Azas safaris jeep

lake mburo national park

introduction about mburo national park 

 

Located basically equidistant between Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and Entebbe, the woodlands, waters and grasslands make for the perfect break in a road journey either to or from the gorillas.

If returning from the gorillas, try to stay a night longer than you initially think necessary; Mburo is the perfect place in which to relax as well as explore.

If you live in Kampala or Entebbe, then Mburo is also a great location for a long weekend getaway.

Although just 260km², Mburo provides a wonderful variety of habitats, with 20% of its surface area made up of lakes and marshland.

Lake Mburo National Park

Discover the park

Although there are no elephants and only one lion (a lonely visitor from Tanzania), there are impala, Burchell’s zebra, eland, buffalo, leopard and wonderfully diverse birdlife.

The landscapes and wildlife can be explored in game drives, by boat, on horseback and by mountain bike in the continuous ranch lands outside the park. These options make Mburo a very modern safari destination, attractive to visitors with a wide variety of interests.

Like Queen Elizabeth National Park, Mburo was born from the rinderpest and tsetse fly epidemics of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. But unlike Queen Elizabeth, the communities that historically utilized Mburo were displaced, destroying local support for the park.

Happily, the creation of theMburo Community Conservation Unit in 1991 has helped mitigate past grievances and now ensures that 20% of the income generated by park fees is used to fund local community projects.

Things to do at Lake Mburo National Park

Game Drives

zebras in lake mburo

zebras in lake mburo

The park has a network of game drive tracks. The wildlife densities will vary depending on the time of year, plus the lack of elephants is allowing thick scrub to grow where there were grassy plains.

However, each drive normally has a great chance of finding substantial concentrations of impala, zebra, waterbuck, topi and buffalo.

The re-introduced giraffe are more commonly seen from the Kazuma and Ruroko tracks. You may also see the shy eland, who now number over 100.

It is now also possible to experience the park in darkness on two to three-hour night game drives. These normally start about 6:30pm and are a wonderful way to see nocturnal animals like bushbabies and potto, plus leopard and hyena at their most active.

Walking Safari

Azas safaris jeep

Azas safaris jeep

In Mburo, the whole park is available to explore on foot, as long as you take a guide with you. Favourite trails are to the salt lick at Rwonyo, the lake shorelines, Rubanga Forest and viewpoint hill tops.

Walks are the most exciting way to discover the park because visibility is often restricted by the undergrowth and it is difficult to see buffalo holding their ground or hyena loping back to their dens after a night on the prowl.

Walks are also the best way for birders to track down the more elusive species.

Boat Safari

Taking to the water is always a welcome, peaceful, part of any safari. You escape the dust and the tsetse flies and see life in the bush from another angle.

A 90-minute morning boat safari takes you along the shore of Lake Mburo, including sightings of crocodile, buffalo, hippo, kingfishers, fish eagles and hammerkops.

The boat safaris start at 8 am and depart every two hours until 4 pm.

Lake Mburo National Park

Birding

The acacia woodland and wetlands of Mburo make it a popular destination for birders. Searching by vehicle and on foot, sightings are also facilitated by viewing platforms constructed within the forest and by salt-licks.

The swampy valleys of Waruki and Miriti, plus the roadsides approaching the jetty provide the best birding spots.

Species seen here include the Rufous-bellied heron, bateleur, black-bellied bustard, and the red-faced barbet, the latter found only in Lake Mburo National Park.

Lake Mburo National Park

Horse Riding

Lake Mburo National Park

Amazing close: a dazzle of zebra in Lake Mburo

Mburo is the only place in Uganda where you can ride horses in a national park. Operating out of the Mihingo Lodge stable, all abilities and ages are catered for.

Buffalo and zebra react very differently to a human on horseback and so this is a special way to move among the wildlife.

The rides last for four hours and often include hill-top sundowners or bush breakfasts.

Mountain Biking

Rwakobo Rock maintains a good selection of well-maintained mountain bikes and offers guided rides through the savanna that borders the park.

This is the perfect way to burn off some energy while also enjoying wildlife and meeting members of the local community.

In 2012, the Uganda Wildlife Authority opened mountain biking trails.

In 2012, the Uganda Wildlife Authority opened mountain biking trails.

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