Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Uganda wildlife reserves


The republic of Uganda is a land locked country which takes its name from the Buganda kingdom. This takes a potion of the south of the country including the capital Kampala. The country is boarded with Kenya in the east, democratic republic of Congo in the west, Sudan in the north Tanzania in the south with Rwanda on the south west. Uganda justifiably sales its self us the best eco destination in Africa. But there is much more to Ugandan eco tourism with 10 national parks and game reserves.

Semuliki national park
 In 1996 this game reserve was turned into a national park, south western Kampala it takes you only 6hrs drive to the flat crater bordered by the rift valley 1500 meters on the eastern side. Ssemulik is on 9000 sq miles and its Habitats include papyrus swamps, lakes, rivers, tropical rain forests and savannah. Semuliki  protects a number of animals like chimpanzees Columbus monkeys ,forest hog , leopard, Uganda cob, lion, elephant ,buffalo ,reedbuck, bush buck ,sitatunga and water buck. One of the few parks where u can take the night game drive. This park can be accessed easily  by road through mubende and fortportal  and can easily be found even on a self drive in Uganda with your car rental in Uganda.

Kibale national park
The handsome l’hoest’s monkey, red Columbus and the black and white Columbus are found in this park, it is situated in the west and it hosts a population of over 1000 chimpanzees. This park is named as the primate capitalof the world. This one rainforest where you can find the  biggest density of primates in the world. Chimpanzee habituation experience is done here is so incredible.

Lake mburo national park
This is the closet park from the central Kampala. It is a savannah land centred in the middle of swamps known for their rich bird life of over 325 species commonly the secretive African fin foot, yellow warbler and more birds. The zebras, warthog, buffalo, impala and various grazers are all Hubbard in the green acacia woodland surrounding the lake. This park has the greatest number of antelope’s. This park has night drives that cost up to 30 dollars, boat rides that give clear views of crocodiles and water birds, horseback safaris and fishing is also available. Lake mburo is the one of the few places to see zebras in the south and can be visited all year around though boat trip reservations are recommended a little earlier.

Mount elgon national park
Its set on the Kenyan border near mbale town, it takes part of the largest base of any volcanic mountain in the word-Elgon where it gets its name. It’s a home of birds and a mosaic afro maintained forest,mooreland and grass land habitats. it is a good place for hiking and other natural history enthusiasts. This park habours the most incredible water fall in Uganda. The sipi falls is a series of 3 water falls originating from the elgon mountains down the slopes and lowlands of kapchorwa. Whether on a self drive in Uganda or guided tour you will absolutely love the elgon region.

Kidepo valley national park
The remote wild and little visited park in the far north with a lot of exiting featers in the valley provides refuge for country species not found anywhere in the country including the cheetah and greater kudu, bat-eared foxes, caracal, aardwolves. The elephants, lions, jackals, Nile crocodiles and thousands of buffalo’s herds are attracted by the perennial waters especially during the dry season. Most of these animals are seen easily as they graze near the residential in the park. Up to 500 species of birds with only those of Kidepo include the ostrich, Karamoja apalis, secretary bird and the pygmy bustard. The spectacular scenery gives you a chance to visit the Karamoja village in November to January but sure to see lots of animals anytime. This park being in the low altitude areas and in a valley, its always recommended to hire a car in Uganda with a high ground clearance and usually  4x4 self drive car hire in Uganda is right for you.

Murchison falls national park
Murchison falls is the largest protected park along the Nile below the spectacular Murchison water falls for which the park was named. With a dense population of lions, patas monkey, buffalos, elephants, Uganda cobs and the Rothschild’s giraffe, spotted hyena which graze in the palm studded grassland.  A big number of hipos and crocodiles are seen with about 460 birds that can be watched mostly in the evening, these include shoebill stork. Wildlife drives, launch trip to the falls, nature walks, sport fishing, walking trail is good for watching from the boat all year around. And can go through Ziwa Rhino sanctuary back to Kampala. Two roads accese this park, one through the karuma bridge and another through the masindi bridge. All is absolutely possible with your Uganda car rental or preferably self drive in Uganda.

Rwenzori mountains national park
The mist covered legendary mountains are presumed to be the mountains of the moon which was described in 350AD by Ptolemy. This place is full of fertility, beauty and the biodiversity and being the tallest in east Africa UNESCO named it a world heritage site. It has three peaks being margarita at 5109m, Alexandria at 5083m and Albert at 5087m high. The mountain has extra ordinary plants and animals like the Rwenzori climbing mouse and Rwenzori red duiker, bush elephants among the 241 known bird species. The think rain forest on the slops that turns into the afro alpine moorland on higher reaces. Trekking in the wet muddy and slippery trails

Queen Elizabeth national park
This is one of the most popular parks in Uganda with a land scap varying from savannah, bush land, wetlands to lush forests of the western Uganda. In 1987 sq km land 96 species of mammals that include elephants, hippos, lions, leopard as well as hyena and chimpanzees. It has the tree climbing lions in the far southern sector of the park you stand a big chance of finding them in the morning.  The Great Britain is among the 611 bird species and besides the usual wildlife drives the park is worth a visit for boat riding on the kazinga channel and nice walk through the kyambura gorge where you can see a lot of flamingos. It is the only place to see statunga and topis.

Bwindi impenetrable national park
set over 331sq km of improbably steep mountain rainforest, the park is a home to almost half of the worlds surviving mountain gorillas over 360in total. Over 120 mammals are in Bwindi which include the chimpanzees, duiker, bushburk, African golden cats, forest elephants and giant forest hog as well as African broadbill among the 360 bird species 24 of which are endemic to the Albertain rift. Given the thick forests its hard to see the species if you don’t have the best guide, tracking mountain gorillas and forest walks with Twa people is good in December to march and June to September though permits are easier obtained at other times.

Mgahinga gorilla national park

Mgahinga punches well above its weight although is the smallest of the Uganda’s national parks at 34sq km. It is in the south west of the country along the three extinct volcanoes of Muhavura,Sabyinyo,and Gahinga that are shared among Congo, Rwanda and Uganda. Down the tropical rain forests the park is a home of gorillas, elephants, buffalos together with 115 species of birds. Mgahinga also serves rewarding treks like volcanic tracking that leads to the crater lake at the summit of mt Muhavura or Sabyinyo, Twa trail to the Twa people who used to live in the forests before they were forcefully evicted witha vist to Garama cave. Permits are booked directly in kisoro UWA offices not more than two weeks.

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