our relaxing stay at the haven


The many times I visited Jinja even as a little girl with my family, it was a thrill! It is a town quite different from Kampala that can be more relaxed and serene. I got to explore a different section of the river, at The Haven, which is only 2 hours away and the perfect spot for a weekend absolute relaxation.

Getting there

Driving from Kampala, we set off at 8:00am making a few stops for some pineapple and Nina trying her luck with the ATMs… Driving is a good option as you will get there at your own pace. Three other Danish friends later joined us at the Haven using a taxi from the old taxi park, which cost them 7000Ugx to the Jinja stage.

From Jinja, go past Holland Park and Nile Horseback Safaris which are 3km towards Kayunga.

The Lodge

The Haven is about 15km from the Jinja, with panoramic views of the overtime rapids, welcoming you the minute you sit down with a fresh glass of passion fruit juice in the Haven restaurant.

Thankfully, we had booked ahead of time through their website. We noticed that there were many guests arriving from different countries, which made sense as this luxury lodge has been around since 2006.

The Haven is solar-powered, which you notice as you walk to the reception and bar, with spacious and airy cottage suites that have been designed with natural materials. There are 4 luxury bungalows, 2 luxury bandas, 2 family bungalows for up to 6 people, a honeymooner and camping options.

Can we please appreciate their amazing shower? Taking a shower here was super refreshing in the wide stone designed bathroom. We also had a view from the shower! There was a cool Elephant shower which I must get for my home someday!



The Haven restaurant serves fresh, locally sourced food like delicious tilapia and Nile perch fish, tomatoes and pineapples. Having breakfast, lunch and dinner overlooking the view was refreshing.

We indulged in the set options of the day and had a feast at breakfast which we customized. Visiting the Haven with friends is ideal as you will spend time enjoying delicious food with great conversations.

Tip: it gets cold in the evening so remember to carry your sweater and socks. As well as mosquito repellent

Their lazy camping is popular and a good way to explore Jinja. I loved that all the staff at the Haven come from the Buikwe village and reside within the community…conversations with them were enriching since they know the area best.


We stayed in a double bungalow. Each room has it’s own unique and effortlessly chic style, with earthy tones and a view of the overtime rapids. Best of all is getting to enjoy the view in either a hammock or swinging chair.

The beds are very comfortable and amazing to wake up with a wide-angle view from the window. This is definitely a place that looks beautiful all year round. The peace and quiet made us feel like we were in a private-owned cottage.




There’s plenty to do at the Haven- even as it is a secluded place. Once you are done swimming and chilling by the poolside, there are more options.

  • You can rent a mountain bike and bike around the area
  • Nature walks- as this is an ideal place to appreciate nature which I always enjoy. Our guide Charles took us up to the Naalongo cave where we witnessed a lady that now lives there and has been attracting many of the locals to see her. The view going up was pretty!
  • Nile Horseback ride, it is a quick drive to go horse riding which they can arrange for you depending on how long
  • Sunset cruise- where we got to see different bird species and enjoyed a beautiful sunset with the amazing sky transformation


The Haven was a relaxing experience which I have added to my list of favorites in Jinja. It is a perfect weekend escape from the city suited for both locals and travelers. I spent two nights here to fully explore the activities, but for locals, one night will do.

Even though I was nursing a cold, I was able to fully enjoy our room, but did not swim in the pool. I cuddled up with nice cups of tea and my book, enjoyed the relaxing boat ride and watched fishermen cast nests amidst flying birds under a beautiful sunset!

You can also reserve a spot for lunch or dinner at the Haven and enjoy the view if you are not spending the night. You can email me and ask any further questions 🙂

Your traveling-friend,



  • This looks beautiful! 😀

  • Kara Aragon

    Wow. This looks like such a great spot to stay. Great photos.

    Kara Aragon

    • It is a very relaxing spot Kara, thank you for stopping by. Have a great day,xx

  • Sara

    Looks like an amazing stay Karen… You visit such cool places and capture them magically! I’m hoping to go to the Haven for brunch with my girlfriends and was wondering if we needed to book in advance? Also what’s their menu like?
    Thank you😊

  • Nicola Holland

    This looks so relaxing, and for a foodie like me the breakfast spread looks amazing!

  • Looks like a nice rustic place. Would love to hang out on the hammock all day. No complaints:)

  • Anuradha Goyal

    That hammock looked inviting enough but then each frame was much better than the other. The views from the lodge are lovely and so is the greenery. It is a blessing to be able to stay at such places.

  • Beverley Goodsell

    It is really interesting to hear that Haven is solar powered, as it is a great way utilise that form of energy force in the lodge. It is not often heard of.

  • Woah, this looks stunning!! PLEASE can I have the coffee table?!? I absolutely love the decor!

  • Shibani Sharma

    Wow this is such a beautiful place and this truly looks like a heavenly place to stay peaceful weekend getaway. Love your pictures specially the one in boat on sunset. Where is this place exactly?

  • You had me at the name Haven and fresh glass of passion fruit juice. That scenery looks stunning and the food delicious. Just curious if this in Africa? The room look fantastic too.

  • Vyjay Rao

    The Haven really looks like heaven. The pictures bring alive the enchanting beauty of the surroundings. I like the fact that the place is so harmoniously blended with the environment. Looking at the pictures, I was reminded of my time in Rwanda a couple of months ago. The landscapes looked so similar. I understand that Uganda is very near Rwanda, hope to get there some day too.

  • Everything Candid

    Jinja looks like a real Haven for travellers as it has so much to offer. Incredible shots. Would love to hire a motor bike and explore the place.
    I am a vegetarian, would I survive in this place?

  • Paige Brown

    What an absolutely gorgeous place to stay! I love that there is so much to do nearby as well. The food looks amazingly delicious as well. I’ll definitely make this at the top of my list to stay if I come to Kampala.