfast at Rafiki Lodge, a charming accommodation nestled amidst the lush greenery with views of Sipi Falls.

With energy renewed, we set off to explore the majestic Sipi Falls - a series of three waterfalls found at the foothills of Mountain Elgon. As we trekked through the picturesque trails, the roaring sounds of cascading water grew louder, building anticipation for the sight that awaited us. Upon reaching the falls, I was left awe-inspired by the sheer power and beauty of nature. The three-tiered waterfall stood tall, surrounded by verdant cliffs, creating a mesmerizing spectacle. I couldn’t resist capturing the moment through photographs and taking a refreshing dip in the cool waters below.

Coffee experience

Uganda is renowned for its coffee production, and a visit to Sipi Falls wouldn’t be complete without experiencing the local coffee culture. We embarked on coffee tours, where I had the privilege to witness and take part in the intricate process of cultivating and harvesting coffee beans. From planting to roasting, I gained insights into the laborious journey from bean to cup, all while savouring the rich aroma and distinct flavours of Ugandan coffee.

After the enlightening coffee experience, I delved deeper into the local community. Interacting with the warm-hearted locals, I learned about their way of life, traditions, and challenges.

I was given a name, ‘Chebet’ meaning waterfall. Engaging in cultural exchanges and sharing stories left an indelible mark on me, reaffirming the beauty of human connections even across different backgrounds and cultures.

The writer with Champion Joshua Cheptegei

In the evening, we ventured into Kapchorwa town, a vibrant town near Sipi Falls. The nightlife scene was lively, with locals and travelers gathering to enjoy music, dance, and delicious local delicacies.

I engrossed myself in the vibrant atmosphere, letting the rhythms of the music guide my moves and forging connections with fellow revelers.

The next day, I embraced the thrill of abseiling down a 100-meter waterfall. As adrenaline coursed through my veins, I rappelled down the cascading waters, feeling a sense of liberation and accomplishment.

The exhilarating activity offered a unique perspective of the falls, allowing me to appreciate their magnificence from an entirely different angle.

On my final night in Kapchorwa, the enchantment of my solo trip reached its peak as I had the privilege of sharing dinner and stories under the starry sky around a crackling fire. To my delight, I found myself in the esteemed company of none other than Joshua Cheptegei, the renowned Ugandan long-distance runner. As we sat around the flickering flames, the warmth of the fire mirrored the genuine camaraderie that developed amongst us.

Sheer determination

Over a delicious meal, we exchanged tales of our respective journeys, drawing inspiration from each other’s experiences. Listening to Joshua’s stories of dedication, perseverance, and triumph ignited a fire within me, reinforcing the belief that dreams can be achieved through sheer determination.

 The night was filled with laughter, shared dreams, and a profound sense of gratitude for the beautiful encounters that travel brings.

It was a moment etched in my memory, reminding me of the power of human connection and the extraordinary experiences that unfold when we step out of our comfort zones.

To conclude my journey, I sipped the best coffee at Endiro, a cozy café known for its exquisite brews. The aroma and taste of the coffee were unparalleled, providing a moment of relaxation and reflection before bidding farewell to Kapchorwa.

Before heading back to Kampala, I made sure to witness the captivating sunset from Kings View Point. From this vantage point, the horizon was ablaze with life. All this set me back about Shs300,000.

One Day Sipi Hike
Sebei Cultrual Centre
Coffee Experience
Towei Hill 
Hiking Mt. Elgon