Uganda is a small country in East Africa set on the shores of Lake Victoria and bordered by Kenya. It is a beautiful country known as “The Pearl of Africa,” blessed with friendly hospitable people, an abundance of wildlife, and spectacular scenery within the landscapes of some of the most legendary names in Africa. Uganda travel for pleasure declined dramatically during the 1970s and the reign of the infamous dictator Idi Amin. Throughout the 1980s and well into the 1990s, there was war with Tanzania, civil unrest, and incursions from violent factions from Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The wildlife suffered as well as the people of Uganda, and their numbers were dramatically lowered. Rhinos, for instance, were completely eradicated in Uganda.
However, the end of the 1990s saw an upsurge in Uganda travel due to political stability, increased security, and intensive movements to rehabilitate the decimated Uganda wildlife population. Today, there are many Uganda safari lodges in most of the varied national parks that cater to both upscale clients and budget backpackers. At Murchison Falls National Park, you can now view all five of the "Big Five" safari animals: elephant, buffalo, lion, leopard, and even rhino. The first rhinoceros born in the country since the 1960s, was born in the rhino sanctuary here in 2009, and the country has a long term plan to release 40 to 50 of the animals into the wild by 2040.
Murchison Falls and the river than flows there from Lake Victoria (source of the mighty Nile River that flows north to Egypt) also provides some of the best whitewater rafting in Africa as well as excellent sport fishing. At Lake Victoria, near the Uganda capital city of Kampala is more sport fishing, beautiful beaches, and pleasure cruises for lunch and to admire the sunsets. The vibrant city of Kampala itself has some wonderful attractions, including one of the country’s three UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Tombs of the Buganda Kings at Kasubi.
Another UNESCO World Heritage Sites is the hauntingly beautiful Ruwenzori Mountains National Park filled with beautiful crater lakes that gave it the nickname “Mountains of the Moon.” This lovely landscape within the highest mountain range in Africa, you can observe everything from lions and elephants to hippo grazing on the grass outside your lodge. At Kibale National Park, covered in lush rainforest, you can book treks to find some of the more 1,400 chimpanzees living in the wild.
While Uganda has now become a popular traditional destination for African safaris, most people who embark on Uganda travel do so to view the crown jewel of primates: the critically endangered mountain gorilla. These gentle giants live in the mountainous rainforests on the mountain slopes of Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park of Uganda. In addition to gorillas, the park hosts 45 other primates and a host of other wildlife. Many people have to trek for hours under strenuous conditions to find mountain gorillas. If you stay at Sanctuary Gorilla Forest Camp, you may be lucky enough to have a gorilla group wander right through the lodge grounds. Bwindi is deservedly Uganda’s third UNESCO World Heritage Site.