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Murchison Falls National Park

Murchison Falls National Park

Murchison falls National Park located in the North Western region of Uganda and  named by Roderick Murchison, President of the Royal Geographical Society during various periods between 1843 and 1871.

About this park

It is the largest National park in Uganda covering an area of 3,840sqkm. It has a variety of wildlife of about 76 mammal species such as  Lions, Leopards, Elephants, Giraffes, Buffaloes, Uganda kobs, Bush bucks, Chimpanzees. And also Primates like black and white colobus monkeys, red tailed monkeys, blue monkeys, red colobus monkeys, L’Hoest monkeys. Various bird species of about 451 like the grey crowned crane, the rare shoe bill, giant kingfisher, Giant heron, marabou stork, black headed lapwing, black bellied bustard, Nightjars among other bird species.

The Park  bisected by the Victoria Nile from East to West for a distance of about 115km as it makes its way through multiple rapids and waterfalls to Lake Albert. Thus making it an ideal place for a boat trip on the Nile to see the World’s most powerful waterfall and also a variety of wildlife. On the extreme edge of the rift, the Nile squeezes itself through an 8m ravine with a thundering force, finally tumbling 50 meters down to form the Murchison Falls.

Murchison Falls National Park is home to the most powerful waterfall and the most Iconic feature the Murchison Falls. This waterfall formed as the Nile River forces itself out through a narrow 8m gorge creating a dramatic 43m drop and a Spectacular Natural spectacle. The park  filled with savannah plains, forests and woodlands as well as woodlands. The first European explorers to visit the area were John Speke and James Grant in 1862 and just one year later, Samuel and Florence Baker arrived and spent much of 1863–64 getting to know the region.

Largely consists of Savannah grasslands, woodlands, open plains and wetlands. The Park is part of the wider Murchison Falls Conservation area that also includes Karuma Falls and Bugungu Wildlife Reserves. Murchison Falls National Park has large forests like Budongo, Rabongo and Kaniyo Pabidi. All three forests known for hosting various bird and primates species like Chimpanzees, blue monkeys, olive baboons, black and white colobus monkeys. Kaniyo Pabidi mainly contains large mahogany and ironwood trees.


Activities in Murchison Falls National Park

There are various activities that can spice up your Safari to Murchison Falls National Park and they include;

Game Drives

Game drives in Murchison Falls National Park is the most exciting activity and it enables you to get up close to the prolific mammal species the park has to offer. This amazing activity can be done early in the morning from 6:30 am to 9:30 am, in the afternoon from 3pm to 6pm, Night game drives and also full day game drives but the best time to do a game drive is early in the morning when the early risers are still active. The Game drives can be done along different trails of the park like Buligi, Victoria and Albert trails.


Boat Cruise

A Boat Cruise is a must-do activity in Murchison Falls National Park and it offers a unique perspective of the park majestic natural beauty, wildlife and the magnificent Murchison Falls. Boat Cruises can be done upstream to the Bottom of the fall and Downstream to the Delta point.



Birding in Murchison Falls National Park can be done during game drives and boat cruises. This allows tourists to see aquatic birds, forest birds especially within the Budongo Forest, Savannah birds and different Albertine Rift Endemics. The bird species you will encounter for instance  Abyssinian ground hornbills, Giant Kingfishers, Secretary birds, Swallow-tailed Bee-eaters,  Red-throated bee-eaters, Black-bellied Bustards, Malachite Kingfishers, Pied Kingfishers, Open-billed Storks, the Ituri batis, Widow birds and Ducks, the elusive shoebill and Plovers which are mainly sighted by the riverbanks.


Hiking and Nature Walks

Nature walks  done within Rabongo Forest and Budongo Forest where you will sight different bird species and primates like Chimpanzees and monkeys.  Furthermore, hiking up to the Murchison Falls is an adventurous activity that truly rewards visitors with incredible views of the Park.


Balloon Safaris

Balloon Safaris in Murchison falls National Park gives tourists an opportunity to achieve total satisfaction as they have to rise at dawn to experience the sun rise then fly over the Park to see several wildlife species like Elephants, giraffes, Antelopes, buffaloes and predators such as lions and leopards as they return from the night hunt. Hot air balloon safaris in Murchison falls National Park start at 5:00 am from Paraa on the northern bank of the river. After landing, those on full package get to enjoy a complete setting of a bush breakfast.


Chimpanzee Tracking

Chimpanzee Tracking  also done in Murchison falls National Park from Kaniyo Pabidi Site and Busingiro site of Budongo Forest Reserve.  However, this activity within Budongo Forest conducted by the Jane Goodall Research Institute and done in the morning and afternoon.


When to Visit

The best time to visit Murchison Falls National Park is during the dry seasons from December to late February and also from June to September when animals are concentrated around the water points.


How to Get to Murchison Falls National Park

The park reached by Road and Air.

By Road, accessed via Kampala-Gulu highway to reach the Northern gates about 305km and via the Southern gates about 260km.

By Air, Murchison Falls National Park  accessed via Pakuba Airfield which is 19km from North Paraa. Reached using chartered flights from Entebbe International Airport or Kajjansi Airfield near Kampala. Other airfields in the Park include Chobe Airfield to the East and also Bugungu to the south of Paraa.


Murchison Falls Entry Gates

Murchison Falls National Park accessed through various Entry Gates and they are;

Kichumbanyobo Gate


Mubako gate.

Chobe gate




Accommodations in Murchison Falls National Park

Accommodations in Murchison Falls National Park gives Visitors a Comfortable stay during their Stay in the Park.

Luxury Accommodations

Chobe Safari Lodge

Paraa Safari Lodge

Nile Safari Lodge

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