Kidepo Valley National Park – The true African Wilderness Experience

After having visited Mgahinga gorilla National Park, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Murchison Falls National Park, and Kibale National Park, you might be lured into thinking that you have seen it all when it comes to Uganda safari attractions, however, there are still other Uganda tour attractions that we are yet to discover and today I would like to take you on an incredible safari in Uganda

Where is Kidepo Valley National Park found?

Located in the northeastern corner of Uganda in Kaabong district, Kidepo Valley National Park lies about 600km or 14-hour drive away from Kampala city Uganda’s capital and its bordered

by South Sudan in the north, Kenya in the east and Kotido district in the south and Kitgum district in the west.

What is Kidepo Valley’s weather?

Kidepo valley experiences a semi-desert climate pattern with relatively long winter or dry seasons that are characterized by very little or no rainfall received during this period between September- March that experience relatively high temperatures of between 30-34oC and short summer or wet seasons characterized by 650m -1000m of rainfall received during this period of April-August with relatively low temperatures of 28-30oC.

What is Kidepo Valley National Park?

Kidepo valley national park is one of the jewels that make Uganda truly the Pearl of Africa as per the words of Sir Winston Churchill in his book entitled “My African Journey” in 1906, due to its beauty and splendor and that’s why its commonly referred to as the “True African Wilderness”. This park covers about 1442sq kilometers of land that is mainly dominated by the Mungole mountain and it further sprawls down into the Narus and Kidepo valleys with its lowest elevation being 999m or 3,278ft found in the Narus valley and the highest elevation is 2340m or 7707ft above sea level. The Narus valley is very essential to the existence of this park because it has the permanent Narus river which provides a constant water source to the wild game in this park all year round and also nourishes the grass in this valley hence ensuring the continued survival of the game in the harsh semi-arid conditions of Karamoja sub-region.

What to see in Kidepo Valley National Park?

A Uganda wildlife safari to Kidepo valley national park is an exciting Uganda safari tour adventure given the fact that this park is home to a myriad of attractions ranging from a wild game like 4 out the big 5 games i.e. lions, leopards, buffaloes, and elephants with only the black rhino missing here other animals Zebras, Kiplisnger, Hippos, Gazelle, Greater and Lesser kudu, mountain Reedbucks, Rothchild’s giraffes, Jackson’s hartebeest, Oribis, Elands, now the Uganda kob is also present here though rarely sighted after a transfer of 100 Uganda kobs from Murchison falls national game park in 2017. There are also over 475 bird species including the Karamoja Apalis, White-bellied go-away bird, Great white turaco, Pygmy falcon, Clapperton’s, and Heuglins francolins, Giant hornbill.

What is Kidepo Valley National park famous for?

This park is famous for being home to the rare Cheetahs and the biggest bird on the planet the ostriches. These can easily be encountered in the Kidepo valley. This park is also home to the unique IK people who have a unique language that’s somewhat similar to the Spanish language

How do I Get to Kidepo Valley National Park?

Getting to Kidepo Valley Park can be achieved by using either road or air transport means. There are numerous charter flight companies that offer chartered flights to Kidepo from Entebbe International airport and also Kajjansi airstrip. A road trip adventure to Kidepo Valley National Park starts can be broken into 2 journey legs with an enroute stop in Kitgum town that comes with A Uganda tour detour to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary that puts on A Uganda wildlife safari encounter with several of the 31 rhinos that are protected within the boundaries of this sanctuary. You will have lunch at Amuka lodge then proceed to Kitgum town for dinner and an overnight stay. This day on your safari in Uganda begins with an early morning breakfast then drive to Kidepo valley which is only 2-3 hours away from Kidepo.

What gates does Kidepo Valley have?

Kidepo Valley has 2 main entrance gates and these Lokomoiti gates and Nataba gate

What to do when in Kidepo National Park?

There several activities you can decide to engage in when you visit Murchison falls park given the diversity of attractions that are found here. However many Uganda safari adventurers favor engaging in a game drive and a cultural encounter with the Karamojong people. If you decide to engage in these 2 activities while in Kidepo, you will need to spend an overnight stay in any of the Uganda safari lodges here. Your day to explore this park will begin quite early at 6:30 am as you wake up for a nicely crafted breakfast then begin your morning game drive experience as you explore the rolling savannah this African wilderness. This activity which commences at 7 am takes you to the haven of wild game in Kidepo Valley which is the Naruss Valley where you encounter a wide variety of wild animals and in their plenty as they usually come to the Naruss river in this valley to have a drink and graze since this place always has fresh pasture and a permanent water source.  While here, you will encounter the biggest and largest buffalo herds you will ever find in Africa as this park has a been recognized by CNN for having the best buffalo herds in the whole of Africa. Other animals that you won’t definitely miss seeing here include African bush elephants, Plain zebras, Jasckson Hartebeest, Rothchild giraffes, and if you’re lucky you can also encounter the top predators of this park which include Lions, Leopards, and the rare Cheetahs. After about 2-4 hours of exploring Kidepo valley you will return to the lodge for lunch and relax as you escape the incessant semi dessert heat of Kidepo, In the evening when the sun has slowed down its intensity, you will visit Lorukul village and have yourself a fascinating cultural encounter with the Karimajong people. During this experience, you will have an opportunity to visit the Manyata settlements where these people live which will blow your mind away by the nature of their size which is quite small and their entrances that can only be accessed while squatting. You will engage in milking or watering the cows if they herdsmen have brought back the cows by the time of your visit. Climax your visit to the community with a thrilling Karimajong performance and dance to this high jumping and foot stumping African dance.

Which safari lodges are found in Kidepo Valley National Park?

Kidepo Valley has luxury midrange and budget safari lodges

Luxury lodge in this park include: Apoka Safari Lodge, Adere Safari Lodge

Mid-range lodges include: Kidepo Savanna Lodge

Budget lodges: Nga Moru Wilderness Camp

Next time we will journey to Semuliki National Park, the primate capital of the world

At Wild Gorilla Safaris, we strive to meet all your Africa safari needs as we have got virtually the safari packages that will give you a memorable Africa safari experience. For anyone interested in Uganda wildlife safaris packages we have got you covered with a wide range of packages that are tailored basing on the number of days you have and the destination you would like to visit on your Uganda safari tour. If you’ve got only a few days, then choose from our short Uganda wildlife safaris which run from 2 days to 5 days such as 2 days Uganda wildlife safari to Murchison falls or 5 days Uganda wildlife safari with chimpanzees and many more. For those that have got more than 5 days, then I suggest pick from our compressive long Uganda wildlife safaris that run from 6 days to as many as 21 days such as

On top of an epic Uganda safari adventure to many of these savanna parks, you have an opportunity to encounter mountain gorillas. Yes, a Uganda gorilla tour experience is very possible when you visit gorilla trekking Uganda destinations Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park.  A Uganda gorilla safari to any of these parks gives you an opportunity to meet any of the 19 gorilla families that have been habituated to give you nothing but the ultimate Uganda gorilla tours experience, you can ever think of.

If you’re interested Uganda gorilla safaris these are available in both short Uganda gorilla safari packages such as 3 days gorilla tours in Bwindi and 4 days Bwindi gorilla tour and wildlife in Lake Mburo. There are also long Uganda gorilla tours that run from 6 days to as many as 18 days while featuring many other things along the way to the gorillas. After a magical gorilla tour in Uganda, you can always visit Lake Bunyonyi Uganda and enjoy the stunning views of this magical lake. A visit to Lake Bunyonyi gives you an opportunity to experience a boat ride on Africa’s second deepest lake.

Rwanda is also another gorilla destination you wouldn’t want to miss out on, hence if you are planning for a Rwanda gorilla safari package, check out some of our Rwanda gorilla tours packages which also come in form of short Rwanda gorilla gorilla safaris for those that have got only a few days in Rwanda but those that have got more days, then Long Rwanda gorilla trekking safari packages will do you good as they also give you a chance to visit other Rwanda safari attractions.

Congo as well is another gorilla destination and we have numerous Congo gorilla safari packages that will take you on a Congo gorilla tour adventure to either Virunga National Park for an encounter with mountain gorillas or Kahuzi Beiga National Park where you will encounter Eastern lowland gorillas. Besides gorilla safaris and wildlife encounters in Uganda, you can still explore Uganda’s diversity using any of our wide range of day trips that visit other sites that are near the capital city Kampala or Entebbe international airport such as a Mabamba birding day trip to Mabamba island Kampala city tour day tour Jinja day tour and 1 day Ngamba island chimpanzee safari. Check out our great east Africa safari to such as Kenya safari tours and Tanzania safari tour that take you on an Africa wildlife safari adventure to Kenya and Tanzania respectively.