Lake Mburo National Park
Extending for 370 square kilometers, Lake Mburo National Park is Uganda’s smallest savannah National Park found within the western part of the country. Gazetted into a Park in 1983, this gem is strategically located on the highway linking Kampala to other western and south-western Parks, making it a perfect stopover for tourists interested in seeing savannah wildlife species.
Flora and Fauna within Lake Mburo National Park
Lake Mburo National Park boasts of different landscape types including lakes, rolling grassy hills, seasonal and permanent swamps, thickets, valleys and acacia woodlands that offer shelter to over 76 species of mammals including Zebras, warthogs, giraffes, elands, Oribis, Topis, impalas, waterbucks, buffaloes, leopards, hippos, jackals, spotted hyenas and reedbucks among others.
Lake Mburo is also rich in avifauna totaling to over 350 species of birds including the African-wattled plovers, African-grey hornbills, Lilac-breasted rollers, Common quails, Emerald-spotted wood dove, barefaced go-away bird, shoebill storks, black-bellied bustard, blue-napped mousebird, brown parrots and yellow-throated long claw among others. These wide range of bird species make Lake Mburo National Park one of the country’s top 10 important birding areas.
Things to do in Lake Mburo National Park
Lake Mburo National Park is the country’s smallest savannah National Park but is known for the highest number of tourist activities that include
Game tracks within this Park reward tourists with the views of the beautiful zebras, elands, impalas and waterbucks grazing on the vast savannah plains as well as the towering giraffes browsing on the acacia trees. Other wildlife species to expect are warthogs, Topis and buffaloes and birds species are a sight to behold.
Lake Mburo National Park has several birding spots with the popular ones being roadsides between Rwonyo Camp, the Miriti and Warukiri swamp valleys and Lake Mburo. Some of the bird species to expect are the yellow-breasted Apalis, grey crowned cranes, long-tailed cistola, Rufous-bellied herons and Emerald-spotted wood dove among others.
Boat cruises within this Park are conducted within Lake Mburo and offer opportunities of spotting hippos, crocodiles and several aquatic bird species such as the African fish eagles, pelicans and malachite kingfishers among others.
Lake Mburo National Park is the only Park in Uganda that offers this exhilarating activity and is organized by Mihingo safari lodge allowing tourists to ride with the wildlife especially zebras.
Besides the other, Lake Mburo National Park offers other tourist activities that include cultural tours, fishing, nature walks/hiking, bicycle tours and visit to Rubanga Forest (forest walks).
Places to stay within Lake Mburo National Park
There are a number of budget, midrange and upmarket safari lodges within Lake Mburo National Park and they include Mihingo safari Lodge, Mantana Tented Camp, Rwakobo Rock Lodge, Rwonyo Rest Camp, Lake Mburo Safari Lodge, Arcadia cottages and Eagle’s Nest Lodge among others.
Best Time of the year to visit Lake Mburo National Park
For tourists interested in visiting Lake Mburo National Park, it is open for visitation all year round but the dry season is the ideal time because during this time, most animals converge at water points, thus offering the best game views.
How to get to Lake Mburo National Park
Lake Mburo National Park is approximately 240 kilometers/3-4 hours’ drive west of Kampala City and only 30 kilometers east of Mbarara Town. It can be reached by air or road.
Two routes lead tourists from Kampala to Lake Mburo National Park, the first one being Kampala-Masaka-Mbarara road branching at Sanga gate (about 37 kilometers from Mbarara Town) and the second one branches from Lyantonde (through Nshara gate)