Until recently, our joyful annual visits to Gisoro in Bufumbira, Kigyezi were always frustrated by lack of a truly pleasant hotel with a good restaurant, clean and odourless washrooms and a great view of the surrounding countryside.
In July 2019, we were very pleased to find IKORO, a new hotel that met our needs. We visited again in November 2019 and January 2020 and confirmed that ours had not been a one off experience.
Located in Muganza, Chahi subcounty, the Hotel is a 2 to 3 minute drive from the Gisoro airport along the road to Chyanika. Opened at the end of 2018, I am told it belongs to Bisangwa mwene Mbuguje, a businessman with a variety of interests.
The building and fencing have utilized local materials. The theme highlights amakoro, the stony products of volcanic eruptions. Hence the hotel’s name. Nothing overdone. None of the fashionable copying of Chinese themes or the opulence of the pre-revolution French Court. Ikoro looks and feels Ugandan.
Besides its pleasant internal ambiance, what we love best is the stunning view one enjoys just by sitting on its patio. Muhabura, Mugahinga and Sabyinyo, three of the Ibirunga (volcanic mountains), stand motionless in the distance, caressed by clouds, smiling at the latest sojourners to marvel at their feminine beauty.
A beautifully terraced hill called Muganza stands a spear-throw from the hotel. Kale Kayihura’s ancestral home is behind that hill.
If Ikoro’s owner leaves its management and operation to real professionals, the hotel should do well. Fingers crossed.
DISCLAIMER & DISCLOSURE: I have no financial, family or any other interests in IKORO. On the other hand, I am a Munyakigyezi with a strong bias towards promoting my region as a tourist destination.