This is Uganda’s largest National Park; it covers an area of 3840km located in the districts of Masindi and Gulu. Animals here are in plentiful supply, Sir Samuel Baker named Murchison Falls in honor of a president of the Royal Geographical society and the park was subsequently named after the falls. The Victoria Nile River flows through the park on its way to Lake Albert. During the 1960s, Murchison (3893sqkm; 5081sq km with the adjoining Bugungu and Karuma wildlife reserves) was one of Africa’s most famous parks; as many as 12 launches filled with eager tourists to the falls each day. The park also had some of the concentrations of wildlife in Africa, including as many as 15000 Elephants.

ACTIVITIES

Wild Drives

Pretty much all wild-watching on land happens in the Buligi area, on the point between the Albert and Victoria Niles. Just about all the park’s residents’ species might be seen in the savannah on the Albert, Queen and Victoria tracks, wildlife has recovered fast and you can find good numbers of Elephants, Rothschild Giraffes, Lion, Uganda kob(Antelopes), Waterbuck, Buffaloes, Hippos, Reedbuck, spotted Hyenas, Warthogs, Sitatunga, Leopard, Jackals, Petas monkeys, Bushbuck and the Oribis.

Bird Watching

 Birdlife consist of some 460 species; Key species include, Shoebill, Secretary bird, Bat Hawk, Red necked-Falcon, Heuglin’s Francolin Denham’s Bustard, Senegal thick-knee, Four-banded Sand grouse, Rock pranticole, Red winged Grey Warbler ,Yellow-billed and Emin’s Shrikes, White-breasted Cuckoo-Shrike, Lesser blue eared and Bronze-tailed Starlings, Beautiful sunbird, Chestnut-crowned sparrow-weaver, Black Scimitarbill, Black-backed Cisticolas, Black billed Barbet, Silverbird, Abyssinian Ground Hornbill, Brown- backed Woodpecker, Egyptian-Plover, Northern Red Bishop, Grey headed Olive-back, Red headed Pytilia, Brown twin spot, Bar-breasted and Black bellied Fire finches, Black rumped Waxbill, Paradise whydah, White-rumped seedeater , African skimmers, Vinaceous Dove, Bruce’s Green Pigeon, Carmine Bee-eaters, White crested Turacco, Pel’s fishing Owl, Pennant winged and Standard winged Nightjars and Brown-rumped and Cabanis’s Bunting.

Launch Trips to the fall   Three-hour launch trip from Paraa (park Headquarters) up to the base of the falls is the highlight of the park for most Visitors. There are abundant Hippos, Crocodiles and Buffalos; thousands of birds, including many Fish Eagles; and usually Elephants along this 17km stretch of the Nile. In the rainy season even Shoebills might make an appearance. The animals are there all day long, but the best of the falls comes in the afternoon trip. The halfway mark takes you 500m from the base of the falls, which provides splendid views, but to get a true sense of its power and might you’ll have to head to the top of the falls walk.