Is it okay that I’m still day dreaming about the weekend Arthur and I set off for Kyambura to explore the gorge in the western part of Uganda? It was a smooth 5 hour drive to our destination; Parkview Safari Lodge where we spent the weekend with views in the savannah in a neatly kept garden with all kinds of plants.
Making a repeat trip to Queen Elizabeth was worth it to discover new places and go Chimp tracking.
We had a relaxed evening after the drive, a 15 minute nap, my plans to-go-to-the-pool turned into soaking in the bath tub whilst listening to The Minimalists podcast. By the time we had dinner, Arthur and I were refreshed and now joined other guests that had arrived from their safari to devour the buffet.
The morning started with a walk down to the shores of the twin lakes, where I got to learn more about the formation of the craters and the locals that use it. The young boys and fishermen from this area spend time relaxing here. It is believed that young boys are supposed to return home before sunset or might meet a ghost that will ask questions.
Before heading back to Park view for lunch, we passed by Nyanzi Ibiri, meaning two lakes. The lakes are separated by a road. So cool!
After a quick lunch, we drove to the chimp trekking starting point, not too far from Park View Lodge. We were joined by a couple from London on holiday touring Rwanda and Uganda. It was interesting to learn about their travels so far and as I’d forgotten my bug spray at the lodge, they were kind enough to give me some.
What to Wear When Chimp Trekking:
- Long sleeved top and trousers
- Lots of insect repellant especially in the dry season. There are tsetse flies here. Spray your whole body before dressing. Those things bite!
- Comfortable walking shoes
- A hat and sunscreen
We were briefed by the guide on what to do. Basically, remember to be very silent when tracking the chimps as their sounds are what helps detect where they are. It’s best to follow the guide’s directions, as there are wild animals here like hippos and elephants that enjoy the Gorge’s coolness and water by the river side. He carries a gun ready to shot and scare the animals in case they threaten to attack. It was amazing having our Park view guide with me and our helpful driver 🙂
I learned so much about Chimps here than anticipated, from their breeding to eating habits. Chimps from time to time chew leaves until they are absorbent and use these as a sponge, by dipping them into water and then suck-out the moisture. In addition, they use twigs or at times grass stems as tools and poke them into termite holes or ant nests; these are a delicacy for chimps. Chimps are swift climbers and set up their nests high in trees. They build new nests in just minutes by simply bending branches, interweaving them to create a platform as well as lining the ends with twigs.
We tracked these sneaky guys for over two hours and could not find them! They were probably watching us pass through the leafy paths snickering. Our tickets were valid for two days and we had the option of going back the next day, but unfortunately we had return to Kampala.
It was rewarding to return to Parkview for a dip in the pool after the hours of tracking chimps. The sun was now setting and I felt a little sad that we had to travel back tomorrow morning.
My room was neat and very clean with views of the savanna. The bed and pillows were extra soft making it irresistible for me to get out of bed for breakfast the next morning. I also enjoyed the shower, with a choice of either a bathtub or shower.
Parkview Safari Lodge offer massages, which I now regret not opting to try. I also passed by the conference room which looks good.
What I enjoyed learning about Parkview Safari Lodge, are their plans to set up an institution in the area to train more professional staff in the hospitality industry. The owner is willing to partner with other lodges around the area to start this initiative, which I feel would be golden for the people in the area, to receive training from professionals (both local and international) I’ll let you know how this goes as I plan on keeping track of their progress.
I love my self-assigned duty to share with you the beauty and progression in Uganda…every small step counts! I’m reminded with every trip how much potential each place has, how much we need to visit these places more and share them with the world!
Hoping for more adventures,