Before thinking of when to go for your trip in the western parts of Uganda, you should know that the region is a tourist paradise and thus you should be well equipped in order for you to get an unforgettable trip and ever-lasting beautiful memories.
It is by no doubt that this is the mostly visited region annually in Uganda due to its endless flourishing tourists’ spots. Your road trip will surely start at Entebbe International Airport (Uganda’s) or at any hotel around Kampala when your hired car will be delivered to you. In this, you are emphasized to hire a rooftop tent car in Uganda from approved rental companies that will give you a good car and will still deliver it to you wherever you will be.
On delivering the car to you, you will need to clear all your trip’s bills there and then before the car is even handled over to you. After clearing all the bills, the car will be handled over to you and this will mean that the car is now fully owned by you at that time of your trip however for any jamming of the car, it is the rental company concerned and it will have to fix the problem immediately.
But, as a reminder, for any reckless driving and you tend to cause any harm on the car, you will be penalized hence you are advised to drive with much care to avoid such inconveniences and to attain beautiful memories. So, below is how your road trip to western Uganda will look like and thus you should possess all the necessities required as you are to know them after reading through this brief article:
Your road trip to western Uganda
Very early in the morning, you will set off to western Uganda for the great trip. The route to western Uganda is so scenic and spectacular that it will leave long lasting memories later on after the end of your trip in Uganda. Among the things you will pass by as you are heading in western Uganda includes the Uganda Equator, which is found along the Masaka to Mbarara highway – Kayabwe.
As you are driving westwards of Uganda, the very first astonishing thing you will come across is Lake Mburo National Park – the closest national park to Kampala city Centre, about 4 hours’ drive from Kampala.
Here you will enjoy very many things such as stunning views to its 5 lakes, varied wildlife species and various bird species, among many amazing activities like boat cruises, guided nature walks, fishing, cultural encounters, cycling, and horse-back riding, just to mention.
From Lake Mburo National Park, you can easily connect to many other western national parks which are just within a close proximity. Therefore, from the park, you will drive like 3 hours to access the ‘’True Birders’ Haven’’ – Semuliki National Park. Semuliki is best known for hosting the serious African birders as the park comprises of almost all the most wanted African bird species by birders who visit the African continent annually.
Besides being a perfect destination for African serious birders, Semuliki is also known for its Sempaya hot springs which are really eye-catching to every tourist and they attract many tourists annually. With luck, you will also spot some of Africa’s big game in the Semuliki forests such as; buffaloes, leopards, hippos and many others. Semuliki also harbors a community for the Batwa pygmies whom you will interact with on your community visits.
From Semuliki, you will drive only 58.8 kilometers to access the Rwenzori Mountain National Park. The park is known for residing the third to fifth highest mountains of Africa (Mount Margherita, Mount Speke and Mount Baker) after Mountain Kilimanjaro in Tanzania and Mountain Kenya in Kenya. The major attraction there is hiking up to the highest peak – Margherita, which is snow-capped and you are guaranteed with stunning views.
Therefore, remind your operator of the hiking permit before heading to Uganda. The landscape of the Rwenzori Mountains is so unique and it is considered to be one of Africa’s most beautiful mountainous areas. The park consists of waterfalls, lakes, glaciers, and snow fields.
There are many other interesting activities that take place here and you will also be delighted to see some of Africa’s wildlife such as; forest elephants, chimpanzees, hyraxes, and various monkey species, among many bird species including the Rwenzori Turaco.
The following day after your visit to the Rwenzori Mountains National Park, you will drive to Kibale Forest National Park which is about 55.3 kilometers away. Kibale is the premier destination for chimpanzee tracking in Uganda, therefore whenever you are to go there remember asking your tour operator to book for you a chimpanzee tracking permit which costs US$ 200.
The permit will be given to you on your arrival in Uganda. Besides chimpanzee tracking, you will also enjoy many other activities such as; birding, game viewing and cultural encounters, among others.
From Kibale, you will then drive to one of the most ‘’if not the most’’ famous national parks in Uganda, Queen Elizabeth National Park – the medley of wonders!! As its name says it all, the medley of wonders offers a lot of wonders and surprises which will be very difficult to forget for your entire life. Among the wonders are the amazing tree-climbing lions which are always seen de-stressing at the branches of huge trees in the Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park.
From the tree-climbing lions, you will enjoy spectacular views of the beautiful Kazinga channel that connects two lakes – Lake Edward and Lake George. On your boat trips on the channel, you will spot a variety of bird species and wildlife species such as; Elephants, Nile Crocodiles, Hippos, and Buffaloes.
At the Kyambura Gorge, you will have a chance to track the common chimpanzees, the chimpanzee permits here costs US$ 50. Other wildlife species you will enjoy while on your game drives are; Lions, Leopards, Ugandan Kob, and over 600 bird species.
From Queen, via the Ishasha province, you can easily access Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park which is just 155 kilometers away. You will access Bwindi through its Buhoma sector and the major attraction there is trekking the endangered mountain gorillas which are only harbored in four national parks and three countries in the whole world.
Bwindi Forest National Park is of course the premier national park for mountain gorilla trekking in the world as it is protecting the largest number of mountain gorillas – almost half of the world’s total number (over 500 mountain gorillas out of the 1000-plus mountain gorillas).
To enjoy this memorable and life changing activity of gorilla trekking, you should have yourself a gorilla trekking permit of Uganda which costs US$ 700 and this will be booked for you by your operator if informed in advance. Uganda comprises of two refuges for the mountain gorillas the other one being Mgahinga Gorilla National Park which is situated about 100 kilometers away from Bwindi, hence you can do double gorilla trekking in Uganda if interested.
After your gorilla treks, you can visit the beautiful Lake Bunyonyi which is located about 80 kilometers from Bwindi and there are many amazing activities to do such as; boat cruises, bird watching, and fishing. The lake is the deepest in Uganda.
Meanwhile to visit all these areas, you need to spare like a minimum of 15 days and you should contact your operator in advance to design for you an appropriate itinerary which will guide you to visit all those places accordingly and quickly.