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Sempaya Hot Springs

Sempaya Hot Springs

The Sempaya hot springs are located in Semiliki National Park in the western district of Bundibugyo. About 70km from Fort Portal Town.

Semuliki National Park  one of the thick forested areas in Uganda, the forests also form part of the Great Ituri forests. That expands to some parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo. While on Uganda safaris to Semuliki Valley National Park, you will catch a glimpse at a variety of wildlife species. Including; elephants, civet, leopards, bush babies, pygmy antelopes, buffaloes, chimpanzees, scaly-tailed flying squirrel and many others.

The Hot Springs got its name from a Swahili word “Sehemu Mbaya” .This was because, it was difficult to penetrate the existing rocks. During the construction of Fort Portal – Bundibugyo road along the ridges of Rwenzori Mountains.

The Sempaya Hot springs has both the male and female hot springs. These unique springs have hot waters and high temperatures of up to 1000C. The male spring locally known as “Bintente” and is about 12 meters in width. Whereas The female spring  known as “Nyansimbi”. And it gushes out water approximately 2 meters in the air.

The powerful Sempaya hot springs lie within the Semuliki River Valley, in Semuliki National Park. And it features among the few unique touristic attractions that are still unexplored. The Semuliki River lies below the escarpment in Bundibugyo town. Sempaya hot springs are popular for their powerfulness. Their boiling temperatures can go up to 1030C with a spurt shelling of up to 2 meters from a wide hole of about 8 meters. As well as numerous micro-organisms.

Sempaya Hot springs scientifically a spiral made by an appearance of geothermal heated underground waters from the earth’s layer. The hotness of the rocks inside the earth upsurges with deepness. When the water infiltrates deep plentifully into the crust, it is heated as it touches the hot rocks. The Hot Springs are formed by fissures spreading deep towards the hot temperatures of the earth layers. And water trickling down is heated and enforced back up with much pressure that makes a bubble.


The Female Hot Springs

The Inner Female hot spring referred to as Nyasimbi by the local Bamaga tribe. And it is believed to be a sacred location of their female god. This hot spring is about 30 minutes’ walk off the main road into the beaten forest trails.

Once at the spring, it is thrilling to see steamy hot water boiling at about 1030C bubbling and coming out from the ground. Visitors here have the opportunity of boiling eggs and cooking matooke (plantain) in this hot waters. The female spring is of value to the local women of the community. Who go there to offer sacrifices and prayer to appease their female ancestor. The barren women also visit the spring for fertility and those who are pregnant pray. That the mother spirit grants them easy delivery during childbirth.


The Male Hot Springs

The Outer male hot spring referred to “Bintente” by the local Bamaga and is believed to be the sacred shrine of their male god. After an hour-long journey into the woodlands, you will find this hot spring. It is associated with wealth and sacrifices are offered by men with the aim of appeasing the male ancestral spirit in exchange for prosperity.

Besides the fascinating hot springs, a Uganda safari tour to Semuliki National Park has a lot to offer to the visitors and avid naturalist. The park has a variety of attractions and they include; Semuliki River which meanders through the mountains and away pouring its waters into Lake Albert. It also has the great Ituri Forest of the Congo basin, wetlands and woodlands which are a habitat to several bird species and wildlife and also the legendary Rwenzori Mountain ranges.