Lake Mburo National Park

Lake Mburo National Park

Nestled in the picturesque landscapes of western Uganda lies Lake Mburo National Park, a hidden gem gazetted in 1993. Despite its modest size, spanning 371 sq km, this park boasts an expansive array of wetlands and five stunning lakes – Kazuma, Kigambira, Bwala, Mburo, and Mutukula.

Encompassing a captivating blend of dry hillsides, rocky formations, and lush savannahs punctuated by tranquil lakes and papyrus swamps, Lake Mburo National Park offers a serene retreat into the heart of African wilderness.

For those seeking an authentic wildlife experience without the lengthy commitment, this park is the ideal destination for a compact two or three-day safari, providing a tantalizing taste of Uganda’s natural beauty.

Although often placed at the end of safari itineraries, such as the 7-day Gorilla and Wildlife Safari, its intimate charm and unique offerings make it a standout destination.

Lake Mburo National Park serves as a natural extension of the Tanzanian plains and is renowned for its thriving population of zebras. Moreover, it holds the distinction of being the sole park in Uganda where visitors can witness the majestic Impalas in their natural habitat.

To fully immerse oneself in the park’s splendor, visitors can partake in ranger-led walking safaris, embark on horseback expeditions, or explore the trails on a thrilling cycling tour.

Managed and operated by the Uganda Wildlife Authority, Lake Mburo National Park promises an unforgettable adventure amidst the untamed beauty of Uganda’s wilderness.

Top things to do in Lake Mburo National Park. 

Lake Mburo National Park

Bird Watching

Explore the rich bird diversity of Lake Mburo National Park, boasting approximately 332 bird species. Renowned as a haven for acacia-associated birds, it stands out as Uganda’s premier birding destination.

Traverse the park’s permanent and seasonal wetlands, connecting lakes and hosting exclusive papyrus endemic species such as the papyrus gonolek, blue-headed coucal, and white-winged and papyrus yellow warblers.

Game drives/ Wildlife Drives 

Embark on exhilarating day safaris along Kazuma, Ruroko tracks, Lakeside, Kigambira Loops, and Rwizi Track. Keep your eyes peeled for the majestic elands, giraffes, zebras, and impalas among the diverse wildlife.

Delight in the park’s varied landscapes and flora during the game drives, spotting giraffes, zebras, impalas, klipspringers, buffalo, hyenas, mongooses, oribis, reedbucks, and more.

Night Game drives

Accompanied by seasoned ranger guides, embark on night game drives commencing at 7:00 pm, spanning three hours. Encounter nocturnal wonders such as leopards, spotted hyenas, genets, bushbabies, porcupines, and other elusive creatures. Utilizing spotlights, your guide enhances the chances of spotting these fascinating nocturnal inhabitants.

Accompanied by ranger guides the game drives start at 7:00 pm and last up to 3 hours. Some of the wildlife to expect to see include nocturnal celebrities like the leopard as well as spotted hyenas, genets, bush babies, porcupines, and more.

Your ranger guide may use a spotlight to assist in identifying some of this sometimes hard-to-see wildlife. nocturnal game drives are one of the most memorable experiences as you may spot the Bush babies, Porcupines, Leopards, and Lions along the 2.5-hour drive.

Nature walks / Wildlife walks

Experience the wilderness up close with popular nature walks in Lake Mburo. Join the Hyena walk, a guided 2-hour expedition, and spot giraffes, elands, zebras, and topis.

Embarking on foot unveils a fresh perspective of the wild. Traverse the Eland track, witnessing large herds of eland, giraffes, and assorted wildlife.

Venture into Rubanga Forest, a tropical rainforest on Lake Mburo’s western fringe, harboring over 40 forest bird species.

Explore the Sait Lick during a 1.5-hour guided nature walk, observing zebras and antelopes from a wooden platform as they indulge in salt licks.

Nature walks typically commence between 6:30 am and 7:00 am, lasting approximately 2 hours, or longer based on your interests.

Boat rides 

Embark on a captivating journey along the eastern shores of Lake Mburo, where a plethora of wildlife awaits. Glide through the tranquil waters on a two-hour boat safari, offering intimate encounters with hippos, crocodiles, waterbucks, and an array of majestic water birds.

Departures are scheduled at 8 am, 10 am, 12 pm, 2 pm, 4 pm, and 5.30 pm, ensuring ample opportunities to immerse yourself in the beauty of nature.

Horseback Safaris

Venture into the heart of Lake Mburo on horseback, exploring the eastern expanse of the park and its scenic lakeside vistas. Led by seasoned instructors from Mihingo Lodge stable, these four-hour rides promise an unforgettable wildlife experience.

Children can join the excitement with pony rides, culminating in a breathtaking sunset observation from hilltop vantage points. Discover the African wilderness in a truly unique way, encountering herds of buffalo, zebras, and antelopes along the way.

Cycling safaris

Pedal your way through the picturesque landscapes of Lake Mburo National Park with guided cycling tours offered by Rwakobo Rock Lodge and Hyena Hill Lodge.

Navigate the park’s savanna plains and neighboring communities on well-maintained mountain bikes, accompanied by knowledgeable ranger guides for safety.

Opt for hour-long excursions, particularly during the cooler temperatures of the early morning, and explore flat valleys teeming with abundant wildlife.

Community walks

Immerse yourself in the rich culture of the Ankole region with community and cultural tours that offer a glimpse into the harmonious coexistence between humans and wildlife.

Experience life on an Ankole farm, participating in traditional activities such as hand milking the famed Ankole long-horned cattle.

These tours provide a unique perspective on the contemporary wildlife safari, adding depth and authenticity to your exploration of Lake Mburo National Park.

Where to stay in Lake Mburo National Park

Mihingo Lodge 

Mihingo Lodge has 12 luxury, tented rooms designed to provide guests with privacy and tranquility. Each room has its own unique charm and character, whether it is nestled in the forest, overlooking the lake, perched on a rocky outcrop, or down by the water hole.

Each spacious canvas tent is equipped with en-suite bathrooms, hot and cold running water, showers, and flush toilets.

Other facilities include a tranquil infinity pool that overlooks a sweeping wild valley, a dining room sitting high on a rock kopje, a bar and lounge area, a gift shop, and a horse stable,

Kigambira Safari Lodge

The lodge is built in the Southern part of Lake Mburo National Park; Uganda’s smallest park, nestled between Lake Kigambira and the Rubanga Forest.

It features 12 tastefully decorated ensuite bandas categorized into 9 deluxe bandas, 2 family bandas, and a honeymoon suite.

All cottages have astonishing views of Kigambira, an expansive freshwater lake that teems with birds and wildlife.  Other facilities include a swimming pool, a gift shop, a restaurant, and a bar area.

Rwakobo Rock

The lodge is set on a massive granite outcrop, just 1km from the Nshara gate of Lake Mburo National Park. It offers 8 private thatched cottages, with solar lighting, flush toilets, and solar-heated showers, which blend into the natural landscape.

The cottages are dotted around the hill taking advantage of rocky ledges and secluded corners. The cottages celebrate the natural lines of the surrounding wilderness.

The lodge also has a Hornbill House that features 5 en-suite rooms with a private veranda.  Other facilities include a restaurant /dining room overlooking the water hole, a bar, a swimming pool, and a campfire area.

The Best time to visit Lake Mburo National Park

Lake Mburo National Park has two seasons both dry and wet seasons. The dry season is in the month between December to March and June to August. In this period water becomes scarce and this makes wildlife viewing easier as animals tend to seek out reliable water sources and vegetation thins. 

The wet/green season is in April to May and September to November. During these months the park is mostly wet animal sightings are few.  However, these months are ideal for other migratory birds.  The scenery is lush and green for photographic scenery. 

How to get to Lake Mburo  National Park

Road transport: The Park can be easily accessed by road, on a 3-4 hour drive. The drive offers scenic landscapes and local communities and is accessible through the 2 park entrance gates.

The Sanga gate and Nshara gate are 2 km away from the park. Currently, there are no scheduled flights to the park though private charters can be arranged. 

Other Uganda Destinations

Lake Bunyonyi-The Gorilla Highlands

South-Western Uganda

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

Southwestern Uganda

Mount Elgon and Sipi Falls

Eastern Uganda

Mt.Rwenzori National Park

Western Uganda

Semuliki National Park

Eastern Uganda

Kidepo Valley National Park

Nothern Uganda


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