Uganda Tour Destinations
Uganda, also known as the Pearl of Africa has 15% of its land covered by water. Uganda or the Republic of Uganda is a landlocked country. It is bordered to the east by Kenya, to the North by South Sudan, to the West by the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and to the South by Tanzania. The southern part of the country includes a fraction of Lake Victoria – which is shared with Kenya and Tanzania.
Uganda also lies within the Nile basin and has a varied but generally equatorial climate. The official languages spoken in Uganda are English and Kiswahili.
Visitors coming into Uganda have a host of activities they can participate in. These include;
- Game and Bird Viewing
- Gorilla Trekking
- Boating and Water Sports
- Cultural and Religious Tourism
- Nature Walking Safaris
- Hiking and Mountain Climbing
- Photography Tours
Bwindi impenetrable Forest
Ranked among the top attractions in Uganda, Bwindi offers an amazing experience for visitors to stand just meters away from the gentle giants – the mountain gorillas. Over 300 mountain Gorillas are found in this impenetrable forest of which an estimated 116 are habituated. Located in south-western Uganda on the edge of the rift valley, Bwindi’s mist-covered hillsides are blanketed by one of Uganda’s oldest and most biologically diverse rainforests. Over 120 mammals are found here with 350 species of birds recorded, including 23 endemics. Local communities like the Batwa pygmies and Bakiga live around the forest and you can enjoy great cultural encounters after your Gorilla trekking experience.
Things to do – Gorilla trekking experience, Nature walks & hiking trails of Buhoma & mountain biking
Queen Elizabeth National Park
This is Uganda’s most popular destination with the famous “Tree Climbing Lions” in Ishasha and the Kazinga Channel where you can get to see a bunch of hippos floating in the water. Queen Elizabeth Park has a diverse ecosystem which includes sprawling savanna, shady, humid forests, sparkling lakes and fertile wetlands. These make it the ideal habitat for classic big game, ten primate species including chimpanzees and over 600 species of birds. Queen Elizabeth national Park has very many areas of interest to any visitor and its location is set against the backdrop of the Rwenzori Mountains. Gorges, explosion craters, forests, wildlife, birds and a lot more make this an interesting destination for any visitor coming to Uganda.
Things to do – Game viewing, Boat Rides – Kazinga channel, Tree Climbing Lions – Ishasha, Katwe Explosions Crater & Maramagambo Forest
Murchison Falls National Park
This is Uganda’s largest and oldest conservation area and one of the most spectacular in Africa. It falls between Kyoga and Albert lakes on the White River Nile in Uganda. The park is named after the mighty Murchison falls where the Nile River forces its way through a narrow gorge, giving rise to a gorgeous rainbow. The gorge is 8m wide and is known as the Devils Cauldron. The national park is under Uganda Wildlife Authority management, north-west Uganda and spreads inland from the shores of Lake Albert, around Victoria Nile, up to the Karuma Falls. Together with the adjacent 748 square kilometres of Bugungu Wildlife Reserve and the 720 square kilometres Karuma Wildlife Reserve, these areas form the Murchison falls Conservation Area. The vegetation in the area is characterized by savannah, riverine forest and woodland. Wildlife includes lions, leopards, elephants, giraffes, hartebeests, oribis, Uganda kobs and chimpanzees whereas bird species include goliath heron, African darter, abdim’s stork, osprey, white-faced whistling duck, yellow-billed stork, secretary bird, shoebill and so much more.
Things to do – Nile River Cruise, Beautiful Wildlife Experience, Birding, Chimpanzee Trekking & Flying over Murchison
Kibale Forest National Park
This is one of the loveliest and most varied tracts of tropical forest in Uganda. The primate capital of the world is found here and it’s 1450 chimpanzees represent Uganda’s largest population of this endangered primate. The forest is also home to East Africa’s largest population of the threatened red colobus and the rare I’Hoest’s monkey. Other primates include the black-and-white colobus, red-tailed and blue monkeys, grey-cheeked mangabey, olive baboon, bush baby and potto. Common activities like Chimp tracking & Birding can be done here.
Things to do – Chimp tracking & Birding
Kidepo Valley National Park
Uganda’s most isolated national park located in wild frontier region of Karamoja. Kidepo valley national park has a savannah landscape that extends far beyond the gazetted area, towards horizons outlined by distant mountain ranges. The Narus valley in Kidepo has a variety of wild animals such as lions, Jackson’s hartebeest, buffaloes, giraffes, oribis and reedbucks. The Kanangorok Hot Springs located 11km beyond the Kidepo River offer a glorious place to sit and view the mountains beyond the frontier. Also found in the park is Mount Morungole which stands at 2,750m and is crossed by the Kidepo and Narus Rivers that nourish the park’s wildlife and this natural habitat as a whole. Kidepo Valley National park was nominated in World Travel Awards 2017 in the Category of Africa’s leading National park against the others like Masai Mara in Kenya & Serengeti in Tanzania and many others.
Things to do – Karamanjogo and IK People, Birding, Wildlife Experience
The alpine highland graciers, snowfields and blue cirque lakes, make Rwenzori one of Africa’s beautiful mountain parks. Rwenzori is Africa’s tallest mountain range exceeded in altitude by Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Kenya carrying Africa’s third fourth and fifth highest peaks that are visible from miles around. Huge tree-heathers and colorful mosses are draped across the mountainside with giant lobelias and “everlasting flowers”, creating an enchanting, fairytale scene. The Rwenzori’s are a world-class hiking and mountaineering destination. A nine- to twelve-day trek will get skilled climbers to the summit of Margherita – the highest peak – though shorter, non-technical treks are possible to scale the surrounding peaks. The Rwenzoris can be visited anytime of the year and are located withing four districts of Kasese, Bundibugyo, Ntoroko and Kabarole in western Uganda. Rwenzori mountains national park is home to 18 species of mammals, 217 species of birds, 9 species of reptiles & 6 species of amphibians. The nearest towns of fortportal and kasese offer budget & midrange accommodation to most visitors who come to Hike the Rwenzori’s.
Things to do – Mountains of the moon experience, Rwenzori culture, Birding Experience, Day Hikes / Nature walks
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is the smallest national park in Uganda. It’s situated in Kisoro south-west of Uganda and about 540 km from Kampala capital. The park also resides in Virunga Mountains, and in the Albertine Rift montane forests ecoregion, totaling to approximate 34 square kilometres. Mgahinga is not only important for wildlife sustenance, but also for the Batwa pygmies, a hunting and gathering community believed to have been the first to occupy its forest. It is also worth noting that Mgahinga is the second park after Bwindi Impenetrable, which protects the habituation of the golden monkey and, the mountain gorilla (an IUCN Red List endangered species). Mgahinga Gorilla National Park comprises three of the eight Virunga Mountains volcanoes namely; Mount Sabyinyo, Mount Muhabura and Mount Gahinga. These dormant volcanoes are international mountains with Muhabura and Gahinga on the Uganda/Rwanda border, while Sabyinyo on a tripoint on the Uganda/Rwanda/Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) borders. The park experiences two wet rainy seasons: February to May; and September to December. The average amount of monthly rainfall the park receives varies from October to July
Things to do – Gorilla Trekking, Volcano Climbing, Batwa Trail, Bird Watching
Whether you call it Lubiri or Mengo, Kabaka Palace is home to the former Kabaka, the king of Buganda Kingdom. It is located in Kampala, at the heart of Uganda. It comprises of both the supernatural or spiritual and the material kings. The spiritual kind is represented by royal drums and regalia – referred to as ‘Mujaguzo’ which like in any other kingdom, have a different palace, officials, servants and palace guards. The Royal Drums serve very critical roles in the kingdom which includes the pre-coronation rite of passage for the prince. Informing the subjects of the kingdom of a royal birth of a prince or a princess. Sounding an alarm upon the death of a material king and much more. However, it is believed that kings get lost in the forest rather than dying.
In 1962, the kingdom suffered a great setback when Uganda attained its independence from Britain. This was not long enough before the kingdom dealt another blow; Milton Obote, leading the Uganda People’s Congress abolished all forms of kingship in the East African country. In 1966, things escalated further when Obote’s army attacked the King’s royal palace with an intent to arrest and kill him. Lucky enough, King Kabaka was able to escape the trap with the aid of his several loyal supporters and fled into exile. This brought an end to monarchism in Uganda for decades. In 1993, things started to turn around after a successful coup which saw the incumbent President, Yoweri Museveni ascend to power after overthrowing Milton Obote’s regime. This saw the return of traditional kingships including the King of Buganda.
Things to do – Namugongo Martyrs Shrine, Kasumbi Tombs, Kabaka’s Manmade Lake & Idi Amin’s Torture Chamber