Wednesday, December 28, 2011
Dear madam, sir,
Last september and october we have visited Uganda and Tanzania. In Uganda we were impressed by the number and big variety of animals and beautifull birds we have spotted, most of the times very close by. Uganda has a lot to offer especially since the people are very friendly, great parks and wildlife to explore and the accomodations fairly priced.
As we had some wonderfull experiences with local tour operators and hotels especially in Uganda we would like to recommend them to you.
Via the internet we found Micheal of Sunlink Travel Adventures Ltd. We’d like to highly recommend him as he provided us with a well balanced six days safari including gorilla and chimpansee tracking, game drives in Queen Elizabeth National Park, and a visit to Kibali forest. It was absolutely great to have seen gorilla’s this close. The accomodations were very clean, comfortable and the staff very kind. But most of all our driver and guide Eddy, assisted by Evelyn made this trip a marvellous experience. Very good value!
Another trip to Jinja and Mbale with Sunlink travel adventures was well arranged by Micheal Kasadha, Mbale resort hotel turned out to be an very good hotel with good kitchen.
Last but not least New city annex hotel. Great value considering the prices for the rooms and the location in the center of the city. Moreover the restaurant of this hotel served very good food, in a nice ambience. The service and prices were more and better than we had estimated.
We hope that any of this information is usefull for your guides and internet websites.
|The main tourist products that will be packaged include:-
- Adventure Holidays
- Bird Watching
- Sport Fishing
- Walking and Trekking
- White Water Rafting
- Mountain Gorilla Tracking
- Game Drives in the Major Parks of East Africa.
|Sunlink Travel Adventures Ltd
Coline House , 3rd Floor
( New Wing)
P.o Box 11058,
Kampala - Uganda
+256 414 533770,
+256 712 840035,
+256 712 123715
|The Republic of Kenya is a country in East Africa. It is bordered by Ethiopia to the north, Somalia to the northeast, Tanzania to the south...
|At 364,875 mi2 (945,087 km2), Tanzania is the world's 31st-largest country (it comes after Egypt).
|She is a small landlocked country regarded as Land of a Thousand Hills and it's found in the Great Lakes region of east-central Africa.
| Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park
|Bwindi is found in South Western Uganda on the edge
of western rift valley. It covers an area of 321 square kilometers;
it also lies along the border of Uganda and the Democratic Republic
of Congo. The park is well known as the home of the world’s mountain
Uganda is ranked number one in the world as a destination to
experience the thrill of a mountain gorilla safari. Bwindi
Impenetrable Forest National Park in Uganda has been designated as a
world heritage site for the protection and conservation of these
Within Uganda there are, seven habituated Gorilla groups - Six in
Bwindi and one in the Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Each of the
habituated gorilla families is named where in Bwindi they are Mubare,
Habinyanja, Rushugura, Bitukura and Nkuringo.In Mgahinga the group
is named Nyakagezi and the Newest Group Nsongi on southern sector of
Today there are about 650- 700 gorillas left in the world, half of
which are found in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park alone.
The Bwindi Forest is described as impenetrable, due to its shear
density of vegetation and the vast area it covers. It’s no wonder
that in the local language “Bwindi” means a place of darkness
because of the thick vegetation, which indeed makes it look
The park is covered by the thick tropical afromontane forest with
dense under growth of fern and vines. There are over 324 species of
trees, 90 species of mammals, 11 species of primates, 360 species of
birds and 23 Albertine rift valley endemic species.
Bwindi's major tourist activities are gorilla tracking, bird
watching, forest walks and village walks. A maximum of eight
visitors may track each of the gorillas groups daily. The permit
tracking fee is $500- per person.
Where to stay
Accommodation may be found in Buhoma, Nkuringo and Ruhija at each of
the gateways to the park. Both Buhoma and Nkuringo are able to cater
for both up-market and budget travelers. Ruhija has limited
accommodation that is currently suitable for budget travelers.
| Kibale Forest National Park
|Kibale Forest National Park is to be found in
western Uganda and accessed through the town of Fort Portal. The
park adjoins the Queen Elizabeth National Park and is a very popular
ecotourism destination on the countries safari circuit. The park is
best known for its population of habituated chimpanzees. There are
many other species of primates including Baboons, Red columbus
monkey, L Hoest’s monkey, Black and white colobus monkeys that are
to be seen on guided nature walks in the forest.
The park can be visited throughout the year and covers an area of
776 square kms. With many different ecosystems within its boundaries
it is primarily endowed with thick rainforest cover where forest
Elephant’s roams. These animals are smaller in size than their
savannah counterparts and very elusive. Other species present
include Buffalo, Giant Forest Hog, and several species of secretive
antelope. There are over 335 species of birds where the extremely
rare Green Breasted Pitta would be regarded the highlight of any
visit. Butterflies are very numerous in the forest with excellent
knowledgeable guides to point them out to you.
The forest has a network of trails for chimpanzee trekking, bird
watching and nature walks. Bird watching activities are also
conducted at the Bigodi wetland sanctuary on the border of the
• Bird watching
• Chimpanzee trekking
• Forest walks
• Educational research
| Lake Mburo National Park
|The Park is located in west of Kampala covering an
area of about 370 square kms and is the smallest of Uganda’s
savannah national parks. The park harbors 68 different species of
mammals including Zebra, Impala, Eland, Topi and Buffalo. Leopards,
hyena and jackals are the predators that are present. The bird
population includes 315 species of birds including the rare Shoebill
stork, papyrus yellow warbler, African fin foot, saddle billed
stork, brown chested wattled plover, ground hornbill, and white wing
warbler. The beautiful landscape with grass hills and idyllic
lakeshore provides a varied mosaic of habitat with gallery forest,
rich acacia valleys, and seasonal and permanent swamp to support
this wealth of wildlife.
Within the boundary of park from where it takes its name is the lake
itself Lake Mburo. The lake is rich in diversity of animal, bird and
plant species. The best way to experience the lake is on one of
several boat trips conducted daily by the Uganda Wildlife Authority
with a competent guide. The activity enables visitors to see
crocodiles, hippos, and a many birds. Popular activities include a
guided walking safari, game drives and now it is also possible to
explore the park by a guided but self drive ATV (All terrain
The Rubanga Forest
Within the park the Rubanga forest is a very small but attractive to
the bird watchers. The forest though small, is a real high forest
with closed canopy. There are over 40 species of birds recorded 5 of
which are forest specialists and include Harrier hawk, Green pigeon,
Narina trogon, Grey-backed cameroptera and Double-toothed barbet.
| Mgahinga Gorilla National Park
|This is the smallest national park in Uganda
covering an area of 33.7 square kilometers. As you approach from the
east the huge cones of volcanoes start to dominate the landscape.
The region surrounding the park is primarily inhabited by Bafumbira
and a small population of Batwa peoples. The park is part of the
great Virunga conservation area covering the northern slopes of
three volcanoes, namely, Mt Muhavura 4,127 meters, Mt Sabinyo 3’645
metres and Mt Gahinga 3,474 metres. The park is bordered to the
south by Republic of Rwanda and to the west by Democratic Republic
of Congo. Each of these countries protects its own portion of the
Virunga range as a conservation area. The three parks together form
the 434 square kilometers of the Virunga Conservation Area.
There is one habituated gorilla group at Mgahinga known as the
Nyakagezi group which roams across the international borders that
make up the conservation area.
The Park experiences two wet rainy seasons; February - May and
September - December. The average monthly rainfall experienced being
250mm (October) and minimum is 10mm (July).
The most popular activity is gorilla tracking. Tracking in this park
depends on whether the gorillas are actually in the park. The
tracking fee is $500 per person. Golden Monkey (endemic) tracking
has evolved as a new experience only to be enjoyed in Mgahinga. The
activity costs $50 per person.
Ecosystem and Wildlife
Being a mountainous area, the park vegetation is afro montane with a
cool climate. The most abundant type of vegetation is the bamboo
(60%), which is a delicacy to the mountain gorillas. Other types of
flora include the Giant lobelia and Haegenia. Other primates found
in the park include: the threatened golden monkey, bushbucks, Forest
elephant and buffalo. The park is also a birder’s paradise with
about 79 species of birds including the beautiful Rwenzori turaco
and in the crater of Gahinga the Yellow tufted Malachite Sunbird.
One of the easier attractions to access in the park which was a
former shelter for the Batwa people where they once lived and fought
their Bantu neighbors. It’s about 3kms from the park headquarters to
the cave some 342m in length and 14m deep. Guided nature walks can
be arranged at the visitor’s reception.
The three extinct volcanoes provide for some exhilerating trekking
on Mt Sabinyo, Mt Muhavura and Mt Gahinga. These treks are all one
day hikes and guided by a ranger/guide.
• Gorilla tracking
• Bird watching along the edge of the park
• Nature walks to the Garama cave and viewing platform
• Volcano trekking.
• Golden monkey tracking
| Mount Elgon National Park
|Mount Elgon National Park lies on the Uganda -
Kenya boarder east of the town of Mbale. The park size covers 1,145
square kilometres. The park is named the mountain of the same name
which is the 8th highest mountains in Africa at 4,321m, with the
largest base of any extinct volcano in the world.
This volcano is estimated to have first erupted more than 20 million
years ago and it is thought to have remained active for another 14
million years. The tallest peak is on the Ugandan side of the border
is called Wagagai peak (4,321m). The other three peaks on the Kenyan
side are Sudek (4,302m), Kuitobos (4,222m), Mubiyi (4,211m), with
Masaba (4,161m) in Uganda.
The first European to reach the mountains lower slopes was Joseph
Thompson who observed it from the direction of Masai land in 1883
and named it the Mount Elgon. Elgon is an important watershed and
its slopes support a rich variety of attitudinal vegetation raging
from montane forest to high open moorland studded with the other
worldly Giant lobelia and Groundsel plants.
Vegetation and wildlife
The Park’s vegetation is characterized by tall afromontane forest,
below 2500m and low canopy montane forest and bamboo between 2500m
Other attractions are the ancient paintings close to the hiking
trail head at Budadiri, and spectacular caves and hot springs within
the crater. A variety of forest monkeys, small antelope, elephant,
buffalo and sitatunga have found a home on the mountain. The
mountain also supports a rich variety of forest birds like Jackson
francolin, Green tinker bird, Alpine chat, and Red throated wryneck
When to hike
June - August and from December - March are the best seasons when
Where to stay
Many visitors stay in Mbale prior to trekking on the mountain at
Mbale Resort - Upmarket
Sunrise Inn – Mid Range
Mount Elgon Hotel – Upmarket
Landmark Inn – Budget
This series of waterfalls commands some amazing views over the
surrounding countryside. Many of the falls can be accessed by foot
as well as viewed from a far. There are several accommodation venues
at Sipi that dominate the view of the main falls.
| Murchison Falls National Park
|This is Uganda’s largest protected area situated
north of Masindi District and spanning the Victoria Nile. The park
is named after the dramatic Murchison falls, where the River Nile
explodes violently through a narrow 7m gap to fall a distance of
47m. The River Nile is the world’s longest river which cuts a grove
through the Murchison Falls National park.
The park covers an area of 3840 square kilometres with a variety of
vegetation raging from riparian forests, swamp, to broad savannah.
The parks wildlife species attractions includes Rothchild's
giraffes, Lions, Buffalos, Uganda Kob, Elephant, Warthogs and an
abundance of birds. These provide opportunity for ecellent game
drive viewing. The main game viewing area is the peninsular between
the Victoria and Albert Nile on the north bank of the river.
This forest administered by the National Forestry Authority is to be
part found within the parks protected area and is habitat to
chimpanzees, monkeys, baboons and some very special forest bird
species. Chimpanzee tracking, bird watching and nature walks are all
popular activities that can be undertaken at the Kanyio Pabidi
Ecotourism centre close to the main entrance Kichumbanyumbo gate
when approaching from Masindi.
The Victoria Nile
One of the most exciting activities at Murchison Falls is a 14km
launch trip from Paraa to the base of the falls and back. Many water
bird species, hippo, and crocodiles can all be viewed from the
| Rwenzori Mountains National Park
|The snow capped peaks of the Rwenzori mountain
range lie along and shares the western border of Uganda with the
Democratic Republic of Congo. It is regarded to be legendary
snow-capped mountains of the moon, described by Ptolemy in AD150.
The highest peak reaches an elevation of 5,102m, it is also Africa’s
tallest mountain range, exceeded in altitude only by the free
standing volcanoes of Mount Kenya and Mount Kilimanjaro.
The distinctive glacial peaks are visible form miles around, but the
slopes above 1600m are the preserve of trekkers who rate the
Rwenzori to be the most challenging of all African trekking tours.
The park covers a total area of 998 square kilometres and is 120 km
long. The mountain has several peaks with the highest being
Margherita peak. This peak is the goal main trekking route known as
the Central Circuit Trail.
The main attraction in the Rwenzori is the luxuriant vegetation
found above 3000m which includes the Giant lobelia. It is also a
home birds such as the Rwenzori turaco and Olive pigeon. A variety
of large mammals inhabit the lower slopes including chimpanzees.
The best time for trekking and mountaineering is during the dry
seasons from mid December to March and from June to mid August.
Trekking and mountaineering
The town of Kasese is about 7 hours drive from Kampala either via
Mbarara or via Fort Portal. The trail head at Ibanda is a further 1
hour from Kasese.
| Semliki National Park
|The park is situated in the extreme west of Uganda
in Bundibugyo District. It lies along the Uganda/ Democratic
Republic of Congo border within the western arm of the East African
Rift valley. In the south east are the Rwenzori Mountains, to the
west is Democratic Republic of Congo and to the north are the
Semliki Flats and Lake Albert.
The park is 220 square kilometers and occupies flat and gently
undulating terrain raging from 670metres - 760metres above sea
level. The average annual rainfall is high at 1,250mm that peaks
from March to May and again from September to December. The
temperatures vary from 18 degrees centigrade to 30 degrees
centigrade with relatively small daily variations.
The park is the only lowland tropical rainforest in East Africa
classified as moist and semi deciduous. There are 336 tree species
recorded, 374 species of butterflies, 63 species of mammals and 9
species of primates. These include: chimpanzee, blue monkey, vervet
monkeys and olive baboons while the nocturnal primates include
pottos and galagos. Also to be found are Forest buffalo, blue
duiker, bee croft’s flying squirrel, pygmy squirrel, little collared
fruit bat and target rat.
Other attractions include the Batwa people (pygmies) hunters
gatherers that live a simple life style and depend on Semliki forest
for food. The meandering river Semliki, Sempaya hot spring. River
Semliki is a shelter of water birds and crocodiles.
• Game viewing
• Bird watching
• Nature walks
The park is accessed via the town of Fort Portal in the west of the
country. The Bundibugyo road that skirts the Rwenzori escarpment
offers a wonderful scenic view at Munu ni Mkubwa where the road has
promontory over the Semliki river and Sempaya hot springs. Driving
time from Kampala 6 hours.
| Kidepo Vally National Park
Kidepo Valley National Park is located in the far North East of Uganda sharing a border with both Sudan and Kenya. It is one of the most spectacular parks where visitors will experience a real feeling of wilderness. It’s the fifth largest National Park in Uganda covering an area of 1,442 square kms. The park offers some wonderful scenery with varied terrain consisting of mountains and savannah landscapes. The vegetation can be described as open tree savannah which varies much in structure and composition, dry mountain forest dominates some of the hills, while areas along the Narus river supports dense acacia forest.
The park harbours the greatest diversity of animal species in Uganda. These include: Bateared fox, striped hyena, Aardwolf, Caracal, and Cheetah. Less common ungulates include greater and lessor kudu, chandler’s mountain reedbuck, Klipspringer and dik dik. Other large ungulates are the bush pigs, bush elephants, burchell’s zebra, warthogs, cape buffalo, eland, bushbuck, Rothschild giraffe, bushduikers. Other carnivores present include lion, leopard, several small cats, spotted hyena, black-backed jackals and side- striped jackal.
The park also boasts an extensive number of species of birds offering a good opportunity for bird watching activities. 465 species have been recorded among them being birds like the Ostrich to be found nowhere else in the country and the Kori birds. Birds of prey include the Egyptian vulture, Verreaux’s eagle and the pygmy falcon.
The Narus river valley that rolls out in front of the lodge contains much of the wildlife species to be found here where visitors will focus their game drive activities.
Hiking of the Morungole mountain some few kilometres from the park headquarters is a spectacular trek. The Lonyili mountain is another possible trek.
The Karimajong culture is of special interest as a cultural tourist attraction. Their simple lifestyle that harbours traditional customs, use of stools, spears, headdresses, knives, bows, arrows, and decorative jewellery is very interesting to witness.
- Game drives
- Walking safaris
- Bird watching
- Cultural visits
The park also runs a self catering hostel comprising of 14 bandas each with two beds. There is a cooking facilities. Visitors are advised to bring sufficient food and drinks for a full duration of their stay.
The Apoka Lodge is managed by Wild Places Africa - Upmarket
Access to Kidepo
The park can be reached by road or by air. But driving is more rewarding as vast parts of karamoja are scenic and total wilderness. And 4WD vehicles are the only ones required because of the nature of the roads and the distance is very long.
There are three routes by roads:
- Kampala via Karuma - Lira – Kotido – Kidepo - 705kms
- Kampala via Mbale - Soroti - Moroto - Kidepo - 792kms
- Kampala via Mbale - Sironko - Kotido - Kidepo - 740kms.
Most tourists travelling to Kidepo do so on the Friday scheduled service from Entebbe International Airport returning on Mondays operated by Eagle Air. It is also possible to arrange a private aircraft charter from Kajansi Airfield (close to Entebbe) to Kidpeo. The Civil Aviation Authority manages an airstrip at Lomej about 3kms south of the park headquarters.
| Queen Elizabeth National Park
Queen Elizabeth National Park is situated astride the equator in the south western Uganda. It’s the second largest national park in Uganda covering an area of 1,978 square kilometres. The park has varied habitats that include grass savannah, dense bushes, forest, swamp and lakes. The park offers magnificent game viewing experiences, a memorable launch trip and spectacular bird watching opportunities.
The park has over 100 species of mammals among which lion, elephant, buffalo, Uganda kob, warthogs, hyena, and leopards are the main draw cards. There are over 606 bird species many of which to be seen along the the Kazinga channel to the Mweya peninsula. The kazinga channel joins Lake Edward to Lake George where a launch trip allows visitors a close up encounter with many wildlife species.
Northern Crater Area
This region of the park is dominated by huge volcanic craters, some containing salt lakes. These unique ecosystems attract buffalo, elephant and on occasions many thousands of flamingo a sight sight to behold.
This huge forest just out side queen Elizabeth National Park is one of the biggest forests in Uganda. It covers a total area of 280 square kilometers of both primary and the secondary forest, 5 species of primates that includes chimpanzees.
The Blue Crater Lake at the sight of the Jacana Lodge is an impressive sight.
The gorge is within the savannah sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park. This 16 kilometer long scar in the earth is home to a group of habituated chimpanzees, baboons, monkeys and birds. The gorge is about 100m deep to where organised chimpanzee trekking can be conducted, bird watching, nature walks and sight seeing can be undertaken from the visitors centre.
The Ishasha Sector
This sector is the southern part of the park that is famous for it's population of tree climbing Lions often to be seen in large fig trees in the plains.
A journey time of about 6 to 7 hours drive from Kampala via Mbarara to Mweya