Lake Mburo National Park Uganda
Lake Mburo National Park Uganda is a special Uganda safari destination located in the western Uganda in Mbarara, Lake Mburo national park is the smallest savannah national park in Uganda covering an area of 260 square kilometers. The park is also the closest park to Kampala the capital of Uganda, Lake Mburo national park is the only national park in Uganda containing an entire lake and is famously known for being the only place where you can find the Impala and for hosting large populations of zebras.
Lake Mburo national park consists of varied habitants ranging from acacia woodlands, dry hillsides, rocky outcrops, bushy thickets, open and wooded savannah, seasonal and permanent swamps. The park’s landscape is dominated by rolling hills and 14 lakes with Lake Mburo as the largest lake among the chain of lakes.
WILDLIFE IN LAKE MBURO NATIONAL PARK
Animals in Lake Mburo national park
Lake Mburo national park has more than 68 mammal species calling park a home, the park is the only place in Uganda where you can find the Impala and also famed for hosting large populations of zebras. Animals in Lake Mburo national park include warthogs, hyena, jackal, Topi, Eland, Zebras, Defassa waterbuck, buffaloes, hyenas, leopards, lion, Crocodiles, monitor lizards, and Hippos among others. Unfortunately, Lake Mburo national park has no elephants.
Birds in Lake Mburo national park
Lake Mburo national park is one of the best places in Uganda to do bird watching activities and this is due to its varied habitats supporting several species of birds, the park hosts a total of 325 bird species including the rare shoe bill, Crested Francolin, Emerald-spotted Wood Dove, Brown Parrot, Barefaced Go-away bird, Red necked Spur, common Quails, Black-billed Barbet, Greenwood Hoopoe, Blue-napped Mousebird, Lilac-breasted Roller, African-grey Hornbill, Nubian Woodpecker, Trilling Cisticola, Bee-eaters and the Cheeky bronze-tailed starling and the majestic crowned crane etc. You have chances of sighting the rare African Finfoot, shoebill, African fish eagle, malachite, and pied Kingfishers.
Lake Mburo national park’s bird habitats include the lake shore, the broad savanna and the fringing swamps. The fringing swamp host secretive papyrus specialists such as the red, black and yellow papyrus gonolek among others. .
SAFARIS ACTIVITIES IN LAKE MBURO NATIONAL PARK
Game drives in Lake Mburo national park
Lake Mburo national park is a home to approximately 68 mammal species which make it a very rewarding destination to do game drives in Uganda, game viewing in the park is best done during early morning game drives or late afternoon game drives when animals are more active.
Game drives are done in 4X4 safari vehicles with open roof using various tracks running through the savannah plains of the park, while on the game drives you will enjoy watching the scenic landscape of the park featuring wetlands, grassy hillsides, rock out crops and woodland. Animals you should lookout for during game drive in Lake Mburo national park include antelopes, common duiker, Bofor, Impalas, buffaloes, eland, zebras, leopards among others.
Game drives in Lake Mburo national park normally last for about 2-3 hours, night game drives are also offered in the park and during these game drives you will be able to spot nocturnal animals such as lions, leopards, porcupines and bush babies.
Birding in Lake Mburo national park
Lake Mburo national park is listed among the best birding sites in Uganda, regardless of the small size of the park it is a home to over 350 bird species including forest birds, savannah birds and water birds living in swamps around the Lake Mburo and other small lakes.
Birding in Lake Mburo national park is a fulfilling experience and during experience you will have an opportunity to spot colorful birds such as Bare-faced Go-away bird, White-headed Barbet, Red-shouldered cuckoo-shrike, white-winged tit, Long-tailed Cisticola, Brown parrot, Grey crowned crane, Rufous-bellied Heron, Bateleur, and black – bellied bastard among others.
Some of the best birding spots in Lake Mburo national park are swampy places like Warukiri, Rwonyo jetty and the viewing platform overlooking the salt lick.
Boat safaris in Lake Mburo national park
Lake Mburo national park is dotted with a chain of 14 lakes with Lake Mburo as the biggest lake, boat safaris are mainly done on Lake Mburo on a launch trip of about 2 hours. Boat safaris offer a great opportunity to tour the lake, enjoy the scenic rolling landscape of the park dotted with rolling hills in a distant view, savannah vegetation and forest galleries.
During the boat cruise lookout for animals like hippos, Nile crocodiles, hippos, bushbucks, antelopes and various birds such as the rare shoe bill, pied and malachite kingfishers, fish eagles, Hamerkop, African fin-foot among others.
Horseback safaris are offered from Mihingo Lodge. You have a remarkable opportunity to see wildlife closer to nature without the noise of the engine that sometimes alerts the animals into hiding. You will feel part of nature and truly enjoy this experience. The number and variety of animals seen are determined by the time of year and weather but generally you have chances of siting the Impala, Topi, Bushbuck, Waterbuck, duiker, eland, warthog and the Zebras – which are often fascinated by their relatives the horses.
Lake Mburo national park is one of the few designated areas in Uganda for sport fishing by the Uganda Wildlife Authority, this activity is done on Lake Mburo “Mazinga” hosting about 6 species of fish with tilapia as the most common fish type.
To do sport fishing in Lake Mburo national park you need to get a sport fishing permit from Uganda Wildlife Authority, also carry your own equipments.
Nature and forest walks
Nature and forest walks are one of the interesting activities to do in Lake Mburo national park, this activity is done in the presence of a ranger guide and mainly conducted in the western side of Lake Mburo. Nature and forest walks starts as early as 7 am leading to the top of the hill, this activity rewards you with sights of animals such as hyenas, zebras, warthogs round salty rocks and amazing views of 9 out of the 14 lakes in the region.
Community walks and Cultural experiences
This activity takes you on a visit to the community of cattle keepers living along the boundaries of the park such as the Hima homestead, during your visit you will participate in activities like milking of the cow, witness the making of various products such as ghee and yoghurt from milk, engage in story tells, dances and making of crafts.
How to get to Lake Mburo national park
Lake Mburo national park is situated close to Kampala the capital of Uganda where most Uganda safari start from, from Kampala it is a drive of about 3 – 4 hours using Kampala – Masaka – Mbarara. The park is accessed using two gates that is Nsahara gate and the Sanga gate.
Accommodation in Lake Mburo national park
There are a number of accommodation facilities offering a place to stay for tourists during their visit to the park, these accommodations are situated inside the park and long the boundaries of the park.
In the park
- Rwonyo Rest Camp
- Mantana Tented Camp
- Arcadia Cottages
- Mihingo Lodge
- Lake Mburo Safari Lodge
- Rwakobo Rock
- Eagles Nest Camp