Queen Elisabeth National Park is understandably Uganda’s most popular tourist destination.
The park’s diverse ecosystems, which include sprawling savanna, shady, humid forests, sparkling lakes and fertile wetlands, make it the ideal habitat for classic big game, ten primate species including chimpanzees and over 600 species of birds.
Set against the backdrop of the jagged Rwenzori Mountains, the park’s magnificent vistas include dozen of enormous craters carved dramatically into rolling green hills, panoramic views of the Kazinga Channel with its banks lined with hippo, buffalos and elephants, anche the endless Ishasha plains, whose fig trees hide lions ready to pounce on herds of unsuspecting Uganda kob.
As well as its outstanding wildlife attractions, Queen Elisabeth National Park has a fascinating cultural history.
There are many opportunities for visitors to meet the local communities and enjoy storytelling, dance, music and more.
The park was founded in 1952 as Kazinga National Park, and renamed two years later to commemorate a visit by Queen Elisabeth II.
What to do in Queen Elisabeth National Park
Classified as Important Birding Area (IBA), Queen Elisabeth National Park has the highest number of bird species in Uganda.
The great variety of habitats mean that the park is home to over 600 species of birds, a phenomenal number for such a small area.
The park’s confluence of savanna and forest, linking to the expansive forests of the Democratic Republic of Congo allow visitors to spot East as well as Central African species.
The forest Kyambura Gorge experience is more than discovering chimpanzees in their natural environment: it teaches visitors about the ecosystems of Kambura Gorge’s atmospheric “underground” rainforest, including vegetation types, bird identification and behavior, and chimp and monkey ecology.
The Queen Elisabeth National Park is famous for its tree-climbing lions and a classic safari experience offer virtually guaranteed buffalo, antelopes and elephant sightings, along with warthogs and baboons.
Taking an experienced guide in the early morning or at dusk is the most successful way to track down a pride of lions, and maybe even the shy leopard.
The Kazinga Channel is an oasis for many of the fascinating species that inhabit the Queen Elisabeth National Park and taking a boat tour along it gives visitors the chance to cruise just meters from hundreds of enormous hippos and buffalos while elephants linger on the shoreline.