What you need to know:
- The growing adventure sport offers a rare perspective of the Nile River and the beautiful scenery epitomised by the surrounding gorge and tranquil waters that encase the area in under 20 seconds.
All adrenaline junkies or thrill pursuers share a similar beguiling dream of flying and believe me when I say that bungee jumping is the closest way to experience flight. Plunging oneself from 44 metres (about 14 storeys high) is not a simple feat but an adventure worth trying at Bungee Uganda in the eastern district of Jinja.
After the Covid-19 pandemic, people have been inspired to take part in more excursions, celebrations and other outdoor events as a way to embrace the fact that life is short and should not be delayed. This is evident in the soaring number of domestic tourists over the years.
The growing adventure sport offers a rare perspective of the Nile River and the beautiful scenery epitomised by the surrounding gorge and tranquil waters that encase the area in under 20 seconds.
Science has it that experiencing a positive adrenaline rush sets in motion another reaction: a rise in happiness hormones – endorphins which make humans feel full of energy and powerful and give good vibes. The euphoria is quite unmatched and leaves you wanting to go again.
A jumper gets the chance to push his/her limits, conquer their fears and defy death.
Not just for thrill seekers, anyone can try bungee jumping since no prior training or experience is required to take on the ultimate challenge. A jumper has to choose between the ankle tie with your face looking down and the whole-body strap that permits you to fly with all your limbs free.
Prior to ascending to the tower’s summit, individuals must complete a form affirming their physical well-being, mental stability, and sobriety, while also relinquishing any potential claims in the event of unforeseen circumstances.
Still, one must overcome stomach-pounding jitters stimulated by the extremeness of the daring act to ‘kiss the Nile’ once at the platform’s edge. A group of dedicated staff helps jumpers into harnesses and prepares them psychologically.
Banking on the training and expertise of the team, the business has been able to become a self-sufficient enterprise. No accidents or unfortunate incidents have occurred over the years.
“It is very safe, and the equipment is exceedingly good,” says Bungee Uganda Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Robert Davies.
“It [the equipment] is the best we could buy, it is handmade for us in Canada. It is specifically designed for my tower. It is made up of thousands of strands of rubber wrapped in more rubber.”
In 2021, amidst the pandemic, Mr Davies was offered the chance to take over the bungee tower by the owners of the land it sits after it had been inactive for three years and he did not look back but took the opportunity without hesitation.
“It is picking up quite well, especially with the domestic market which is lovely, we do get some foreign jumpers. Most Ugandan jumpers are mainly women, about 70 per cent, which means they [women] are either crazier or braver or both,”
He furthermore notes that it is very expensive to train staff and acquire the proper certification and licenses to operate the adventure sport.
The Bungee Uganda proprietor has also had a few jumps under his belt but finds more comfort in not jumping.
“When we first opened the tower, I felt like I had to. I am not an adrenaline junky but when it is your tower you have to give it a go, I have enjoyed it but I do not want to do it again.”
When asked about his future plans, Mr. Davies says he wants to set up a zipline to complement the tower.
The cost for Ugandan nationals is shs200,000, USD 100 and USD 115 for East Africans and foreign tourists respectively for every jump. The facility also offers quad biking, tubing and rafting.
The environs also offer beautiful views for those who wish not to jump but can enjoy the wonderful offerings off the menu, and watch jumpers as they sip on their favourite drink until nightfall.