Lake Mburo National Park

Lake Mburo National Park is the smallest scenic savannah park and the closest to both Kampala and Entebbe International Airport taking only 3 hours’ drive. The park was blessed with various wildlife species which are not easily seen elsewhere in Uganda. Some of them include the Burchell’s zebra, impala and other wildlife including the Rothschild giraffe, defassa waterbuck, buffaloes mention but a few. Although the park is small, it is a must visit if you are interested in walking safaris, bird watching tours and photography trips. Lake Mburo national park has various habitats which range from wooded savannah, seasonal and permanent swamps, acacia woodland, bushy thickets, rocky outcrops, dry hillsides among the rest.

lake mburo wildlife


Location of Lake Mburo National Park

The park is situated in the southwestern part of Uganda. Its size is approximately 260 square kilometers laying at an altitude of 1220m to 1828m above the sea level. The park is a neighbor to the 4 districts of Uganda that is Mbarara city, Isingiro, Lyantonde and Kiruhura. Lake Mburo is the only park which is close to the president’s home town in Kiruhura district, only a 2hours drive to the president’s home in Nyabushozi Kiruhura district.

Wildlife in Lake Mburo National Park

Lake Mburo National Park is gifted with over 68 mammal species and best known for the  Impala though it has a variety of other wildlife  like the buffaloes, leopards, hippos, elands, zebras, deffasa waterbuck, hyena, crocodiles, reedbuck, oribs mention but a few. The park host over 315 different bird species including the famous shoebill, crested crane, crested francolin, emerald-spotted wood dove, barefaced go-away bird, common quails, Nubian woodpecker, brown parrot, pelican, heron, marabou stork, African fin foot among the rest. You can’t miss spotting any of the named animals during game drives accept the elephant and rhino, birds because the park is suitably located and perfectly angulated.

mburo leopards

Activities in Lake Mburo National Park

Bird watching

The vegetation in Lake Mburo national park favors the spotting of the birds. The park has over 315 bird species which make it the perfect birding destination in the country. The best spots for birds are next to swampy places like the Rwonyo jetty, Warukiri plus other viewing platforms which overlooks the salt lick. Birds to be spotted in the park include the red-shouldered cuckoo-shrike, long-tailed cisticola, grey crowned crane, Rufous-bellied heron, white headed barbet, bateleur, black-bellied bastard among others. With the help of a warden, you can be escorted to Rubanga forest on foot because there are high chances of viewing the African fin-foot and the red-faced barbet.

birds of lake mburo

Boat safaris

Boat safari can be easily done in Lake Mburo national park because Lake Mburo is mainly found in the park. Animals in the park get water throughout the year therefore sighting them is easy compared to other safari parks. You can grab a chance to explore the beauty of the park at a distance. During a boat safari you can view both the bird and animal life. Bird lovers can get chance to clear view of the magnificent fish eagle, African fin-foot, malachite kingfishers, hamerkop plus the rare shoebill.

boat cruise in lake mburo park

Nature and forest walks

Nature walks in Lake Mburo national park are carried out with the help of a game ranger. He has the knowledge to locate where animals are like the salty rocks. Walking safari is done very early in the morning at around 7am to the western part of the lake. Here you can get a chance to view the hyenas coming back to their dens and hippos going to the water source. Woodlands and forests give you the opportunity to a clear view of the birds. Nature and forest walk is a rewarding safari activity since you have to walk up to the top of the hill and have an amazing view of the 9regions of 14 lakes in the park.

nature walks in Mburo

Sport fishing

Sport fishing is done in a place called Mazinga in Lake Mburo national park. Uganda Wildlife Authority designated that place for sport fishing activities only. It has six fish species including the common fish species the Tilapia. One is only accepted to carry out sport fishing activity if he has a fishing permit which is got from the Uganda Wildlife Authority head offices or you can contact us and we help you get it. You have to carry sport fishing activities in case you are interested in the safari.

Horseback safaris

During this horseback safari you can grab chance to watch the wildlife closer to nature minus any form of noise from the engine which alerts the animal and run to hide in most cases. You can enjoy the amazing experience and also feel the nature in its natural state. You view different animal species depending on the time of year and weather and the animals are the bush back, topi, elands, zebras, duiker, warthogs, waterbuck including the only Impala which are not found elsewhere in other tourist destinations.

lake mburo horse ride.

Community walks and cultural experiences

Lake Mburo national park is surrounded by a group of people called the Hima. They are cattle keepers and carry out different activities which you can also practice like you can try the processing of the milk which they get from cows and make other various by products, try their cultural dances, craft making, and storytelling and also get the opportunity of testing their traditional meals.

Attractions in Lake Mburo National Park

Game tracks

The park has various game tracks on the eastern hinterland where various animal and bird species can be found. Its hill top view point gives you a panoramic view of the park including its five lakes.  During game tracks attract more travelers in a large number to this national park.

Rubanga forest

Travelers who prefer guided nature walk in rubanga forest get a great taste of true African tropical forest. Lake Mburo has a closed canopy which harbors 40 of the park’s bird species plus a viewing platform for travelers. Bird species in Rubanga forest include the Harrier Hawk, green pigeon, Narina trogon, double toothed barbet, grey backed cameroptera among the rest. You are advised to hire an armed ranger guide who can protect, safe guard and identify for you different bird species while in the African jungle.

Lake Mburo

Lake Mburo is known as the natural refuge for flora and fauna and most of its animals are viewed when coming to drink water. Some animals live around the lake and others in the lake like the hippos and the crocodiles. Resident lakes can also be spotted around the lake like the malachite kingfisher, herons, hammer-like headed hammerkop, large pelicans, eagles, African fish, skillful pied kingfishers and the cormorants.

Getting to Lake Mburo National Park

Accessing the park is easy and quick since the park is near the capital city Kampala. You can reach the park through the use of road transport which is around 4 hours’ drive. If you don’t want to travel long journeys, you can decide to just fly in to the park through the use of chartered flights. You fly in from Entebbe International Airport or Kajjansi Airfield to Mbarara airstrip which takes half an hour making it the easiest way to the park.

Accommodation in Lake Mburo National Park

Lodges in Lake Mburo national park are categorized in form of luxury, budget and mid-range. The park has the cheap and affordable lodges among all the national parks of Uganda. Lodges in Lake Mburo national park include the following;

Budget lodges; Eagles Nest lodge, Rwonyo rest camp

Luxury lodges; Lake Mburo safari lodge, Mihingo lodge

Mid-range lodges; Arcadia cottages, Rwakobo rock lodge, Montana tented camp

All these lodges give you the best services which meets all you desires. There accommodation is not a problem to travelers visiting Lake Mburo national park.

Best time to visit Lake Mburo National Park

The park is open to visitors throughout the year though it is better to visit it during the dry season. Dry season has the best weather since no much rain which may inconvenience you during the game drive and nature walk. The dry months include the months of the mid-year in June to August and December to February. During this period you can have a clear view of the wildlife species.

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