Murchison Falls National Park in the north-west of the country is Uganda’s largest national park, and together with adjoining wildlife reserves forms a vast wilderness covering over 5 000 km2. It is home to a wide variety of wildlife, forest primates and 450 bird species.
The mighty Nile, the longest river in the world, flows through the heart of the park for a distance of 120 km, on its 6 500 km journey from Lake Victoria to Egypt and the Mediterranean Sea. The park’s centrepiece is the explosive, 40-metre high Murchison Falls where the Nile is forced through an 8-metre gap in the Rift Valley escarpment. Downstream, the Nile flows quietly towards Lake Albert which it enters through a large papyrus delta. It is this peaceful 40 km stretch of river which provides the park’s prime wildlife spectacle and where we explore.
Chimpanzee tracking in nearby Budongo Forest is available, and definitely worthwhile spending an extra day for, and bird-watchers will be delighted by the variety of localised species including Shoebill Stork. For the fishermen, there is the challenge of catching the massive Nile Perch.