Unspoiled, Magnificent, and Teeming with Wildlife
Robustly fertile and lush, Uganda hums with the call of primates, the crunch of mammals roaming through underbrush, and the trill and screech of birdlife. It is perhaps one of the most richly populated centers of wildlife on earth. Wide savannahs reach out toward dense forest. Africa’s highest mountain range, the Rwenzoris, are capped by equatorial glaciers. And, most famously, it is the source of the mighty Nile River, which meanders at a rather dull pace until its voluminous waters crash through the Murchison Falls gorge in a torrent.
These unspoiled lands harbor classic safari wildlife, as well as a primate population found nowhere else. And much of it is protected in some two dozen national parklands, reserves, and sanctuaries. When you join Discovery Tours’ new Uganda Wildlife Exploration, you will set out in search of it all with expert guides, by safari vehicle, by foot, and by boat.
Murchison Falls National Park, Uganda’s largest, has hosted the likes of Winston Churchill, Theodore Roosevelt, and several British royals. It is sliced in two by the Victorian Nile River, also known as the White Nile for the color of its clay, a tributary of the Nile. More than 100 species of mammals roam the park, including the African bush elephant, Rothschild’s giraffe, East African lion, and African buffalo. Chimpanzees make the dense forest their home. Look to the sky or to the marshland and you’ll see some of the 450 types of birds, including the shoebill with its distinctively enormous beak, a cousin of the stork and pelican.
The moist evergreen rainforests of Kibale National Park provide a stark contrast. Thirteen primates can be found in its dense canopy, comprising one of the highest concentrations in the world. The chimpanzees that reside on the safari circuit have been well-studied and are habituated to human presence. Other primates in Kibale include the Uganda mangabey, the Ugandan red colobus, and the L’Hoest’s monkey. Elephant, leopard, the African golden cat are among the other mammals here. Up in the trees, you might spot some of the 325 bird species, such as the olive long-tailed cuckoo, the grey parrot, and the endemic ground thrush. You will set out to find them all during a thrilling walking safari.
Adjacent to Kibale is Queen Elizabeth National Park. Together, they form a 110-mile wildlife corridor. When it was founded in 1952, it was named Kazinga National Park. On the occasion of the queen’s visit in 1954, the name was changed. Spanning some 764 square miles between Lake George and Lake Edward—which are linked by the Kazinga Channel—the park’s diverse ecosystems vary from endless savannah to dense forest, sparkling lakes to fertile wetlands. This fecund area is also notable for its enormous volcanic crater lakes sculpted over millennia into the emerald-green hills. Its most distinctive animals include the hippopotamus, the Nile crocodile, chimpanzee, and the tree-climbing lion with its dramatic black mane.
The king of Uganda’s parks system is Bwindi National Park, home of the last remaining great apes, the mountain gorillas. Only about 700 of these majestic creatures are believed to remain in the wild. Half of them are here in Bwindi while the other half are in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. A hike in to see them is a thrill unlike any other.
Discovery Tours has secured breathtaking safari lodges in or near these national parks so you’ll enjoy easy access, delicious meals, and the ultimate in safari comforts. We hope you’ll join us on your journey to Uganda