When they mention famous travel destinations in Africa, Uganda assumes a lower compared to Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, and other well-known safari destinations, which is actually a disgrace. Uganda has a lot of tourist attractions to offer to all tourist types ranging from nature lovers, backpackers, adventure junkies, birders, and campers who are searching for slightly less visited, interesting, and virgin destinations.
I was lucky when my boyfriend surprised me with a one-week self-drive camping safari to Uganda were had to spend some days in Kampala Uganda’s capital and the other days in the western part of the country where there is a lot of interesting national parks and other attractions. While I cherished the time I spend in this amazing country more especially the chance we got to interact with the friendly locals and even learning more about African culture.
Our first destination was Murchison Falls in the northwestern part of the country is undoubtedly one of Uganda’s famous destinations – the Murchison Falls is found in Murchison Falls National park and together with the Karuma and Bugungu wildlife reserves, the park forms the Murchison Falls Conservation Area (MFCA) and largest national park in the country.
Murchison Falls is a power waterfall between Lake Albert and Lake Kyoga, at the top of the falls the Nile River forces its self in a narrow 7m wide gorge and tumbles 43m before it turns into a peaceful river that flows in the western direction to Lake Albert.
This waterfall can be explored on a boat cruise which they always conducted in the morning afternoon and it takes 2 to 3 hours. This boat trip takes you up to the bottom of the falls, and on this boat cruise, you have a chance to spot a variety of wildlife and different bird species. Still, you can take a nature walk to the top of the falls.
From Murchison Falls, we drove direct to Queen Elizabeth National Park in the southwestern part of the country and it took us something like 4hours to drive from Murchison Falls to Queen Elizabeth National Park and we reached in the park late afternoon and checked in at our campsite, set our tent and the cooked our dinner and then overnight.
The next morning in Queen Elizabeth National Park was so memorable and romantic because it started with a morning breakfast prepared by my boyfriend and it was followed by a romantic morning boat cruise on Kazinga Channel which is a 40km long natural channel in the park connecting Lake Gorge and Lake Edward, it’s known for its high concentration of Nile Crocodile and Hippos, there is also a variety of birds species we spotted and also different wild animals like buffalos, elephants and other that come to drink water at the channel. After the boat cruise, we just returned back to the campsite, have lunch, and then a simple evening walk around the park. Then the next morning we had the plan of going for gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, but we missed buying gorilla trekking permits in advance, and so we missed getting in person with those gentle giants. So our next day we decided to just drive about 190km from Queen Elizabeth National Park, through Kasese – Mbarara road to Lake Mburo National Park where we spent a day which we had to spend while tracking mountain gorillas in Bwindi Forest.
The Lake Mburo National Park is another amazing destination you can’t miss when you visit Uganda it’s strategically located on the main highway connecting Kampala to the western region. Meaning it can either be the first or the last destination to visit when you on a safari to western Uganda. We entered the park at around 3.00 pm and we went direct to the campsite, we set up our tent and then relax for some hours, in the evening at around 6 pm and went for a romantic nature walk with my boyfriend. We were surprised the park is open to walkers as long as they are accompanied by a ranger to guide them, we walked for over 2hours and we managed to see different wild animals like hyenas returning to their dens, Hippos returning to the lake, and others.
More Thoughts on Uganda
Another surprising place we visited in Uganda on our last day of the trip it was the reptile village it’s found in Entebbe town about 10km from Entebbe International Airport, where we managed to see almost all the reptiles in the country and our guide managed to explain more about all these reptiles. From there we was still having 4hours before check-in for our departure flight, we decided to first have lunch at Café Javas at Victoria Mall, and we decided to use the last 2hours to visit the Uganda Wildlife Education Center (UWEC) and later we had to drive directly to the airport where we found the agent from the car rental company to take back the car.
Uganda has so much more to offer than the highlights we explored on our 7 days self-guided Uganda safari, but hopefully, this is enough to whet your appetite for an extremely interesting and amazing country that won’t disappoint. And we also are hoping to go back to Uganda for at least a longer trip of about 3weeks so that we can explore the whole country.