You undoubtedly associate Uganda with the rare mountain gorillas, and then… it stops? No! Take a trip to the “pearl of Africa,” where natural parks blend seamlessly and where mountains and lakes alternate harmoniously. This beautiful country has much more than mountain gorillas to offer. Here are some off-the-beaten-path experiences that will make for an unforgettable trip to Uganda!
Chimpanzee Sightings in Kibale
A beautiful example of dense equatorial rainforest, Kibale National Park boasts the largest concentration of primates in all of Africa. It has thirteen species of monkeys, including the black and white colobus monkey and the grey mangabey, but they all come here for the chimpanzees. On a full day’s stay, you’ll be among chimpanzees as they wander through the forest, gathering in the treetops to play.
Tracking Mountain Gorillas
Uganda’s biggest attraction is tracking mountain gorillas, the second-largest primates in the world. They are a critically endangered species that today is found only in a small area of Bwindi National Park on the border between Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. In 2018, approximately 1,000 individuals were living, and in 2016 about 800 gorillas were living here. They are now considered endangered.
The northern blunt-nosed rhino and eastern black rhino are critically endangered species that were completely wiped out in Uganda in the 1980s, even though Uganda is their natural habitat.
This is why the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, a private project, has been established to return the rhinos to the Ugandan wild. It is, therefore, the only place in Uganda where rhinos can be seen. Tourists have the opportunity to watch and observe them, and it is only a short distance from the rhinos in the immediate vicinity.
Spotting the Rare Shoebill Stork
The Shoebill Stork is one of the most bizarre animals in the world. This bird looks like it escaped from Jurassic Park. Its razor-sharp beak tears apart its victims, including small crocodiles. This huge bird can also make a machine-gun-like sound with its beak. Its striking appearance and way of moving are unmistakable.
The best opportunity to see this shy bird is on a boat safari in Murchison Falls National Park. You’ll have to be a bit lucky because the birds hide among the reeds in the vast marshes.
A Boat Ride on the Kazinga Channel
The Kazinga Channel is a natural canal that runs through Queen Elizabeth National Park. The canal runs east to west and connects Lakes George and Edward. It is possible to take a three-hour boat trip along this canal, and this is the highlight of a visit to Uganda! You will sail along the banks and see many (aquatic) animals and birds; particularly striking is the huge number of hippos. Due to their territorial behavior, there is a high probability that you will see these giant animals fighting with their mouths open. You may also spot a group of elephants drinking on the shore.
Rafting on the Nile
The Nile is often associated with Egypt, but this mighty river rises near Jinja, Uganda’s third-largest city. Jinja is a true paradise for adventurers. One of the activities you can do here is Nile rafting. It is one of the best rafting locations in the world. During this spectacular activity, you will face heart-pounding rapids of different grades. There is also the option of a two-day rafting trip. An unforgettable adventure!
Magic Lake Bunyoni
Idyllic Lake Bunyoni is the perfect place to end your Uganda tour. Here you can enjoy the beautiful tranquillity, spectacular views, and local Ugandan life. Don’t miss this unique crater lake!
Have you ever been to Uganda? Share your experience with us in the comments below!