Nestled in the wild frontier region of Uganda, Kidepo Valley National Park is apparently the most isolated national park in Uganda but still stands out to be one of the best virgin places every wildlife viewer can ever visit in Uganda. This virgin national park is undoubtedly among the best wilderness areas in Africa, harboring a couple of extinct species of wildlife that can’t be found in any other Ugandan national park. Kidepo is right at the core of a Savannah landscape right next to a few mountainous bodies. The reasons for planning your safari here are endless, something you will definitely see when you set foot on Uganda’s soil. Besides the exceptional wildlife safari experience, this national park is another great spot for a cultural trail especially to those who would like to see the Karamojong, Acholis plus other great tribes. The outstanding lodging / accommodation options of Apoka safari lodge, Kidepo Savannah Lodge, Nga’Moru Wilderness camp coupled along with the cool environment, exceptional views of the Savannah grasslands plus so many more attractions, Kidepo Valley National Park was truly gifted by nature.
The park can be reached by both road and air. Driving is rewarding, as much of Karamoja, like Kidepo itself, is a vast and unspoiled wilderness. However, road conditions are sometimes poor and a 4WD vehicle is essential.
There are four possible routes by road as listed below. Optimum driving times are given
Routes passing west of Lake Kyoga through Acholiland
Routes passing east of Lake Kyoga through Karamoja
The most usual route passes through Gulu and Kitgum Ideally, travellers should plan to stay overnight in one of these towns or at Chobe, near Karuma in Murchison Falls National Park.
Visitors should note that the road mainly in use from Kotido to Kaabong passes via Kanawat not via Losilang as indicated on most maps. Enquire at Kotido for details.
Prospective visitors should contact UWA Headquarters or the Apoka Lodge operator Wildplaces to obtain up-to-date advice about road conditions and identify the preferred route, particularly if considering an approach through Karamoja.
Charter flights to Kidepo may be arranged from Kampala (Kajjansi), Kampala Aeroclub, or Entebbe with Eagle Aviation. Flights take about two hours. The Civil Aviation Authority plans to make Lomej airstrip near Apoka, an international airport to enable visitors to fly direct to Kidepo from other countries.
Kidepo is pristine wilderness of opulent green valleys, dramatic mountain ranges, spectacular night skies and amazing sunrises. Kidepo National park is 1442km2 and lies between 915m and 2750m above sea level. The Apoka is the tourist Centre of the park; ranger guides accompany holiday makers on game drives and walks. Tourists that don’t come with their means of transport hire park trucks. Craft shops with books and souvenirs, packed water, sodas and alcoholic beverages can also be purchased here. Food is prepared on request and cooking gas as well as utensils can be hired by individuals who desire to cook for themselves.
Kanangorok Hot Springs. This area is nearer to the south Sudan border. The Kanangorok Hot Springs are situated 11km safari the Kidepo River on the Sudan border. This is a pleasant and picturesque place with good view of the mountains beyond the frontier. On the topography of the Kidepo valley, dispersed with palms and acacia thorns, are the Kanangorok hot springs, These hot springs are considered among the best gifts of Mother Nature in Kidepo National Park and because of that, for anyone a safari in Uganda this is a must visit destination.
The Narus valley of Kidepo national park is situated in Karamoja region in the north eastern part of the country, it’s got a lot of dry country species that can not be found elsewhere in the country, the Narus valley is situated in one of the best sceneries of east African national parks.
The Kidepo national valley was gazetted as a national park in 1962 after being established as a national reserve in 1958. Narus valley has got high concentration of animals due to availability of water so most of the game trucks are found here; the good observation places are at the Narus dam and the water hole close to the tourism center. The valley contains of four loop circuits.
The Primarygrasses of Narus valley are Guinea grass, fine thatching grass and red oat grass. Common tress is desert dates, drumstick trees, buffalo’s thorn trees, sausage trees and red thorn acacias among the rest.
Kidepo Valley National Park Game Drives are tracks where you can encounter the Wild of Africa without the crowds. This remote unvisited park allows you to see the best of Africa while on a game drive.
Game drives in Kidepo Valley National Park depend on where you stay if you stay at Apoka Lodge you will find that two activities a day such as game drives are included in the price of the room per night,
Other lodges such as Nga Mmoru Wildlife Camp or the Uganda Wildlife Authority Bandas mean that like in other wildlife parks we take you in our safari vehicle on game drives. We always use a Uganda Wildlife Authority Ranger who comes on board to gives you added insight about the wildlife found in the park.
Kidepo Valley Park has some great places for Nature and Bush Walks. There is nothing like taking in the African Wild on foot and there are not many better places to do so than Kidepo Valley Park.
There are also places outside of the park area where you can go for a hike such as an all-day hike up the Morungole Mountains to visit the Ik People, one of the smallest ethnic groups in Uganda.
There are many places within the park where you can hike and or climb including Idi Amin’s dream lodge that was never completed while he was president of Uganda may be in the future as more visitors come to the park it will be.
All Nature Walks and Hikes within the Park will be guided by Uganda Wildlife Authority Rangers, you cannot wander off on your own in this remote park.
New Hiking Trails have been developed in 2019 for you to enjoy in the Park
Kidepo Valley Park is a great place for birders that also would like to enjoy wildlife in the remote Kidepo Valley Park.
Kidepo is notable for its birds of prey. Of the 56 species recorded, 14 including Verreaux’s Eagle, Egyptian Vulture, and Pygmy Falcon are believed to be endemic to the Kidepo and Karamoja region.
There has, however, been no comprehensive survey of birds in Kidepo and visitors stand a good chance of adding to the current list.
Kidepo Valley Park is the only park in Uganda where you can find the common ostrich which is certainly a sight to see. Ostrich Eggs are harvested for breeding purposes by Uganda Wildlife Authority in order to increase number ostriches in Kidepo Valley National Park.
Kidepo Valley Park is a Birders Paradise. One cannot stress enough the remoteness of the park and as you do a Birding Walk you have that sense that you are all alone.
There are several lodes in Kidepo National Park that offer the comfort that each guest is looking for. Facilities and amenities to expect in the lodges include a spa, en-suite rooms, an in-room fridge and WiFi.
Lake Mburo National park is amazingly the closest national park to Kampala, it also doubles as the smallest national park. Situated between Masaka and Mbarara district taking approximately 4 hours’ drive time to arrive. The park covers an area of 370km² including the lakes ( 5 lakes). Lake Mburo is endowed with several wildlife species to mention recently translocated giraffes, buffaloes, elands, waters bucks, antelopes, zebras, oribis, topis, warthogs as you take a boat cruise on Lake Mburo you will be in a position to observe, hippos and crocodiles. In addition, the park also is home a wide a ray of birds amounting to 350 species some which include water birds, forest and savanna birds.
Lake Mburo national park has got thrilling activities that keep its visitors always on the desire for more. Some of the most common tourism activities at Lake Mburo include; Game drive in the park, boat cruise on Lake Mburo, birding/ bird watching, Nature walks, the unique horse riding to view wildlife, fishing, cultural tours and cycling among others.
Lake mburo national park is situated in western Uganda and certainly the nearest in terms accessibility/ distance from the capital city (Kampala), a drive distance of approximately 228km and 3-4 hours’ drive time. The park is located in Kiruhuru District between Masaka and Mbarara district.
The Entebbe international airport is 46km distance from Kampala the capital city. The Airport server as your entry point to the country and you will be picked up by the representative of the travel company you booked with, they will also conduct a transfer you to hotel you booke prior to our travel. all this can be upon your request since some citty hotel offer airport pick up services.
The park is accessible in two ways. When you are getting the park from Kampala-Masaka, your access will be through the Sanga gate about 20km for lyantonde a asmall district close the park and if you are driving from Mbarara, your entry to the park will be from the Nshara game aproxiamaltey 50Kms from Mbarara.
For any savannah African safari, its considered safari or a rewarding one until game drives are conducted. Its therefore by all means that game drives are the prime activity one can ever carry out while on a wildlife safari. Game drives guarantees one an amazing opportunity to see the parks constituents namely the bird and wildlife species. Game drives at lake Mburo are conducted by guides under close supervision of the UWA rangers who are designated to make sure everything goes smoothly.
Lake Mburo national park is endowed with several wildlife and bird species species among which you may lay your eyes on, they include but not limited to Elands, antelopes, buffaloes, giraffes, topis, warthogs, zebras, water bucks and impalas. Besides the park is the only in Uganda that is home to the impalas. Other features to look at while at the park are the alluring beautiful sceneries, the parent rocks and savanna. Other unique wildlife can also be viewed when on decides to take a night game, such wildlife include the leopards, bush babies and porcupines.
Another rewarding activity one ought to look for, when they are in Lake Mburo national park is a boat cruise. It’s also realized that during the dry seasons, some wildlife also are frequent habitants o the water areas some of which include buffaloes and antelopes.
This boat cruise will get you to come face to face with the flora and fauna of the lake. And along the bank, you will also see many animals that come to the water especially in the dry season. You will also see many hippos, crocodiles, antelopes, buffaloes, and over 3 types of otters that are found in the lake. Also when it comes to the birds, you will view the malachite kingfishers, African Fish eagles, blue headed weavers, Rufuos long tailed starlings, the pied kingfishers, hammerkobs, Herons, pelicans, the rare shoebill as well as the cormorants.
Another unique aspect of lake Mburo national park is the ability for one to carry out a game viewing exercise while riding a horse. The fascinating activity gives the park a distinction from the rest of the country’s national park as horse riding while viewing wildlife can only be done at lake Mburo National park. The activity is done at Mihingo lodge under the guidance of trained staff in conjunction with the park rangers. The horseback ride in Lake Mburo can take 1-3 hours as you explore the beauty of the national park savannah coupled by the view of the wild game. This experience is quit breathtaking imagine you seated on a horse moving into the savanna to watch wild game. Horseback riding can also be conducted in the overnight as you head to the savannah in the night, will be amazed by sounds of the wildlife and probably that of the horse you ride on .For overnight horse ride, accommodation is normally availed in form of tents. Note that the horse back experience is only sold by Mihingo lodge there by only participation while residing at Mihingo lodge.
You leave the park just 4 kilometers from Sanga gate, you will find the Igongo cultural center that is an historical showplace or the Banyakitara people, who lived in the western Uganda and also include the Banyankole, Batooro, Bakiga and the Banyoro. In the Banyankole, the ankole cow was king and queen in western Rwanda and Uganda.
This cultural center has got many traditional grass huts on the display and the guides will always explain to you about the way of life of these people in the past. You will also enjoy the museum and then learn about the ways of the local cultures. You can as well enjoy the local food that you can eat with in the restaurant and the great roasted goat that is offered here, it’s really a good stopover or the cultural, history and the traditional lovers.
Birding at lake mburo has increasingly become an attraction at lake Mburo national park. With the huge bird species that frequently storm the park, birding clearly keeps on growing, some of the most distinct bird viewing points are salt licks area, Rwonyo camp, lubanga forest, swampy valleys of Mariti and at the road sides. Some of the most notable bird species viewed at Lake Mburo national park include; coqui Francolin, emerald spotted wood, rufous bellied heron, crowned cranes, bare faced go away birds,ross turaco, white headed barbet, Nubian wood pecker, white parot, red-shouldered tit,black bellied bustard, yellow breasted apalis,long- tailed cisticola, king fisher, African fish eagles and so many more.
The park becomes increasingly more of a birding paradise, with more visitors. Tourists flocking it in quest to view the several birds that it has. The search for birds at lake Muro park doest exempt other parks in country to be birding paradise given the fact that its sighted that Uganda has over 1000 bird species, rendering it a true birders paradise. Lake Mburo alone harbors a whooping number of 135 bird species, some of which cannot be sighted elsewhere across the country and national parks.
Mburo Safari Lodge boasts of its excellent accommodations which comprises the main Lodge, cottages and honeymoon house all raised on a wooden platform and covered by a grass-thatched roof, perfectly blending with the natural environment, stylishly and thoughtfully designed for your absolute comfort, convenience, and pleasure.
Queen Elizabeth National Park is one of Uganda’s oldest parks. It was formed officially, along with Murchison Falls National Park in 1952.
The park was initially known as ‘Kazinga National Park’ before it was renamed in 1954 to commemorate a visit by Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain.
QENP hosts 619 bird species, the second highest of any park in Africa, the 6th highest of any parkworld-wide. This remarkable number is enabled by the park’s diverse habitats.
Crocodiles have only recently been seen in the Kazinga Channel. They disappeared for 8,000 years after they were eliminated from Lake Edward by toxic ash from local volcanoes.
Queen Elizabeth National Park contains 95 species of mammal more than any other park in Uganda.
Hippos are efficient lawn mowers. They prefer to graze short grass, each animal eating about 40kg each night
Queen Elizabeth National Park is found in Western Uganda. It can be reached both by air and by road.
The main entry point into Uganda is Entebbe international airport (EBB) which is about 26km from Uganda’s capital Kampala. Travelling from Kampala, the park can be reached from the South through Mbarara, or via Fort portal from the North.
Using these routes a Uganda Safari trip to Queen Elizabeth can be combined with visits to Kibale and Semuliki National Parks, and Lake Mburo, which creates a wonderful circuit and enhances any wildlife safari experience.
The main camp of the park and its headquarters are found in Mweya which can be reached by bus, or charter flights. Charter flights can also be arranged from Kasese, Ishasha or Mweya Airstrips.
The Kazinga channel is about 40m long adjoining Lake Gorge to Lake Edward. It has the perfect view of the parks’ major wildlife ventures. The shores of the lake attracts a large concentration of mammals, birds as well as reptiles all year around. The animals can be viewed well by the Nile cruise or probably at the entrance of Lake Edward. The operation of the cruise run from 15.00 and 17.00, furthermore voyages run 11.00 and 13.00 depending on the demand of the tourists.
Kazinga channel has parts for instance North Kazinga as well as Kasenyi. Its acknowledged that the plains of channel are focal points for game viewing. Tracking is the only way that will enable you see all the wildlife in its nature setting for example buffalo, elephants and other animals that dwell in the grassland thickets of the Northern Kazinga close to Mweya. The most accessible spot for lions is in the eastern part of Kasenyi plains and the Kasese road where they quarry on the big inhabitants of Uganda Kobs.
The Ishasha sector ( at queen elizabeth national park) is eminently perceived for its occupant Tree climbing lions that are an outstanding fascination and one among the features on all safaris taken inside Queen Elizabeth National park. In the southern segment of this park, the Lions are every so often spotted holding tight braches of colossal fig trees while the Uganda Kob (which are the real nourishment to these lions) brush in the fields of the Ishasha segment.
The Ishasha area is situated close to the hide most south-western edge of Queen Elizabeth National Park which is the most all around enjoyed stop as well as the most made a trip to national park inside Uganda. The scene in this sector of the sublime park is extensively not the same as that found in different parts of Queen Elizabeth National Park. The Ishasha Sector inside Queen Elizabeth National Park is environment to the globally famous tree-climbing lions which are really one of a kind to this very place.
Situated on the northern bank of the stunning Kazinga Channel where it merges with Lake Edward, the Mweya Peninsula region joins the channel track distance down to the main gate of Katunguru from where it transversely moves to the Kabatoro door; with a very thick ground cover and vegetation that is ruled by the Candelabra Thorn. The dense vegetation cover makes the viewing of game quite difficult however, there are other paths that are kept well thus making it a whole lot easier for game drives. Following the park’s paths might be tiresome sometimes which may lead you to forget the path you took but the Channel track and the main street in the park are both obvious features where unique tracks for game drives come together.
Most of the travelers that come visiting the Mweya Peninsular take part in a 2-hour boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel. This boat is a 20 seater mechanized boat run by the park authorities and this has 2 rides that happen in the morning and late afternoon respectively. Sometimes however, the boat may go 3 times a day if there is an overflow of guests who would wish to participate in this activity.
Kalinzu Forest is an amazing natural forest situated in Bushenyi district in south western Uganda around the confines of queen elizabeth national park uganda, it’s also famous for chimpanzee trekking. This is a National Forest has an age limit for tracking chimpanzees which usually 13 year and above. Kalinzu Forest is close to Queen Elizabeth Park and chimpanzee trekking here is typically superior/ better than the one at kyambura gorge. You can make Kalinzu Forest Reserve an entire day trip by hitting the magnificent climbing trails and birding that are found here in Kalinzu Forest. There are four climbing trails in the forest s and climbs are from an hour to throughout the day long.
Currently besides the camp ground, one cannot find a lodge here and you need to take the drive back to your Queen Elizabeth Park with our Driver Guide.
Kalinzu Forest in Western Uganda is one of those unique places that you have for a long while been itching to investigate. On the off chance that you are going by Queen Elizabeth Park you can without much of a stretch visit and spend a day in Kalinzu Forest Reserve Hiking, nature walk, birding, chimpanzee tracking and all the more all open from Queen Kalinzu ForestChimpanzee Tracking Elizabeth National Park Mweya Area.
Accommodation at Queen Elizabeth national park is at its best as the park is dotted with a number of accommodation facilities to cater for all your safari accommodation needs. Queen Elizabeth national park is blessed with the best tourist accommodation facilities that will make your stay a memorable one.
Murchison Falls National Park is one of the best game parks to visit while in Uganda. The park is located in the Murchison Conservation Area where we also find the Bugungu and Karuma wildlife reserves.
The park is endowed with several attractions including over 76 mammal species with four members of the big five, the lion, the leopards, the elephants, and the Buffaloes. Other species include bushbucks, Uganda kob, waterbucks and warthogs, giraffes, Jackson’s hartebeest, hyenas etc. Along the shores of the nile and within the waters you will see lots of hippos and crocodiles among other resident creatures. There also several primates in the Murchison falls national park including baboons and several monkey species.
Murchison Falls National Park, Uganda’s largest national park is also home to over 450 recorded birds species including the rare shoebill stork. The park is also home to 23 Albertine rift endemics given its location in the western arm of the East African rift valley. Our Murchison falls birding safaris allow you see many of these bird species with the help of our expert guides.
1. By road
The distance from Kampala to Murchison falls national park is 305Km and driving there will take you 4.5 hours.
The park has several access gates from both the south and the northern as follows.
Southern Entrance Gates
Northern Entrance Gates
To access the park from the north, there are several entrance gates including the Chobe, Wankwar, Mubako and Tangi gates north of the Nile. These are reached from the Kampala-Pakwach Road which crosses the Nile at Karuma Falls Bridge in the northeastern corner of the park, 260km from Kampala. These gates are convenient for visitor travelling to/from Gulu town and Kidepo Valley National Park.
2. By Air
Pakuba Airfield, 19km from North Paraa, can be reached using chartered aircraft from Entebbe International Airport or Kajjansi airfield near Kampala. Other airfields in the park include: Chobe to the east, and Bugungu near Murchison Falls to the south.
Another highlight of any safari visit to Murchison Falls National Park is the boat ride up to the falls, almost a scene out of a National Geographic Special on TV, only better because you are there seeing hippos frolic in the water (they do not swim but bounce off the bottom of river or lake),
Nile Crocodiles mouths wide open sunning themselves along the banks, elephant herds coming to bathe and water, Buffaloes in numbers, various species of antelopes and many water birds, one cannot imagine the scenic shoreline you will see on a boat safari up the River Nile.
On the Murchison Falls Boat Safari up to the falls, you have the choice to disembark at the bottoms of the falls and hike up to the top of the falls or return on the boat downstream for more wildlife viewing.
Bird Species commonly seen between Paraa Rest Camp and Ferry crossing are; Spotted Mourning Thrush, Vitelline Masked Weaver, Silver Bird, Bluff bellied Warbler, Blue-napped Mousebird, Chestnut-crowned Sparrow weaverBlack headed Gonolek, Green-winged Ptyilia, and Black-headed Batis, this is the best site for the localised White-rumped Seed-eater.
Common Nocturnal Species in the area include: Verreaux’s owls, Nightjars such as long tailed and Pennat-winged nightjar which usually is watched between the months of March – September. Also available is the amazing standard-winged nightjar watched from November to February. Other bird species include: African Skimmer, White African fish eagle, long-toed plover, Gray Crowned crane, Goliath Heron and more
Tourists get to explore the wild on foot while in Murchison Falls Conservation area. There is a trail at Paraa winds throughout low hills, gullies and forest around the river. Nature walks happen at top of the falls, KaniyoPabidi and Rabongo Forest. Rabongo Forest Ecotourism Centre is located in an island of tropical river forest in the south-east of the conservation area. Savannah grasslands surround the forest. With a tour guide, one can explore primates like the Red tailed monkeys, Black & white colored monkeys, Chimpanzees, birds, trees and medicinal plants. Kanio Pabidi is an serene area of natural forest within Budongo Forest Reserve, where you can walk beneath mature Mahogany and ironwood trees. Chimpanzee tracking is the most famous activity. You certainly see many forest birds, including the Chocolate backed Kingfisher, the White-thighed Hornbill, and Puvell’s Illadopsis found nowhere else in East Africa! Kaniyo Pabidi is on the Masindi – Paraa road, 8 kms from Kichumbanyobo gate.
Hot Air Balloon Safaris can now be taken in Murchison Falls Park. This is the only park in Uganda where you can take a hot air balloon wildlife Safari.
Rise at dawn over the savannah watch the sun rise and then glide over the park above the tree-tops where you can see the most wildlife below.
The park is filled with vast herds of buffaloes, elephants, giraffes, antelopes. Watch the predators below as they come home from a night’s hunt.
Afterward, it is a one of a kind champagne Bush Breakfast prepared by Paraa Lodge chefs that you will enjoy and as most long remember.
Its pilots also have to go through the Ugandan and Egyptian Aviation Authorities for certification before they are accepted to operate these balloons.
Accommodation ranges from campsites, lodges, hotels and guesthouse. Of these are built on top of the falls and they have better facilities that are eco-friendly.
Budget accommodation is also available for the budget travelers and the most suitable places include Kaniyo Pabidi Camp and Red Chilli Rest Camp.
Mgahinga National Park sits high in the clouds at an altitude of between 2,227m and 4,127m. As its name suggests, it was created to protect the rare mountain gorillas that inhabit its dense forests and it is also an important habitat for the endangered golden monkey. The park has a huge cultural significance, in particular for the indigenous Batwa pygmies. The park takes its name from “Gahinga” the local word for the piles of volcanic stones cleared from farmland at the foot of the volcanoes.
Mgahinga’s most striking features are its three conical extinct volcanoes, part of the spectacular Virunga Range that lies along the border region of Uganda, Congo and Rwanda. Mgahinga National Park forms part of the much larger Virunga Conservation Area which includes adjacent parks in these countries. The volcanoes’ slopes contain various ecosystems and are biologically diverse and their peaks provide a striking backdrop to this gorgeous scenery.
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is 510km from Kampala; the most commonly used route passes through Kabale and Kisoro. The 434km journey from Kampala to Kabale can be completed in 8 hours on good tarmac. It is then a further 76km to Kisoro town on a mountainous tarmac road with steep ascents and descents.
An attractive, alternative route leaves the main road at Kabale and follows the shoreline of the superbly scenic Lake Bunyonyi to rejoin the Kabale-Kisoro main road at its halfway point at Muko.
Ntebeko, the main entrance to Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is 14km from Kisoro at the end of a dirt road with some steep and rocky sections.
Mgahinga can be reached from Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. From Bwindi’s southern gorilla tracking trailheads at Nkuringo and Rushaga, Kisoro lies 28km south and Mgahinga 14km beyond. Mgahinga is almost four hours drive from the main trailhead at Buhoma. Dirt roads from Buhoma pass the Ruhija trailhead to join the Kabale-Kisoro tarmac road (see above).
Mgahinga can also be reached by air using the daily flights from Entebbe International Airport to Kisoro airfield.
The wonder filled town of Kisoro is where Mgahinga Gorilla National Park stands amidst the grandeur of three of the Virunga Volcanoes. The Park is a cocktail of rain and bamboo forests, golden monkeys, silverbacks and deservedly described as the place where Gold meets Silver. You may access the park by road or by air from Entebbe to the Kisoro airstrip. Bordered to the south by Rwanda and to the west by the Democratic Republic of Congo, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park presents a silent invitation to explore beyond these borders. Its location is also conveniently placed to suit one driving in from Rwanda or heading there after an excursion at the Park. In the midst of the scenic sights and adventurous activities at Mgahinga, Kagera Safaris picks out the top 5 things to do in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park.
There is something in the landscape of Mgahinga Gorilla National Park that your eyes will not miss; Volcanoes, a whole three volcanoes! They form part of the Virunga Ranges found in Rwanda, Democratic republic of Congo as well as Uganda. For each name given to these mountains is a literal translation: Sabinyo to mean Old man’s teeth, Gahinga to mean Pile of stones and Muhavura means a guide.
Mount Muhavura is the highest of them all with the advantage of seeing the other Virunga Mountains from its peak. It can be seen from as far as Kisoro town and is justifiably called the guide given how it leads one to the rest of the mountains in the ranges.
Mount Sabinyo is a gateway to Rwanda and the DRC while in Uganda; at its peak you are geographically standing in Rwanda, Uganda and The DRC at the same time! The way to the summit of Sabinyo is filled with mushy vegetation whose uncomfortable impact can be reduced by dressing appropriately in waterproof hiking boots.
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is home to some of the world’s endangered mountain gorillas making gorilla trekking a must do activity while at the park. The trek commences at about 8am and lasts 2 to 4 hours, which duration is mostly dependent on the location of the gorillas or how far they moved in their search for food.
There are a few guidelines to keep in mind before you go gorilla trekking which you will be acquainted with at the orientation but we picked a few to keep in mind before then. Gorillas can catch human diseases so if you have a cold or other infectious diseases, it is wise that you save the adventure for after your recovery. If you have to ease yourself while gorilla trekking, all waste must be buried 30cm deep. Flash photography should not be used and all trekkers should be at least 15 years of age.
Only 8 people per trekking group are allowed. Depending on how far the gorillas moved, your reward for the trek maybe a silverback out of the 5 in the one family of Gorillas found in the park. This ought to remind you that by trekking you have a chance to see the gorillas but it is not a guaranteed that you will see them.
You can shoot two birds with one stone by using your gorilla trekking experience to simultaneously trek golden monkeys. These primates are small and fast which makes golden monkey trekking a rather active adventure. The activity takes about 4 hours per session during which you are allowed the opportunity to view, take photos of the primates before heading back to your lodge or camp.
They are a sub-species of the blue monkey and are found in the bamboo forests of the Virunga Volcanoes. Mgahinga Gorilla Park presents a golden opportunity to track the golden monkeys of Mgahinga Gorilla Park. Next, to the tracking of the mountain gorillas in Mgahinga Gorilla Park there is also is tracking of the Golden Monkeys to see these beautiful primates bantering about is a sight to see and most enjoyable for the visitors to the park.
The habituated family of these monkeys is about 6 in number and they have due to the habituation process grown fond and less evasive of human presence in their sanctuary.
Before the area on which mgahinga gorilla national park was set aside for the purpose of being a gorilla national park, the Batwa or African pygmies lived and thrived in these forests and mountains as hunter gatherers.
They were later displaced but some of them still live around the park to participate in the tourism industry as porters and guides. They are also entitled to a portion of the tourism proceeds and a tip for their guide services will be welcome. A Batwa trail experience is an activity that takes you through their history and transition over time.
Besides meeting the Batwa people as your guide, visiting their sacred Garama cave watching the dance at the end of the walk by the women with a haunting son (the cave was a place where their king lived and where they hid in times of war the cave is 342 meters in length so quite a place the Batwa people themselves directly benefit from this activity since a large part of the fee for the walk goes directly to them a few tips in Uganda Shilling would not hurt either.
The Dusky Turtle Dove, Cape Robin-chat, Brown-crowned Tchagra, Bronze Sunbird, Black-headed Waxbill and Streaky Seedeater, Handsome Francolin, Kivu Ground Thrush and Cinnamon Bracken Warbler, White Starred Robin, Greater Double collard Sunbird, Rwenzori Turaco, Rwenzori Batis, Shelly’s Dusky Crimsonwing, Archer’s Robin Chat, Olive Pigeon, and Black headed waxbill, Western Green Tinker bird, Malachite Sunbird, Cape Robin, White-starred Robin, Brown Woodland Warbler, Striped breasted Tit, Malachite and Scarlet-tufted Sunbirds, are some of the bird species found in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park which is said to have about 180 bird species.
Birding in this park can be an all year round. You will enjoy a good list of the Albertine rift endemics in this area especially on the gorge trail. Be ready to bird the whole day and therefore you should carry packed lunch.
There are several campgrounds, hotels and lodges around Kisoro and Lake Mutanda Area. There are no developed lodging facilities inside the park. There are various lodging options near the Ntebeko’s entrances. Depending on the season, you will need to reserve hotels and campgrounds well in advance.
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is the most sought after world-class tourist destination as it harbors more than a half of the world’s surviving mountain gorillas listed as a critically endangered species. Recognized by UNESCO as a world heritage site in 1994, Bwindi (Which locally refers to darkness or impenetrable) was since 1942 a forest reserve before it was elevated to a full national park in 1991. The 321k2 national park is characterized by tangled vegetation draped over a deeply fissured landscape of steep slippery valleys and high drought ridges.
It’s ever chilly weather and challenging terrain offers unequaled ambiance and serenity for the visitors seeking to meet and interact with their closest cousins. A trek through one of Africa’s most ancient rain forests, in search of the endangered Mountain Gorillas, ranks among the world’s premier wildlife encounters.
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is located in south-west part Uganda near the democratic Republic of Congo situated on the border next to the Virunga National Park and on the edge of the Albertine Rift.
The park can be accessed by road and it is 520 Kilometres from Kampala, Uganda’s capital city. Normally for one to enjoy the journey, 4Wheel drives are recommended taking the below routes:
Move from Kampala-Kabale about 414 Kilometres, about 5-8 hours drive, then Kabale-Kanungu- Kanyantorogo – Buhoma Park Headquarters, about 120 kms, a 3.5 hour-drive.
The forest is home to more than half of the entire world’s mountain gorilla population and as such, mountain gorilla trekking is the specialty of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Gorilla trekking in Bwindi starts with briefing at the park headquarters at 8:00AM by the ranger guide and allocation of gorilla families to visit; each gorilla group / family is visited by a maximum of 8 people on a particular day and the forest has more than 12 groups at the moment but in different locations.
After briefing, you then head into the forest with your guide ahead of you and at hand to clear the trail. The trek can last anywhere between 2 to 8 hours depending on the movement of the gorillas but usually, park rangers will enter the forest early and try to track the gorillas from the point where they were last seen the previous day. After finding the gorillas, you will be allowed up to a maximum of 1 hour to see and photograph them. When your hour is done, you enjoy your lunch pack and make your way out of the forest and back to the starting point to receive your gorilla trekking certificate to confirm your successful participation in Gorilla trekking in Bwindi.
Besides the ordinary Gorilla trekking which is an exciting adventure itself, Gorilla habituation experience is mind blowing! Bwindi impenetrable forest national park is the only place in Africa where you can spend 4 hours with a gorilla family in its natural habitat. You get to spend time alongside researchers as they prepare a wild gorilla group for human interaction thus spending more hours observing and learning more about the mountain gorilla lifestyle.
There is no known actual definition of the Gorilla Habituation Experience. However, it can simply be known as the act of training wild gorillas to become used to the sight of people. It involves different groups of people like the trackers, conservationists, trackers, researchers and rangers among others who take a period of about 2 to 3 years completing this habituation experience. It is a learning experience that has just recently become a stable activity presented by the Uganda Wildlife Authority on a small scale.
There are six nature trails found in Buhoma for those looking to explore the “impenetrable forest” on guided nature walks. The trails take different directions and expose the visitor to a number of sites including waterfalls, primate encounters, mountain views, tranquil nature and impressive birdlife. Muyanga Waterfall Walk departs from Buhoma along the River Ivi-Nkuringo trail and culminates in the sensational sight of the falls plummeting 33 meters.
Rushura Hill Walk passes through one forest shared by two countries. On a clear day you can view Lakes Edward and George and the Rwenzori Mountains as well as the conical peaks of the Virunga Volcanoes.
Muzubijiro Loop is a 6km walk around a hill, where you will encounter primates and birds and enjoy a view of the Virungas.
The Ivi River Walk is 14km and takes around seven hours. The trail passes a place known as Mukempunu, meaning “a place of pigs” where wild pigs can often be found.
Nature plus Village Mountain Bicycles Guided Rides at Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, enjoy a mountain bike ride within Bwindi to support the local adjacent community and the Ride 4 a Woman organization. get pleasure from the exciting scenery of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest or opt for a bike ride in the village.
The Ride 4 a Woman Organization offers a brand-new activity enjoyed at Buhoma that allows visitor to partake a variety of Bicycle rides within the forest and within the local community. Those people that participate in such activities directly offer support the neighboring community. The mountain bike ride ventures in Bwindi are managed by a woman’s group which offers trained guides, a repair -shop for these bikes and every participant that helps in this program receives direct reimbursement from visitors to Buhoma enjoying a ride on the bike.
Ride 4 a Woman Forest Trail: This is a 3 hr guided bicycle-ride within the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, with emphasis on birding, or just enjoying this very old forest.
When visiting Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and you’re looking for a great recommendation of where to stay/accommodation and there many lodges in the area where one can spend their nights during the visit. Get a whole listing of accommodation places where you can receive the best luxury services.