Birdnest Resort is an oasis of serenity, located on the shore of Lake Bunyonyi in the South-East of Uganda. I’ve been fortunate enough to visit Lake Bunyonyi in Uganda regularly since the mid 90’s. Therefore I have seen a wide range of accommodations come and go over the years. Birdsnest Resort however, has remained consistent in it’s quality, supreme cuisine and hospitality.

History of Birdnest

Now operated by Belgian investors, Birdnest has a vivid history, which started in 1962. Francis (Frank) Kalemera Kalimuzo was born on September 24, 1925. He studied education at Makerere University graduating in 1946, after which he continued his studies in Wales and Oxford. After returning to Uganda he served as an Assistant District Commissioner for several years till he was appointed to be the Secretary of the Constitution Committee. After Uganda attained Independence on October 9, 1962, Frank Kalimuzo was appointed Permanent Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office. Around this time he visited Lake Bunyonyi and fell in love with its pristine beauty. In fact, he enjoyed it so much, he decided to build his home there.

The building was supposed to be his home, but this never happened because even as he built, tourists asked to spend the night. After the hotel was completed people flocked from far and wide, this was the beginning of tourism at Lake Bunyonyi.

Unfulfilled potential

After Idi Amin’s military coup in 1972, Uganda started to fall apart. Frank’s association to former President Obote was looked on with suspicion by the new President: in October 1972 members of the notorious Public safety unit raided Frank Kalimuzo’s home and arrested him. Frank Kalimuzo, like many others fell victim to Amin’s reign of terror, he was never seen again.

The hotel at Lake Bunyonyi was occupied and destroyed by the soldiers of Amins regime. It remained a ruin for decades, a painful reminder of the impact Amin had on Uganda’s success until a group of Belgian Investors caught a glimpse of Franks vision. They were able to locate the widow of Frank Kalimuzo, and renovate the hotel. The original hotel was remodeled and expanded from a four bed roomed lodging, to the fourteen roomed building that it is now.

Birdsnest is definitely on the more expensive side of Lake Bunyonyi accommodation, but if you ask me it has the best cuisine I have tasted in the area. So even if you’re not able to sleep there, it’s worth stopping by for a bite to eat. Speciality of the house are dishes made with the local crayfish, fresh from the lake. The pasta is truly amazing!

Birdnest Resort on Tripadvisor