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SEMLIKI WILDLIFE RESERVE

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GUIDE ON SEMLIKI WILDLIFE RESERVE IN UGANDA

Semliki Reserve Introduction - Location, Wildlife & History

Wander along the African lush trails of the Semliki Wildlife Reserve on your safari holiday and your senses will be treated to an atmosphere of sheer tranquility and calm. You will feel like you are the only visitor in its diverse wilderness, with a guide for company describing and pointing out many of the more than 440 species of birds that reside here. Breathe in the scents of the wild ecology and stop here and there to study the tiny insects, reptiles, amphibians, and other denizens of the forest and savannah that scurry about in the undergrowth. Travel a bit farther into the forest and you may encounter one of the families of chimpanzees that thrive in Semliki (best time to go). But always keep a lookout for the colorful bird species that abound, such as the Congo serpent eagle, black-wattled hornbill, and long-tailed hawk.

Walking the trails is only one of the many exciting vacation experiences you can have when touring one of the first gazetted wilderness parks in Uganda. Spread out in a depression south of Lake Albert, the reserve covers an area of 542 square kilometers (210 square miles) and lies in the shadow of the Rwenzori Mountains and Congolese Blue Mountains. Originally named the Toro Semliki Wildlife Reserve, when it first became a protected area in 1926 it teemed with wildlife, particularly the famous Ugandan kob. However, the civil war of the 1980s took its toll on animal numbers, decimating the herds to a fraction of their original size. Fortunately, with the return of peace, the wildlife in the park is also making a comeback, and you will now be able to view several species of grazers in the every evolving Semliki Wildlife Reserve.

Key Takeaways

  • A pristine reserve which is little-known and off the main tourist circuit lending tranquility
  • The oldest reserve in Uganda since 1926, originally carrying the name Toro Semliki Wildlife Reserve
  • Boasts of 440 species of birds along with insects, reptiles, amphibians, and various other small denizens
  • Families of savannah and forest chimpanzees alongside other primates that can be spotted on trekking excursions
  • Covers an area of 542 sq km (210 sq mi) in a depression near Lake Albert in the heart of the Albertine Rift Valley. Home to a variety of grazers including the famous Ugandan kob

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Page Content - Start Here

1. What Are The Wildlife Experiences In Semliki Wildlife Reserve?
What Are The Areas Of Interest In Semliki Wildlife Reserve
2. Communities Of Semliki
Semliki Reserve - An Overview

1. What Are The Wildlife Experiences In Semliki Wildlife Reserve?

Key Takeaways

  • Three of the Big Five of Africa including the elephant, leopard, and buffalo along with various other grazers, primates, and the white-tailed mongoose
  • Possibility of going on night game drives and boating trips to see aquatic birds including the whimsical shoebill stork
  • Hot springs at Sempaya and beautiful inclines of Kijura, the reserve also has stunningly beautiful, diverse landscapes

Animals Of Semliki Reserve - Big Cats - Predators, Grazers - Herbivores & Primates

On game drives, keep watch for three of the Big Five of Africa, including the elephant, buffalo, and leopard. Also present are many herbivores, such as bushbucks, waterbucks, bushbabies, forest pygmy hippos, and antelopes. Aside from the rare leopard, the other predator is the white-tailed mongoose, and that fact makes Semliki adventurous to tour on night game drives also. If you take a boating trip on Lake Albert, you may be lucky enough to spot the rare shoebill stork, great egret, African fish eagle, goliath heron, sunbird, and many other aquatic birds such as the blue-headed coucal, African pygmy goose, glue-cheeked bee-eater, pied kingfisher etc. Semliki has 5 endemic species to Uganda’s Albertine Rift Valley and also Guinea-Congo Biome species, 46 of them, found nowhere else in East Africa e.g. orange-cheeked waxbill, Nakulenge rail, piping hornbill, Maxwell’s black weaver and many more.

On special requests to your AfricanMecca safari consultant, you can also visit Sempaya to see the hot springs in the adjacent public Semuliki National Park (where to stay) alongside exploring the slopes of Kijura. Semliki’s varied ecosystem include sprawling grasslands, swamps, and woodlands, some of them bordering the Muzizi and Wasa Rivers, which runs through the area. You will also find glades of Borassus palms and forests of acacia combretum, which are home to primates such as chimpanzees, olive baboons, black and white colobus monkeys, red-tailed monkeys, and vervet monkeys.
What Are The Wildlife Experiences In Semliki Wildlife Reserve

What Are The Areas Of Interest In Semliki Wildlife Reserve?

2. Communities Of Semliki

Key Takeaways

  • Visiting the village to interact with the local people
  • Bakonjo farmers living in the Karugutu-Kyabandara locale on the south of the reserve. Batuku (Batoro-Bahuma) thriving in the Rwebisengo area
  • Kasesenge–Kyakabaseke community engaged in tea plantation and farming. Ntoroko dependent mainly on fishing for a livelihood
On your safari trip in Semliki, you may enjoy a visit to the village and a cultural tour opportunity to interact with the other communities of the region. These settlements include the Karugutu-Kyabandara locale, inhabited by the Bakonjo farmers to the south of the reserve, and the Rwebisengo area, which the Batuku (Batoro-Bahuma) call home. Farmers reliant on tea plantations and other farms live in the Kasesenge–Kyakabaseke community, while the Ntoroko depend mainly on fish sourced from the lake and rivers.
Communities Of Semliki

Semliki Reserve Rating By AfricanMecca
3.9 Star
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WHERE & BEST PLACES TO STAY IN SEMLIKI
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WHERE & BEST PLACES TO STAY IN SEMLIKI

Semliki has limited quality camps and lodges. AfricanMecca only recommends Semliki Safari Lodge that affords a mid-range Deluxe Tier 2 Safari rating. It offers a tented lodge experience with various activities.

SAFARI & TOUR IN SEMLIKI
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SAFARI & TOUR IN SEMLIKI

Semliki Reserve offers distinct safari activities i.e. day and night game drives, chimpanzee and primate trekking tours, birdwatching and boating excursions around Lake Albert, bush walks, and cultural interactions.

BEST TIME TO VISIT SEMLIKI
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BEST TIME TO VISIT SEMLIKI

Like most locations in Africa, Semliki Wildlife Reserve has two wet rainy seasons and two dry seasons. June to August and December to February are the best times to visit Semliki Reserve in Uganda.

AFRICANMECCA REVIEWS

What are our Customers saying about us? READ MORE REVIEWSfive star africanmecca safaris reviews

  • AfricanMecca Safaris offers incredibly knowledgeable and skilled services! Our travel arrangements for 2 months of volunteering with TEACH Rwanda in country were made quickly and economically. Honored to work with Raza!
    Janet Brown - TEACH Rwanda Founder - United States
  • I just returned from a month in Africa, specifically Rwanda & Kenya. I am left breathless with my experience. AfricanMecca Safaris coordinated the entire trip for me and left no detail, nothing for me to do.
    Carol Bobb - Pennsylvania, United States
  • AfricanMecca Safaris created a remarkable honeymoon tailored to our interests and desires. The quality of service and delivery of experience was unsurpassed. I highly recommend AfricanMecca Safaris to honeymooners, families, or any traveler.
    Noorin & Jason Nelson - Maryland, United States
  • I booked my safari holiday through AfricanMecca. They were the most helpful company I have ever dealt with and I work within the travel industry. I had the most amazing time. The holiday went as clockwork with no hitches anywhere.
    Shelley Roberts - Hemel Hempstead, United Kingdom
  • This is to let you know my guests, The Bryant's, had a wonderful time on the trip Samburu, Masai Mara/Kenya, Chobe/Botswana & Victoria Falls/Zambia. Everything was perfect! Thank you.
    Christine Milan - MT Carmel Travel - Connecticut, United States
  • We have returned from our African adventure and would like to thank you very much for your part in making this such a wonderful experience. We were lucky enough to time the Great Migration from the Serengeti, which was amazing.
    Denise Paterson - Belmont, Australia
  • Rwanda was amazing. The accommodations, food, and guides AfricanMecca arranged were great. Raza also helped us through the complicated process of getting permits for gorilla trekking. AfricanMecca is a fantastic company to work with.
    Stephanie Weir - United States

EAST AFRICA SAFARI BOOKING TRIP IDEA FOR SEMLIKI IN UGANDA

When visiting Semliki 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 Lake Mburo 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 Uganda

Below 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.

1. How To Plan Uganda Safari Trips? (Summary)

2. Wildlife Safari Trip Planning Guide For Uganda

3. Private & Tailor-Made Trip Planning Guide For Uganda

4. Honeymoon Safaris Trip Planning Guide For Uganda

5. Family Safaris Trip Planning Guide For Uganda

6. Luxury Safaris Trip Planning Guide For Uganda

7. Photo Safaris Trip Planning Guide For Uganda

8. Cultural Safaris Trip Planning Guide For Uganda

9. Gorilla, Chimpanzee & Primate Safaris Trip Planning Guide For Uganda

10. Hike, Trek & Bush Walk Safaris Trip Planning Guide For Uganda

11. Birding Safaris Trip Planning Guide For Uganda

12. Wedding Safaris Trip Planning Guide For Uganda

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