Top things to do in Mount Elgon national park; Mount Elgon national park is one of Uganda’s oldest physical feature locates in eastern part of Uganda in Mbale district bordering with Uganda and Kenya. The national park derives its name from Mount Elgon which is an extinct volcano that first erupted twenty four million years ago. Mount Elgon was once the highest volcanic mountain in Africa but due to soil erosion, it reduced its height to 4,321 meters which makes it the 4th highest peak in East Africa and the 8th highest mountain in Africa with the largest caldera which is about 60 kilometers long and 40 kilometers wide. Mount Elgon national park was declared a UNESCO man and biosphere reserve and it’s a home of different wildlife species including waterbucks, elephants, oribi, buffaloes, bushbucks, hyenas among others which live in the lower slopes and over 300 bird species including black collared apalis, black-shouldered kite, Jackson’s francolin among others. Mount Elgon national park offers a number of activities that visitors can engage in during the Uganda safari including,
Top things to do in Mount Elgon national park
Mount Elgon national park is a home of over 300 recorded bird species including 50 afro tropical highland biome species which makes it one of the best bird watching destinations in Uganda.
During bird watching , you will be accompanied by an experienced bird guide who will help you to spot different bird species including moorland francolin, Moustached green tinker bird, alpine chat, black-collared apalis, Jackson’s francolin, black-shouldered kite, Tacazze sunbird, African goshawk, Chubb’s Cisticola, Mackinnon’s fiscal, cinnamon bee-eater, Baglafecht weaver, African blue flycatcher, Chinspot batis, white-chinned Prinia, Hartloub’s turaco, Luhders bush-shrike, alpine chat among others.
Hiking/ Mountain climbing
Hiking is an adventurous and one of the major activities. During mountain climbing, you will follow different trails like the Sasa trail which is the shortest but most challenging trail that takes about four day round trip passing through Mudangi cliffs, community gardens and bamboo forest. Sipi trail which takes about 4 to 6 days round trip passing through Tatum cave which is known for its ancient cave painting and Piswa trail which takes about 7 days round trip and offers stunning views of Karamoja plains, hot springs and Kenya’s Kapeguria and Nandi hills. Mount Elgon national park also offers day hikes for less experienced hikers which take about 3-7 km and give travelers an opportunity to enjoy views of the beautiful scenery and different wildlife species.
Mountain biking is an exciting activity in Mount Elgon national park that visitors can engage in during the safari. Mountain biking trails in the park were opened up by Uganda Wildlife Authority in 2012 and the trails run from Sipi trading Centre to Chema hill in Kapchorwa town. During mountain biking which takes about one to two hours, you will enjoy great views of the Karamoja plains, Sipi falls, beautiful scenery, farmlands, rocks, Soroti plains among others. Travelers interested in mountain biking can hire bicycles from Sipi river lodge and arrangements have to be made in advance or book through a tour company like Achieve Global safaris.
Nature walk is an exciting activity where you will be able to explore the park on foot with the company of an experienced park guide. During the guided nature walk, you will follow different trails like the bamboo trail to Kapkwai cave which takes about 4 hours passing through tropical and bamboo forest, Khauka cave trail which takes about 3 to 4 hours and Budadiri short hikes. During the nature walk, you will also be able to view different plant and tree species, animals, bird species, enjoy the cool breeze, listen to sweet sounds of bird species among others.
Cultural tour is an interesting activity in Mount Elgon national park where you will be able to interact with the Sabiny and Bagisu people, learn about their culture, taste their traditional dishes, visit their homesteads, farmlands, listen to their ancient stories, enjoy their cultural dances, songs among others.
How to get to Mount Elgon national park
Mount Elgon national park is located in eastern part of Uganda and can be accessed by road transport means whereby you will drive from Kampala via Jinja town, Mbale own and then to the park headquarters which takes about 4 to 5 hours’ drive.
Mount Elgon national park can also be accessed by air transport means where you will book domestic charter flights by Bar aviation or Aero link Uganda from Entebbe international airport or Kajjansi airfield to Soroti.
Where to stay
There are various accommodation facilities where you can stay during your Uganda Hiking safari including Mount Elgon hotel and spa, Mount Elgon View hotel, Kapkwai Forest Cottages, Mbale Resort hotel, Kayegi hotel, Masha hotel, Noah’s Ark hotel, Sipi River Lodge among others.
For more information about the top things to do in Mount Elgon national park, you can contact us at Achieve Global Safaris or visit our website to book an affordable safari package.