Game Drives in Uganda
The game drive is a guided excursion adventure that entails viewing wildlife through the wild areas in a 4-wheel open-sided Safari vehicle to find Africa’s most iconic and elusive wildlife in a National park. The vehicle normally accommodates 4 to 6 people. The word “game” in-game drive refers to wild animals or wildlife which originally comes from the haunt of the most difficult and dangerous animals in Africa on foot. During a game drive, the driver has to follow game drive tracks created to avoid getting lost. Game drives mostly take place in the early morning and late afternoon because animals are more active in the cooler time of the day.
Game Drive in Murchison Falls National park.
This is the largest park located in the North Western part of Uganda. It covers a total land area of over 384 square kilometers and the park is bisected by the Victoria Nile into two sectors of Northern and Southern sectors. The park is one of the most visited National parks due to its abundant wildlife species, ranging from Savannah vegetation to woodland, and tropical forest. It has over 76 types of mammals including Antelopes, lions, Giraffes, Buffaloes, Rhinos, Leopards, and Elephants. Bird species over 451 and Reptiles. The game drive is best done in the Northern sector due to the high number of animals and birds. There are game drive tracks in Albert, Victoria, and Buligi tracks. Buligi game track is a 7 km game track in the North of Paraa that stretches between Victoria Nile and Albert Nile passing through open grassland Savannah.
The best game to view lions, leopards, Jackson’s heartbeest, Oribi, Uganda kobs, duiker, Jackals, Hyenas, Bushbucks, Giraffes. Nyamsika gorge is another area in the park to visit during a game drive, Nyamsika Cliff is home to a high concentration of animals and bird species that mostly come to drink water for example Elephants, Buffaloes, and Lions among others. The game drive in the Southern sector is also known as the heart of Murchison Falls National Park because it is mostly covered by shrubs and forests. During the drive, you can view giraffes that were translocated, herds of Rhinos, Uganda kobs, lions, and bird species. There is a day game drive which starts at 6:30 am and a night game drive at 8 pm. It is done using spotlight torches for clear viewing and an armed park ranger for protection as well as for spotting nocturnal animals. Game drive in Murchison Falls National Park is all year round activity. The dry season is the best time for game drive activity since it makes roads to the park accessible, and grass in the park will be short hence seeing animals easy. The months of June – September, and December – February are more favorable for game drives in Murchison Falls National Park. The day game drive costs 30 USD for Foreign Non-residents, 25USD for Foreign Residents, and 30 UGX for EAC residents however the Night game drive costs 40USD for Foreign Non-residents, 35USD for Foreign Residents, and 40UGX for EAC residents.
Game Drive in Queen Elizabeth National Park.
The park is a Savannah National park located in the Western part of Uganda in the Kasese, Rubirizi, Rukungiri, and Kamwege districts. The park is the 2nd largest park, It is a home of unique apes commonly known as Chimpanzees, other primates include; Red tailed monkeys, blue monkeys, and white and black monkeys. While you are on a game drive in Queen Elizabeth National park you will get a chance to see 4 of the big five animals. It has two conservational areas of Kasenyi plains and Ishasha grasslands and they are both located within the park giving you a beautiful view of various species in the sky. The game drive is best done in the morning hours when mammals are just coming out of their hiding places when they are looking for food, and the late afternoon hours are from 3 pm – 6 pm while some are done in the night from 6 pm – 9 pm. Game drives are done in the Kasenyi plains, the Mweya peninsula, and the Ishasha sector where you see tree-climbing lions. During a game drive, you can view animals like Topi, Kobs, Hippos, Giant forest, Waterbucks, and Bush bucks, View predators like Lions, leopards, hyenas, and Bird species.
Game Drive in Kidepo National Park
The park is an isolated Savannah National park located in the North East region of Uganda, Game driving is the most famous activity carried out in Kidepo National park. It has a variety of animals and is characterized by a rugged semi-arid valley that is found at the border of Uganda, Kenya, and South Sudan. Visitors that visit enjoy the adventurous experience right from the travel moments, wilderness plains, good views of the wildlife at a distance, and spectacular scenery and landscape.
It is done to view large concentrations of animals that gather to drink water during the dry season because rains rarely limit movement since the ground dries up very fast. The rainy season will also offer the best wildlife viewing because animals can be spotted scattered around the plains. Night game drives are allowed in the park since the game ranger guide moves with you in the car. This takes place in the Narus Valley since they enable tourists to sight some nocturnal animals like Cheetahs, Red buck, Guenthens, Dik-dik, and also some predators trying to hunt. A torch is used for bright light to help you view animals in the dark. The best dry months to carry out the Game drive in Kidepo national park are between September – March. The cost for the Day Game drive is 20 USD for Foreign Non-residents per person per day, 15 USD for Non-residents per person per day, 20UGX for EAC residents and the Night Game drive costs 30 USD for Foreign Non-residents, 20 USD for Foreign residents per person per day and 50UGX for EAC residents.
Game Drive in Lake Mburo National Park
This park is the smallest national park in Uganda, it is located in the Western region along Masaka – Mbarara highway. The park is one of the Savannah destinations that offer an amazing game drive where you will be able to view different animals like Buffaloes, Impalas, Zebras, Giraffes, Elands, Water bucks, Wathrogs, Topi, Leopards, and Hippos. The cost of the Day game drive in Lake Mburo National Park is 20 USD for Non-residents and for EAC residents it is 20 USD. The game drive is a round-year activity however the best time of the year for game drives is during the dry season from June to September and from December to February when the animals are concentrated on the water sources of the park.
Game Drive in Pian Upe Wildlife Reserve.
This is the largest conservation area and Uganda’s best-kept secret located in the North Eastern region, Karamoja, Nakapiripit. It is about 8 hours or less via Mbale town. The game drive can be done in the morning time and Afternoon hours. January, February, and March are the best months because they are relatively dry unlike the rest of the year.
The game drive costs 25 USD for foreign residents and 15000 for EAC residents. The reserve is mostly known for Roan Antelopes besides the Cheetahs, Elands, Buffaloes, Dik-dik, Jackals, Crater Kudu, Zebras, and Jackson’s best. Game drives are great during the dry season but can get nasty during the rainy season and you will need to have a good 4-wheel drive vehicle to maneuver through the muddy roads during the rainy season. Some roads within the reserve are not well maintained and you will have to create your own if you want to reach certain areas of the reserve. When interested in doing a Game drive activity in any of the above Uganda Tourism destinations you can contact Jewel Safaris to plan a trip for you as well as also creating an itinerary of your choice.