Lake Mburo National Park is the nearest park from Kampala the Uganda capital, its located in the western part of the country, conveniently close to the main highway that connects Kampala to the western part of the country. The park is believed to be the smallest savannah national park in Uganda occupying about 260sqkm and was named after the Lake Mburo the fresh water late which is found in the middle of the park.
Together with 13 different lakes in this same region, Lake Mburo forms part of a 50km-long wetland system connected by a swamp and 5 of these lakes are found within the national park borders. With over 350 rare species of birds, the national park turned into a famous bird lovers’ paradise. The park is also home to other interesting wildlife like Hippos, Zebra, Crocodiles, buffalo, oribi, panther, Defassa waterbuck, hyena, hippo, reedbuck and many others.
A safari to this park is never complete without a boat cruise on this fresh water late blessed with amazing wildlife.
This ongoing Domestic Tourism campaign Uganda, named Uganda Travel Month got me to this park.
We arrived at the park entrance at around 12:35pm following 4 hour drive from Kampala. Normal time taken for this journey is always lesser than that yet we made a few stopovers en route, spending most of the time enjoying the beauty of country particularly at the Equator.
As we drive around the national park, we see tamed cows grazing in peace with impalas and zebras. The front part of the park is shared between wild animals and domestic animals.
Lake Mburo National Park was initially gazetted in 1933 as a Controlled Hunting Area and become a Game Reserve in 1963. The Banyankole-Bahima inhabitants kept on graze their cows in the Reserve until it was upgraded to National Park level in 1983.
The local people who were living in the park were expelled without compensation or resettlement, a situation that made them remain unfriendly to the development.
Lake Mburo National Park is among the parks in the country that have suffered conflicts from the local people although the current government has tries to curb them, for the most part through income sharing and remuneration.
The park in any case still boasts of rare animal species like elands, impalas and amazing the variety of birds that can be watched on the shores of Lake Mburo.
Having arrived at the park in the afternoon, we took a game drive first before we returned to the lodge at Arcadia cottages. The lodge is made for mainly cottages spread out in the encompassing bushes to give a tourist via feel of nature.
It’s a nippy Sunday morning the main thing left on my check list was a boat cruise and obviously the different species of birds that I had learnt about.