24 year old American model Marlina Moreno is finally in Uganda and very exited to climb mount Rwenzori. Ms Moreno is a former NFL cheerleader, model and TV host. As a way of boosting tourism, and tapping into the mountain climbing potential of the country, the Uganda government is sponsoring the model on a mountain-climbing adventure and a country tour.
Ms Moreno is set to climb mount Rwenzori- the mountains of the moon on January 17, 2015. an event which Ugandans have been encouraged to join in and participate. Ms Moreno will be accompanied by Uganda minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities, Hon. Maria Mutagamba on the climb.
Rwenzori Mountains are the third highest Mountain in Africa at 5,109 meters, after Kilimanjaro in Tanzania at 5,895 meters and Mountain Kenya in Kenya at 5199 meters. While the Rwenzori mountain ranges are the highest mountain ranges in Africa. A full mountain climb up Rwenzori usually takes about 5 days to go up and back down.
This mountain climbing event is going to be a 3 day event which will allow the climbers to see different plants and bird species only found in the Rwenzori region.
The beautiful young model says she is passionate about wildlife, nature, travel and culture, and is very excited about this adventure. Well, we are excited too. She says she has doe her research about Uganda and the Rwenzori mountains, which makes her a good traveler and adventurer.
“Uganda has such a unique offering for people and it’s astonishing that more people don’t know or talk about it,” Moreno said.
Rwenzori was named a World heritage site in 1994, and according to Simon Baluku, chairman of the Rwenzori Mountaineering Services, there is no mountain like Rwenzori, he describes it as “part of a surreal world”. A sentiment we here at Wild Whispers Africa agree with.
Ms Moreno will also tour other places in Uganda such as Murchison falls national park, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and a number of other interesting place. She is expected to profile Uganda’s major tourist sites and make a documentary which will be aired different travel platforms. This is definitely a campaign to promote Uganda tourism.
Rwenzori as tourist site brings in quite an amount of revenue each year, but it could be higher and that is what Uganda is aiming for.
At a cost of $780 for foreigners and $470 for East Africans, Rwenzori earns Uganda nearly 2 billion shillings a year.
In order to attract more climbers to the Rwenzori climbing expedition Uganda Tourism Board has cut the rates for the tour. The rates for the tour have been brought down from Shs350,000 to Shs149,00 making it a lot more affordable for both foreigners and Ugandans as well.
John Sempebwa the Chief Executive Officer of Uganda Tourism Board is confident that this will be the best climbing expedition in the African region.
Uganda tourism Board has quite aggressively promoted this expedition which was aptly dubbed the “Climb Mt. Rwenzori with Marlina Moreno” Campaign. Uganda does need to tap into all of its tourism potential and this is one smart way of doing it.