Kidepo Valley National Park
Kidepo Valley National park is located in north- Eastern part of Uganda, 700km from Kampala, straddling the borders of Uganda, Kenya and Sudan making it the most isolated park in Uganda. It covers an area of 1,442 sq km. It lies in the rugged, semi-arid valleys of Karamoja province; those that make the long journey north would agree that it is one of the most attractive parks. The park harbours scenery not found in any other park of East Africa as well as great numbers of fauna and flora. The vegetation can best be described as open tree Savannah which varies in structure and composition. Mountain forest dominates some of the high places, while areas along the Lorupei River support dense Acacia geradi forests.
What to do:
Popular tourist activities include game viewing as the park has over 80 mammalian species with around 28 of them not found in any other national park in Uganda. They include Caracal, Bat-eared Fox, Klipspringers, and Cheetah. Other mammals include elephants, common zebras, buffaloes, Bohor Reedbuck, Waterbuck, Kongoni, spotted Hyena, Leopard, Lion, Oribi, Guenthers Dikdik, Senegal Galagos, Side-striped Jackal among others. Another activity here is birding as the park boats of an extensive avifauna. 465 species have been recorded including the Ostrich and the Kori Bustard which are principally associated with arid areas.
The park also has an outstanding number of birds of prey. 58 species of these have been recorded here 14 of which are believed to be endemic to Kidepo and the Karamoja region. Cultural entertainment is another attraction here as the local community near the park stages cultural dances and performances. Traditional dances such as the Emuya of the Naporre and Nyangia, Larakaraka and Apiti dances of the Acholi are interesting to see and participate in them too. Other activities in this park include hiking, nature walks among others.
Where to stay:
Accommodation is more concentrated at Apoka which is located on the shallow slopes of the scenic Narus valley. Apoka lodge offers spacious and luxurious cottages with expansive views across the plains. Bottled drinks are available but visitors are advised to bring their own food. There are two basic campsites situated in the Narus valley. Each is provided with a pit latrine and shower stall but visitors should bring their own equipment.