With over 1.7 million tourist arrivals expected this year, Uganda is remarkably one of Africa’s most sought after safari destinations due to its distinctly diverse tourist attractions that are widely distributed across different parts. A visit to this magical country never leaves you bored but rather keep you in a vibrant and sound experiences most of which are rarely attained in Africa. With a lot more to do and see, Uganda’s major tourist attractions are largely distributed within its different towns, protected areas a mention but a few. Today, Uganda is ranked among the top 4Africa’s and worldwide in the 16thposition as travel destination to visit in 2019. It comes with exceptional attractions such as;
In East Africa, Uganda is that one country you need not to miss to pay a visit to strike your imaginations with the rare mountain gorillas while in their natural habitat. Over 500 of these amazing creatures call this landlocked country a home thus making it a few most looked for destinations in Africa. Treks to see these great apes in Uganda are conducted in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and Mgahinga National Park that equally have positioned this country as a leading travel destination. In Bwindi, treks kick start from the 4 main trailheads of Buhoma, Ruhija, Rushaga and Nkuringo each of which feature habituated families. About 17 groups have so far been habituated in Uganda and readily available for trekking. Equally, Uganda offers relatively affordable gorilla safaris with permits costing $600 per person compared $1500 in Rwanda.
Uganda boasts of its over 1080 distinct bird species that are widely distributed in varied habitats including the 10 national parks, different wildlife reserves, forests, wetlands, savanna and woodland areas and others. This makes it a true birder’s paradise. The notable avifaunal species for bird enthusiasts to sight at while on bird watching safari include the Great Blue Turaco, Chapin’s flycatcher, African green breasted pitta, African green broadbill, bee-eaters, Grauer’s swamp warblers, turner’s eremomela, shoebill stork, pelicans, flamingos, black and white casqued hornbills, bar tailed trogon, Kivu ground thrush, yellow eyed black flycatcher, black billed Turaco a mention but a few.
Besides mountain gorillas and many primates, Uganda also boasts of diverse savanna grassland wildlife and aquatic life. These are mainly distributed within most of its national parks and reserves. They include elephants, buffaloes, lions plus the tree climbing lions, leopards, giraffes, rhinos that are only at the Ziwa rhino sanctuary, zebras, variety of antelope families, the Nile crocodiles, hippos a mention but a few.
National parks and reserves
The main attractions in Uganda are confined within its stunning national parks and reserves. By nature, these protected areas alone are tourist attractions. Uganda’s national parks include Murchison Falls National Park-Uganda’s largest park with an area coverage of 3840 square kilometers, Queen Elizabeth National Park-western Uganda a main refuge to the big game including the tree climbing lions, over 620 bird species; Kidepo Valley National Park, Kibale Forest National Park-prime destination with varied primate species including over 1500 chimpanzees, Lake Mburo National Park, Mount Elgon National Park, Rwenzori Mountain National Park a UNESCO site in western Uganda with over 217 bird species, 70 mammal species; Semuliki Valley National Park and Reserve, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park southwestern Uganda-a home to half the world’s population of mountain gorillas, 350 birds, 120 mammals and Mgahinga National Park, Pian-Upe wildlife reserve a mention but a few.
Uganda is largely covered by water bodies most of which are Lakes and most significantly, it is a home to a shared scenic Lake Victoria. This Lake is one of the fresh water lakes in the world and the largest straddling at the heart of East Africa mainly shared by Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania. It is from this water body that the mighty River Nile which also stands as a major tourist attraction originates from. Besides fish, this lake features remarkably stunning islands-the Ssese archipelago, over 350 birds a mention but a few. You may also pay a visit to picturesque Lake Bunyonyi which straddles within the southwestern side of Uganda which comprises of 29 beautiful islands. This lake features as one of the deepest lakes in Africa and remarkably an ideal site for swimming as it has no crocodiles and hippos but you have to be keen with its depth. For visitors on gorilla safari to Bwindi or Mgahinga National Park, this can be your stopover spot when traveling to or returning from your lovely adventure. This water body boasts of its breathtaking sceneries especially over the dotted islands. The other water body you shouldn’t miss to explore is Lake Mutanda which still straddles in southwestern Uganda and comes with jaw-dropping views.
A side from wild animals, Uganda is truly gifted by nature and waterfalls are some of the natural wonders you need not to miss to explore while on African safari in this magical country. The notably powerful waterfalls to explore here include Murchison waterfalls which is situated in Murchison Falls National Park, the Sipi falls in Mbale, Itanda falls in Jinja, Ssezibwa falls in Mukono, Sisiyi falls in Mbale, Kisiizi falls in Rukungiri a mention but a few.
Uganda is where you find all that Africa has to offer to world travelers a reason it is popularly called the pearl of Africa. With variety of attractions waiting for you, cultural exploration is one rare experience you shouldn’t miss out in this country. With so many cultural groups and tribes, Uganda is incredibly a melting pot of cultures with each region showcasing unique cultures. To get the best of Africa’s cultural experiences in Uganda, visit the Ndere cultural center which is a few kilometers away from Kampala city center, Kasubi tombs site to explore more about the Buganda cultures, wamala tombs, the Baha’i temple, Nakayima tree in Mubende a mention but a few. For those of you who are planning to pay a visit to Bwindi or Mgahinga, do not miss to visit the Batwa pygmies’ community to learn more about their life styles and traditional practices enjoy their dances and music performances.
Regardless of the fact that Uganda is a landlocked country, a visit to this magical country rewards travel endeavors with lasting memories. Uganda lies suitably around the rift valley region along the scenic Lake Victoria which is one of the world’s largest fresh water bodies. It features among a few most spectacular countries in Africa with distinct mist forests, snow capped mountains, Lakes, savannas among others. Given its diverse natural wonders, it is of no doubt that this magical country is dubbed the pearl of Africa.
Below are some of the best tourist attractions for you to explore while on safari in Uganda
What makes Uganda such an exceptional safari destination is its stunning national parks. It is from these parks that most safaris are conducted and Uganda features 10 parks and several game reserves. A visit to any of these parks rewards travel endeavors with unique experiences. They include Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, Mgahinga National Park that offer you a great opportunity to see mountain gorillas, Murchison Falls National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Lake Mburo National Park, Kidepo Valley National Park which are perfect for wildlife viewing experiences, Mount Rwenzori National Park, Kibale Forest National Park, Semuliki National Park, Mount Elgon National Park as well as Pian Upe wildlife reserve among others.
What attracts most tourists to Uganda is mainly wildlife. Uganda is endowed with distinct wildlife species ranging from forest to savanna dwellers. While on Uganda safari, expect to see the big game-lions, elephants, buffaloes, rhinos, leopards as well as giraffes, hippos, crocodiles, warthogs, antelopes, birds a mention but a few. Besides, there are many primate species for you to catch a glimpse at while on safari in the pearl of Africa. They include among others the rare mountain gorillas, chimpanzees, L’Hoest monkeys, red tailed monkeys, mangabeys, black and white colobus monkeys, vervet monkeys, baboons a mention but a few.
The mighty source of the Nile
While on safari in Uganda, don’t miss to take a trip to the Nile-one of the longest Rivers in the world. This natural wonder has its source in Jinja and it is of no doubt that while here, you have a chance to engage in a number of adrenaline adventures. This particular area is best known for thrilling adventures like the white water rafting, kayaking, sport fishing, bungee jumping, jet boating, boat cruise a mention but a few.
Scenic water lakes
Uganda is blessed with many water bodies as it is located along the rift valley area/great lakes region. The notable lakes that you shouldn’t miss to explore include Lake Victoria which features as one of the largest fresh water bodies in the world. It is shared by Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania and it from here that the Nile starts from. This beautiful water body refuges about 200 fish species plus 350 bird species. Besides, there are also islands worth exploring including the Ngamba Island where chimpanzee sanctuary is found, Ssese Island which features about 84 distinct islands which are worth visiting while on honeymoon safari. The other is Lake Bunyonyi which is situated near Kisoro and Kabale. This water lake is composed of 29 unique islands. This lake rewards travel endeavors with breathtaking sceneries. While on gorilla safari to Bwindi or Mgahinga, you can also pay a visit to magnificent Lake Mutanda.
The beauty of Uganda also lies on its scenic waterfalls. There are many beautiful waterfalls that are worth exploring while on Uganda safari. They include among others Murchison Falls, Karuma falls, Sipi falls and many others.
If you are good at hiking and you are not sure of where to go then Uganda should be a must to include in your bucket list. This magnificent country features several most stunning mountains for instance the Rwenzori mountain range, Mount Elgon, Mount Muhabura, Mount Gahinga and others.