Entebbe Silent Beaches Haunting Dwellers as COVID 19 Bites Further

For all time, it tends to be Entebbe’s energy to host revelers. Many a time concerts end at the shoreline of the lake. 

Lido beach, Imperial Resort, Aero, White Sand and Water Front, fringed by the nostalgic the Nalubaale Lake view and admirable white sand held concerts for Uganda’s finnest artists. Others hosted beach volleyball among other games. 

For Botanical Gardens, a tale of romance as couples held hands inside the beautiful tree species encountered a relaxing population. More than 1800 people would join daily. 

“For it refreshes minds, the fantastic lake view and fresh air from the distant shores would reflex the zeal for a new normal,” Haruna Mukasa, a regular occupant of Botanical Gardens recollects. 

Others emphatically view animals in the Wild at the Uganda Wildlife Education and Conservation Center as husbands and wives hold hands together to renew vows and mend relationships.

The city, Entebbe had gradually grown into a peaceful recreation center before the COVID 19 pandemic. It all turned lonely, a neighbourhood! Beaches closed Hotels picking from their reopening. Ambulances keep moving, perhaps to transport COVID 19 patients.

Located at Lake Victoria peninsula in Wakiso district, Entebbe municipality is home to charming attractions that lure merrymakers to the town everyday of the week. The municipality is home to 80- percent of the beaches on the Lake Victoria shoreline making it an ideal party spot for all kinds of activities.

Thousands of visitors often go to Entebbe for water sports, sunbathing, boat cruises, horseback riding, family-oriented parties, bird watching, camping and fishing and local events among others. The area is also home to the National Botanical Gardens, a serene surrounding of nature strategically located along the gateway to the international airport.

But the town is now a ghost of its former self. It has increasingly become isolated since the first case of coronavirus disease which was recorded in March, exacerbated by the closure of the airport, bars and hotels, the ban on the movement of motor vehicles and the night-time curfew announced as some of the measures to control the spread of coronavirus disease.

The beaches are deserted and, the hotels are abandoned as citizens are encouraged to stay home and tame the disease. For instance, Lake Victoria Hotel has only six of its 150 rooms occupied mainly by cargo crew members. At Protea Hotel, less than 10 guests visit and have meals daily.

Meanwhile, Isaac Wabwire, a hotel staff who was sent on unpaid leave due to low business says he usually takes a walk through the streets but the walk also brings sounds of loneliness. 

A foreign resident who preferred anonymity says he stays home all day because some of his best spots are closed including Riders Lounge, Imperial Golf View Hotel and the beaches.

Van Yoti Broogenbroeck, one of the managers of the Goretti’s pizzeria says that the rising Lake Victoria water levels have also kept the party goer’s spectators away. The water levels which have been rising since October 2019 have submerged the beach line at Anderita, Palm and Goretti’s Pizzeria beaches.

Additional reporting by URN

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