Semuliki National Park
Nestled in a far-off country in western Uganda, Bundibugyo, Semuliki National Park also known as the ‘True Birder’s Haven’ resides an eastern extension of DR Congo’s vast Ituri Forest. The Park is one of the richest areas in Africa for forest birds; it’s really perfect for birding experiences!!
Attractions in Semuliki:
As already noted, Semuliki National Park is fair to say the best birding site in East Africa, provided it resides many unique bird species that you cannot meet anywhere in East Africa. A large number of predominantly Central African bird species take residence in this Park and cannot be found anywhere else in East Africa. Among them include some of the continent’s most spectacular and sought-after birds such as; Congo Serpent Eagle, Long-tailed Hawk, Nkulengu Rail, Black-wattled Hornbill and Lyre-tailed Honey guide. Birders who take birding safaris in Semliki National Park will be richly rewarded with some of the very best forest birding in Africa; truly a birder’s paradise!!!
Among the major attractions in this mesmerizing western Park include its eye catching pair of hot springs – male and female, found near the Park headquarters at Sempaya. The pair of hot springs comprise of a male and female. The male hot spring is known as Bintente well as the female hot spring is called ‘’Nyansimbi’’, which means the female ancestors; it is a boiling geyser that spurts bubbling water and steam up to two meters high. Here you can cook eggs and eat them.
Besides the unique African bird species and the breathtaking pair of hot springs, Semuliki also inhabits very many other attractions. There are beyond 305 species of trees recorded in this Park and 125 species of them are said to be restricted to this park only. There are 53 species of mammals such as bush pigs, elephants, buffaloes, Sitatunga, Dwarf Antelopes (White-bellied duikers), Water Chevrotain, and many more – though seeing them is always luck as the Park is not that perfect for wildlife safaris. Other attractions to see however include Grey-cheeked Mangabey, Vervet monkeys, Red-tailed and Mona, Gentle (Blue) Monkeys, Olive Baboons, De Brazza’s Monkeys, and Chimpanzees may once in a while be heard than seen. There are also some nocturnal primates in Semuliki which include Pottos and Galagos. 30 species of butterflies have also been recorded, including 46 species of forest Swallowtails and Charaxes (75% of Uganda’s total) and at least 235 species of moths have been classified as restricted.
Accommodations in Semuliki:
There are not so many accommodations in Semuliki National Park, though there are quite a number of lodges and hotels in Bundibugyo and Fort Portal, nearby cities. Meanwhile, some of the places to stay at while in Semuliki National Park include; the Semuliki Safari Lodge, Ntoroko Game Lodge, Hotel Vanilla, UWA Bandas and Cottages, Rwenzori Unique Eco – Tourism Camp, and Kirimia Guest House.