Travel from Kampala to Murchison Falls and boat tour below the falls
August 17-18, 2010
The first day of our trip to Uganda is spent traveling from Entebbe airport to Murchison Falls National Park via Kampala, by 4x4 Toyota Land Cruiser. An excursion to the top of Murchison Falls is followed the next day by a small boat cruise on Victoria Nile to the base of the falls, looking for hippos, drinking elephants, buffalos, crocodiles, colorful birds and other typical Ugandan wildlife.
The trip to Murchison Falls National Park in Uganda, starts from Entebbe airport thru Kampala, the Uganda's capital, where street vendors make a background to the chaotic traffic. The total distance to drive today is less than 400 kilometers but, due to the conditions of the road, especially for the last segment entering into Murchison Falls national park, the journey requires almost a full day.
Crossing the Uganda countryside along one of the few asphalted roads existing in central Africa, we see often large herds of Long Horned Ankole Cattle, known also as Watusi or Ankole.
After the town of Masindi, where we get a very welcome lunch, the road becomes very bad and bumpy. After a while, we cross one of the Murchison Falls' national park gate, before continuing to the top of the falls.
In the meanwhile, we have a first contact with the lush vegetation of this part of Uganda, made of acacia in flower, small Lantana bushes and many other flowers.
Suddenly, we get a spectacular view onto the african Rift Valley, in a landscape dominated by a dense rainforest (Budongo forest) extended up to where the eyes can see.
After a long day drive, we finally get to the top of Murchison Falls, the spectacular falls known also as Kabalega or Kabarega, breaking the Victoria Nile.The falls are located along the segment of the Nile river connecting Victoria lake with Albert lake, through Kyoga lake. At the top of Murchison Falls, the Nile is forced through a gap in the rocks just 7 meters wide, before falling down for 43 meters. The total water outlet is about 300 cubic meters per second.
After a Murchison Falls tour to the upper side, the next day we get a relaxing cruise along the Victoria Nile, with the purpose of getting as close as possible to the bottom of the falls. Along the way, a rich wildlife awaits for us.
, a small bird known in English as "Red-throated Bee-eater"
A sausage tree ( Kigelia africana
), so called because of the fruits' shape, food preferred by baboons and other mammals.
During the cruise we meet also hundreds of hippos, sometimes isolated and sometimes gathered into small groups resting in the water.
We see also many buffaloes, warthogs and antelopes, coming close to the Nile river to drink.
We see also small groups of elephants.
The Nile crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus
) is a reptile not to be taken lightly and a sign placed on a trail head invites to be aware about them.
Murchison falls pictures. After a couple of hours, we get to the base of Murchison falls. After some time spent taking pictures, the small boat goes back to the starting point.