Adventure Safaris In Africa

British Adventurer Drove From UK to Uganda in 180 Days

Malkit Rooprai
Written by Jesca

A British traveller, Malkit Rooprai drove across 30 countries for six months to reach Uganda from the United Kingdom (UK).

Rooprai says it was always his dream to have such a trip from the UK to East Africa and he decided to set it off in 2022. Rooprai left the UK on October 6, 2022, driving a Toyota Land Cruiser Invincible, and arrived in Uganda last month(April). He has visited several places in Uganda, including Bwindi National Park, where he tracked mountain gorillas, Jinja City, Kakira Sugar Limited, and Sipi Falls.

Which Countries Did Malkit Rooprai Drive Through to Uganda?

British Malkit Rooprai

Malkit Rooprai at Kakira Sugar Factory in Uganda. Photo/Roorai Overlandig Africa

The British adventurer drove through several countries. They include the following:

  • Ghana
  • Angola
  • Gambia
  • Senegal
  • Zambia
  • Sierra Leone
  • Mauritania
  • Namibia
  • Tanzania
  • Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)
  • South Africa
  • Rwanda
  • Kenya

At some point, he also used a ferry to cross to France, Portugal, and Morocco to reach Uganda, the Pearl of Africa.

Why Did Malkit Rooprai Drive To Africa From UK?

According to Monitor Uganda, Rooprai said that he wanted to try something different and unique. His wanderlust spirit pushed him to take a different path that not many people take in their travelling adventures.

“I wanted to discover what others have not tried; It is sort of an adventure,” he noted when asked about this seemingly bizarre undertaking. He recalls a photo taken at Kakira Sugar Works when his parents were invited to Uganda for a family member’s wedding in 1967 when he was seven.

Rooprai said he always wanted to visit the Kakira factory Uganda after reading so much of its history. Sugarcane farming has always fascinated him.

“I have read books and heard much about the history of Kakira. So, when I saw the billboard and the sugarcane plantations, I remembered the photo taken when I visited the factory as a child.”

Rooprai visited Kakira Sugar Limited in Eastern Uganda while driving along the Jinja-Iganga Highway. Upon seeing the signpost to the factory, he decided to drop in. The Managing Director, Mayur Madhvani, greeted and welcomed him warmly.

The warm welcome he got made him fall in love more with Uganda and he also discovered that some of the products he gets in the UK are from Kakira.

Rooprai stated that his car is equipped with satellite technology to facilitate communication, provide secure access, and enable his family to monitor his travel.

How Was the Driving Experience From UK to Uganda?

Malkit Rooprai covered 350km every day and learnt a lot all through. There are days he spent his nights at roadside cafes when darkness set in in places where there were no hotels or lodges.  Moreover, driving for six months across Europe and Africa treated him to the beauty of sceneries across both continents.

He now knows that Africa is a different continent from what the Western media projects and he is in love with it.

“I drove 350km daily, and if the night got me on the road where there is no community settlement, I’d park the car near a roadside café. Africa has developed and is rich in resources, beautiful scenery and welcoming people, unlike the West,” he adds.

Malkit Rooprai

Malkit Rooprai in Nandi, Rift Valley , Kenya. Photo/Rooprai Overlanding Africa

According to Rooprai, he was not bothered by the police or other security agencies while driving on the road, except in countries like the DRC and Rwanda, where it can be challenging to drive a right-hand vehicle. His wish was to drive back home to the UK through Sudan but the current political strife currently going down in Sudan makes it hard for him to do so.

Does British Wanderlust Makit Rooprai Have African Roots?

Malkit Rooprai runs a popular Facebook page,  Rooprai Overlanding Africa and enjoys documenting his trips.With his recent drive to Uganda and then to Kitale in Kenya, many people were left wondering if he has African roots. From his narrations, he spent some time in Kenya before moving to the UK .

In his recent visit, he drove to Kitale to check on the Bansal Family which runs an old engineering workshop in the town at the edge of the South Rift.  He has visited several temples and local communities in keeping up with his tradition although he is now based in the UK.

About the author

Jesca

Besigye is a Ugandan writer and a teacher by profession. She loves adventure and travelling that's why she loves writing travel blogs.

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