Are you thinking about visiting and exploring Lake Mburo National park? This post will give you an idea of what to expect and guide you as you plan the trip.
Lake Mburo National park is the second smallest park in Uganda and most accessible park. I’ve visited twice, once for a cycling safari and later for a walking safari. Lake Mburo is also the only place you will find horse-back safaris. Plan for at least a day here if you’ve run out of time, as that should be enough…
About Lake Mburo National Park
It is located conveniently close to the highway that connects Kampala to the parks on the western side of Uganda. An idea is to combine the park with either Bwindi Impenetrable National park, Lake Mutanda and Lake Bunyonyi. Many often drive past the park, but I’d advice venturing into this park for a day to explore what it has to offer
From Kampala, this is the most accessible park and is a three and half hour drive.
As a nature lover, this park made it to my list for its compact nature. The possibility to experience a walking safari, where we interacted with wildlife like zebra, elands, oribi, hippo, topi and reed buck made it worthwhile. The local Ankole cattle are famous for their long horns and graze around the park.
For the cycling safari which is done outside the borders of the park, you still get a chance to see some of the above listed wildlife, however, not as many as whilst you walk inside the park.
Depending on your accommodation, after either your cycling, walking or horseback safari can wind down around an open fire, sipping on a cold drink from the bar with sounds or sights of impala, the occasional hippo just yards away.
40% of the land belongs to the park and 60% was given to the people to settle with their cattle.
There have been conflicts between the people in the community and the park mostly regarding competition between the wild animals and their cattle to graze. The park authorities are trying to sensitize the people on the value of the park and 20% of all park fees collected go back to the community.
Drive with friends or hire a driver. The best route is to use the nshara gate, where you might see my wildlife on your way, go past Lyatonde.
Opt for the Sanga gate if you are using a boda-boda or other public means. I know of two guys who rode their bikes all the way to the national park from Kampala- a whole other level in my opinion, but interesting to know that it can be done. It will be 40 km from Mbarara.
This luxury lodge is outside the park, with some gorgeous landscape views of the savannah and community land. There is an actual rock, which many have used as a destination for weddings and special occasions. Worth the visit if you only have a few minutes to admire the views.
Mburo Safari Lodge
This lodge is immersed in nature, with views of the savannah and offers mid-range and budget options. The food and atmosphere is great and I can definitely recommend it.
Leopard Rest Camp
Is a budget campsite, that two people I know visited and had only good things to say.
Fun Activities In The Park
On a morning game drive it’s highly likely that you will encounter zebras, impalas and giraffes and stand a chance to see buffalo, elands and hyenas along with a variety of bird species. The park has 315 bird species and 68 mammal species.
Mburo Delta boat trip
You can take this relaxing two-hour boat trip, to view more animals on the rich eastern banks of Lake Mburo. You are bound to spot crocodiles, buffalo, hippos some colorful Kingfishers, magnificent Fish Eagles and more…Lake Mburo is one of the only spots to see some very rare bird species including the Shoebill Story & African Finfoot.
Cycling, Walking and Horseback Safaris:
Lake Mburo is the best place to do these three unique types of safaris, where you get to experience the wildlife in an intimate way. I did my walking safari with Mburo Safari Lodge, and our cycling safari was organized by Rwakobo.
Extra Tips From Other Travellers
- I highly recommend taking a bus or hiring a car.
- Find out the prices of the activities before you set off.
- Review your packing list
Have you been to Lake Mburo National park? What were your thoughts? Are there additional tips you would add? I’d love to hear from you 🙂