Murchison Falls National Park

A 3480 km² national park situated in the north-west of Uganda in the Albertine Rift Valley, Murchison Falls is the largest park found in the country. It is home to an impressive waterfall of the same name. Here the Nile River flows through a narrow 7 metre gorge before careening over 43 metres downwards to the waters below where it slowly becomes a gentle river on its way to the Mediterranean.

The park itself has a number of ecosystems, including grasslands, tropical forests, wooded savannah and the open water areas of the Nile. This runs through the park and draws plenty of wildlife who congregate along the shores. In fact, the river itself is home to the biggest crocodile population in the Uganda and therefore, swimming is not advised.

Around 109 species of mammals call the park home, including four of Africa’s Big 5. Unfortunately, rhino are missing from the park although you can expect to be able to view hippo, various antelope and buck, hartebeest, zebra, lions, hyena, giraffe and the very rare Patas monkey during game drives or safaris. Guide tours are best in this regard with well-trained rangers able to pick out the various animals for you.

Birders will love Murchison Falls National Park as well. It is home to 476 species including the shoebill stork, 53 different kinds of raptor, and a range of water birds who live on the Nile as well as migratory birds that visit from November to April.

Activities in the park include game drives and safaris, boat trips to Murchison Falls (be sure to climb it and view from the top), fishing for Nile Perch (only in designated areas), birding, cultural encounters with local tribes (including village tours), hiking trails, nature walks, and chimpanzee trekking in the nearby Bundongo Forest.

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