Mbale is a small town sitting below a beautiful mountain cliff that is part of the Mt. Elgon mountain range. For those up for the hike, it's a beautiful two- to four-hour trail through villages and waterfalls that reward you with a stunning view of Mbale and the surrounding area. The city itself is easy to manage, with a number of good local and Indian restaurants, supermarkets, and internet cafes. There are a number of lodges in the area, but your options for hostels in Mbale are extremely limited. Mbale is frequently visited by foreigners due to a number of volunteer programs in which to become involved, whether it be long term or short. There is also a good hospital in the area, which also brings in the services of foreigners. Locals are very open and excited at the prospect to get to know travelers and volunteers. Mbale is also a good place for African nightlife, with a few large bars and discos that are packed on the weekends and are known to have events or concerts frequently.
For those who are simply traveling, Mbale is a good place to stop before visiting the famous Sipi Falls, since it is a short thirty- or forty-five-minute minibus ride away. While there are plenty of hotels and lodges closer to Sipi Falls, most with breathtaking views of some of the falls, they tend to be more expensive, so a Mbale hostel would be better for those on a budget. Many of the lodges near Sipi Falls can arrange a number of activities across Uganda, such as rafting the Nile, kayaking adventures, safaris, and more in addition to tours of Sipi Falls.
Hi, I'm Richard Ballentine,
the Hostelz.com local expert for Mbale hostels. Welcome.