MURCHISON FALLS NATIONAL PARK
Murchison Falls National Park covers an area of 3840 square kilometers thus making it Uganda’s largest park. It forms part of the vast Murchison Falls Conservation Area that also covers the Karuma Falls Wildlife Reserve and Bugungu Wildlife Reserve. The northern sector Murchison Falls National Park is largely composed of extensive savanna grassland and Borassus palms, acacia trees and riverine woodland whereas the southern sector features the woodland and forest cover. This park derived its name from Murchison falls and this features as one of the most powerful waterfalls in the world. It comes with a powerful roar as it squeezes itself into a narrow gorge of about 8 meters before plunging about 43 meters.
Murchison Falls National Park is situated in northwestern Uganda and features a huge concentration of wildlife species including the African elephants, lions, buffaloes, leopards, hippos, crocodiles, giraffes, warthogs and over 451 bird species are present ranging from easy variety of water birds, including the rare shoe-billed stork, dwarf kingfisher, Goliath heron, white-thighed hornbill and great blue Turaco and others.
Activities to do in Murchison Falls National Park
Game viewing is a popular safari activity that is offered in Murchison Falls National Park. Game drives in this park take you through Buligi game trail, the northern bank. Wildlife viewing in Murchison Falls National Park gets you the best sights at wildlife species African bush elephants, buffaloes, lions, leopards if you are lucky enough as well as warthogs, giraffes, bushbucks, duikers, Uganda Kobs, Oribis as well as many bird species. Game drives usually take you to Buligi peninsular and at the heart of Murchison falls national park.
A launch cruise/boat ride in Murchison Falls National Park takes you views of Nile crocodiles, hippos and many water birds including fish eagles, kingfishers and others. This exciting water sport lasts for about 3 hours and comes with rewarding sights.
Murchison Falls National Park is a home to over 451 bird species and this makes it one of Uganda’s most significant birding sites. A birding tour in Murchison Falls National Park allows you to spot out birds such as shoebill stork, giant kingfisher, long headed kingfisher, osprey, grey headed kingfisher, long toed plover, black headed lapwing, African darter, Abyssinian ground bill, rock pratincole, yellow fronted tinker bird, black billed barbet, veracious dove, giant heron, swamp flycatcher, African jacana, secretary bird, saddle billed stork, Senegal thick knee, red winged grey warbler, red throated bee-eater a mention but a few.
Murchison Falls National Park is best explored while on a nature walk. A nature walk gets you close to nature especially around the Kaniyo Pabidi and Rabongo forest. This gets you the best sights at varied birds, primates among others.
Sport fishing in Murchison Falls National Park is one of the best water sports for you to embark on while on Uganda safari. It is such a thrilling water sport experience that gets you a chance to challenge yourself with heavy fish species that weigh about 20 kilograms, 60 kilograms as well as 108 kilograms.
A visit to Mubako community gets you the best of African cultural encounter. This is one of the remotest areas around Murchison Falls National Park. This village features traditional thatched huts and deal in wooden sculptures, hand woven items as well as offers you a chance to enjoy the experiential dances and music performances.
You may also take part in other exciting safari activities including chimpanzee tracking which is conducted within Budongo forest. There are many habituated chimpanzees within this area.
Hike to the top of the falls
A hike to the scenic Murchison falls gets you the best of a powerful roar of this natural wonder. Murchison Falls is one of the most powerful waterfalls in the world. At the top of falls, catch a glimpse as it squeezes itself in a narrow gorge of 7 meters prior dropping down about 43 meters. For those who will embark on a boat ride, you can be dropped off at the bottom of the falls and you hike through the designated trail or drive from the southern side of the park to the top of the falls.
Accommodation facilities in Murchison Falls National Park
Accommodation options in Murchison Falls National Park include the Nile safari camp/Lodge, Red chili rest camp, Paraa safari lodge, Masindi hotel, Chobe lodge, Baker’s Lodge, Murchison River Lodge, Bwana Tembo Safari Camp, Fort Murchison, Sambiya River Lodge, Pakuba Safari Lodge, Heritage Safari Lodge, Shoebill Campsite and many more.
How to get to Murchison Falls National Park
By road, Murchison Falls National Park can be reached within 4 to 5 hours’ drive off Kampala along Luweero-Masindi route. By air, you can take a flight from Entebbe airport or Kajjansi airfield and land into airstrip north of the Nile at Pakuba and or south at Bugungu.