Uganda has a good number of tourist attractions offering wide range of things for tourists to see and this make it on one of the most exceptional safari destinations in the East African region with a good number of the big five game, the rare mountain gorillas, chimpanzees, the amazing volcanoes, Mountains of the Moon and many more. Uganda is undoubtedly a primate destination with over 480 mountain gorillas compared to its counterparts taking about half of the world’s population which is about 900. Also features the biggest number of chimpanzees in East Africa with more than 5000within its varied habitat and over 1500 of them thriving in only Kibale Forest National Park which describes it the capital of primates in East Africa given all the 13 primate species all thrive in its jungle. Uganda also refuges the rare golden monkeys which all describe this incredible destination the primate world. It also comes with abundant wildlife, scenic wonders and the most humble and hospital people. With variety of things to view on a Uganda safari, it is not accidental for this country to be called the “Pearl of Africa.” It is only in Uganda where one spends all the 4 hours and the entire day with chimpanzees, golden monkeys and the rare mountain gorillas while on Habituation Experience.
Below is a list of top things for you to see while on safari in Uganda
Most of the tourist attractions in Uganda are confined within its ten national parks each with distinct features as can be seen below;
Mountain Gorillas of Bwindi & Mgahinga
Uganda is a habitat to more than 480 mountain gorillas, representing about half of the population that thrives on earth with about 400 of them in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and 80 in Mgahinga National Park. Mountain gorillas have become the most sought after Apes in the world today making Uganda one of the only three most incredible countries by trekkers to realize their dreams. Make your dream come true while on gorilla trekking adventure in only one hour of face to face encounter with a group of these dramatic Apes in their natural habitat. Alternatively, you can spend all the four hours and entire day with a group of mountain gorillas while on Gorilla Habituation Experience. Beyond mountain gorillas, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is also a home to chimpanzee, over 360 bird species, mammals, reptiles, 220 butterflies, different tree and plant species and many more that wait for you to explore.
The top things to see in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park
Mgahinga National Park is Uganda’s second destination where you can strike imaginations with not only the rare mountain gorillas but also with the unique golden monkeys, volcanoes, bird species, Batwa cultural encounters and many more. This park offers refuge to 3 distinct Virunga Mountain ranges locally known as the Mufumbiro which gives hikers and climbers opportunity to par take hiking adventures in the park, engage in cultural encounters along the Batwa trail and meet the ancient Batwa pygmies who count not more than 3000 today. These incredible people lived in the forest for centuries and now they are marginalized people around the Mgahinga National Park and Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park.
Queen Elizabeth National Park
This feature among Uganda’s most sought after safari destinations. It refuges mainly the rare tree climbing lions that you can sight at Ishasha sector, variety of wildlife including African elephants, Buffaloes, Leopards, crocodiles, the largest number of hippos in Africa, chimpanzees in the lost valley of western Rift-Kyambura Gorge, antelopes, birds of about 620, stunning Crater Lakes, rainforests and incredible people around the park all waiting for you to encounter in person.
Murchison Falls National Park
This is Uganda’s biggest protected area and features the largest number wildlife with its strongest waterfalls known as Murchison falls. It is perfect destination for you to see large numbers of African elephants, Lions, Buffaloes, Antelope family, Leopards, Giraffes, Savanna with Borassus palm trees which you not see in other parks in East Africa, Nile crocodiles, Hippos, Nile monitor Lizards and not to forget over 450 bird species including the rare shoebill stork.
Things to see in Budongo Forest
This is part of Murchison Falls National Park. There is a lot more to explore in this tropical rainforest right from chimpanzees, birds, and other wildlife species as well as several unique tree species and many more. This can be sighted while on Chimpanzee Habituation Experience or nature walk which leads you to the Catholic Church set up by Polish refugees during the Second World War.
Primates of Kibale Forest
Located in western Uganda, Kibale National Park is exceptionally the capital of primates in East Africa. Over 13 primate species call this park their home including the chimpanzees that represent over 1500 out of 5000 that are estimated to live in Uganda. There are also other wildlife species which include birds that make up 370 species including the rare Green breasted pitta, crowned eagle, dusky crimson wing, Abyssinian ground thrush, black capped apalis, purple breasted sunbird and many more; 70 mammals (elephants, buffaloes, hippos and many more); over 200 butterflies, tree and plant species.
Wildlife in Kidepo Valley National Park
Kidepo Valley National Park lies in Northeastern Uganda and features as the third largest safari destination in Uganda. While on safari, you will sight 475 birdlife including the karamoja apalis, black breasted barbet, pygmy falcon, long tailed and standard winged nightjars, ostriches and many more; as well as bat eared fox, striped hyena, aardwolf, caracal, cheetah and hunting dog, elephants, lions, leopards, buffaloes, 5 species of primates, trees and plant species. This ranks the second destination with the largest number of birds and ranked the third best destination for tourists to visit by CNN.
Top things to see in Lake Mburo National Park
This is one of the smallest savanna protected areas in Uganda that offers visitors a chance to see the burchell zebras, endangered Rothschild giraffes, lions, leopards, buffaloes and many more. There are also over 350 bird species including the shoebill stock.
Top tings to see in Semuliki National Park
This park is credited for its amazing wildlife and the hot springs. While on safari, you will sight over 63 mammals, nine of which include the diurnal forest primates like chimpanzees, olive baboons, blue monkeys and vervets. You will also sight forest bee crofts flying squirrel, little collared fruit bat, buffaloes, blue duiker, pigmy squirrel and water chevrotain. There are over 374 bird species to be sighted, 81 moth species and many others.
The Mist Covered Rwenzori Mountains National Park
The Rwenzori Mountains of the Moon features as the tallest mountain range in Africa taller than the Alps of Europe, and good for hikers and climbers. There are various trails that lead to the mountains peaks including the Mahoma trail which lead visitors to Lake Mahoma. Other protected areas include Mount Elgon National Park and the Sipi falls, the source of the Nile at Jinja and Lake Victoria which features among the seventh natural wonder of Africa, Ssese islands that make up 84 tropical islands, Lakes especially Lake Bunyonyi where you will sight over 29 islands, Lake Victoria, Lake Mutanda, the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary which is perfect for rhino viewing, Entebbe Wildlife Education Centre for a variety of wildlife and birdlife, Kampala for birding in Mabamba swamp, Mabira rain forest, Ssezibwa waterfalls, Kasubi tomb site, Bahai temple, Wamala tombs and many others.
While on safari do not miss to see over 8 (eight) hot spring that are in Uganda some of which include the Sempaya, Kitagata, Nyasimbi, Amoropii, Rwagimba, Buranga, Kibiro, Ihimba hot springs. These hot springs are of significant value as they are known for their healing power.
Besides wildlife, there are also a number of waterfalls for you to view on safari in Uganda and they include the Sipi falls, Murchison falls, Ssezibwa falls, Kisizi falls, Bujagali falls, Ripon falls, Karuma falls and many more.
Uganda is indeed natural paradise that you should not miss while in Uganda. There is a lot more in offer for visitors to sight while on safari to this remarkable destination. For more information, check out the Uganda Guide, a complete resource for planning a vacation to Uganda. Other attractions worthy adding to your bucketlist include the Virunga Volcanoes and golden monkeys of Mgahinga, the UNESCO world heritage site of Kasubi Tombs, cultural heritage sites and museums, etc.