Queen Elizabeth National Park is situated in the Southwestern part of Uganda in the districts of Kasese, just about 6-7 hours drive from the capital city Kampala or arrangements can be made to go by a charter flight to Kasese air strip from there you can be picked up and transfer you to the park. Queen Elizabeth national park is considered as the 2nd largest Uganda national park covering an area of about 1, 978 sq. km including a remarkable 57 varieties of eco-systems, from semi-deciduous tropical forest to green meadows, savannah and swamps. The area of the park extends from Lake George in the northeast to Lake Edward in the southwest, and includes the Kazinga Channel that connects the two lakes. The park is named after Queen Elizabeth of England and was established in 1954 to protect world life being hunted by poachers. 95 mammal species has been recorded here, the highest for any Ugandan national park. It is the only park in Uganda to house the famous tree climbing lions, the Uganda kob and other antelope species, elephant, buffaloes, hippo, the rare giant Hog, as well as chimpanzees, baboons, Black and white Colobus Monkeys among other primates. Over 612 bird species have been sighted in Queen Elizabeth, making this park truly unique for it has one of the highest numbers in the world for such a relatively small reserve to mention some include eleven types of kingfishers, Lappet-faced Vultures, black bee-eater, palm-nut, African skimmer, pick-backed pelicans, the rare shoebill stork to mention but a few
Activities within and outside the park
Game drive: the park is gifted with over 95 mammal species of which most of them are rare to other national parks. Game drives can be arranged in the north kasenyi plains or north kazinga where the highest concentration of animal species is high. During the game drive informative explanations can be given to visitors and animals expected to see include elephants, buffaloes, Uganda kobs, antelope species, the rare giant Hogs, leopards among other animal species, and the tree climbing lions can be seen in the southern sector of the park called Ishasha sector
In the eastern section of the park is Kyambura Gorge where visitors can go down the 100m deep gorge through tropical forest and catch sight of a variety of primates, especially chimpanzees and olive Baboons.
Chimpanzee tracking is yet another thrilling activity done at the park. Chimps can be tracked in the kyambura Gorge or in the southeast, the Maramagambo forest provide a good sighting position, the park is a home to a variety of primate species coupled with chimpanzee the closest relative of man sharing almost 98% of human DNA, how ever other primate species such as baboons, black and white colobus monkey civet monkey can also be seen during the tracking plus a variety of birds. Informative information on all forest flora and fauna can be taught to visitors during the tracking.
Boat trip: Is another amazing activity at the park done along the kazinga channel that connects lakes George and Edward. While at the Lake you will be in position to see several species of animals in just meters such schools of hippos, crocodiles, buffaloes, and elephant along the water shores and plentiful of bird species that live and feed on the lake. The boat cruise takes about 2 hours while on the lake.
In the Ishasha sector south of the park, visitors can move through the woodlands in search of tree-climbing lions perched on the branches of ancient fig trees. In the southeast, the Maramagambo forest offers opportunities to see primates including Chimpanzees, Black-and-white Colobus and other monkeys.
Nature walks in the maramagambo forest provide a platform for primate watch, viewing various bird species among other forest flora and fauna
Where to stay:
Mweya Safari Lodge, Jacana Safari Lodge, Katara Lodge- luxury/ Kyambura Game Lodge, Ihamba Safari Lodge, King Fisher Lodge-mid range/ Samba safari Camp, Bush Lode, Enganzi Lodge, Ishasha Wilderness Camp, Ecology Institute –budget.