UGANDA

Bwindi Mountain Gorillas Uganda Inspired JoruneysUganda packs a lot into a small country. Most visitors come to Uganda to trek the endangered mountain gorillas and chimpanzees, but this beautiful country has way more to offer.

 

It has breathtaking volcanic scenery, Africa’s tallest mountain range (the Rwenzoris, which it shared with the Congo); big game on the savanna grasslands, including tree climbing lions, the world’s highest concentration of primates in the rain-forests and beautiful lakes.

 

Uganda is also a true paradise for bird lovers, with over 1,000 species of birds – more than 10 percent of all the world’s species.

 

Outdoor enthusiasts can get their adrenaline fix with the opportunity to go white-water rafting, kayaking, hiking, climbing, quad biking and horse riding.

 

Uganda has gained itself a reputation as ‘Africa’s friendliest country’. The warmth of the Ugandan people and culture will touch your heart.

BWINDI IMPENETRABLE FOREST

Bwindi Mountain Gorilla Trekking Uganda Jungle PrimatesLocated in southwestern Uganda, on the eastern edge of the Albertine Rift Valley. The Bwindi Impenetrable Forest (331 square km) is said to be Africa’s oldest rain forest. It is thought to be one of the most biologically diverse jungles in Africa.

 

As the name suggests, it is an area of almost impassibly dense rain-forest with steep ridges and valleys rising up to an altitude of 2,600m, with cascading waterfalls and beautiful mountain streams.

The forest is one of the best places in the world to see mountain gorillas up close and is supporting approximately half of the world’s mountain gorilla population. It is the only forest in Africa in which the gorillas and chimpanzees successfully co-exist.

 

Aside from these great apes, one can also find L’Hoest’s monkey, red-tailed monkey and colobus, five species of duiker and bushbuck. As well as a small population of forest elephants. For the bird-lovers, Bwindi is also home to around 350 bird species of which 23 are endemic to the Albertine Rift and at least 14 are found nowhere else in Uganda.

 

QUEEN ELIZABETH NP

Queen Elizabeth National Park Uganda Tree Climbing LionsNorth of Bwindi, bordering the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to the West, lies the Queen Elizabeth National Park. Nestled at the foot of the Rwenzori Mountains on the rift valley floor between Lakes Edward and George.  The 1978 square km park is one of the county’s most popular parks. The landscape is a diverse mix of volcanic craters, tropical forest, open savanna plains and swamps.

 

Queen Elizabeth National Park is home to almost 100 mammal species a remarkable 612 species of birds, including the impressive and unusual shoebill. The park now has four of the Big Five, with steadily increasing populations of lion, elephant and leopard, as well as great herds of buffalo.

 

This is also one of the few places in the world known for tree-climbing lions, in the Ishasha sector in the south of the park. The Kazinga Channel (great boat trips) contains a large concentration of hippos and the Kyambura Gorge, is home to habituated chimpanzees.

 

KIBALE FOREST NP

Rubondo Island Chimpanzee Tanzania SafariKibale Forest (795 square km) is located just to the east of Uganda’s snow-capped Rwenzori Mountains and adjoins Queen Elizabeth National Park to the south to create a 180km-long corridor for wildlife.

 

The forest is home to the highest diversity and concentration of primates found in Africa. There are 13 primate species found within the forest including the highlight of the park the chimpanzee, red-tailed monkey, L’Hoest’s monkey, grey-cheeked mangabey, red colobus and black and white colobus monkeys.

 

Other (more elusive) animals can also be seen including leopard, forest elephant, duiker, bush pig and buffalo, although the dense vegetation makes them difficult to spot.

 

Kibale’s birdlife is outstanding, with over 375 species of birds, including the sought-after African pitta and the secretive black bee-eater. Although the dense growth and high forest canopy means stealth and patience are needed.

 

Activities in the forest include chimpanzee treks, chimpanzee habituation experience, bird watching tours and nature walks.

 

RWENZORI MOUNTAINS NP

Rwenzori or Ruwenzori National Park Hiking and climbing with Inspired JourneysThe remote Rwenzori Mountains, also referred to as the ‘Mountains of the Moon’, lie in Western Uganda on the Congolese border. The Rwenzori Mountains are the tallest mountain range in Africa. The national park itself is about 100,000 hectares, covering almost the whole area of the actual mountains.

 

The mountain range has six peaks permanently covered in ice and glaciers, while the lower slopes are covered with dense forest. Mount Margherite is the highest peak at 5,109 metres, making it the 3rd highest peak in Africa.

 

The Rwenzoris are one of Africa’s most beautiful alpine areas offering hiking treks through varied and stunning landscapes, with none of the crowds found at Kilimanjaro. Most of the park is accessible to hikers (both experienced climbers and casual hikers) with magnificent scenery and 19 Albertine Rift endemics, amongst them.

MURCHISON FALLS NP

Murchison Falls National Park covers 3.893 square km, making it Uganda’s largest National Park. Named after the world’s most powerful waterfall and the main attraction of the park, the Murchison Falls. Formed by the fast-flowing Nile pushing through a seven-meter gap in the rift valley, creating a powerful surge of leaping water.

 

The landscape features dense rainforest, rolling savannah, flanked by lush riverine woodlands and a diversity of abundant wildlife. The forests are home to various primates, including chimpanzees, and near the river, buffalo, elephants and Rothschild’s giraffe can be seen. Other commonly seen wildlife include: lions, antelope, waterbucks, great pods of hippos and the country’s largest population of crocodiles. The birdlife is extraordinary, with over 460 species recorded in the park such as the great blue turaco, dwarf kingfisher and the shoebill stork.

 

A great way to experience the wildlife here is by boat on an exciting river safari. The mighty Nile River at Murchison is also famous for its exciting sport fishing for the monstrous Nile Perch and vicious Tiger Fish.

 

KIDEPO NP

Kidepo Valley National Park lies in the deep far north of Uganda, in the rugged, semi-arid valleys of Karamoja province, and is a real hidden gem. This is one of the few places in Africa where you feel you are all alone.

 

Sharing borders with Sudan and Kenya’s Northern Frontier District, it is one of the most remote parks on the entire continent and Uganda’s most beautiful and least-explored park.

 

The terrain varies from open savannah, which stretches as far as the eye can see, to dense jungle forests. It is home to over 77 mammal species, 28 of which are found at no other park in the country, including cheetah, wild dog, aardwolf, caracal and striped hyena. Visitors can enjoy excellent wildlife sightings with big herds of buffaloes and elephants, lion, leopard and Rothshild giraffe.

 

Kidepo is also a birdwatchers paradise, as there are over 475 recorded species. Rare birds to be seen here include the black-breasted barbet and karamoja apallis.

ADDITIONAL UGANDAN HIGHLIGHTS

 

Uganda still has a lot more to offer: Entebbe, Kampala, Lake Mutanda, Mgahinga National Park, Semliki Wildlife Reserve, Jinja and Lake Mburo National Park. If you would like to know more about any of these, please get in contact with us.

QUICK FACTS

Official name: The Republic of Uganda

Capital city: Kampala

Area: 241,038 km2

Population: 44,270,563

Languages: English is the official language. While Luganda and Swahili are also widely spoken in most parts of the country. There are forty living native languages in Uganda, which can be grouped into three main language families: Bantu, Central Sudanic, and Nilotic.

 

CLIMATE

 

Uganda is located around the equator and the climate is very pleasant throughout the year. Uganda has a tropical climate, with temperatures ranging from 21-25°C (70- 77°F), apart from in the mountainous areas, which are cooler. The hottest months are January and February when the average daytime range is 24-33°C (52-91°F) with peaks of up to 40°C/104°F in the far north.

 

Evenings can feel chilly, as temperatures drop to around 12-16°C (54-61°F). If you are travelling to areas of a higher altitude such as Bwindi National Park, Kisoro, Lake Bunyonyi, Mount Elgon, Sipi Falls and Rwenzori Mountains, expect to experience colder weather particularly in the mornings and evenings. The warmest regions in Uganda are around Murchison Falls and further north and around Queen Elizabeth.

 

SEASONS

 

The south has two wet seasons: from mid-September to November and March to May. The north, including Murchison Falls and Kidepo Valley, has one continuous wet season from March to November and a more obvious dry season from December to February. Except in the dryer northern regions, annual rainfall can be as much as 1,000mm -2,000mm with roads becoming difficult to travel in the rainy periods. During the rainy season the rain occurs mostly at night and early morning and can be heavy but are typically short. There will always be plenty hours of sunshine.

 

The best time for trekking is during the dry seasons, January to February and June to September. Wildlife viewing is best at the end of the dry seasons, when game is more concentrated around water sources.

 

Uganda’s weather can always be unpredictable and visitors should be prepared for rain at any time of the year.

Map Uganda Adventures Inspired Journeys

Uganda is a landlocked republic in eastern Africa, bordered on the north by the Republic of Sudan, on the east by Kenya, on the south by Tanzania and Rwanda, and on the west by the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Uganda has an area of 241,038 square km (93,065 square miles).

 

The main entry point for flights into Uganda is Entebbe International Airport (EBB). Uganda can now be easily accessed from any part of the world. There are many direct flights to Entebbe from Europe, Asia and Africa.

UGANDA ITINERARIES

Uganda Primate Heaven- 5 DAYS
A trip focusing on the wondrous experience of habituating primates
This itinerary is for real primate enthusiasts. It is not just a “regular” visit to chimps or gorillas, but instead you will join researchers in their efforts to habituate wild Mountain Gorillas, Chimpanzees and Golden Monkeys.

You will join a Golden monkey habituation experience at Mgahinga National Park in the South of Uganda, where you will be able to enjoy the monkeys and their frolics for up to 4 hours. You will then continue on to Bwindi to hang with the Mountain Gorillas (again a max of 4 HOURS, compared to the regular tour of 1 hour). And finally you will have a full day Chimpanzee habituation experience in Kibale Forest.

This trip is one of the most immersive primate experiences you can do in the world, and a truly exciting opportunity.

Mountains of the Moon - 15 DAYS
A glacier hiking adventure through the Rwenzori mountains
How about a glacier climb on the equator? The Rwenzori mountains are the highest mountain range in Africa, its towering peaks are covered in snow and its glacier nostalgically named Stanley. Unlike its famous cousin the Kilimanjaro, the Rwenzori mountains still offer an off-the-beaten-track and really wild experience, climbing through various habitats on your way to Margarita peak (5100 m) you will traverse the wonders of the African Alpine Forest with its deep mosses its wonderful Lobelia and wispers of “Old Man’s Beard” a wonderful adventure.

In this example itinerary it is combined with 2 other highlights in Uganda, Mountain Gorillas at the start and Chimpanzees after your mountain adventure.

The Ultimate Uganda Trip - 19 DAYS
See all (or at least most) of the highlights of Uganda
For those of us who want it all, here is a 19 day bonanza. Enjoy the many wonders Uganda has to offer.

Trek mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and go on safari in search of tree Climbing Lions in Queen Elizabeth NP.

Go Birding at Lake Mutanda and Lake Mburo and find the Chimps at Kibale.

Go North to Catch a monster Nile Perch at Murchison Falls and find yourself alone in Africa in Kidepo Valley NP.

Round it all off with a rush of adrenaline rafting in Jinja…. What are you waiting for?

UGANDA GALLERIES