There are 10 national parks in apparently. This article lists down the full list of Uganda national parks with their respective location. Uganda is a landlocked country found in East Africa. It is often referred to as “the pearl of Africa”. The country is endowed with beauties that cannot be compared to many other countries on the African continent. Uganda boasts of exotic wildlife, various bird species, diverse cultures, many landmarks and so much more.
Uganda is home to the world’s longest river that covers eleven countries. Its source is in Uganda. The mighty River Nile breaks off from the rift escarpment at Murchison Falls National Park forcing itself through a narrow gorge and flowing in a placid stream into Lake Albert to form the world’s strongest waterfalls. Uganda harbors half of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. The rest is shared between Uganda, Rwanda, and Congo in the Virunga Conservation Area, an area that shelters the eight Virunga Volcano Mountains. There is a lot to do and learn from Uganda and some of these can be experienced in the country’s national parks. Below is a complete list of the national parks of Uganda.
List of National Parks in Uganda
Ugandan national parks can be visited all year round. However, some months like June to September and December to February are better than the rest especially when it comes to stunning game viewing experiences. For bird lovers, the best time to visit is from November to April when migratory birds from North Africa and Europe are present. See the full list of the national parks in Uganda below.
1 – Kidepo Valley National Park
Kidepo Valley National Park is located in the northeastern part of the country; in the Karamoja plains. The park is a true African wilderness that is still untouched with unique wildlife that cannot be found in other Uganda national parks. Kidepo Valley National Park is Uganda’s third largest national park and is home to over 400 species of birds including the Ostrich, a bird species that can only be found in Kidepo and Pian Upe Wildlife Reserve. This park is also home to 77 species of mammals. Some of these mammals cannot be found elsewhere in Uganda.
2 – Mount Elgon National Park
Mount Elgon National Park is situated in the eastern part of Uganda right at the Kenyan border. The park derives its name from Mount Elgon, a mountain that dominates a bigger area of the park. Mount Elgon, the extinct Volcano in the park has the largest surface area other than any extinct volcano in the world.
The park was established in 1992, covering an area of 1,110 kilometers squared. Mount Elgon National Park is home to mammals like leopards, elephants, duikers a, d bushbucks; plus various species of birds like Jackson’s francolin, taccaze sunbird and napped bronze pigeon among the rest. Mount Elgon was once the highest free-standing mountain in Africa exceeding the height of Tanzania’s Mount Kilimanjaro. The regular soil erosion and landslides contributed heavily to its loss of elevation. This park has got unique vegetation types and offers impressive views of Karamoja plains.
3 – Rwenzori Mountains National Park
Ruwenzori Mountains National Park is a world UNESCO heritage site and is found in the western part of Uganda. It covers an area of 998 kilometres squared. The park was established in 1991. The main activity is done in the park is climbing the great mountains of the moon to any of its five peaks. Mount Margherita, one of the mountains on the Rwenzori Ranges is the third highest in Africa.
4 – Murchison Falls National Park
Murchison Falls National Park is located in the northwestern part of Uganda. The park is home to over 76 species of mammals, over 400 species of birds with various primates at Budongo forest. One of the famous must-do activities in Murchison Falls National Park apart from game viewing is the afternoon Launch Cruise to the bottom of the falls as seen in the photograph above.
The boat cruises give visitors an insight to the Nile’s flora and fauna, with a lot of views of wildlife quenching in the river banks. As you cruise to the worlds strongest waterfalls, you will also find a lot of water birds, hippopotamuses and crocodiles that may come close to the boat.
5 – Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is one of the most visited national parks in Uganda. It is also home to half of the worlds remaining mountain gorillas. The main activity in the park is gorilla trekking. This activity attracts many tourists from many parts of the world. The park has habituated over 15 gorilla groups. Each group can be visited by a maximum of 8 tourists per day. The cost of Uganda gorilla trekking permits is $600 all year round. This permit entitles you to a full hour of viewing gorillas in the wild.
Gorilla habituation experiences are more interesting than the normal gorilla trekking as tourists get to spend up to 4 hours with researchers as they habituate gorillas. The cost of a gorilla habituation permit is $1500. All gorilla permits should be booked in advance due to high demand, especially in the peak season. There is a lot more to see in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park than mountain gorillas. You will spot 13 primate species, 200 tree species, 220 species of butterflies, 27 species of frogs, 120 species of mammals and over 300 species of birds.
6 – Kibale Forest National Park
Kibale Forest National Park is not only the best place for chimpanzee trekking in Uganda but to the world at large. Being home to over 1,400 chimpanzees, its unique vegetation is home to about 351 species of birds tall up to 55metres. Kibale Forest National Park is also home to other primates like black and white Colobus monkeys, Olive baboons, red-tailed monkeys, grey-cheeked mangabeys and blue monkeys to mention a few.
7 – Semuliki Valley National Park
Semuliki Valley National Park is located in the southwestern part of Uganda. Its an extension of the Ituri tropical forest in Congo, one of the worlds remaining lowland forests. The park is one of Uganda’s newest. It spans an area of 220 kilometers squared. One of the main attractions in the park are the Sempaya hot springs, also known as the male and female hot springs with a very fascinating history.
8 – Mgahinga Gorilla National Park
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is located in the south-western part of Uganda; bordering Volcanoes National Park and Virunga National Park in Congo. Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is also a good place for hiking. It is home to 3 of the 8 Virunga Volcanoes. This is the second less visited gorilla trekking park in Uganda but has only one habituated gorilla group called Nyakagezi. This group can be visited all year round. The other good activities in the park are Golden Monkey Trekking and Mountain Climbing.
9 – Queen Elizabeth National Park
Queen Elizabeth National Park was established in 1954 and derived its name from Queen Elizabeth of England shortly after she visited the park. Queen Elizabeth National Park has got the highest concentration of birds in Uganda with over 600 species recorded. The park is the most visited amongst all national parks in Uganda with over 95 mammalian species. The park has got very rich diversity and is a great place for adventure.
10 – Lake Mburo National Park
Lake Mburo National Park is Uganda’s smallest savannah national park. It is endowed with 13 lakes, with 5 found within the park. Its a perfect weekend getaway from Kampala and an ideal place to stopover when coming from Queen Elizabeth National Park or from Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Lake Mburo is home to over 300 species of birds. Tourists can also view wildlife on a horse riding safari or during a boat cruise.
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