As a town, it is the biggest in the Northern Uganda. It is 330km north from Kampala and about 240km from juba, South Sudan. Gulu’s neighboring districts are; Kitgum, Pader, Oyam and Amuru. Gulu developed into a town in 1912, two years after it was demarcated from Acholi. The first district in Gulu was Kitgum
The city is home to the headquarters of the 4th Division of the Uganda People’s Defense Force, active in operations against the rebel Lord’s Resistance Army. There are three hospitals providing services to the city: St. Mary’s Hospital Lacor, Gulu Regional Referral Hospital and Gulu Independent Hospital. The headquarters of Gulu District Administration is also located in the city which is serviced by Gulu Airport. It has a tarmac runway that measures 10,314 feet (3,144 m). Gulu is also the location of Gulu University, the only public university in northern Uganda and the parent institution of Gulu University School of Medicine. The Acholi people are the main inhabitants of the city and many of them are Christians. There are a range of spoken languages including Luo, Swahili, English and Luganda.
Gulu is the economic capital of Northern Uganda. The reduced violence since the rebel LRA moved out of Uganda has resulted in an economic revitalization. Peace has also brought a lot of help from the International community in terms of Non-Government Organizations. These NGOs are helping the community in various ways by providing food, medical help and rehabilitation centers for formerly abducted children. The NGOs have also created many jobs. Gulu is the home of Gulu University, which has a wide range of programs ranging from agriculture to medine, business management and conflict resolution
Pece Stadium is Gulu’s public stadium, and the largest in Northern Uganda with a capacity of 30,000 people. Gulu is the base of several radio stations including Choice FM which broadcasts daily to an estimated 5 million to 6 million listeners each evening. Other radio stations include; Mega FM 102.1, Radio Four 89.4, King FM 90.2, Childcare International 91.5 & 98.9, Norah Radio 92.1,UBC Radio 102.1 &103.1 and Radio Maria 105.7.
The comprehensive government development recovery and development programme for northern Uganda is expected to develop the town. Most of Roads need to be upgraded to accommodate the weight of the trucks that go through Gulu from Kenya to South Sudan.
However, the banking services are in place therefore this is an indication of the district economic growth. Gulu has six banks; Crane, Dfcu, Barclays, Stanbic and Post banks