Are you an eco-tourist or nature enthusiast and looking forward to visiting some of the country’s magnificent ecotourism sites during Uganda safaris? Uganda is endowed with authentic destinations that offer breathtaking eco-activities that will take your breath away.
Ecotourism is referred as the responsible travel of tourists to relatively undisturbed areas and this always aims at promoting sustainable tourism development in the country. You will be surprised that Uganda is one of the best eco-tourism destinations in Africa and the World in general. Some of these Eco-tourist sites include;
Budongo Forest Reserve
Budongo Forest Reserve is the largest tropical rainforest covering over 825 square kilometers thus making it the largest Mahogany Forest within the East African region with abundant tree, wildlife, bird and butterfly species. This large Forest Reserve is a haven to more than 120 Chimpanzees with at least 30 of them being habituated thus can be tracked by tourists. Other must-see primates at this eco-tourist site include olive baboons, vervet monkeys, black and white colobus monkeys, red-tailed monkeys as well as bird species that can be spotted within the Kaniyo-Pabidi sector in the north-eastern side of the Forest Reserve.
Besides Chimpanzees, the Kaniyo-Pabidi sector is a home to other wildlife species that include buffaloes, forest elephants, warthogs, waterbucks, bushbucks, bush pigs and many others. There are several developed and well maintained walking trails within Budongo Forest and can allow visitors to participate in different interesting activities such as bird watching, forest walks, primate walks and camping among others.
Mpanga Forest Reserve
Mpanga Forest Reserve is situated at approximately 35 kilometers (one hour’s drive) out of Kampala City along the Kampala-Masaka highway and covers an area of 453 hectares. This site is a perfect ecotourism site with several species of birds (including those with the wide buttress rooms), colorful butterfly species, mammals especially primates like the red-tailed monkeys as well as bird species such as cuckoos, parrots, hornbills, owls and weaverbirds among others. Due to the interesting attractions, the best activity to engage in is nature walks that lead tourists through the well developed and maintained trails including family trail, baseline trail, hornbill trail and butterfly trail that allow reward tourists with the wonderful views of some of the wildlife, trees, butterflies and birds that call the forest home.
There are over 84 Islands within Lake Victoria that are collectively referred as “Ssese Islands” and still remain one of Uganda’s authentic yet unexplored ecotourism sites with verdant tropical rainforests that offer shelter to a number of primate species such as the black and white colobus monkeys, chimpanzees, red-tailed monkeys and vervet monkeys, col0rful bird species and butterflies.
Additionally, the Islands are known for pristine beaches that are ideal spots for unwinding, swimming and sunbathing but you can’t mention these Islands without the exquisite Resorts. Therefore, tourist activities you should expect include bird watching, nature walks, water sports, fishing, relaxation, sunbathing and beach sports (such as volleyball).
Mabira Forest Reserve
Situated on the Kampala-Jinja highway at around 54 kilometers from Uganda’s Capital and 20 kilometers from Jinja Town is the verdant Mabira Forest Reserve, one of the must-visit ecotourism sites during Uganda safaris. Gazetted in 1932, it extends for about 300 square kilometers (120 square miles) and is a haven to several mammal species including primates (grey-cheeked mangabeys and red-tailed monkeys), blue duikers, leopards and bush pigs, snakes as well as over 315 species of birds such as yellow-spotted barbets, African pied hornbills, grey parrots, Cassin’s Hawk-eagle, black and white casqued hornbills and Nahan’s francolins among others.
Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary
Bigodi wetland Sanctuary is situated within western Uganda, near Kibale Forest National Park and is a home to over 200 species of birds but offers papyrus reed that are used as raw materials for making handcrafts.
Besides the above, other important Ecotourism sites worth exploring during Uganda safaris include the Sezibwa River, Bugoma Forest Reserve, Kasyoha-Kitomi Forest Reserve, Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary and Kalinzu Forest Reserve. These Sites offers exceptional wildlife, birds, butterflies and tree species as well as eco-lodges for comfort as you explore what nature offers.