Winston Churchill called Uganda 'the pearl of Africa', presumably basing his opinion on the country's great natural beauty. From the moment the visitor lands at Entebbe's international airport, with its breathtaking equatorial location on the forested shore of island-strewn Lake Victoria, it is clear that Uganda is no ordinary safari destination.
Dominated by a century-old botanical garden alive with the chatter of acrobatic monkeys and colourful tropical birds, Entebbe itself is the least obviously urban of all comparably sized African towns. Just 40km (25 miles) distant, sprawled across seven hills, there is the capital Kampala. The bright modern feel of this bustling, cosmopolitan city reflects the ongoing economic growth and political stability that has characterised Uganda since 1986. Since the late 1980s, the nation has managed to move on from the abyss of civil war and the economic catastrophe of the Idi Amin days.
Uganda is where the East African savannah meets the West African jungle. In this lush country, one can observe lions prowling the open plains, track chimpanzees through the rainforest undergrowth, then navigate tropical channels teeming with hippos and crocs before setting off into the misty mountains to stare deep into the eyes of a mountain gorilla.