Beyond the Gorillas in Uganda
Gorillas are Uganda’s big wildlife draw, and are found in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and Mgahinga National Park. The greatest population of Uganda’s gorillas are in Bwindi, around six hours by vehicle, or a short light aircraft flight, from the capital Kampala via Entebbe. The lush rainforest vegetation means tracking can be slightly harder than in neighbouring Rwanda but the reward of an hour’s face to face with one of our closest living relatives is well worth the effort.
Tick the gorilla box and there’s plenty else to see and do in Uganda. Away from the rainforest Uganda’s fertile lands are made up of terraced hillsides, numerous lakes, waterfalls, mighty rivers, volcanoes and snow-capped mountains. With greater choice for general wildlife viewing, it’s a arguably a more complete safari destination than it is given credit for.
Queen Elizabeth National Park is Uganda’s most visited and with elephant, lion, buffalo, hippo and leopard it’s the Uganda park most like those in neighbouring Kenya and Tanzania. There are chimps in Kyambura Gorge and in the far south there are the famous tree climbing lions of Ishasha. With some 610 bird species – possibly the most in any African park – it’s a bird watching paradise.
Another of Uganda’s gems is Kibale Forest National Park, one of Africa’s best primate hot spots with 13 species recorded here including nearly 1,500 resident chimpanzees. It is possible to track chimps here and there are even more chimps in lovely Semliki where you can also spot pygmy hippo, forest elephant and myriad butterflies and birds including the shoebill.
The Great Rift Lakes Albert, Mburo and Victoria with their forest-fringed shores and rolling green hills are all worth a visit. The prehistoric-looking shoebill wades the shores of Lake Albert while Mburo is home to rare endemic ungulates. Exploring by boat, horse, mountain bike, or on foot adds another aspect to safari here.
Murchison Falls, Uganda’s largest national park, lies astride the Nile as it plunges through the falls into Lake Albert. It’s remoteness means it’s often overlooked on an itinerary which is a great shame since there are few reserves in Africa that have such diversity of habitat. All this makes fantastic wildlife viewing which includes the extraordinary shoebill, elephant, buffalo, lion, Nubian giraffe, Uganda kob, hippo, crocodile and plentiful birdlife.
Any questions on beyond the gorillas in Uganda?
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We would be delighted to help you plan a holiday, or answer any questions if you’re at an earlier stage. Our team of experts have travelled widely throughout Africa. They can offer expert advice on every type of safari from family and beach holidays to riding and primate safaris. If you would like to talk to someone who has been there and done it, please just send us an email or give us a call.