Murchison falls national park was first gazetted as a game reserve in 1926, it is the Uganda’s largest and oldest conservation area hosting 76 species of mammals and 451 birds. Murchison falls lies at the northern end of the Albertine rift valley.
Accessibility to the park
By road, the park can be reached via various entrance gates and Kichombonyobo (southern gate) is the nearest from Masindi town which is about 4hours drive about (240) from Kampala. Along the way you can have a stopover at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary and have a glance at the rhinos. The Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary is the home to the only wild Rhinos in Uganda and these can be tracked on foot.
Through the Northern entrance gates, the park can be accessed via Chobe, Wankwar, Bugungu and Tangi gates North of the Nile. The gates are more convenient for visitors travelling from/to Gulu town and Kidepo Valley National Park 260km from Kampala.
By air, Murchison Falls National Park can also be accessed Pakuba airfield 19km from North Paraa can be reached using chartered aircraft from Entebbe international airport or Kajjansi airfield. While in Murchison falls, the following are a must do activities:
Hiking and nature walks
Trails through Kaniyo Pabidi and Rabongo forests provide sightings of many primates and birds. You will be blessed with exploring on foot the vast landscapes and varied scenery of Murchison.
Both game drive and launch trips offer an opportunity for one to come across distinct birdlife like savannah forest birds, water birds and Albertine rift endemics, Shoebill being the most park’s birding attraction, it is best sighted in the dry season (January- march) around the Nile delta 2-4hr guided swamp walks offer its sightings.
Game drives are a must do while in Murchison Falls National Park. These are accompanied by trained ranger guides which provides a fantastic way too see and photograph the wide range of animals in the Nile valley.
Astonishing and stunning display of the wildlife and culminates with the memorable frontal view of the falls, a morning cruise downstream to the Nile-lake Albert delta is best for birders and a tranquil sundowner cruise offers the classic view of an equatorial sunset reflected on the river.
The Nile perch lives within strong currents and highly oxygenated waters. The banks of the Nile below Murchison falls provide existing challenges to anglers but there is a chance to land a massive catch depending on your luck.
Energetic dancers from Mubako perform around lodge campfires, giving a magical African experience at dusk whereas the Boomu women’s group offers accommodation, a craft shop and village tours, revealing the realities of life in this rural community.
Chimpanzee tracking in Budongo forest
Budongo forest boasts of a high biodiversity of 24 species of small animals 9 of which are primates, 465 species of trees and shrubs, 359 species of birds, 298 species of butterflies and moths which are about 130 species. The forest is basically renowned for its high number of Mahogany trees and Chimpanzees which are estimated at 600-700. Chimpanzee tracking is best to start at around 7:00am. Daily movements of habituated groups are followed by the guides however the chances of tracking depends on the season and month meanwhile groups are limited to 6 people and only children 7 years and above are allowed.
Inside the Murchison Falls National Park, accommodation ranges from campsites, lodges, hotels and guesthouses where travelers can stay while on a safari in Uganda. Some of these are built on top of the fall. They have better facilities that are eco-friendly. Budget accommodation is also available for the budget travelers and the most suitable places include Kaniyo Pabidi Camp and Red Chilli Rest Camp. Tourists that love up market accommodation include Nile Safari Camp, Parra Safari Lodge as well as Sambiya River. In case you want to stop in Masindi, there is luxury Accommodation such as Masindi hotel along with court view hotels that have excellent services. Other facilities include;
Nile Safari Lodge
Budongo Eco Lodge
Water View Rest Camp
Chobe Safari Lodge
Fort Murchison Lodge