Uganda is known for its national parks and animal safaris. The beautiful country consists of savannah plains, rainforest jungles and massive lakes. Uganda is also home to many endemic and endangered species, which NGOs and the local communities are working hard to protect for the population to grow in the coming years. On your visit to Uganda, you can enjoy breathtaking views and immerse yourself in a rich cultural experience. Let’s look at four places where you can engulf yourself in nature.
Queen Elizabeth National Park
The park covers an area of 1,978 sq km, which includes rich landscapes, savannah plains, forests, bushlands and wetlands. Some animals you will encounter on your safari are hippos, elephants, giraffes, kobs, lions, leopards, hyenas and chimpanzees. The Queen Elizabeth National Park is a haven for over 95 mammal and 612 bird species. In the Kyambura Gorge forest, you will find families of chimpanzees. Thirty miles to the north, you will come across the beautiful Rwenzori Mountains. Towards the west of Lake Edward stands the Mitumba hills. The Mweya Peninsula is where you will find the park headquarters, safari lodges and budget hostels, making it the park’s tourist hub.
Murchison Falls National Park
This park was created in 1952 and is located in northwest Uganda. It is named after the powerful waterfall from the Victoria Nile River, which squeezes through a seven-meter narrow gap. Adjoining the Murchison falls is the Uhuru falls. The park forms the Murchison Falls Conservation Area (MFCA) of 3,893 sq km, along with Bugungu Wildlife Reserve and Karuma Wildlife Reserve. You will also get to witness chimpanzees in the Kaniyo Pabidi mahogany forest. You will see many animals, including elephants and hippos in the Murchison Falls National Park.
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
The Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is among the few parks that protect the natural habitat of endangered mountain gorillas. The park’s name is from the local word “Mubwindi,” which means place of darkness. Scientists date back the area to the last Ice Age, making it one of Africa’s prehistoric habitats. The 320 sq km park is also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage. As it is home to about half of the mountain gorilla population, the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park offers mountain gorilla treks. This is a golden opportunity to witness the magnificent creatures in person.
Bunyonyi is a local word which translates to “little birds.” Near the lake, you will spot many bird species like gray-crowned cranes, African harrier hawks, levaillant cuckoo, cardinal woodpeckers and the African kingfisher. Small islands and hills surround Bunyonyi Lake. You can participate in activities like hiking, cycling and canoeing. There are mountain bikes, canoes and kayaks easily available to hire for tourists to explore the area.
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