Queen Elizabeth National Park is Uganda’s most visited game reserve and definitely the most scenic. The park features a big choice of habitats including savanna grassland mixed with various kinds of trees and grassy plains, but also tropical rainforest, different swamps and volcanic features, comprising volcanic cones and deep craters.
Queen Elizabeth National Park is a superb place to sight massive game, track the chimpanzees within the Kyambura Gorge, go bird watching on the Kazinga Channel, and see the renowned tree climbing lions in Ishasha.
Animals in Queen Elizabeth NP
The wide variety of habitats in Queen Elizabeth NP leads to many different of species finding their home there. The park includes almost a hundred types of mammals, dozens of different reptiles, and more than 600 different types of birds. The park is home to large groups of hippos, buffaloes, elephants, lions, leopards, but also to smaller mammals like antelope, warthogs, giant forest hogs, topis, bushbucks and hyena’s. A host of primate species like baboons, red tailed monkeys and the famous chimpanzee also roams the territory of this park.
In the Ishasha sector of the park you can see the famous tree-climbing lions. Some tracks in the park pass through large mating grounds of great herds of Uganda kob. The big number of different bird species makes this park a must for birders visiting Uganda. Thrill Expeditions Ltd offers safaris in Queen Elizabeth National Park!
Boat Safari on the Kazinga Channel
Connecting Lake Edward with Lake George, the wide, 32-km-long Kazinga Channel is a superb place to experience nature in Queen Elizabeth Park. The channel attracts a rich array of animals and birds, with one of the world’s largest concentrations of hippos and numerous Nile crocodiles.
Along the banks, you will see other typical Ugandan wildlife like elephants, antelopes and buffaloes from the surrounding savannah while they are drinking and searching for some fresh grass. Birders can easily spot 60 species of birds during a boat trip including the great white and pink-backed Pelicans, African shoebill, yellow-billed stork and long-tailed cormorants.
Chimpanzee tracking in the Kyambura Gorge
The Kyambura Gorge – also referred to as the ‘Valley of Apes’ – is found within the far eastern corner of Queen Elizabeth National Park. The gorge is drained by the Kyambura River and includes some of the most impressive landscapes you will find in Uganda. The area is a very important water source for many animals and is enclosed by savannah, but is generally noted for its high concentration of primate life.
Spanning a distance of 16 km and linking to the Kazinga Channel, the gorge is another world on his own. The rich tropical rainforest is home to a variety of wildlife. Here you will find chimpanzees, baboons, colobus, vervet, and red-tailed monkeys as well as many other mammals and birds.
Tree-Climbing Lions in Ishasha
The Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park lies within the southern part of the park and is home to the famous tree-climbing lions. While lion cubs globally frequently climb trees for fun, adults rarely do. In Ishasha it’s thought that they sit within the branches to get away from the tsetse flies and to enjoy a cool breeze.
But Ishasha offers more than arboreal felines. Buffalo and Uganda kob can be seen when driving over the plains and even elephants are frequently seen in the area, but they tend to be quite aggressive since they have probably just migrated from the Virunga National Park just across the border in Congo where poaching the a serious threat.
Landscapes in Queen Elizabeth NP
The rolling grasslands are set against the backdrop of the jagged, snow- capped Rwenzori Mountains making the breathtaking landscapes a photographer’s dream. Lake Edward as well as the much shallower Lake George are frequently visited by local fishermen, and small crater lakes are home to many buffalo and flocks of pink flamingo.