Queen Elizabeth National Park

Queen Elizabeth National Park

Queen Elizabeth National Park is Uganda’s most popular game reserve for safaris and definitely one most attractive. It is located in the Western part of Uganda. It stretches from the crater-dotted foothills of the Rwenzori range in the north, along the shores of Lake Edward to the remote Ishasha River in the south; including a wide diversity of habitats that range from savanna and wetlands to gallery and lowland forest. It has 611 recorded bird species in the

Kazinga channel sanctuary which covers an area approximately 207km.

Key Species

The park has 95-recorded species of mammals which include Elephant, Buffalo, and Lion. It has remarkable diversity as reflected in its bird list of over 550 species, the largest of any protected area in Africa. African Mourning Dove, Grey-headed Kingfisher, Swamp Fly-catcher, Grey-capped Warbler, The beautiful Black-headed Gonolek, Collard Pranticles, Pin-tailed Whyda Martial Eagle, Gabon and Slender-tailed Nightjars,Great and Long-tailed Cormorants, Black-rumped Buttonquail, Common Squaco Heron, Shoebill Stork, African Open-billed Stork, African Fish Eagle, African Jacana, Malachite and Pied Kingfishers, African Skimmer, Verreaux’s Eagle-Owl, Black Bee-eater, White-tailed Lark, White-winged Warbler, Papyrus Gonolek, Papyrus Canary,Great white and Pink-backed Pelicans,White-winged Terns.

Other park inhabitants include 10 primate species which include the Chimpanzees, the Black and White Colobus Monkey, Olive Baboon and the others.

Bird Watching Excursions

The main camp at Mweya is appealingly located with fine views of the Rwenzori Mountains a number of widespread bush species may be seen in the vicinity of the airstrip watch for African Mourning Dove, Grey-headed Kingfisher, Swamp Fly-catcher, Grey-capped Warbler, The Beautiful Black-headed Gonolek, Red-chested sunbird, Slender-billed, Yellow-backed and Lesser Masked Weavers, Pin-tailed Whydah,and brimstone Canary, Gabon and Slender-tailed Nightjars, are fairly common along the airstrip.

Kazinga channel is a magnet for water birds. A cruise on the channel will reveal species like Great and Long-tailed Cormorants, Common Squaco Heron, White-faced Whistling and Knob-billed Ducks, African Fish Eagle, Great-white and Pink-backed Pelicans, African open-billed Strok, Water Thick-knee, Malachite and Pied kingfishers, Swamp flycatchers and Yellow backed Weavers, Black Crake, African Jacana, Spur-winged and African Wattled Plovers, are all common and conspicious.

Hundreds of African Skimmers may be seen roosting on sandbars near the entry to Lake Edward but are migrants from southern tropics and typically present only from December to May. The Kazinga channel can also be viewed from the Katunguru Bridge on the main Mbarara-Kasese road where Pelicans, Terns, Greater Swamp and winged Warblers, Winding and Carruther’s Cisticolas and Papyrus Gonolek may be seen.

Access

The Main Camp and Park HQ at Mweya is a convenient base for exploring the sites in the northern part of the park, whilst the road network running from Ishasha Camp and Ranger Post, 80 km to the south, provides entrance to the Ishasha area.

Accommodation

Camping can be done at Mweya, Maramagambo Forest and Ishasha sector of the park come with camping facilities or can be provided by the tour company.

Lodges include Mweya Safari Lodge (5 start luxury accommodation for relaxation), Simba Safari Lodge, the institute of Ecology (basic, budget hostel style kind of accommodation) and Jacana Safari lodge (Luxury accommodation built over the banks of Crater Lake).

Additional information