Lake Mburo National Park
Lake mburo national lies in the western region of Uganda in Kiruhura district bordered with other districts including Isingiro District and Mbarara district in the East. The park covers approximately 260 square kilometers of its low land. Lake mburo national park is Uganda’s smallest park which is closest to Kampala the capital city of Uganda compared to other national parks in Uganda. It is a distance of 240 kilometers and 4 hours by road from Kampala. The park is a home for various species such as Lakes, swamps & trees of over 313 birds, 68 species of mammals, rocks, forests, vegetation, savanna grasslands and 6 species of fish. All these species are under the management of Uganda Wildlife Authority. The park became a UNESCO world heritage site in 1993.
In 1933, this gazetted area acted as hunting area for the local people in the surrounding areas until later it was upgraded as a game reserve in 1963. The Banyankole known as “Bahima” pastoralists during that time were the residents on this land. They continued to graze their cattle in the reserve until this land was upgraded as a national park in 1983 during Obote’s regime. The park lies with in the rain shadow that is between the shores of Lake Victoria and Rwenzori Mountain. It’s also at a low latitude of 1,220m to 1,828m above the sea level. Tourists can be able to have a stopover at the equator to see where the sun sets from and they can also have great views of highest peak of “Margherita peak” on Rwenzori mountain which is the highest mountain in Africa and worldwide.
Lake Mburo National Park boasts with massive herds of “impala”. These impalas are mostly only found in this park and there are other antelopes such as oribis, warthogs, bush bush, bush pigs, duiker, tops, eland and many more. The word lake mburo came from the local narrated story, when the two brothers used to live together in the valley. These were Kigarama and Mburo & Kigarama happened to have a nightmare and one day he decided to narrate the story to his brother Mburo imposing that they had to move to the hills. Mburo ignored the narrated dream from his brother & he decided to stay and he was killed when the floods came. Kigarama had to move up into the hills, thus deriving the word Mburo from this story.
Lake mburo national park in a home to over 313 species of birds such as common francolin, the green woodhoopoes, Nubian woodpeckers, white winged warbler, African grey hornbill & other rare birds like African wetted lover, Rufous naped, as well as the yellow throated longclaw. It also has over 68 mammals such as impalas, road antelopes, jackes, hyenas, buffaloes as well as Zebras. The inland areas are wetlands such as unique lakes which inhabit over 6 species of fish such as the common known fish Tilapia, lungfish, mudfish, water birds like shoebill stork, pelicans, black crake, water animals like crocodiles, hippopotamus and many more. The swamps are a harbour for sitatunga antelopes and also black and yellow papyrus. All these species have made the park famous worldwide and attracted tourists improving the different Uganda safaris destinations.
Lake Mburo National Park has over five lakes & the most well-known one is lake mburo which is located within the park with over 6 species of fish. The park is found in western part of Uganda in the East of the largest beautiful town of Mbarara. It is the easiest park to be accessed by road which takes over 4 hours & a distance of 240 kilometers by road.
Lake Mburo National park has got very many famous activities for the tourists which include Bird watching, Guided nature walk, cultural safaris, visiting Rubanga forest, fishing and other options like horse riding, bicycle ride and many more.
Guided nature walks: Lake mburo national park has open savanna grasslands at Rwonyo Rest camp where tourists can be led by the guide to this savanna grassland. They can be able to view acacia trees like acacia gerill and acacia hockii. They can be as well lead to the salt links where you can see thousands of impalas, buffaloes, oribs, topis and duikers linking on this salty land.
Birding watching: The park is a home to over 313 bird species suitable for birding safaris. They can be able to spot large populations of birds in Rubanga forest like black billed barbet, green
, bare faced go away, saddle billed stork, African finfoot, mosque swallow, white winged warbler and other unfamiliar birds like the African wattled love, Rufous naped, yellow throated longclaw, Narina trogon and many more.
Boat launch: Lake mburo national park is famous with unique lake mburo and other four lakes which are located within the park, lake mburo has got 6 species of fish like lungfish, mud fish and the well-known one Tilapia fish as well as Haplochromis, travelers who like to explore African lakes you can have this amazing experience through fishing on the nature lakes using the fishing method common known as hooking. While you are busy enjoying boat launch tourist can be able spot water animals like crocodiles, hippos, buffaloes and also water birds such as water bills, shoebill stork, pelican and black crakes and many more.
Game drive: The tourists can engage in game drives led by the ranger guide. They can be able to view plants, vegetables and a variety of mammals like the famous zebras, leopards, buffaloes, hynes, antelopes, jackes and the impalas.
Horse riding: Lake mburo national park is the only park which offers to the visitors with this unique horse riding package with in the park as they view different attractions.
Cultural encounter: The park is surrounded with a community of people who perform their cultural dances to their traditional music as they do entertain to the visitors.
Lake Mburo National park has got unique accommodationwhich range from mid-range, luxury & budget lodges. Some of the lodges include Montana luxury tented camp, Mihingo lodge, Eagle Nest lodge, lake mburo safari lodge, Arcadia cottages, Rwonyo park headquarters and many others, depending on the client’s budget.
The best time to visit lake mburo national park is in the dry season from the month of January, march, June, August and December. These are great seasons to visit Uganda safaris destinations when the weather is favoring you to enjoy these amazing activities to explore the wild animals. You can as well visit in the wet seasons from the month of February, may, July, September. Within this season it requires a traveler to carry clothes that match with the weather such as jampers, jackets, gumboots, huts and sweaters.