Murchison falls national park is the largest of Uganda’s national parks covering a total area of 5,308 kms with a pleasant wilderness area of rolling grasslands and wooded savannah, it’s also one of the most spectacular parks in Africa. Renowned for its scenic beauty and spectacular falls from which it gets its name. It also has an abundant flora and fauna that never ceases to amaze visitors and residents alike, no visit to Murchison fall national park is complete without a visit to the top of the falls where its narrows from 50 meters to crash through a 7 meters gorge falling 45meters to the rocks below, other residents in this park are lions, the Uganda kobs, antelopes, elephants, buffalos, giraffes, hippos, baboons, leopards as well as over 650 different species of bird have been recorded here making it a prime target for birdwatchers. In the Southeast, Rabongo Forest is home to Chimpanzee and rainforest creatures. The Nile it’self hosts one of Africa’s densest Hippo and Crocodile populations and a dazzling variety of waterbirds including rare shoebill stork which are easily seen along the banks of river Nile.
QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK
It’s one of the outstanding treasures of Uganda, QNP has recently been designated a Biosphere Reserve for Humanity under UNESCO. The park covers 2000 sq.kms, and includes a remarkable variety of Eco-systems, from semi deciduous tropical forest to green meadows, Savannah and swamps. It is the home of the famous tree- climbing lions, the Uganda kobs and other antelopes as well as elephants, buffalo’s, hippos, baboons, leopards, and chimpanzee. Over 500 species of bird have been recorded here making it a prime target for birdwatchers. Species recorded include the shoebill stork, black bee-eater, 11 types of kingfishers and a variety of raptors which include several falcons and eagles. In the crater lakes, spectacular flocks of flamingos gather creating the image of a moving pink carpet. The launch trip along the Kazinga channel between the Lake George and Edward is a memorable way to view the abundant game in Queen Elizabeth national park. North of the main gate is the crater area, one of the most scenic parts of the park. To the east, in kyambura gorge, visitors can climb through tropical forest and catch a glimpse of a variety of primates including the chimpanzees. In the most isolated Ishasha sector of the park, search the woodlands for the tree-climbing lions perching on the boughs of ancient fig trees. To the southeast, travellers can explore newly opened trails in maramagambo forest.
LAKE MBURO NATIONAL PARK
Its (260 sq.kms) lies along Mbarara Road with easy access of Kampala. It’s an attractive park of rolling hills and open grass valleys covered in extensive acacia woodland, Mburo has markedly different fauna to other reserves. Find herds of Zebras, Cape buffalos and Eland Antelopes, Oribi and Topi, Impalas are easily approached. Along with the game drive, many visitors enjoy the Boat tripe on Lake Mburo. Self –guided nature walks are also available. The five lakes in the park attract a variety of waterbirds, birdwatchers will enjoy more than 250 species of birds including the yellow papyrus Gonolek, Brown faced lapwing. Carruthers Cisticola, the extraordinary white winged warbler and Bare-Faced –Go –Away bird.
BWINDI IMPENETRABLE FOREST
A magnificent verdant swathe across the steep ridges of the Albertine rift valley, this ancient 331sq kms rainforest, one of the few in Africa to have flourished throughout the last Ice Age is home to roughly half of the world’s mountain Gorillas. Looking deep into the expressive brown eyes of these giants is surely the most exciting and poignant wildlife encounter that Africa has to offer, but we should not let it distract from Bwindi’s broader bio-diversity, a result of it’s immense antiquity and an altitude span from 1,160m to 2,607m. The national park has 90 mammal species including 11 primates, such as the black and white Colobus, common chimpanzees, L’Hoest’s Monkey, red tailed Monkeys and the well known vervet Monkey but also the elusive giant forest Hog. The park has more than 350 bird species and more than 200 butterfly species.
SEMLIKI NATIONAL PARK
This is an eastern extension of the vast Ituri forest and forms part of the forest continuum during the climatic upheavals of the Pleistocene. This is one of the richest areas for both flora and fauna in Africa, especially for birds. It’s 220kms was gazetted in October 1993 and it’s one of Uganda’s newest parks. Semliki national park is situated in the remote corner of west Uganda in Bundibugyo District, the park lies on Uganda – Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) border within the western arm of the East African Rift Valley to the southeast are the Rwenzori Mountains, to the west is DRC and to the north is Lake Albert. The park has more than 400 bird species including the rare Forest ground thrush and Sassi’s Olive Greenbul not forgetting the nine species of hornbills that have been recorded in the park. The park has over 60 mammal species, including forest Buffalos, Leopards, pygmy Hippos, Mona Monkeys, Bush babies, Forest Elephants and the Pygmy flying squirrel.
KIDEPO VALLEY NATIONAL PARK
Tucked into the corner of Uganda’s border with Sudan and Kenya, the park offers breathtaking savannah landscapes which end in a rugged horizon. A huge latitudinal range and correspondingly wide climatic conditions have evolved an extremely diverse flora, as a result the variety of animal species in the park is abundant. The vegetation can best be described as open tree savannah that varies much in structure and composition. Mountain forest dominates some of the high places, while areas along the Lorupei River supports dense acacia geradi forest. Wildlife in Kidepo is abundant ; Lions, Leopard, Cheetah, Elephant, Giraffe, Zebra and Uganda’s largest herds of buffalo, hartebeest, waterbuck, bushbuck and warthog…..the list goes on. The safari vehicles are the best way to see the wildlife up close but walking safaris are also possible.
The 120km Rwenzori chain is regarded to be the legendary snow capped ‘Mountains of the Moon’, described by Ptolemy in AD150. Reaching an elevation of 5,109m, it’s also Africa’s tallest mountain range, exceeded in altitude only by Mount Kenya and Kilimanjaro. The distinctive glacial peaks are visible for miles around but the slopes above 1,600m are the favourite territory for hikers, who rate the Rwenzoris to be the most challenging of all African mountains.
A variety of large mammals inhabits the lower slopes such as Chimpanzees, Colobus Monkey and other primates, Leopard, forest Hog, Elephant. The birdlife is magnificent and includes the Rwenzori Turaco, Francolin, Olive pigeon and the white-necked raven but the Rwenzoris are notable more for their majestic scenery and varied vegetation. The traits leads through rainforest rattling with Monkeys and birds, then tall bamboo forest, before emerging on the high altitude moorland zone, a landscape of bizarre giant lobelias, towered over by black rock and white snow, looking for all the world like the set of a science fiction film.
Uganda National Park Rules And Regulations
Do not camp or make campfires except at official sites.
Do not drive off the tracks.
Do not disturb the wildlife by sounding motor horns.
Do not drive in the park between 7:30pm and 6:30 am.
Do not bring dogs or other pets to the park.
Do not drop litter, especially cigarette ends or matches.
Do not bring firearms or ammunition into the park.
Do not pick flowers or destroy any vegetation.
Do not exceed the speed limit of 40km per hour (25mph).
Retain all official receipts for entrance, boat trips, fishing, etc, as you may be requested to show them at any time during your stay.