Best 5 Tanzania Parks to Explore on a Self-drive
Tanzania is East African giant in a lot of considerations right from politics, economy, and trading and also well in the travel section. A self-drive likewise to the fully guided trip in Tanzania exposes you to that unique features that the country has only signified itself to offer. By size Tanzania is a bigger country, times 4 Uganda to get the real size of the country, so when opting for a self-drive drive trip here, it mean you must be ready to take on drives.
Tanzania has a list of over 50 national parks and game reserves which are scattered across the country. These parks has significantly positioned Tanzania as the best safari destination in African offering such great and unique wild encounters of which some can be even encountered elsewhere in the world.
However, among the many were making a selection five super national parks. These parks has unique and varying experience. So, when you going for a self-drive to Tanzania you can consider among these and make your own travel plan.
The Serengeti National Park
The Africa’s top safari destination, the Serengeti National Park is Tanzania’s second largest park 5,700 square miles. The park was exclusively reserved for wildlife since 1951 and the heart of a vast ecosystem with much greater dimensions. Any safari to this majestic Serengeti is always comes combining the protected site of Ngorongoro, the Maswa Game Reserve, the controlled areas of Grumeti and Ikorongo, the Kenyan nature reserve of Masai Mara and the controlled area of Loliondo (up to Lake Natron).
The 11,583 square miles controlled in such a way as to ensure that human activities remain compatible with the welfare of the wildlife. The conservation effort in this immense territory is mainly to preserve the presence of migratory routes involving hundreds of thousands of zebras and wildebeest. The park is mainly known as visited for the famous dramatic wildebeest migration where about 2.5 million wildebeests, gazelles, zebras, and cross from the plain of Serengeti to the plain of Masai Mara.
The Serengeti National Park is Africa’s most rewarding park with varieties of wildlife encounters. And when opting for a self-drive here, you just need to have that safari customized land cruiser which can maneuver al road terrains of the Serengeti.
One of the remarkable destinations to take a self-drive in East Africa. Ngorongoro Crater is the largest crater in the world, and is a safe haven for a remarkable self-drive assortment of wildlife. Because the Ngorongoro Crater is one of the worlds’ natural remnants site was declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1980. A huge crater that acts like a vast natural zoo.
Three million years ago, a major eruption devastated the Ngorongoro volcano and the collapse of the cone left the largest caldera in the world – a staggering 12 miles in diameter. Surveying this site is a truly awe-inspiring feeling, one that grows with the discovery of more and more African species of flora and fauna as you approach the bottom of the crater.
The reserve contains other less impressive but equally admirable extinct volcanoes as well as two outstanding paleontological sites in Olduvai and Laetoli.
Kilimanjaro National Park
Nothing rewards than taking an adventure to Kilimanjaro National Park. The self-drive means taking such a great reward and hiking to the top of Africa. Also called ‘roof of Africa’, Kilimanjaro is the Africa’s highest peak. The large village of Moshi, located at the foot of Kilimanjaro and not far from Mount Meru, is often used as a starting point when climbing to the summit of Kili or exploring the splendor of Tanzania’s north. While its main charm lies in its African authenticity touched with Asian influences, it is also known for the quality of its coffee plantations Kilimanjaro being one of Tanzania’s main coffee growing regions. This is a must visit when taking this self-guided esteemed drive and one of the best national parks in Tanzania.
Lake Manyara National Park
This is an outsized lake accommodating exceptional wildlife, thousands of birds and primary forest. The Manyara National Park encompasses the northern half of the lake and its western shore, which ends a few miles from the escarpment. The detached eyesight of flocks of birds on the hazy horizon is unforgettable. Among these include; Herons, egrets, ospreys, ibis, pelicans, jacanas and plovers are just some among the 380 species recorded.
A drive through the deluxe shrubbery replies visitors as they enter the park. Consider this watch where towering trees take advantage of the rich volcanic soil and porous rocks help underground streams reach the roots. Those lucky enough might even see baboons gathered in troops of between 30 and 100.
A self-drive in Tanzania’s Lake Manyara National Park rewards of awesome sights of impalas, giraffes, buffaloes and zebras. The park is as well famous for hosting the special tree climbing lions. The park rewards with a lot of programs among are the wild boat ride which is very unique in Tanzania parks, game drives etc.
Tarangire National Park
Experience the dry savannah landscapes, baobab forests, these have harbored elephant herds in the Tarangire National Park. Tarangire National Park is a quiet, wooded savannah, where a rich variety of thriving fauna including tree climbing lions can be spotted from open vehicles. Taking a self-guided drive through the park will expose you to these unique African bush elephants, plains zebras, Masai giraffes, impalas, blue wildebeest, buffaloes, bush pigs, common elands, common waterbucks.
For birder’s, when traveled along with your well lensed cameras, there are a lot of birds that can also be found on many of the wetter banks of the Tarangire River. Keep an eye out for brilliantly colored parakeets known as lovebirds. Termite mounds are very common in Africa and abandoned mounds are often used for shelter by dwarf mongooses. In the north of Tarangire National Park, the majestic baobab trees are among the finest examples of this species anywhere.
Top Places to Explore by Rental Car in Kenya
Kenya is ranked among the top Africa safari destination due it’s richness in tourist attractions that range from wildlife, culture to landscapes and water bodies all of which contribute highly to the success of tourism in Kenya.
Being a very large tourist destination, Kenya is one of the best places to embark on a self-drive safari or guided road trip and much as the latter is a much safer and comfortable option, driving yourself offers you all the freedom and privacy you want adding spice to the road adventure.
If it’s your first time visiting and would love to self-drive Kenya alone, a s couple, a group of friends or family, we suggest you try out this self-drive itinerary for a full feel of some of the country’s best attractions.
The capital city of Kenya is the perfect base for all safaris in Kenya, a place buzzing with local and international businesses. Top places to visit include the Nairobi national park, Giraffe center, Karen Blixen museum, Bomas of Kenya, Maasai market to mention but a few. You can also do some shopping before you exit the city or spend the night out mingling with the locals.
Nairobi National Park
Nairobi National Park is just a 10 minutes’ drive from the center of Nairobi with only a fence separating the park’s wildlife from the metropolis. Nairobi’s skyscrapers can be seen from the park. Despite its proximity to the city and the relative small size of the park, Nairobi National Park boasts a large and varied wildlife population. Migrating wildebeest and zebra gather in the park during the dry season, and it is one of Kenya’s most successful rhinoceros sanctuaries.
Malindi provides a very nice introduction to the coastal tourist attractions in Kenya with its extensive coral reefs and beautiful beaches. There are surfing, snorkeling, deep-sea fishing and other water sports. The Malindi Marine National Park is protected and has fine beaches clear water and very colorful fish. Malindi is served with a domestic airport and a highway between Mombasa and Lamu.
Mount Kenya is the highest mountain in Kenya and the second-highest in Africa, after Kilimanjaro. The mountain offers a beautiful sight. Its series of peaks are crowned with snow, and its slopes are covered with forest. The 5199 meter (17,057 ft) high summit is a difficult technical climb, several lowers peaks however are an easy destination for any fit trekker.
Samburu National Reserve
Samburu National Reserve is a very peaceful national park in Northern Kenya. It attracts wildlife because of the Uaso Nyiro River that runs through it and the mixture of forest and grassland vegetation. All three big cats, lion, cheetah and leopard, can be found here, as well as elephants, buffalo and hippos. The Uaso Nyiro River contains large numbers of Nile crocodile.
Hell’s Gate National Park
Hell’s Gate National Park is a tiny park named after a narrow break in the cliffs, once a tributary of a prehistoric lake that fed early humans in the Rift Valley. It is unique among Kenya’s wildlife parks, as you are allowed to walk or cycle without a guide. There’s dramatic scenery, with steep cliffs, gorges and basalt columns. The national park is home to a wide variety of wildlife, though many are few in number. Examples of little seen wildlife include lions, leopards, and cheetahs.
Lamu Island is a part of Kenya’s Lamu Archipelago, and has managed to stay unspoiled and untouched by the mass tourism that has hit much of Kenya’s coastline. As the oldest living town in Kenya, Lamu Town has retained all the charm and character built up over centuries. There are no roads on Lamu Island, just alleyways and footpaths, and therefore, there are few motorized vehicles on the island. Residents move about on foot or by boat, and donkeys are used to transport goods and materials.
Tsavo National Park
Tsavo is the largest national park in Kenya and one of the largest in the world. Due to its size the park was divided into Tsavo West and Tsavo East. The Tsavo West has spectacular scenery with a rolling volcanic landscape while Tsavo East has more open savannah than its western sibling. Tsavo National Park is the ideal destination in Kenya for people who seek solitude and privacy as well as the chance to explore the wilderness.
Lake Nakuru is a very shallow lake in central Kenya. The lake’s abundance of algae attracts vast quantities of lesser flamingos, sometimes more than one million at once. Often called the greatest bird spectacle on earth, the flamingos are one of Kenya’s top attractions. Sadly, in recent years the number of flamingos at Lake Nakuru has been decreasing, due to environmental degradation and pollution.
Amboseli National Park
Amboseli National Park is a relatively small park located close to the Tanzania border at the foot of Africa’s highest mountain, Mount Kilimanjaro. The park is famous for being the best place in Africa to get close to free-ranging elephants. Other attractions of the Amboseli National Park include opportunities to meet the Maasai people and spectacular views of Mount Kilimanjaro.
Masai Mara National Reserve
The Masai Mara National Reserve is one of the top tourist attractions in Kenya and the country’s most popular game park. Each year the Masai Mara National Reserve is visited by thousands of tourists who come here to watch the exceptional population of game and the annual migration of zebra and wildebeest. The “Great Migration” takes place every year from July to October when millions of wildebeest and zebra migrate from the Serengeti in Tanzania.
We believe that driving yourself at your own pace is the best way for a true Kenya safari adventure. If you are looking to hire a car in Kenya to explore this beautiful country, you have come to the right place. Kenya car rental is the best recognised car company in Kenya.Read More
Diani Beach: A Perfect Romantic Honeymoon Destination
Organizing weddings can be very exhausting both physically and mentally. For that, love birds deserve a honeymoon in a peaceful setting with elements that help one recharge their batteries. Diani is one such place. It is a coastal reef where the majestic Indian Ocean meets the land of warrior nomads. This 10 kilometer resort found roughly 30 kilometers South of Mombasa is famed for two things:
- For emerging as the Best Beach Destination of 2014 as awarded by World Travel Awards.
- For having white sand and lush greenery.
Here are things to do at this heaven among havens
Breakfast by the Beach
A great honeymoon day starts with a healthy breakfast in a dreamy setting. You can start your day by waking up to a morning feast at the beach as the sun arises from the horizon. The tickling sensation of waves lapping your toes will leave you laughing senseless. Spending time here is a great way to fill your lungs with oceanic freshness, as the breeze sweeps away your worries. If you love keeping fit, you could welcome the new dawn by jogging along the beach. It’s a guaranteed way of seeing the different marine species before they are swept off shore by the caretakers.
Take advantage of Diani’s all year friendly weather to pursue Kayaking, skiing, kite surfing or stand up paddling. Most of these adventures do not require swimming lessons or prior experience. Most Hotels along the coast organize them for guests at a fee. As expected, this could cost just a little more compared to if you hired them directly from the service providers. However, it’s wiser to let them take charge. They know the agencies with the most dependable options. Hakuna Matata, if you prefer to organize the excursion by yourself, an hour’s excursion of either of the mentioned activities ranges roughly between $10-$50. This is dependent on the agency you’ll contract and the tourism season.
Glass boat tour
If you desire for a National Geographic moment, a visit of the ocean in boats with glass bottoms will light up your world. The water is clear for much of the year. This allows unlimited views of the marine life at the oceans floor/reef (unless the boat has algae underneath). Due to effects of refraction, you are bound to think most of the creatures are right underneath the boat. It is until you take a dip that you’ll realize they are yards away. The Excursion costs an average of $15.
Visit to monkey sanctuary
Usually when I see “Conservancy”, I think tourist trap. Colubus conservancy is certainly not one. It is a very lovely place tucked in the coastal forest. This place is a research base, information centre and primate rescue facility. It is a small conservatory, but well maintained and unique. It offers guided Eco-tours. During the tour, one gets to see vervets, sykes and baboons as they jump from one branch to another like Spiderman. The birds that take shelter under her towering canopies are so beautiful and the scenery is so peaceful. Chances are high you’ll come across staff at work, caring for injured monkeys or doing research. They are open from 8am-50pm all week except for Sundays.
The tour costs 250 Kenyan shillings, 100 Kenyan shillings for adults and children between 6 and 11 respectively. It is free for Children under 6.
Duruma village tour
The best way to immerse one’s self in local cultures of Diani is by mingling with the Duruma, one of the nine tribes that complete Mijikenda chiefdom. Many from this tribe of farmers offer homestay experiences tailored to treat tourists to a mix of their Arabic and Swahili cultures. One such is Bakari, a tour guide who is informative and answers questions comprehensively. Experiences at his homestead range from learning how Durum local foods are prepared to learning traditions that spice up their marriages. You can also join his wife and daughters in the garden as they tend to it. The experience is usually crowned with a great array of dances with stories that go with them. It is very entertaining cultural show.
Exploring Baobab trees
Naturally, one would expect a tree’s root to be tacked in the ground and its foliage up in the air. However when you look at a baobab tree, the reverse is true. It looks like it grew upside down. What’s more, there are countless of them in Diani. Taking a picture by them doesn’t come at any cost. While at it, you could join hands with three friends and try to hug one of them. Chances are high you will be only hug half of it. It is that big, with a whooping height ranging from 16 to 98 ft and a circumference over 40 meters wide.
What particularly fascinates me the most about this wonder plant is its ability to store up to 120,000 liters of water in their trunks!
Food: Sampling coconut and sea food
Exquisite, exquisite, exquisite!!! The array of sea food that this town has to offer cannot be missed. The crabs are so fresh and literally melt in your mouth. The oysters and lobsters too don’t disappoint. Most eateries present these foods in a way—that overwhelms you even for one who is not a big fan of sea food. They (sea food) are so beautiful that you would feel guilty watching them disappear off your platter for burial in your stomach.
The weird thing about this town is that seafood served at the shacks is much tastier than the ones served in star hotels. The only silly thing that lets them down is the dessert they complement meals with. It is usually items that taste a bit old and dry.
That said; this did not spoil my overall experience as they had fresh coconut juice as a substitute. I haven’t yet gotten over its cream-like texture and a massive flavor like a cocktail of fresh pineapple and apple.
Snorkeling at Kisite Mpunguti Marine Park
During my previous snorkeling excursion at Kisite Mpunguti Marine Park in 2006, I didn’t get to see much. The ocean was rough. Accordingly, I didn’t expect any wow moments when I took another two hours south of Diani to get to it last October. Things were different this time. There were lots of new companies offering the excursion for as low as $50 per person for a three hours excursion. That aside, there were lots of dolphins in sight, but certainly not as many as the fish species, sea turtles and whales. I didn’t get their names right though. I guess I got so carried away by the simplicity of the local boat we used for the expedition and forgot to pay attention to anything else.
From afar, they looked like a small ship belonging to pirates. It seemed built of tough and resilient silver that can counter any storm or any bullets fired at it. On the inside though, it was basic. Except for its floor which was made of hard wood, the rest of the parts were a patch up of frail materials like mats and soft wood. For East African Nationals, entrance fee to the park is KSH 215 for adults and KSH125 for children, For residents it is KSH300 for adults and KSH 170 for children and lastly $17 and $13 for foreign travellers who don’t stay in Kenya. Budget snorkeling excursions cost roughly $30 per person.
You don’t need to rob a bank in order to afford a happy stay in Diani. Yes it is true most of the tour operators mostly target middle range and high end tourists, but there is also a niche that targets budget travellers. For instance, there are over 20 guesthouses in town that offer comfortable accommodation for as a little as $20.
Thanks to its location along the Equator, Diani is humid for much of the year. It’s longest rainy season is in April and May. In June, the rains are on and off and thus nothing to worry about if this is the only time you can visit the beach destination. On the other hand, its highest average temperature is 32 degree Celsius during the days in January and February. The coolest months are June, July and August with an average day temperature of 27 degrees Celsius.
Where to buy crafts
If you want a wide variety of crafts at affordable prices, the roadside stalls are worth a visit. They are make-shift in nature and thus operate mostly at day time.
How to get there
By Air: Diani is served by a small airstrip called Ukunda. Air Kenya offers daily flights to there from National. A round trip costs roughly $290.Read More
Top 10 Places to Explore on a Road Trip in Uganda
Taking a self drive tour in Uganda is one the ideal choices for traversing this pearl of Africa on a road trip. Today many travelers visit Uganda for road trips. However, the country has an extensive wide variety of places that can be visited. Given that most visitors to Uganda look for wildlife and primates that are fairly distributed throughout the country, here are the top places to visit in Uganda including various national parks and game reserves. There are a variety of activities that one can indulge into when in these national parks. Below is the highlight of some of these national parks;
- Bwindi impenetrable national park
The famed Bwindi Impenetrable Forest lies in southwestern Uganda on the edge of the Rift Valley. This forest protects to a higher degree half of the remaining mountain gorillas in Uganda. In addition, it is very famous for mountain gorilla safari trekking or tracking. Its mist-covered hillsides are blanketed by one of Uganda’s oldest and most biologically diverse rain forests, which dates back over 25,000 years and contains almost 400 species of plants. More famously, this “impenetrable forest” also protects an estimated 320 mountain gorillas – roughly half of the world’s population, including several habituated groups, which can be tracked. It also harbors several primate species such as baboons and chimpanzees, as well as elephants and antelopes. There are around 350 species of birds hosted in this forest, including 23 Albertine Rift endemics
Some of the most prominent activities carried out in this national park include:
- Gorilla tracking
- Bird watching
- Plant and tree species
- Nature walks
- Village tours
2. Murchison falls national park
Murchison falls national park is perhaps the largest park in Uganda which is named after the Murchison falls where the mighty river Nile bangs through a narrow gorge flowing down to be converted into a placid river whose banks are thronged with hippos, water bucks, crocodiles, and buffaloes. The flora and Fauna at Murchison is characterized by Savannah, riverine forest and wood land. Uganda Wildlife Safari at Murchison falls national park includes, elephants, lions, leopard, giraffes, buffaloes, hartebeests, oribis, Uganda kobs, chimpanzees, and many bird species including the rare shoebill. So after securing your hired car from a reputable around the country, please make some endeavors and visit this park for such an adventure. Several activities are carried out in this national park which include the following;
- Chimpanzee trekking in Budongo forest
- Ferry crossing
- Hiking the top of the falls
- Bird watching
- Game drive
- Boat ride
- Delta viewing
- Plant and tree species
- Nature walks
3. Queen Elizabeth national park
This is also another destination that you need to explore on yourself drive vacation in Uganda. Queen Elizabeth national park along with Kyambura and Kigezi wildlife resource brings together the most diverse ecosystem in Africa. Thousands of hippos populate these water shores. Open Savannah dotted with acacia and euphobia trees provide habitat for leopards, elephants, lions, Uganda Safari kobs, in addition to big herds of buffaloes. The park also harbors primate species, ten in number which include chimpanzees and monkeys. Waterbucks, giant forest hog, topi, hyenas, and crocodiles are among the many animals distinguished frequently in Queen Elizabeth national park. There are several activities that are carried out in this national park which include the following;
- Bird watching
- Game drive
- Boat ride
- Village walks
- Plant and tree species
- Nature walks
4. Kibale forest national park
Kibale is one in all the most attractive national parks in Uganda with tropical rainforest, and a multiplicity of animals. Kibale Forest harbors the principal figure of chimpanzees and more than 1,450 are protected inside the park. At Kanyanchu, a community chimpanzee has been habituated for 16 years. This gives tourists a chance to see the great apes in their natural environment at these exclusive Uganda safaris. Threatened red colobus monkeys and the rare I’hoesti monkey are found in the park. At The same time the forest has one of the highest diversity and density of primates in Africa .When in Kibale forest, one carries out a multitude of activities which include;
- Chimpanzee tracking
- Nature walk
- Bird watching
- Primates viewing
- Village tours
- Plant species
5. Lake Mburo national park
Lake Mburo National Park, Uganda’s smallest national park, was designated in 1982, and is situated in Kiruhura district of Western Uganda. It is the only park that contains an entire lake. The attractive acacia-dotted savanna is home to huge herds of impala, as well as uncommon topi, eland, klipspringer and other antelope. Other animals found in the park include Zebras, buffaloes, while birds include Crested Francolin, Emerald-spotted Wood Dove, Brown Parrot, Barefaced Go-away bird, Greenwood Hoopoe, Lilac-breasted, Hornbill, Nubian Woodpecker, Trilling Cisticola, bee-eaters and the cheeky bronze-tailed starling, as well as the majestic crowned crane etc.Several activities are carried out in this national park which include the following;
- Game drive
- Bird watching
- Boat ride
- Plant species
- Nature walks
- Village tours
6. Mount Rwenzori national park
Rwenzori is the highest mountain in Uganda, and the first foreigner to climb it was an Italian, a hundred years back. It was in 1906 when Luigi Amadeodi Savoy duke of the Abruzzi climbed to the top of the mountain and last year 2006 the Ugandans and Italians celebrated the hundred years since the first foreigner reached on top of Mt. Rwenzori.A trip into the Rwenzoris is an exhilarating and rewarding experience but one, which must be well planned. The key to an enjoyable visit is to be prepared! The central hike circuit takes six nights or seven days and reaches an altitude of 14,000ft.(4,267m) above the sea level. The conditions on the mountain are a challenge to even an experienced hiker. This park also hosts 70 mammals and 217 bird species including 19 Albertine Rift endemics, as well as some of the world’s rarest vegetation When in this national park, several activities are enjoyed such as;
- Hiking to the top of the mountain
- Nature walks
- Village tours
- Mountaineering and hiking
- Bird watching
7. Mgahinga gorilla national park
Mgahinga gorilla national park is the smallest park in the country. It is about 38 sq km. Though it is very important as it is one of the two parks in Uganda that are habitat for the endangered mountain gorillas. Mgahinga gorilla national park is situated in south western Uganda, in Kisoro district. This park was gazetted in 1999 and is part of the virunga conservation area. This park adjoins Rwanda’s volcano, and the democratic republic of Congo’s virunga national parks. Mgahinga gorilla national park experiences two wet seasons in the year that is February to May, and September to December. Several activities are enjoyed during one’s stay in this national park namely;
- Gorilla tracking
- Pygmy tribe tour
- Golden monkey tracking
- Visiting caves
- Game drive
- Bird watching
8. Lake Bunyonyi
Lake Bunyonyi literally meaning the place of many little birds lies in the western part of Uganda between the towns of Kisoro and Kibale that are situated closely to the border of Rwanda. This is the second deepest lake in Africa whose depth is rumoured to be over 144ft.It is considered to be the only lake free from bilharzias and totally safe for swimming. This lake boasts of over 29 islands that are snaking in nature along the Ugandan landscape. These islands are of different shapes and sizes surrounded by a ring of terraced farms. The most prominent of all these islands is Akampene island commonly referred to as the punishment island where the Bakiga tribe used to dump any girl that got pregnant before marriage. She would be dumped on this island with a single stick to die of starvation and hunger or drown in the waters if at all she tries swimming to the main land.So you need to go and have a glance at this magnificent lake especially on your self drive vacation in Uganda
There are a variety of activities that one will indulge during his/her visit to lake Bunyonyi amongst which will include the following;
- Relaxation on the lake shores
- Bird watching
- Mountain biking
- Boat rides and canoeing
- Nature walks and hiking
- Village visits
9. Mabamba swamp
Uganda is one of the countries that are widely endowed with all kinds of birds around the globe. These birds include both resident and non resident birds.However, this country has several birding destinations but non beats the endowment and population of birds found in Mabamba swamp.
Mabamba swamp is approximately 50 km south of Kampala, this large wetland is the nearest bird watching site on the shores of Lake Victoria. It is the home of the rare Shoebill that is not found everywhere but you will never miss it here after failing in all other places.
Other special bird species resident in this swamp include the Papyrus gonolek, lesser Jacana, Pigeon, grey rumped swallow, pygmy Kingfisher, slender billed weaver, blue-breasted Kingfisher, Lizard Buzzard, Spur- winged Goose, long toed Lapwing and White winged black Terns- European migrant birds and others.So for bird lovers,this is the right place for you on your car hiring safari in Uganda.Read More
9 Best Places to Visit in Uganda
Uganda is a landlocked country in East Africa whose diverse landscape encompasses the snow-capped Rwenzori Mountains and immense Lake Victoria. Its abundant wildlife includes chimpanzees as well as rare birds. Remote Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is a renowned mountain gorilla sanctuary. Murchison Falls National Park in the northwest is known for its 43m-tall waterfall and wildlife such as Hippos. Among the magical places tourists should not miss includes:
- The Equator
One of the magical attractions you will find in Uganda is the Equator that runs through some of the districts of the country. The Equator is an Imaginary line that separates the earth into the northern and Southern Hemispheres.
This Equator land mark in Uganda is situated at about 72 kilometres along the Kampala-Masaka road, particularly in Kayabwe, Mpigi district. When you reach this spot, you will find a line drawn in the middle of the road and a monument stands on both sides of the road indicating “Uganda Equator” so that anyone can have the amazing feeling of standing on both sides of the Earth.
Most tourists taking gorilla trekking safaris to Bwindi as well as those who visit Western Uganda do not miss taking experiments at the Ugandan Equator. Standing at this magical feature is one thing you should never miss to experience on your way to or from the national Parks in Western Uganda especially Lake Mburo National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Mgahinga National Park and Rwenzori Mountains National Park. Imagine yourself standing in two halves of the world, this magical feeling can never be forgotten.
This is the ancestral capital of the Buganda kingdom and a modern day Uganda’s capital too. You can still see some of the thatched relics of the former glory years at the Kasubi Tombs, or you can taste the frenetic energy of day-to-day Ugandan life between the sun-cracked streets of Central Kampala; a place of throbbing markets (the city’s Owino market is said to On the edge of town is the more straight-laced area of Nakasero Hill, where well-to-do villas house the country’s elite and expats chatter in the ramshackle bars. Kampala has also got theatres including National theatre and Labonita for those who need entertainment.
- Kibale National Park
Take a tour into the dense jungles and wetland forests of the great Kibale National Park and you won’t be disappointed! You will meet the wild chimpanzee who are our closest relatives .You will see them jumping through the under growth of the forest.Other species to spot include monkeys, like the rare L’Hoest’s and the Ugandan red colobus. Kibale is also a good bird watching spot for bird lovers.
- Ssese Islands
The archipelago of the Ssese Islands is Uganda’s answer to the tropical gems of the East African coast on the Indian Ocean.
The Islands are considered the country’s premier rest and relaxation spot, with the popular Buggala and Bulago Islands .You can also visit lakeside resorts, or wax up the walking boots and make for the hills, where hippo-dotted swamps hide between the ridges.
- Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is located in the south western part of Uganda on the rim of the Rift Valley. The hillsides which are mist-covered are sheltered by one of the ancient and very biologically varied rain forests in Uganda that dates back to more than 25,000 years, comprising of about 400 varied plant species. Bwindi is habitat to more than half the world’s population of Mountain Gorillas. Actually there are over 300 mountain gorillas living here.
The word “Bwindi” means “darkness” and taking a hike in this magnificent forest will certainly unveil to you the reason why the forest was named so. You will as well be in position to fast tell why actually the forest is also regarded as Impenetrable. One requires to be physically fit to take part in this mountain gorilla tracking adventure because it may involve climbing the steep terrain in search for the great apes.
Restricted numbers of viewing permits help protect the endangered gorilla families. In the park, rough paths weave amid dense forests, which are a home to many butterflies and birds. All you need to do is to secure yourself a gorilla permit to enable you do a gorilla trekking safari in Uganda.
- Murchison Falls National Park
The protected area is actually the largest national park in Uganda, with a whopping count of nearly 4,000 square kilometres between its borders.
This is the point where the Victoria Nile crashes through a tight-knit gorge and over an escarpment of more than 40 meters in height.Among the tourist attractions to do in Murchson falls includes a game drive to spot the Elephants, Giraffes, The kobs, and you get opportunities of visiting the Sipi falls on a boat cruise to spot more aquatic species at a close range.
Entebbe is where you find Uganda’s major airport called Entebbe international airport.
Many tourists use this base to travel to different destinations within Uganda and outside Uganda. Others board from Entebbe to fly to National parks including Murchison falls, Kidepo and Bwindi Impenetratable National parks especially those who need not to spend a lot of time on the roads.
It is in Entebbe where you also find the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre commonly known as the Ugandan Zoo. Here you find different species kept including Monkeys, Snakes, Birds, Antelops, Chimpanzees, among others. This is ideal for people who have a few days in Entebbe.
- Queen Elizabeth National Park
Queen Elizabeth National park lies close to the banks of Lake Edward.It’s visited by thousands of tourists each year, who come in search of the lazy Congo lions and the swinging chimps that can be seen mingling between the Maramagambo Forest and the grassy savannah vegetation.
The whole area has countless volcanic features, going from the awesome Katwe craters to great rifts in the earth, making it an interesting and eye-catching place to go on safari drives and game seeking journeys.
Among the tourist attractions to spot includes the crater lakes, Lake Katwe, you do a game drive in search for early risers like Elephants ,Lions, and also a launch cruise on the Kazinga Channel to spot aquatic life at a close quarters. These includes schools of Hippos, Birds, Buffaloes among others
Cascading down from the extinct caldera of one of Africa’s oldest volcanoes, there are waterfalls, dank cave systems, and rugged canyons aplenty.
Visitors can also feel the geothermal activity at a series of hot springs, or wonder upwards, to where African goshawks and elegant bush-shrikes flit through the skies.
Monkey wise, there are the likes of De Brazza’s and colobuses, along with blue monkeys and some other rare simian species.
Mbale is one of the main transportation and administration hubs of eastern Uganda,
Mbale hosts its own regional government and a clutch of good hotels and guesthouses.
It’s particularly useful for those on their way to the heights of Mount Elgon and the famous summit of Wagagai – a 24-million-year-old volcano that is the seventeenth highest in all of Africa. For the best base of explorations around the hiking trails and glorious mountain’s that erupt around Mbale, be sure to hitch a local minibus out to Bududa.
Back in the town you can enjoy the hustle and bustle of day-to-day Ugandan life, along with plenty of shops and market stalls. It is in Mbale where the Imbalu ceremonies are done. This ceremony is very interesting to watch when grown up boys are circumcised.Read More
Top places to Track Chimpanzees in Uganda & Rwanda
Have you tracked gorillas and golden monkeys but still want to track chimpanzees? Nyungwe forest national park, Kibale forest national Park, Queen Elizabeth Park and Murchison falls National Park are the top places for chimpanzee trekking in Uganda and Rwanda. Chimpanzees are man’s closest cousins sharing a lot of resemblements in terms of survival and adaption to their environment. Though they have famed to the world as first moving primates, chimpanzee trekking and habituation is an incredible adventure that bring the chimps and other primate species close to humans putting in the open their way of life in the forest environment. Expect to meet many forest habitats including other primate species during the trek a moment you will wish to celebrate on your primate safaris in Africa. Chimpanzee safaris are fun in Uganda and Rwanda no matter where you track gorillas or do other tour adventurers.
Rwanda Chimpanzee trekking
Ever since Nyungwe forest in south Rwanda is the top chimpanzee trekking ground and home to over thirteen primate species. The park has two sectors for chimpanzee trekking, Uwinka and Cyamudongo.The trek starts early morning by 8.00am in both sectors with a briefing from park rangers followed by the forest nature walk in search of the beautiful chimpanzees.Nyungwe is said to be a home to over 500 chimpanzees so a good number of chimps can be spotted during every trek. Here are some other park activities you can engage in if time and money permits during your Rwanda chimpanzee trekking tour, hiking in Nyungwe Forest, Nyungwe Forest Canopy Walk, Colobus Monkey Tracking, and Bird watching. Also you will meet several primates like Vervet monkey, baboon, bush babies, grey-cheeked mangabey, silver monkey, golden monkey, red-tailed monkey, Lhotse’s among others.
Chimpanzee trekking in Uganda
Uganda has always been a primate capital for all primate safaris in Africa with several primate trekking grounds in different national parks and reserves.Travelelrs discover the best chimpanzee Trekking or chimpanzee Habituation Experience in Kibale forest national park a home to over 120 habituated chimpanzees, Kalinzu forest reserve-home to over 40 habituated chimpanzees, Budongo forest at the Kaniyo Pabidi a perfect ground to trek chimps in Murchison falls, Kyambura gorge- a remarkable chimpanzee trekking ground in Queen Elizabeth National Park.Remeber to chimpanzee trekking is an activity for only those above Twelve years, dress up in long trousers and shirts, wear comfortable walking boots, charge your camera to grab trip memories, insect repellant is a must, sun cream among others.Chimpanzee permits are usually purchased before the trip.Read More