Murchison Falls National Park

About the Park

Murchison Falls National Park lies at the northern end of the Albertine Rift Valley, where the sweeping Butiaba escarpment tumbles into boundless, palm-dotted savanna. The protected was first gazetted as a game reserve in 1926 and declared a national park in 1952; it is Uganda’s largest and oldest conservation area. As the tagline reads, “the world’s strongest waterfall”, the Nile squeezes through an 8m wide gorge and plunges with a truly thunderous roar into the “Devil’s Cauldron”, creating a trademark rainbow. Reminding us of the “The African Queen” film in 1951 starring Humphrey Bogart, filmed on Lake Albert and the Nile. North of the park is where most of the activities are done due to savanna and Borassus palms, acacia trees, and riverine woodland whereas the south is dominated by woodland and forest patches making it a little difficult for the most of activities. The park is bisected by the Victoria Nile, which forces its way through a remnant rift valley wall 8m wide and tumbles 45m deep, before flowing westwards in an 80km stretch of rapids. That will later pull the most power of the river and flow quietly across the rift valley floor into Lake Albert. Providing a remarkable wildlife spectacle with Regular visitors to the riverbanks including, Nile crocodiles, hippos, elephants, and permanent residents like birds. Competing with queen Elizabeth national park, the park is blessed with over 76 mammals, including 13 species of primates, over 451 bird species such as the White-crested Turaco Red-winged grey Warbler with occasional visitors like the Shoebill stork, 51 reptiles, and 51 Amphibians,250 butterfly species,450 tree species. Historically Giraffes exclusively inhabit the northern sector of the park, with the large herds of elephants, buffaloes that are rapidly increasing, kobs, oribis, and many others making the park more attractive and impressive.


Game Drives

The northern bank of the park is the most productive with plain lands and lots of game concentration , moving around Victoria game track, common wealth ,Albert track Pakuba track and many others with a trained and qualified guide is the best way to see and photograph the wide range of animals in the Nile valley. Visitors will marvel at large herds of elephants, dozens of buffaloes, towering giraffes along with oribis, reedbucks, the unusual looking hartebeest, with great chances of spotting lions and on your lucky day you may spot a leopard at dusk.

Boat Cruises

The launch trip upstream from paraa presents an astonishing wildlife display and culminates with the memorable frontal view of the falls. The boats depart at anytime of the day but in most cases between 8am to 5pm .birders are recommended for an early morning boat to the downstream of the Nile delta, providing the best chances of spotting the mighty shoebill. This 4-5 hour voyage brings you closer to more wildlife like hippos, elephants ad more birds. A tranquil sundowner boat cruise at the late 5; 30pm offers an incredible view of the sunset reflects of the world’s longest river Nile.


Both launch trip and game drives offer someone an opportunity to come across distinct birdlife, both forest, savannah and water birds. However the park’s main attraction is the Shoebill sighted in mostly in months of January and March. The park also provides you with Secretary Bird in the dry months, Abyssinian-ground Hornbills, Bee eaters, several residents and other many species not forgetting the key migrants.

crowned lapwing Murchison
Shoebill Murchison falls national park
wattled Lapwing Murchison

Visit to Top of the Falls

Sheer sensory overload ,Hiking through the woodland to the top of the falls is completely a different experience, thus is an experience that brings all the senses into play, watch waves of white water tumble hypnotically through this 7m chasm , listen to the roar, taste the spray on your face and feel rock shake beneath your feet. Walk down a set of steps to stand within meters of the rapids.

Nature Walks and hiking

The vast landscapes and varied scenery of Murchison falls conservation area can be explored on foot. Trails kaniyo padidi and rabongo forests provide sightings of many primates and birds while around the Nile delta 3-4 hour guided walk offers possible sightings of the Shoebill. Birders and nature lovers can easily enjoy the short treks from Sambiya river lodge to Mubako junction, both in the south bank or a walk along the north bank from paraa passing through Emmy River. All walks last 2-3 hours.

Cultural encounters

The remote Mubako is located beside the sprawling savannah of the park. The village is a cluster of traditional thatched huts around a clearing where the villagers gather to escape the midday sun under the shade of a large tree. At dusk the local cultural groups perform vibrant songs and dances around the campfire of the local lodges.

Bush camping

This allows you to spend the night amidst the parks wildlife. And this enables you to do night games and as well enjoy the night calls of the game as you enjoy storytelling.


A number of routes can be used to link to paraa the heart of Murchison, located 305km/190mi north of Kampala via nakasongola with a chance to spot rhinos at ziwa sanctuary connecting to kichumbanyobo gate, and 280km/170mi from fort portal via the Butiaba escarpments to the Mubako gate .

By Air

The local operator will help you arrange the local charters from Kajjansi airstrip and Entebbe airport connecting to Pakuba airstrip in the park.