If you have never travelled to the Eastern District of Bulambuli at the foothills of Mt Elgon, you will be forgiven for assuming that all beautiful places exist only in other areas.
Until recently when I had the opportunity to get to Sisiyi falls camp and resort in Bulambuli District about 19 km along Sironko-Moroto road, I was one of those people who believed that beautiful places’ only existed in the urban centres.
Sisiyi Falls camp is conveniently located in the Floresta neighbourhood at the slopes of Mt Elgon, in between relaxing places to gather and the place is designed to start your day off comfortably.
Although deep in rural Bulambuli district, Sisiyi falls camp and resort is an amazing wonder in the wilderness.
Recently I had the opportunity to travel to Sisiyi in rural hilly Bulambuli at the slopes of Mt Elgon 35 Km Mbale-Kapchorwa road and 4 Km branch off from this main road at Buyaga trading centre.
What struck me most was Sisiyi falls seen from both Sironko hills and Bulambuli hills; one gets awed especially when you go again there.
It is just magnificent, easily one of the best natural wonders and the attractions around the Sisiyi falls camp can help you spend a couple of days here.
The adjacent ridge that spreads across like a sleeping Lion waiting for its prey is what welcomes you to Sisiyi falls.
And then shimmering above stony hills, like a white sheet spread over the rocks for centuries, Sisiyi Falls looms ahead, the longest falls in Uganda being 103 metres high.
The resort is nestled between rocks that seem to be as old 500 years and there you will see a dazzling famous Sisiyi falls camp and resort in green scenery, popularly referred to as “The Garden of Eden” here.
Coined out of the Biblical Garden of Eden, the director Dr. Patrick Mutono says the stones that are as old as the Stone Age, the caves, the big trees as old as 500 years and the naturally flowery compound depict the biblical Garden of Eden.
“We have not chosen this name by accident but everything which is here reflects what exactly was in the Biblical Garden of Eden,” says Mutono.
Although the exterior décor is often neglected by many hotels, at Sisiyi falls resort’ it counts as much as the interior; it is a fine place for outdoor parties and good outdoor living room.
And nestled between attractive and green exterior the resort stands before three big stones and trees that are as old as 500 years that stand high in the compound making it the best destination for any tourist.
The way the environment is naturally modelled and the way food is prepared and served, makes this place a new gastronome in Bulambuli and entire Eastern region, [maybe first of its kind] that is set to give you a reason why the place is referred to as ‘Garden of Eden’.
Many tourists will tell you if you visit Mt Elgon national park, choose to visit the Sisiyi falls camp and Resort also and get a minute to see Sisiyi falls, listen to the roar and close your eyes it will no doubt take you under its spell.
Sisiyi falls might not be the tallest falls at Mt Elgon by any stretch but they have the ability to take over your senses and seduce you into falling in love with them!
Little wonder, therefore, that one sees all roads for all classes of people, colour, race and religion on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays leading to Sisiyi Camp and Resort, “The Garden of Eden”.
As early as 11.00 am, the place which is a marvel surrounded by lush gardens, big stones, and ancient trees buzzes with a lot of activity.
Right from the entrance which is guarded by two towering sphinxes and very old big stones, one is able to clearly see the magnificent Sisiyi falls at a stone throw distance and deduce that he / she is heading for a new and rich experience.
“It is one of the most beautiful sites in Uganda. An amazing wonder of nature. This is a must visit if you are visiting Bulambuli, in Eastern Uganda. I have seen it and I must say Sisiyi falls is certainly the best place to visit while at Mt Elgon,” remarked Aaradhya Shrishti, an Indian visitor.
“You must take the maid of the mist and you really have to go under the Falls, literally,” added Shrishti, a common visitor at Sisiyi falls Camp and Resort.
If there was a place that you visited and your breath was not taken away, “The Garden of Eden” would take away your breath.
The way the environment is naturally modelled and the way food is prepared and served, makes this place a new gastronome in a rural area, [maybe first of its kind] that is set to give you a reason why the place is referred to as ‘Garden of Eden’.
The class here is not only reflected in the traditional but modern buildings, the many tourist attractions and beautiful environment but also in the décor and menu.
For serious connoisseurs, there is a gift shop selling French wines, Brandy Vodka, Vintage champagne, Ram, Cuban cigars and all spirits.
The compound is well designed attractively with tourist attraction features and the inside is very comfortable compared to what you would find in your urban areas, this is what makes ‘The Garden of Eden’ a favourite place for myriad of visitors.
We recently visited the place with a friend but just as the name suggests, the best meals are apparently found in this place at low costs and one is served with full course meals with nothing to complain about.
The Mushroom soup starter was very delicious. I tasted Sisiyi chicken, marinated, dusted, egg washed, shallow fried with bread crumps at Shs 9,000 and there was no regret about all this.
Being a place that attracts European tourists, Indians and Africans, there is an abundance of different types of foods from which to choose from including Chicken and pork Madras on a bed of Rice, Avocado vinaigrette and mixed cheese and vegetable paste.
The manager, Daniel Washiwuku says besides special Sisiyi chips, there are Lionised potatoes, Roast potatoes mashed potatoes and Parsley potatoes.
Washiwuku says for breakfast they have chosen to have two offerings, one for Shs8,000, an all day breakfast where you go the whole hog and indulge in a couple of eggs and style, bacon, bangers, baked beans, sausages, grilled tomatoes fries and coffee tea.
The main course has a selection of grills such as chicken, lamb chops, sticks and fish fillet. Washiwuku says deserts like mixed fruits, fresh Sisiyi fruits, desert of pineapple and fruit platter are also served. Other desserts include Bogoya, watermelon, pawpaw and local traditional bananas ‘Nakazungu’ here.
The traditional foods; Sisiyi chicken, Malewa, Magila [mashed beans] Goobe and Nakati, Isufa, egyobyo together with traditional mashed Matooke, cassava, yams make the local dishes served at “The Garden of Eden”
Special cakes ‘Cake of the day’ Chocolate cake, Fruit cake, Carrot cakes and spongy cake are also prepared at the hotel says Mr Mutono, the hotel director.
He adds that besides treating their customers courteously and in style, they also offer them with a new concept of eating out with quality, style and value and that their target is to make the quality of food served commensurate with the standard of the place.
At ‘The Garden of Eden’ quality, style and value reign in service. The quality of food served here is commensurate with the standard of the place; just think about what God put in the biblical Garden of Eden and you will find it here.