LAKE MBURO National Park

Lake Mburo National Park (LMNP) is a very special place; every part of it is alive with variety, interest and colour. LMNP contains an extensive area of wetland. The park harbours several species of mammals including zebras, impalas, elands, topi and buffaloes. Unique bird species, the park is situated in Mbarara district. It is about 3.5 hours drive from Kampala. The park is accessed from the Masaka-Mbarara road; turn left to Nshara gate (13kms past Lyantonde) or alternatively turn left at Sanga trading centre (27kms past Lyantode) which brings you through Sanga gate. Both junctions have clearly marked signposts. It is about 13kms from Sanga trading centre to Sanga and 8kms from the main road to Nshara gate. It is about 20 minutes drive from either gates to Rwonyo park headquarters. Its sculptured landscape with rolling grassy hills and idyllic lakeshores has a varied mosaic of habitats: forest galleries, rich acacia tree valleys, seasonal, and permanent swamps which all support a wealth of wildlife. The park covers an area of 370km2 it’s the easily accessible and smallest of Uganda’s Savannah national parks. Its mosaic habitat: dry hillside, rocky outcrops, bushes, thickets, open and wooded savannahs, forests, lakes and swamps are home to a surprising diversity of plants and animals.

The Park is famous for its richness in biodiversity with about 68 different species of mammals. The common ones being the zebras, impalas, buffaloes, topis and elands that are herbivores predators like, lions leopards, hyenas and jackals are also oftenly seen. The park is also rich with a bird checkl;ist of more than 315 different species of including the rare shoebill stork, papyrus yellow warbler, African fin foot, brown chested and wattled plover, carruther’s and tabora cisticola, great snipe, Abyssinian ground hornbill white winged warbler and much more. The woody vegetation of lake Mburo is dominated by Acacia species, Olea species and Boscia species.

The park has a number of tourist trails crisscrossed by numerous animals that are used for game drives. Impala track exposes the visitor to a diverse species of animals. Impala is the most common species viewed along this track although one may sight number of waterbucks, warthogs, topis and zebras.

Zebra track leads to harems of Burchell’s zebra with other species like bushbuck, oribi and reedbuck. The Zebra Track leads to the junction of Ruroko Track, a drive through a wetland basin and thick acacia shrub and woodland, with olive trees and eurphorbia species. Kopjes (rock outcrops) found along the Ruroko track, are home to the elusive klipspringers to which the rock is the best habitat.

The Kazuma Track passes through wooded grassland where black-bellied bustards often patrol the area. For visitors to experience a real exposure of Lake Mburo National Park, they should climb Kazuma hill, which is high enough to enable them see what they could have missed. The five lakes within the park and the rolling hills become more visible and attractive. Its better seen than read or heard!

Kigambira Loop takes you through a wooded wilderness with scattered thicket and while you are here, look out for bushbucks and bush duikers.
The Lakeside Track is specially designed to facilitate viewing of water plants and animals. The park has a diversity of water birds and woodland birds, which can be sighted along these tracks

This forest offers a variety of habitats, conducive for birds thereby making it a very attractive place for bird watchers. There are over 40 species of birds recorded in Rubanga forest, 5 of which are forest “specialists”. Some of the common species are the harrier hawk, greenpigeon, narina trogn, grey-backed cameroptera and double-toothed barbet. The forest though small, is a real high forest with closed canopy. Some common trees are markhamia platycalyx, sapium, erythriana and acacia.

The presence of Lake Mburo within the park is a blessing. The lake is rich with a diversity of animal and plant species, which can only be viewed clearly while on a boat trip. These include crocodiles, hippopotami and birds like pelicans, black crake, heron, cormorant and fish eagle but you may also see the arre shoebill stork, all of which will furnish your visit with pride.

Nature Trail The nature trail offers the visitor a chance to admire nature on foot. Visitors have the opportunity to walk in the circuit at their own pace in company of an armed guide. Information on trails is also available at the Rwonyo headquarters.

SALT LICK: A walk to the nearby salt lick is a highlight platform. A strategically located wooden plat-form offers a chance to see at least four different species of animals at any one time while they lick the salty soil. The observation point is strategically located in such a way that close observation can be done without distracting the animals from their salt lick.
Note: Rutoto Nature ensures that enough armed rangers must accompany the visitors.