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Queen Elizabeth National Park

One of the most popular savannah reserves in the country, Queen Elizabeth National Park features a wide variety of wildlife and offers a variety of habitats including lakes, wetlands, grassland savannah, and forests. It is an ideal setting for many primates and large mammals. You will have a chance to see four of the Big five here at Queen Elizabeth National Park. Only Rhino are absent.

Scenery

Queen Elizabeth National Park is conveniently set against a backdrop of the Ruwenzori Mountains. Some of the other scenic points include Kazinga Channel right between Lake George and Lake Edward and more than 10 crater lakes. Open savannah is the easiest part of the park to get to. However, the public has access to the large forests such as Maramagambo forest and Kyambura Gorge.

Wildlife

You will have a chance to spot buffalos and elephants, as well as lions. Unfortunately, giraffes and zebras are absent, but hyenas can be occasionally spotted. Several interesting species of antelopes can be seen here including bushbuck, topi, and Uganda Kob. Kazinga channel is home to hippos and crocodiles, while chimpanzees have been habituated for tracking. You will also find nine more primate species including the black-and-white colobus monkey.

Head out to the Ishasha sector to see tree-climbing lions. Giant forest hog can also be easily spotted in the park and buffalos are often reddish-brown because they inbreed with the forest buffalos from Congo. If you are interested in Chimp tracking, go to the steamy forest of Kyambura Gorge.

Best Time to Visit

Queen Elizabeth National Park is open throughout the year. The dry season that lasts from January to February and June to July is the best time for wildlife viewing. You can also visit the park in the wet season from March to May and August to December. Keep in mind that heavy rain might influence the quality of your safari during this time of year.

Dry season –December to February and June to July

  • December to February and June to July: Expect to find plenty of sunshine and little rain during these months. It can also get really hot in the dry season, but nights are chilly and ideal for sleeping.

Wet season – March to May and August to December

  • March, April, and May: Expect less rain in March and more rainfall in April and May.
  • August, September, October, and November: These four months are known to be the wettest season of the year. October brings heavy rain, while the temperature usually increases in November.

Getting There

Located around 410km/255mi from Kampala, Queen Elizabeth National Park can be reached in about 6 hours. Keep in mind that the itinerary usually includes visits to the parks on the way. You can also take a flight to nearby airstrips of Ishasha, Mweya, and Kasese by a charter or scheduled aircraft from Entebbe International Airport or Kajjansi Airfield.

Tourists will land at the Entebbe International Airport (EBB), which is located about 46km/29mi from the capital city of Kampala. In most cases, the tour operator arranges pick-ups from the airport and organizes further transportation as part of the safari package.

Domestic Flights

There are domestic flights between Ugandan parks which are usually arranged by your tour operator.

  • Fly Uganda (daily flights from Kajjansi Airfield to Pakuba Airfield)
  • Aerolink (Entebbe to Pakuba, Chobe and Bugundu Airfields)
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