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Ssemuliki National Park


Semliki National Park is one of the smallest parks in Uganda. The park is located on the extreme end of the western boundaries sharing borders with DRC. The park was gazetted in 1993, the park is located in Bundibugyo district within Bwamba County district on U     Uganda’s border with the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The 220km/sq park attracts a high diversity of flora and fauna. It also shares on the central African climate and its ecology. The Semuliki Park features majorly a medium altitude moist evergreen vegetation to the semi-deciduous forest with the huge Ituri forests. Semuliki national park is famous due to its primordial hot springs, traditional sites for rituals of Bamaga people.

The park boosts with one of Africa’s ancient and biodiversity forests. It’s a birders haven with over 440 bird species in particular the central African species. The park is recorded with over 144 Guinean Congo forest species and at least 50 species are recorded nowhere in the rest of Africa.

Accessing Semuliki national park

Located in western region from Kampala capital in Bundibugyo district. Semuliki can easily be accessed from Kampala via Fort Portal on a drive of about 180km, thendriving over 59km from Fort Portal to Semuliki National Park.

Activities to undertake at Semuliki national park

Wildlife drive

The most done adventure activities by tourist going to the park. The semuliki drive within and outside the park is very rewarding with several wildlife species. The park’s dominant mammal species to sight alongside scenic drive include buffaloes, leopards, hippos, Mona monkeys, water chevrotains, bush babies, civets, elephants, and the pygmy flying squirrel. Expect to find several primate species including red-tailed monkey, Vervet monkey, blue and De Brazza’s monkey, grey-cheeked mangabey, olive baboon, black and white colobus, and Chimpanzee together with over 300 butterfly species.

Bird watching

Semuliki national park known as the birders haven. Semuliki accommodates over 440 bird species which are mostly sighted along Sempaya and Ntandi the park headquarters. For bird enthusiasts expect to watch birds like white-crested hornbill, red-billed dwarf hornbill, piping hornbill, yellow-throated nicator, great blue and ross’s turaco. Close to Lake Albert you can expect to sight shoebill stork and several water birds.

There are also 12 unique bird species that are extremely partial in East Africa. These include Western bronze-napped pigeon, yellow-throated cuckoo, piping hornbill, red-sided broadbill, xavier’s greenbul, capuchin babbler, yellow longbill, blue-headed flycatcher, red-billed helmet-shrike, crested malimbe, pale fronted antpecker and chestnut-breasted negro-finch among others.

Chimpanzee tracking

It’s not clear and guaranteed to watch chimpanzees here. However, this fascinating adventure to is also available at Semuliki national park especially with researchers. The morning chimpanzee tracking UWA mainly calls it primate walk. Chimpanzees here are under research and not fully habituated for tracking. To hike and see the chimps is likely difficult and chances left to watch the chimpanzees are lesser about 30%. Nevertheless, along the primate walks in the tropical savannah comes with several primates including grey checked mangebay, red tailed monkeys, olive baboons among others.

Nature walks

Walking trail to the hot springs through a patch of the forest rewards with some common primate encounters. These primates including red-tailed monkey, grey-cheeked mangabey and black and white colobus and many interesting birds like the forest hornbills, blue-breasted kingfisher, red-rumped and yellow-throated tinker bird, Frasier’s ant-thrush, honey guide greenbul among others.

Along the far side of slushy swamp clearing, there is another broad steaming pool than a geyser that can be reached by a footpath. The wilderness trail through the Eastern margin of the Park to the Semuliki River proposes variability of localized birds. In addition to the red monkey trail, you can as well see a variety of monkeys, crocodiles, buffalo, and elephant on the River.

Other nature walking trails can include the, Kirimia River Trail about 15km along the banks of river Semiliki crossing to river Kirimia and the cultural trails.


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