Uganda Safari Lodges
Uganda safari lodges were once limited to very basic accommodations that provided little more than a one-night break for adventurous campers looking for a (hopefully) hot shower and (hopefully) comfortable bed. This was the case well into the 1990s, but the end of that decade saw great stability in a country once known for its brutal dictator and for widespread civil disorder. Luxury lodges and safari camps were built in many of the country’s national parks and wildlife reserves, and basic campsites were spruced up with comfortable bandas, walk-in tents, and even dining rooms and bars. Today, you will find a variety of choices in almost all national parks.
Lodges in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
Set in southwest Uganda and known for its population (about 340 animals) of critically endangered mountain gorillas, Bwindi protects one of the world’s most biologically diverse ecosystems and is one of Uganda’s three UNESCO World Heritage Sites. On the high end of the scale here is beautiful Sanctuary Gorilla Forest Camp (pictured above). While there are a couple less pricey options, like Buhoma Lodge, these are not cheap options for two reasons. First, the permit just to enter the park is quite expensive—between $350 and $500 per person per day. Second, because there is a strict limit on the size of groups that can visit the gorillas at any given time, it is not practical to have lodges with high capacity. A total of about 16 guests is the maximum for both luxury and budget properties.
Murchison Falls National Park Lodges
One of the finest five-star Uganda safari lodges is located in Murchison Falls National Park, which is home to all of the Big Five (elephant, rhinoceros, buffalo, leopard, and lion) and which provides some of the best whitewater rafting in Africa. There is both lake and river environment here, and another popular activity other than safaris and rafting is fishing. Luxurious Chobe Safari Lodge is set on a gentle slope overlooking the River Nile; you can soak in the three-tier swimming pool and observe hippo in the river below. There are elegant guest rooms, luxury tents, and an opulent Presidential cottage. Of course, the lodge offers wildlife safaris, but freshwater sport fishing is also popular. Species include the huge Nile perch (the record is 237 pounds), catfish, and the small but fierce tiger fish.
Queen Elizabeth National Park Lodges
This beautiful national park was established in 1954 and named for the then newly-crowned Queen of England. It is set amongst the magnificent Ruwenzori Mountains (known as the legendary “Mountains of the Moon”) along the border with Rwanda and along the shores of Lake George and Lake Edward. This is one of three UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Uganda. Wildlife (except for rhino) is plentiful here, including leopards, black-maned and tree-climbing lions, elephant, and chimpanzees. Located overlooking the Kazinga channel, one of the finest Uganda safari lodges here is Mweya Safari Lodge. Here you can watch forest hog munch on the grass outside the lodge – and even the occasional hippo will wander up to graze. There are standard and deluxe rooms, as well as two suites and two cottages, two luxury and two standard tents, and a health spa. If you’re on a budget, you might try the Simba Safari Lodge, providing great views of the crater lakes gave the area the name “Mountains of the Moon.” Rooms are basic, but clean and comfortable, and there is a good restaurant.
Safari Lodges in Kibale Forest National Park
This beautiful park is covered with tropical rainforest and is popular for chimpanzee trekking. More than 1,400 are protected inside the park, and sometimes trekking to find them can be almost as arduous as going in search of mountain gorillas. Here, Chimps’ Nest is one of the best lodging options. Chimps and other monkeys (including the threatened red colobus and rare l’hoesti money) as well as forest elephants frequent the property. The property offers a range of choices, including double and family cottages, a romantic tree house in the forest, budget backpacker rooms, and a campsite.
Kampala Uganda is the country’s capital and largest city. It is located in th...
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest boasts one of the names that evoke the mystery and...
Murchison Falls National Park is located about a three-hour drive north of th...