Uganda is one of the land locked countries and well known as the ‘pearl of Africa’ the tittle given to it by Winston Churchill and this came because of its diverse sceneries that can be spotted all over the country. Uganda is located in East Africa, neighbouring Tanzania to the south, Rwanda to the south west, D.R. Congo to the west, south Sudan to the north and Kenya to the east.
A Uganda safari can take you to explore the 10 national parks and over 12 game reserves in the country which are well covered with attractions such as wildlife, water bodies like lakes, water falls, incredible scenery characterised by mountains and valleys and many more to discover. These game parks have different neighbouring communities and give you a chance to visit one or two while on your safari.
Therefore, during a Uganda safari you have a chance to enjoy more than expected. Some of the activities include the following;
Primate trekking (gorilla, golden monkeys and chimpanzees).
Uganda is blessed with tropical rain forests and these favour primate habitation. Most of the south western part of the country is located within Virunga ranges where you can locate the endangered mountain gorillas and golden monkeys.
Trekking mountain gorillas is only done in Mgahinga and Bwindi impenetrable national park; golden monkeys can be trekked in Mgahinga National Park.
Chimpanzee trekking is mainly done in Kibale national park but there are other destinations where you can trek these beautiful cousins, including Kyambura gorge in Queen Elizabeth national park, Budongo and Kalinzu forests.
Trekking these primates requires you to have a valid trekking permit purchased from Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) and because the permits are limited to only 8 people per day, you can purchase the permits earlier; even a year before trekking date.
Primate habituation is also provided and only 6 visitors are allowed to habituate one gorilla family only done in Bwindi national park as well as chimpanzees which is done in Kibale National Park. Habituation exercise helps wildlife or primates to get used to human behaviours.
Wildlife safaris in Uganda.
Uganda has seven savannah national parks where wildlife viewing can take place. This is through using an open roof tourist vehicle (4x4 wheel drive) and drive around the park or using a boat where visitors get a chance to spot amazing wildlife. Some of the most sought after include the rare tree climbing lions which can found in Ishasha sector - Queen Elizabeth national park, buffaloes, elephants, bush backs, waterbucks, Jackson hartebeests, Uganda kobs, jackals, lions, leopards, hippos, crocodiles among others. The game drives or boat cruises last for about 2-3 hours.
Uganda has over 50 cultures fairly distributed all over the country and among others include the Batooro, Bakiga, Baganda, Batwa and Karamajongs. These cultures provide visitors with cultural dances, historical excursions, traditional dishes, hand crafts like baskets among others.
Great cultural adventures can be organised while on this safari to take you to Isunga Cultural Community in Kibale national park for both Batooro and Bakiga cultures, as well as Entanda cultural experience for the Buganda culture.
Take a hike on either Rwenzori mountains to reach the Margherita peak which is the highest point in Uganda with 5,109 meters above the sea level or Mount Elgon with Wagagai peak which stands at 4,321 metres above the sea level. Other mountains to hike are Mount. Gahinga, Mount. Muhabura and other small hills like Mwegenywa in Fort portal.
Over 1000 bird species can be spotted in Uganda and these are savannah, swamp, forests among others. Uganda birding safari takes you to spore birds like the shoebill stork in Mabamba wetlands, the great breasted pitta in Kibale national park and other birds that can be spotted are the Abyssinian ground hornbill, malachite king fisher, African fish eagle, hawks, weaver birds, hamerkop, grey crested crane, great blue turacos, Rwenzori turacos and many more.
Best time to take a Uganda safari.
Uganda is a lovely country with suitable and favourable weather where you can even move with light clothing during cold days. This means that the country is beautiful and can be visited all year round.
All you need to know is that Uganda has two dry and wet seasons where the dry season begins in December until February and June to August where you can take a safari without hindrances by rains.