Lake Mburo National Park is situated in western Uganda about 260 square kilometers which makes it one of the nearest safari destinations to Kampala city centre. It is exceptionally one of the best protected areas where you can make a stop over while on gorilla safari to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park or Mgahinga National Park. About 20 percent of Lake Mburo National Park is occupied by Lakes and wetlands, swamps that make up the larger part of the wetland system which extends beyond the protected area.
The park also features the largest part of savanna grasslands which are scattered with acacia trees, forested ravines and rocky ridges as well as the most stunning fauna. It features as one of Uganda’s most famous and sought after safari destinations for you to spot zebras, topis, impala, buffaloes, elands and many more. Its rare acacia comes with distinct species of birds most of which include the unique shoebill stork.
A visit to this conservation area also rewards visitors with lots of hippos and crocodiles as well as many species of water birds with the fringing swamps that come with unique papyrus wildlife species like Sitatunga antelope and the red or black and yellow papyrus gonolek. Other notable wildlife species include hyenas, jackals, roan antelopes, giraffes The park is reachable within 3 to 4 hours’ drive from Kampala city center through Masaka-Mbarara route then you turn to Nshara gate about 13 kilometers after Lyantonde where you will reach Sanga gate.
Tourist activities in Lake Mburo National Park
Lake Mburo National Park offers refuge to over 315 distinct bird species making it one of the important birding areas in Uganda. The notable bird species to spot while on safari in Uganda include the rare shoebill stork, African fin foot, brown chested wattled plover papyrus yellow warbler, saddle billed stork, Abyssinian ground hornbill, white winged warbler, carruther’s Cisticola, Tabora Cisticola, great snipe and many more acacia species of birds. The park features open water birds, seasonal swamp birds, woodland, Lakeshore and papyrus swamp birds, grassland birds and forest birds. The open water species include the darter, white pelican, yellow billed duck, long tailed cormorant, white winged black tern, greater cormorant and pink backed pelican and many more.
This is another most exciting safari activity in Lake Mburo National Park that rewards visitors with lifetime experiences. While on boat cruise, visitors have a chance to spot most of the crocodiles, hippos as well as bird species especially the black crake, heron, pelicans, fish eagle, green necked doves, Rufous long tailed starling, blue headed weavers, malachite kingfishers, pied kingfishers, Hammerkops, cormorant and the shoebill stork. This experience lasts for about 2 hours or more but it allows you to engage in other remarkable activities in the park.
Guided nature walks
Lake Mburo National Park features nature travel that provides tourists yet another remarkable opportunity to explore its rare natural wonders. Tourists have a chance to walk in the circuit at their own pace. Lots of information concerning this trail is well spelt out in a brochure and it comes both in English and Runyankole. Among other natural wonders to explore while on nature walk include zebras, elands, topi, antelopes, buffaloes, birds, butterflies and giraffes.
Night game drives
Lake Mburo National Park also offers visitors opportunity to engage in nocturnal game drives where they will have a chance to spot leopards and some lions, bush babies, porcupine and many more.
Visitors can also take a walk to the closet salt which will also make your safari very memorable. As you stand at wooden hide, you can catch a glimpse of four distinct wildlife species as they lick the salty soil.
This forest features more than 40 bird species that are worthy exploring while on safari in Uganda. The is small in size but comes with rare trees some of which include the markhamia platy calyx (grey brown truck) with irregular flaky patches, divided leaves, yellow flowers stripped and spotted with red, brunches of extremely long, palms, figs, sapium and flame tree erythrina abyssinica which is found around the edge of the swamp.
Conservation education center
Lake Mburo National Park also comes with a conservation education centre and it is situated within one kilometer from Sanga gate and it is accessible to any visitor who is willing to explore it. It features excellent accommodation and about a 40 occupancy hall. It covers the interests of individual travelers, school groups who come mainly for tourism, seminars and workshops.
There are around six fish species some of which include the tilapia also known as oreochromis leustictuss and this also make park one of the important sport fishing ground in Uganda.
Visit the interpretation center
If you are interested in exploring more about Lake Mburo National Park’s history, biodiversity and many more resources including the scenic beauty then you need to visit the interpretation centre and your dreams will come true. The center lies around Rwonyo hill that also serves as a beginning site for nature walks.
Where to spend a night in Lake Mburo National Park
Availability of accommodation facilities in the destination is very vital when it comes to safaris. Lake Mburo National Park features about 6 tents at Rwonyo park headquarters and 3 public campsites all of which are strategically situated and they offer the best scenic viewing sites and allow visitors to easily reach to Lake Water. Mburo dinning shelter offers meals only on order and neither the Rest Camp nor Hostel stork food. This means you will need to carry your own food and drinks that will take you through out your travel time in the park. Other safari lodges in Lake Mburo National Park include the Mihingo safari lodge, Mantana tented camp, Mburo safari lodge, Eagle’s Nest and others.
Other remarkable safari activities for you to enjoy in Lake Mburo National Park include horseback riding, bicycling safaris, visit Igongo cultural center and explore more about the Banyakitara as well as the Banyakole, Batooro, Bakiga and Banyoro cultures and traditions; visit the equator.
In conclusion, Lake Mburo National Park is one of Uganda’s smallest and most stunning conservation areas that can easily be explored within the shortest time from Kampala city center. Visit this national park and be rewarded with incredible experiences that come once in a lifetime.