Murchison falls national park is divided by the world wide known longest Victoria Nile and this plunges 45m over the residues of rift valley wall, creating the dramatic Murchison Falls, the decorative point of the park and the last event in an 80km expanse of rapids. The mighty small water falls drains the last of the river’s energy, converting it into a wide, calm stream that flows quietly across the rift valley floor and lastly pouring into Lake Albert. This extent of Nile River provides one of Uganda’s most exceptional wildlife spectacles.
The park derived its name from the point that was named Murchison Falls which was found in the world’s longest river Nile. The prominent historical individuals who are recognised for the foundation of the name of the park include Sir Roderick Murchison (1851–1853), who was by then the President of the Royal Geographical Society and among the first explorers who took time to explore the interesting wonders of Africa during Colonial times in the African continent.
Historically Murchison falls Conservation Area was first explored by the well-known world European explorers who travelled to Africa in search of the source of the Nile and these include the likes of John Speke as well as James Grant who visited the present day Murchison in the year 1862 and just a year after the mentioned two explorers, Samuel and Baker Florence also visited the area in the year 1863-1864. Later Florence Baker decided to name the falls Murchison falls basing on the name of Roderick Murchison who was the president of the Royal Geographical society and geologist as well as the first European explorers to explore the area around Murchison falls conservation Area. Among the other historical figures that cannot be left out when they talk of Murchison falls is Winston Churchill who also visited the Murchison falls conservation area in the year 1907 as well as Theodore Roosevelt who also managed to visit the park in the year 1909.
Murchison falls National Park is also sometimes called Kabalega National Park and this is mainly because the Kabalega was the Omukama of the Bunyoro Kingdom towards the end of the 19th century. The highly remembered king resisted colonization by the British and this made him to win an arrest from the British colonialists and they decided to take him to exile to the island nation of the Seychelles. Sad news happened when Kabalega the Omukama of Bunyoro later past away in Jinja, in the year 1923 when he was on his way back from exile to Bunyoro.
The park which covers an estimated area of 3,840 square kilometers contains even the 748sqaure Kilometres of MFCA, (289sqmi) Bugungu wildlife Reserve as well as the 720 square kilometres (280sq mi) Karuma wildlife Reserve. The park is managed by Uganda Wildlife Authority which is a body responsible for conserving and protecting national parks in Uganda.
The park which hosts around 76 mammal species and an estimate of 451 bird species is the only park in Uganda that has the potential to contain all the big five animal species. These big five include the Lion (King of the Jungle), Buffalos, African elephants, leopards and these can be easily found in the northern part of the park especially above the Nile. The world endangered white Rhinos that were bit extinguished are now being recovered and protected in the Rhino sanctuary located south of the Murchison Falls National Park.
During the regime of President Idi Amin, wildlife in the Murchison falls national park was seriously decreased due to high rates of poaching but currently wildlife populations have recovered and regained from this deadly era.
Interesting tourist’s attractions
Murchison falls national park is the only park in Uganda endowed with all the big five wild animals but within the park premises only the big four can be easily found and these include the King of the Jungle (Lion), Cape buffalo, African big Elephants, as well as the Leopard .These wild life species can be easily watched by tourists in the northern part of the park which is located above the river. The prominent Nile bisects the park into southern and northern parts but most of the wild life in the park is found in the northern part. In the year 1983, Rhinos become extinct due to the effects of the high poaching and hunting rates which were carried out in the park. However hope was regained in the year 2005 when Rhino fund Uganda re-introduced the endangered species into Uganda. In the present day, White Rhinos are being conserved and protected again in an estimated area of 7,000 hectares of land covered by Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary; the sanctuary which is located in the southern part of the park is located in an area estimated to be 70 kilometres (43 mi), south of the park. Their mission is to reintroduce small herds of rhinos (around five at a time), whilst retaining a nucleus breeding herd in the sanctuary.
MFCA and adjacent Budongo Forest reserve contain 76 Species of mammals including the giraffes, bushbucks as well as Uganda’s largest population of Nile crocodiles. In the other areas that constitute the Murchison falls conservation area, there are remarkable Primates species and these include the olive baboons mostly seen along the route as well as the Red and blue tailed monkeys, white colobus commonly got in the forest areas. In the other areas but within Murchison falls Conservation Area, one can watch the interesting primates and among these include the Olive baboons which are easily seen a long the roadsides, Red and blue tailed monkeys as well as the white colobus found in the forested areas like Budongo, Kaniyo Pabidi. The 800 estimated number of chimpanzees can also be trekked in the Budongo forests and the Kaniyo Pabidi located away from Murchison falls park but within the MFCA.
The varied natural habitats of Murchison falls National Park in Uganda makes it to be the favorite home of different bird species .The Park boasts of an estimated record of 451 bird species which can be easily watched in the different areas of the park. The remarkable list of birds includes Uganda ‘s national bird the Grey Crowned Crane as well as the endangered world species of the rare Shoebill Stork and also the largest heron in the whole world i.e. Goliath Heron. The particular species which can be seen along the banks of the world’s longest River Nile include the Blue-headed Coucal, Piapiac ,Swamp Flycatcher, Silverbird, Squacco Heron, Red-throated Bee-eater ,White-browed Sparrow Weaver ,African Jacana, African Quail-Finch, as well as the Sandpipers, Black-headed Gonolek ,Denham’s Bustard, Eastern Grey Plantain-eater and Abyssinian Ground-Hornbill among other exceptional bird species.
Murchison Falls .
Murchison Falls is one of the exciting attractions in the park and the falls are characterized by eternal struggle between rapidly running water and rocks. The waters violently force their way through a narrow gorge, applying misty of droplets on their way over a 50m radius. This forms an outstanding rainbow over the place where water struggles with the rocks and causes a continuous roar. The interesting bit when one is standing on the Baker point in the south of falls, one can see how the Nile splits into smaller Uhuru falls that were formed in the year 1962 when the River Nile experienced burst in its banks
River Nile .
The world’s longest river bisects the park into two part s i.e. North and South and there one can decide to take a boat ride along the Nile to the cover distance of Murchison Falls which provides a remarkable experience for nature lovers, as the northern bank is blessed with a different species of mammals as well as the reptiles and birds. Guided nature walks can be also conducted along the two sides of the south and north banks of the River Nile located in the park .The activity is so refreshing and besides others one can also get involved in the sport fishing activity along the waters of River Nile.
Nile-Lake Albert Delta –
The other interesting area with the Murchison falls part is the Nile-Lake Albert Delta which is a wide, quiet stretch of water, where the placid Victoria Nile pours its water into Lake Albert. This particular area is key birding area in the park and its papyrus-lined banks are blessed with numerous birdlife and the remarkable bird species here include the Goliath Herons as well as the Great Egrets, plus African Fish Eagles. Above all is the mostly wanted to watch bird species of the rare shoe bill well known as the world’s endangered bird species.
Buligi Game Tracks –
The Buligi game tracks which extend from Victoria Nile to Albert Niles are the park’s most well-known safari destination area, where mostly visitors can enjoy the views of various wild life species. Due to the park’s endowments with different vegetation zones which range from open savannah grassland to woodland as well as the rare acacia vegetation favors the survival of different wildlife in the park. The Buligi Game Track covers an estimated area of 120-170 km in length.
According to the Luo language the word Paraa, means a place of hippos and it happens to be the park’s tourism hub. The place is the meeting area or point for all the roads leading to the park and also the south and northern parts of the park are joined by passenger ferry in this very place. Paraa is where most of the accommodation places serving visitors to Murchison falls national park are found among these include Paraa luxury hotel. Additionally, a museum and gift shop can be found on the north bank, and most game drives launch trips and nature walks commence here.
The Karuma Falls are found in Chobe, in the northeastern region of the Murchison falls National Park. These wonderful roaring waterfalls on the Victoria Nile are formed as result of a series of natural rock formations which make the waters to form series of waves and at the end give water a white like beautiful look. Karuma falls is the best area where one can experience sport fishing in Murchison falls national park.
Kaniyo Pabidi Forest .
The naturally gifted forest is located in the southern part of Murchison Falls Conservation Area; it’s an ecosystem diverse forest that contains white and black colobus, blue monkeys as well as the olive baboons. The forest reserve also boasts of the habituated chimp family which is opened for tourism purposes. The visitors to the forest include the lions, Elephants as well as buffalos and leopards. Various species of birds which mostly like inhabiting the forest can easily be watched in this forest and some of these birds include the chocolate-backed kingfisher as well as the white-thighed hornbill plus even the Puvel’s illadopsis which can be only found in East Africa. Kaniyo Pabidi has a variety of accommodation facilities in form of campsites and cottages.
Rabongo Forest .
This particular forest covers an estimated area of 4square kilometers which is Surrounded by savannah vegetation, Rabongo Forest is taken to be birders’ paradise because of the forest’s ability to act as habitant for different endangered species of birds which can be only found in the park. Rabongo is the best place for educational tours as it offers visitors opportunities of identifying different wildlife animals as well as bird species and medicinal plants plus trees.
Outside the park
The most important forest is just located a few kilometers outside Murchison falls national park. The forest Reverse lies south west section of the Murchison Falls Conservation Area. Budongo is gifted with 24 mammal species as well as over 360 birds and lastly 289 butterflies and 465 plants. Budongo forest is popular known due to its 800 chimpanzees which are habituated and protected in the forest. The various activities which can be carried out here include chimpanzee trekking as well as the interesting Forest walks which can be conducted at Busingiro Ecotourism Site found along Masindi-Bugungu road leading to Murchison Falls National Park.
- Game drives in Murchison Falls National Park.
The game drive in Murchison Falls National Park is one of the rewarding encounters that you can ever have while on Uganda safari. The activity exposes you to a range of wild game including; elephants, buffaloes, lions, leopards, Jackson’s hartebeest, Rothschild giraffes, Uganda kobs, water buck, oribi among other species. The game drives are usually carried out in the open savannah landscapes of the northern sector with in the designed tracks of Buligi, Albert and Victoria. The area between Paraa – Pakwach road and Victoria Nile Delta present great wildlife concentrations. The 7km transfer from Paraa takes you up to junction where you will turn left to enter Buligi track or turn right to Wankwar gate and Chobe. The Nyamsika gorge which is situated within few Kilometers from the junction offers good sights of wild game as it gathers to drink water while the Nyamsika cliffs are shelter to seasonal colonies of bee-eater bird species while the shallows are ideal for encountering the Egyptian plover. In the southern sector, the open area along Sambiya Karuma road offers impressive sights of Jackson’s hartebeest, Uganda kob, oribi, waterbuck and baboon. The rarely sighted are elephants and lions. The game drive activity is best done in the morning at 6:30am and in the evening at 4:30pm local time and it lasts for 3 – 4 hours. If you slept in the southern side, you have to catch up with the ferry crossing at 7am.
Birding safari in Murchison Falls National Park.
Murchison Falls National Park with its 451 bird species and 19 that are unconfirmed offers ideal birding encounters. The game drives and the launch cruise both offer birding encounters. Alternatively, it can be encountered as full day activity of its own. The Nile banks provides encounter with the rare and endangered shoebill stork that is easily spotted in the months of January and March. The Murchison plains present sights of Marabou Stork, Abyssinian Ground Hornbill, Secretary Birds, Open-billed Storks and Widow Bird and Black-bellied Bustards. Other bird species that make birding encounters thrilling in Murchison while on Uganda safaris include; White headed vulture, grey crowned crane, Senegal thick- knee, Black headed lapwing among others. The forests of Rabongo and Kaniyo-Pabidi also provide good birding encounters while Nyamsika cliffs are home to Swallow-tailed and Red-throated Bee-eaters. The combination of these makes birding in Murchison Falls National Park interesting.
- Launch trips in the Nile in Murchison Falls National Park.
Murchison Falls National Park is traversed by the Nile River for 115km. After the powerful Murchison falls, the waters of the Nile lay in at most calmness as they approach Lake Albert (Victoria Delta) providing a thrilling ground for a launch trip. The launch trip commences from Paraa jetty and goes up to the bottom of the falls allowing Uganda Safari undertakers to view Nile crocodiles, Hippos, birds like the rare shoe bill stork, Goliath heron, saddle billed stork, African fish eagle, pied and malachite kingfishers, African jacana, African skimmer and piacpiac, wild game drinking on the river side including elephants and the lush vegetation that front the river including acacia woodland, mahogany stands and borasus palm. The Nile launch trip takes 3 hours and is best done in the afternoon commencing at 2pm.
- Top of the Murchison Falls.
The encounter to the top of the falls is also very thrilling. The powerful falls in the world would be explored on Uganda safari by reaching at its top. This can be done by taking a 15km road that branches off from the main Paraa – Masindi road near Sambiya River Lodge and because of steepness and roughness of the road, it requires keen navigation. The top of Murchison falls is marked by a foot path that trails to the botoom of the falls following the Nile as it crushes its self on the impermeable rocks that have only given it 8m gap to proceed with its course. You can also take a 20 minute from the view point to a saddle that will in turn offers you the views of Murchison falls and Uhuru falls in the north. The exploration of the waterfall takes approximately 2 hours and is best done in the afternoon.
- Cultural encounters around Murchison Falls National Park .
There are a range of tribal groups that surround Murchison Falls National Park including the northern Nilotic tribes and southern Bantu tribal groups. These people have got varying traditions that are very interesting to encounter while on safari in Uganda. The local dance groups are available to give a taste of this tradition suiting your limited time. The example of these is Mubako energetic dancers who are good at music dance and drama and always perform in the evening at the safari lodge forest. You can also take a village tour to explore the local community setting.
- Sport fishing on the Nile in Murchison Falls National Park.
The River Nile waters can also be ideal for sport fishing encounter while on safari in Uganda. They offer ideal encounter to fish Nile perch. Sport fishing is done at specific gazetted areas and can be done all year round and throughout the day. However, local fishermen assert that the outcomes are interesting in the morning and evening which holds some truth for the sake of predator fish species. This is rejected by the technocrats like Arthur de Mello who points out that fishing can be done at any day time or night provided the waters and weather are clear and warm. The low water volumes and clear water offer impressive sport fishing encounter in Murchison National Park between Mid-Januarys to Early April.
- Hiking and nature walks in Budongo Forest in Murchison Falls National Park.
There is also provision for nature walks in Murchison Falls National Park. There are walks in the forests of Kaniyo Pabidi and Rabongo offering sights of birds and primates. There are other nature walks along the Victoria Nile Delta that lasts 2 – 4 hours with probable views of spotting shoe bill stork.
The 45m hike to the top of the falls offers rewarding sights of the powerful Murchison falls as it crushes its self on the hard rocks that mark the 43m long pass that is 8m in width. This is done when travellers leave the launch after approaching the bottom of the falls and hike to the top on foot. There are also other short treks that commence from Sambiya River Lodge ideal for birders and nature lovers. They normally last 1 ½ – 2 hours.
- LODGES IN KANIYO PABIDI FOREST
Boomu Women´s Group Bandas-Budget
Boomu Women’s group Bandas is perfectly location between Budongo Forest Reserve and Murchison Falls National Park. Boomu Women´s Group has around 40 members from the villages of Kihaguzi and Kigaragara. These subsistence farmers had little produce left over to sell, so in 1999 the women´s group was formed, with the aim of reducing poverty and malnutrition, and providing an income for the members to be able to pay their children´s school fees. What began as a craft group has evolved into a wonderful community tourism project, with accommodation, a restaurant, unique guided tours and a well-tended garden.
The local community group offers accommodation in the grass-thatched bandas that have been built in traditional Ugandan style for an authentic community experience. The bandas are surrounded by beautiful tropical gardens filled with butterflies and weaver birds. Guests are t the location of the community tourism projects can easily relax in the gardens, visit the local community of Kigaragara and explore the craft shop.
Boomu has seven twin bandas, one double banda and a building with two triple rooms. All have mosquito nets, electric lights (from a generator) and shared bathroom facilities. Showers are cold water tanks fitted with a shower head, and are outdoors. Jerry cans of hot water can be provided on request and toilets services are offered by the dry eco toilets.
The food prepared and served in the restaurant by local women is basically Uganda traditional food and this give room for visitors to have taste of the Ugandan food. The bandas have the bar services where visitors can set relax and refresh their minds in an open air ground.
The tourists activities organized in the lodge include ,Village walks, Cooking demonstrations in the nearby home steads, Basket weaving lessons chaired by the local women leader, Bird watching in the gardens or nearby Budongo Forest as well as Chimp tracking at Budongo Forest Reserve.
In terms on responsible travel, Boomu has four full-time employees and many part-time staff who benefit directly from tourism. All the money from the community tour and a percentage of the turnover is put into a community fund that finances school books, soap, pencils and porridge for local children attending a nursery created by Boomu. Other projects that benefit from this fund are educational projects, local clinics, water access improvements, and agroforestry initiatives. Community members have also been trained in high-quality blanket weaving, which can be sold to local lodges and hotels.
Room /Activity Type Rates Banda per person per night 20,000 USH Bed only Camping per person per night 7,000 USH Breakfast 7,000 USH Community Walk, Cookery Tour, 15,000 USH
LODGES IN THE NORTHERN AND EASTERN MURCHISON
Chobe Safari Lodge-Luxury
Chobe Safari Lodge is situated in Murchison Falls National Park in the north western Uganda and its Five Star lodge providing world class accommodation services to tourists on their safaris to Murchison Falls National Park.
The lodge offers opportunities for visitors to have breathtaking panoramic views, accompanied with the nice sounds of the River Nile’s prominent rapids, set the scene for an adventure that will impress even the most discerning visitors. Chobe Safari Lodge provides a rare opportunity to visitors mainly to sample the wildlife as well as the endangered bird species, the diverse beautiful flora and fauna.
The Lodge offers different amenities to different travellers on their Uganda safari destination of Murchison falls National park and among the important amenities include Restaurant/bar with TVs, Swimming pool, Travel desk Children´s play area, Gift shop, On-site wildlife, Solar water heater, Generator for electricity in mornings and evening, Telescope for stargazing and 4×4 vehicle to rent for game drives.
The lodge offers accommodation in the different lodge rooms which range from 16 standard Rooms all positioned in the main building block. The interior avails an atmosphere of being on safari, yet more importantly having that modern touch that gets one back to modernization or civilization which is currently vital. Each standard room have additional features like En-suite private bathroom, Ceiling fan, Hair driers as well as Private balcony which has a best view of the river Nile.
The lodge also has a total of three suites which are all located in the main building block. The built in way that favour traveller s that travels with their families and also travellers who wish to stay in rooms with enough space.
Besides the other types of rooms visitors can also use the 7 deluxe tents situated a short walking distance from the main lodge building. The lodge has deluxe tents which are for the discerning guest who wants a little more exclusivity to make your trip an unforgettable one. The interiors are more spacious and the furnishings are more suited to the ‘luxury safari’ experience. The views from the balconies are unparalleled; watch the mesmerizing sunset over the river’s waters in the evening or marvel at the twilight skies.
Interested visitors have chance to select from 8 standard tents situated a short walk able distance from the main lodge building. These tents offer perfect accommodation to those specific travellers interested in a more authentic ‘safari’ experience.
The lodge also organizes various activities for the tourists and this range from the Safari adventurers like participating in the launch cruise in the waters of the Victoria Nile. For Birders the lodge offers guided nature walks around the two banks of the river where the visitors can enjoy the views of various bird life.
The present of lush green gardens in the lodge and experienced staff to prepare weddings, the lodge also provides options for visitors have their wedding ceremonies at the lodge. Besides the ones mention the lodge also offers Conferences and group retreats among others.
As well as Sustainability tourism is concerned, Chobe Lodge be works with the surrounding communities to develop complimentary tourism activities that express local Ugandan culture and enrich the tourists’ experience. The Lodge also supports Local Craft Shop as well as local Community Dancers and also employs a high number of people from the surrounding areas.
GeoLodges Nile Safari Lodge
The safari lodge is situated in amid papyrus forests on the banks of the River Nile, Nile Safari Lodge provides luxurious accommodation in Uganda’s largest national park. The wooden chalets and luxury tents of the lodge all have private balconies suspended over the mighty river, maximizing stunning views and giving a true feeling of wild Africa. Weaver nests occupy overhanging trees, vervet monkeys leap from branch to roof, and hippos snort with contentment.
Nile Safari Lodge gives visitors opportunities to come closer to nature without causing harm to the natural environment, allowing the tourists to stay peaceful with the region´s natural inhabitants, without air conditioning or barriers to wildlife.
The secluded pool offers the best reprieve from the equatorial sun after a day of activities. During cool hours visitors are invited to enjoy the lodge open fireplace – perfect for stargazing, bird watching, and enjoying a chilled sundowner.
We hope to instill a love and enthusiasm for this exceptionally beautiful area which will stay with you forever!
The Safari Lodge Amenities range from the wonderful Restaurant and bar, Extended deck with seating area, Swimming pool, Tour desk and Small craft shop, On-site wildlife viewing, Outdoor fireplace with cultural dance performances and the Shoebill Camp Site for guests who bring tents
The safari lodge room description varies from one room type to another, all rooms and tents have lighting and private bathrooms with flushing toilets and outdoor “bush” showers, filled with hot or cold water on request. They have private verandas overlooking the Nile.
Available rooms include: Twin safari tents,Private cabins (family, double and twin cabins), Camping area – tents not provided
The lodge activities include Boat Ride: Sail around the island in the river and down to the delta – ideal for shoebill spotting! $50 per boat. Bird Walk: With an experienced guide. $10 per person. Village Walk: Visit nearby Mubako community with Francis, a community member and guide $10 pp . Cultural Performances: Mubako Community performs traditional songs and dances around the camp fire.
As far as Responsible Travel is concerned, the lodge uses the solar powered lighting which is installed in the tents and also uses the Bush showers which save water. Most of the staff members are got from Mubako Community; local labourers are employed when possible
Paraa Safari Lodge- Luxury.
Established in the year 1954, Paraa Safari Lodge located in Murchison Falls National Park, on the banks of the mighty world’s longest River Nile.
There is a choice of fine dining, and the Explorer’s bar is the ideal watering hole after a day of wildlife discovery in Murchison Falls National Park. The luxurious pool overlooks the winding Set in an area of landscaped gardens, the safari décor of the lodge still reflects the bygone era of early explorers, enshrined with a modern touch.
Enjoy a variety of excursions and activities; from exhilarating Safari drives to boat trips along the River Nile, ending at the foot of Murchison Falls. For the more adventurous, one can trek up to the top of the falls and marvel at the views through the mist. A variety of ecosystems and an impressive 451 species of birds awaits you here…
Paraa safari Lodge offers different world class Amenities and these ranges from Restaurant and bar, the lodge has best menu of local and international specialties produced by lodge experienced chefs. The Captain’s Table restaurant is located on the upper floor in what was one of the lodge’s main halls before it was renovated. One can choose to eat inside or outside on the balcony (which boasts a sweeping view of the River Nile). Special barbecues and traditional dancers make a Saturday evening at Paraa Safari Lodge an occasion to remember.
Conference facility.For corporate occasions or for those who like to mix pleasure with business, Paraa Safari Lodge can provides a conference room and facilities to cater for your conferencing/meeting needs.
Business Service Centre with Internet access the Business Service Centre is open from 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week. It meets all the needs of the traveling business executive and includes 24-hour Internet access as well as printing facilities.
Gift Shop- Indulge in getting your loved ones a present from the pearl of Africa, the lodge gift shop sells local East African crafts and souvenirs such as guidebooks, clothing, an
Swimming Pool – the lodge has one of the best pools which can used by visitors to cool themselves off after a long day out in the bush, the swimming pool at Paraa Safari Lodge even has a pool bar – come sip a cocktail in the water while overlooking the River Nile below at sunset. The other facilities include the Fireplace, Laundry service and On-site wildlife viewing.
The lodge provides accommodation to guest in its different rooms and the description of the rooms is given below;
Each of the 54 rooms is a haven of style and serenity, complete with balcony and private bathroom. All rooms have fans and hot water.
Suites also have air conditioning, mini bars and panoramic windows.
In addition, the Queen’s Cottage has a sunken bath, king-size master bedroom, twin room (both with en suite bathrooms), living/dining room, mini bar and air conditioning.
The luxurious lodge in the Murchison Falls Park also organizes different activities and these include Chimpanzee Tracking, Game Drive Birding and Nature Walks as well as Boat ride to Murchison Falls Fishing Boat trip to the Nile Delta
The Paraa Safari Lodge supports and operates with the help of the local and surrounding communities. Most of the staff at the lodge are local residents helping to create authentic Ugandan surroundings with the comforts of home.
On side of the responsible travel again, Nightly dancers from Mubako community arrive to show off their moves and display the local culture and heritage.
The lodge also sources fruit from the surrounding communities and this is done in order to give market to the communities’ products.
Sambiya River Lodge
The lodge is situated just 15 minutes from the top of the magnificent Murchison Falls; Sambiya River Lodge is the perfect location for those who want to experience the tranquility of Uganda. The Lodge’s unique charm is in the atmosphere of intimacy provided to the guests. Our 36 cottages and bandas are tucked away beneath the trees of our beautiful tropical garden, which also contains a small children’s play area and a pool.
The lodge offers personalized wildlife safaris, fishing excursions, birding walks and trips to Murchison Falls to suit each of our guests’ unique tastes. Sambiya River Lodge is the perfect place to relax between adventures and also watch a spectacular African sunrise with fresh coffee or tea on visitor’s cottage verandah as well as a cool off in the pool after a day full of activities, enjoy excellent meals and sundowners around the Lodge bar or sip after dinner drinks by the camp fire.
Sambiya allows you to relax in luxury whilst experiencing the sights and sounds of Africa.
Lodge Amenities, Lodge amenities, Restaurant and bar with TVs, Swimming pool, Travel desk, Gift shop, On-site wildlife viewing in the surrounding gardens, Solar water heater, Electricity in the mornings and evening
Room scattered around the peaceful gardens, Sambiya has 26 individual and family thatched cottages with en suite bathrooms, fans, screened doors and windows, mosquito nets, and a veranda to relax and enjoy the commanding views of quintessential Africa.
Ten basic bandas are also available for guest accommodation, including one en suite banda and nine with shared bathroom facilities. Bandas have fans, screened doors and windows and mosquito nets.
The activities at the Lodge include exclusive Game drives – we have our own vehicle, Trips to the top of the fall, Nile boat rides to the bottom of the fall – with the option of hiking to the top
Bird watching and the Hiking and trekking, including walking safaris, Chimp tracking and forest walks in Kaniyo Pabidi Forest, Fishing – check out our “Hall of Fame” board to see what has been caught!
Responsible Travel Sambiya was designed as a small eco-lodge. Most of the trees in the concession area were undisturbed and consequently the site is very ‘green ‘It was built with materials from the area, Sambiya Lodge has solar heated hot water, Local crafts from Anaka Women’s Group are sold in the Lodge Gift Shop
Red Chilli Rest Camp-Budget
Red Chilli Rest Camp is the only budget accommodation located inside Murchison Falls National Park and it’s the best place to meet like-minded travellers; begin your thrilling safari; or take a launch trip to the Falls , the Nile River boat dock is right on our doorstep. The camp’s open-sided restaurant offers great views across the river and is a great place to relax with a chilled beer or a good book after a dusty day on safari. The camp also has a bonfire most evenings, and campers with their own cooking equipment are encouraged to use the barbecue area.
All bandas the lodge have mosquito nets, electric lights, fans, linen and towels. Furnished safari tents have linen but no towels, and the tents are treated with mosquito repellent. As there is no electricity, paraffin lamps are supplied. at night
The Lodge Amenities include Restaurant and bar (open until midnight), Outdoor seating areas,Bonfire, Barbecue area (equipment not provided) ,Power points for charging laptops and phones, On-site wildlife viewing, Camping area for up to 100 guests (tents not provided),Electricity is available from 9am until midnight.
The lodge organizes different activities to tourist who spend the night in the camp and among these activities include wildlife viewing in the Murchison falls national park, nature walks, community walks among others.
Room Type Rates (sharing) Rates per person
75,000 USh 100,000 USh single( B&B)
55,000 USh sharing 70,000 USh single B&B
US $90 full board sharing $105 US full board single
- By road, it will take you around 5hours from Kampala with about 311 km. Paara covers a distance of about 85km from Masindi town by the shortest route.
A direct or longer route will cover an area of about 135km.Alternatively one may decide to take on the Budongo forest route that will provide magnificent views overlooking Lake Albert from the direct position of the rift valley escarpment over Butiaba.
You can also access Paara from the north through Chobe Gate, Karuma Falls along with Tangi. The Gate that is close to Pakwach covers an area of about 25Sqaure kilometres to Paara in addition to Wankwar Gate close to Purongo.
People with Vehicles or public means will definitely go through the Nile at paara. It has a fixed time from 07.00 and 19.00.Besides road, Murchison can be accessed by air. Pakuba is the landing site for the charter flights and this takes about 19 kms from Paraa and Bugungu covers an area of 13kms from Paraa.