SAFARI GUIDE ON LAKE MBURO NATIONAL PARK IN UGANDA
Lake Mburo Park Introduction - Location, Wildlife & HistoryAs you travel along the highway connecting Kampala with western Uganda’s national parks, you’ll discover a small but rich haven of wildlife in Lake Mburo National Park (safari activities). Located close to the main artery, this reserve is the smallest of all the parks in the country but it has significant socioeconomic importance. It’s a place that reveals the impact of a single species’ disappearance on the region’s ecosystem. Originally a landscape of savannah grasslands, the park now has a lush forest covering due to the absence of elephants, whose foraging once kept tree growth at bay. In addition to woodlands, the topography also features gorges and rocky ridges. Spend some safari vacation time in this part of Africa where you will also discover riparian forests growing around the lakes, and papyrus-dominated wetlands.
- Located on the highway connecting Kampala with the reserves on the west of Uganda
- Smallest park in the country, but of significant importance
- Showcases diverse landscapes like riparian forests, woodlands, gorges rocky ridges, swamps and papyrus-lined lakes
Travel Guide Content - Start Here
|1. What Are The Wildlife Experiences In Lake Mburo National Park?|
|What Are The Areas Of Interest In Lake Mburo National Park|
|2. The Beautiful, Diverse & Aquatic Ecology Of Lake Mburo|
|3. Sustainable Conservation At Lake Mburo|
1. What Are The Wildlife Experiences In Lake Mburo National Park?
- Only location in Uganda that has numbers of impala, also has various other grazers
- Birdwatchers’ haven showcasing more than 350 species of avian life
- Lakes abounding with hippos, crocodiles, rare cichlids, a fish species and aquatic birds
Animals Of Lake Mburo Park - Big Cats - Predators, Grazers - Herbivores & PrimatesThe Lake Mburo National Park that you see today is a result of the efforts of the National Resistance Movement (NRM) government, which redefined its boundaries in 1986. Although it now covers less than half of its original area, it more than makes up for that with a stunning variety of animal and birdlife. On your game drive trips in Lake Mburo Park, you’ll have a chance to see various species of grazers, including reedbucks, topi, Defassa waterbuck, oribi, buffalos, elands, impalas, zebras, giraffes and many more. The park is, in fact, the only place in Uganda where you’ll see impalas.
Birdwatching enthusiasts will enjoy spotting some of the over 350 species that thrive here, including 22 migrating birds. On your birding tour in Uganda with AfricanMecca, you will also have the opportunity to view the rare shoebill stork, red-faced barbet, and African finfoot. The lakes thrive with rare cichlids, along with aquatic birds, crocodiles, and hippos. Primates such as vervet monkeys and galagos can be seen too.
What Are The Areas Of Interest In Lake Mburo National Park?
2. The Beautiful, Diverse & Aquatic Ecology Of Lake Mburo
- Comprises of a network of 13 lakes, of which 5 are located within the park’s boundaries
- Lakes and swamplands combining to create an ecosystem of water bodies that is 50 kilometers (31 miles) long
- Bedrock made with 500-million-year-old Precambrian rock
3. Sustainable Conservation At Lake Mburo
- Balanced sustainability between the Banyankole Bahima tribe and park’s preservation goals
- The park’s history strengthens its future existence
- A good example for renewed conservation for the rest of Uganda and Africa
Fishing from the lakes also offers a major source of food. In 1933, the reserve was slated as a Controlled Hunting Area, and it was given national park status in 1983. However, strife between the former ruling Obote government and local people took its toll on the reserve and its residents, and much of the wildlife and vegetation was destroyed. This is now slowly reversing with the forward looking government in Uganda. The wildlife of Lake Mburo and its renewed ecology are getting back to its former glory every day.
What Safari Attractions & Tour Activities To Experience During Your Lake Mburo Visit?
- Small park covering an area of 370 sq km (143 sq mi) with a diversity of scenic landscapes
- Home to 350 species of birds including 22 migratory northern species
- 68 species of mammals along with various reptiles, amphibians, insects, and smaller creatures
You can go on fauna viewings on walking safaris, which also offer the opportunity to get a closer look at insects, amphibians, reptiles, and other smaller creatures you wouldn’t notice on a typical game drive. Nonetheless, the classic game drives offer a chance to see some of the 68 species of mammals present in the park, including grazing herbivores like warthog, reedbuck, topi, Defassa waterbuck, oribi, duiker, buffalo, Rothschild's giraffe, and many more. Although common in other parts of the continent, this is the only region in Uganda to find impalas. You will also find the eland and Burchell’s zebra, viewable only in Lake Mburo and Kidepo.
Horseback riding safaris, mountain biking, wild running are the unique adventure activities to do here at Lake Mburu. Spend some time in a hide close to a watering hole and salt lick to watch the animals visit to drink and lick the saline soil. The hides and a wooden viewing platform were set up by the Uganda Wildlife Authority.
Our Top 7 Safari Activities In Lake Mburo - Things You Can Do & See
Activities Content - Start Here
1. Game Drives To View The Diverse Wildlife Of Lake Mburo
- Drives along the Research Track with your guide on board to spot herds of herbivores grazing
- Visiting the Kazuma Lookout for stunning views of the 5 lakes of the park
- Night game drives to spot nocturnal creatures that remain hidden away in the day
The environs of Lake Mburo National Park allow for tours and explorations both inside and outside the reserve boundaries. You will be riding in a specialized safari vehicle with an AfricanMeca assigned guide on board to help you spot the wildlife hidden in the bush and learn more about the behaviors. Drive to the dams for livestock outside the park for sightings of crested cranes, shoebills, and other aquatic birds. The tribal villages on the outskirts of the park, are also a great place to visit, allowing guests to spot magnificent long-horned Ankole cattle grazing side by side with herds of eland, impalas, and topi.
Night game drives in Lake Mburo National Park offer the opportunity to view the park and its denizens in a whole different light. Be on the lookout for nocturnal animals such as the leopard, spotted hyena, and perhaps even a lion hunting in the bush. Also watch for smaller creatures like the white-tailed mongoose, genet cat, bush pig, gallago, and porcupine. Each trip takes around 2 hours and is conducted after dinner. The expert guide assigned may use spotlights to help you better see the animals.
2. Boat Safaris Around Lake Mburo
- Boating to view hippos and crocodiles
- Sightings of gorgeous aquatic birds fishing in the lake
- Each cruise lasting around 90 minutes and available for both kids and adults, life jackets provided
3. Birdwatching Safaris In Lake Mburo
- Birdwatching excursions to view some of the 350 species of Lake Mburo
- Rubanga Forest birdwalk to see some of the 40 woodland species
- Opportunity to spot some of the aquatic bird species
AfricanMecca Safaris can also organize a Rubanga Forest birdwalk. The forest has a lovely shaded atmosphere under a canopy of trees that includes figs, acacia, markhamia, and platycladus, among others. From the viewing platform you can see more than 40 species of birds, 5 of which are limited to such forested habitats. As you walk with the guidance of a naturalist, look for species such as the double-toothed barbet, gray-backed harrier hawk, Camaroptera, Narina trogon, green pigeon, and shoebill stork.
Below is a list of some of the birds of Lake Mburo National Park
4. Cultural & Community Tours Near Lake Mburo Park
- Interactions with the Banyankole Bahima tribe to learn about how they manage their long-horned Ankole cattle. Lessons in milking cows and tasting fresh milk
- Opportunity to check out the traditional huts and learn about the ancient lifestyles of the people. Listening to folklore and sampling traditional dishes
- Bicycle rides to the fishing village to learn traditional drying and preserving techniques
As you travel out of Lake Mburo National Park through the Sanga Gate, you will reach the Igongo Cultural Center, located about 4 kilometers away. This cultural complex has a series of traditional huts where you can learn more about the ancient living styles of locals, including many customs still followed today. You will also learn about the reverence the tribes feel for their Ankole cattle believing them to be kings and queens. People living in the area include the Banyankole, Batooro, Bakiga, Banyakitara, and Banyoro. At the end of the tour, you can sample some of the traditional dishes, including served in the area, such as roasted goat.
5. Walking Safaris In Lake Mburo Park
- Excursions organized in the early morning to experience the sights and sounds of animals waking up
- Spotting tiny insects and small reptiles, amphibians, birds, and small animals hiding in the bush
- Possibility of combining the walking tour with a picnic lunch beside the lake
6. Horseback Safaris In Lake Mburo Park
- Horseback safaris that last for around one to five hours, or overnight tours
- Possibility of approaching animals more closely without the possibility of startling them off
- Unique experiences of exploring the bush without the distraction of motorized vehicles
7. Mountain Biking & Cycling In Lake Mburo Park
- Biking safaris to explore animal trails and check out the smallest denizens of the forest and savannah
- Personal tour guide to direct the excursion
- Opportunity to view animals from closer distances without the sounds from safari vehicles
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WHERE & BEST PLACES TO STAY IN LAKE MBURO
Lake Mburo has limited quality camps and lodges. AfricanMecca only recommends Mihingo Lodge that affords a mid-range Deluxe Tier 2 Safari rating. It offers a tented lodge experience with diverse activities.
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LAKE MBURO SAFARI ACTIVITIES & TOUR ATTRACTIONS
Lake Mburo Park offer many activities such as horse riding safaris, biking, bush walks, day and night game drives, boat trips, cultural interactions with the Banyankole Bahima tribe, visit to wildlife hides.
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BEST TIME TO VISIT LAKE MBURO
Like most locations in Africa, Lake Mburo National Park has two wet rainy seasons and two dry seasons. December to February, June to August are the best times to visit Lake Mburo Park in Uganda.
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EAST AFRICA SAFARI BOOKING TRIP IDEA FOR LAKE MBURO IN UGANDA
When visiting Lake Mburo for your wildlife safari, we recommend combining it with Bwindi Park for your gorilla safari trek, Queen Elizabeth, Murchison Falls and Kibale (chimpanzee safari) alongside your city tour visits of Kampala and Entebbe.
You may optionally extend out to other wilderness areas such as Mgahinga to track down golden monkeys and gorillas in the same park, Jinja for whitewater rafting on the Nile River, and Semliki or Kidepo for an offbeat wildlife tour.
You can end your vacation on the beach at Lake Victoria or even extending out to the exotic spice island of Zanzibar or Lamu, or even Mombasa.
Best Safari Planning Ideas & Trip Experiences For UgandaBelow are guide references on how to plan each of the below safari experience in Uganda. Alternatively, go to the summary section for a quick overview of each trip planning experience.READ MORE
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