Activities to Do in Kidepo Valley National Park : Kidepo Valley National Park is one of the unmatched safari destinations in the world that harbors a diversity of Unique species which can’t be found elsewhere in other Uganda’s national parks. The park is situated in far northeastern Uganda in the Kaabong district at Uganda’s border with Kenya and Sudan. However, the Kidepo was gazette in 1962 and covers a total area of about 1,442 square kilometers comprised of open savannah grasslands, woodlands, mountain forests, and acacia forests. More so, the park is home to about 86 mammals including buffaloes, giraffes, elephants, zebras, bush babies, cheetahs, leopards, African hunting dogs, jackals, caracal, waterbucks, buck bucks, among others. More to that, the park is a paradise for birders that hosts more than 500 bird species including Ostriches, Kori bustard, and Karamoja Apalis among others.
Activities in Kidepo Valley National Park
Game drives in Kidepo Valley National Park; Game driving is the best activity for the tourists who visit the park is comfort done in a 4×4 wheel driver accompanied by a national park guide who will help you to lead in different animal tracking routes.
Well, game drives are done early in the morning at around 6:00 am. During the morning drive, there are many chances of spotting a wide range of animals, since morning hours animals can be active. Where you expect to view animals like elephants, spotted hyenas, and leopards before returning to their hideout, Oribis, greater and lesser kudus, Guenther’s dik-dik, Jackson’s hartebeest, Klipspringer, reedbucks, zebras, buffaloes, Uganda kobs, giraffes many more. While on morning game drives there is a high percentage of viewing the predators like leopards, cheetahs, lions, bat-eared fox , side jackals if you are lucky, bird species many more. Along your game drive you can have a chance to visit the Kanangarok hot springs where you will enjoy gainful views of the mountains.
Evening game drive; This starts after lunch at 2 pm and during dry season high concentration of animals can be seen around water hole areas like the Narus valley animals to see includes, reedbucks, buffaloes, giraffes, Oribis, Jackson’s hartebeest and different bird’s species such as white-bellied go-away bird, Rufous chatterer, Golden pipit, Greater kestrel, Chestnut weaver, Rufous chatterer, Northern carmine bee-eater, Jackson’s hornbill, Karamoja Apalis among others. The big cat mammals including lions, leopards, and cheetahs may not be easy at this hour because they can be in their hideout areas due to hot sunshine.
Night games; This is more favorable to visitors who love to see nocturnal species and it can be done after dinner, where you can be escorted by the park guide who will help you to spot nocturnal animals and spotlight torches for clear seeing. Therefore, you will be able to see nocturnal animal species like caracals, cheetahs, a dwarf, hyenas, wild dogs, leopards, and side-striped jackals among others.
Walking Safaris/Guided hiking
This is an impressive activity in Kidepo Valley National Park which gives visitors a great opportunity to explore the park on foot with a high percentage of seeing the hidden treasures of the park. During the walking safaris, you will be accompanied by an experienced guide who knows well the walking trails in the park and an armed park ranger to protect you from a dangerous mammals. Guided walking safari in Kidepo Valley National Park is carried out in several areas such as; Narus Valley, Namamukweny valley, and Kidepo plains which leads you to the home of Unique IK people ‘’Morungole mountain, also take a hike to the Lomej Mountains many more.
In Kidepo guided walking safaris start at 7:00 am at the Apoka tourism office where you will get a great chance to spot animals like buffalo warthogs, reedbucks, elephants, waterbucks, zebras, and giraffes, they can be seen grazing, different bird species like beautiful scenery, Ostriches, landscape listen to sweet melodies of bird species among others as well as enjoying the cool breeze many more.
Bird watching –Kidepo Valley National Park
However, Kidepo Valley National Park is home to more than 500 recorded bird species including endemic bird species, savannah birds, and migratory birds thus making it a true birding hoven and some species can be seen during your game drive experience. Some of the lists of birds include; Yellow-rumped seed eater ,Ostricts ,white bellied bustard ,four banded sand grouse ,pygmy falcon ,Kori bustard ,greater kestrel ,slate coloroued boubou ,Abyssinian ground hornbill ,rufous crowned roller ,red billed oxpecker ,Jacksons hornbill ,speckle fronted weaver ,black breasted barbet ,Brown backed woodpecker ,Singing bush lark ,Grey capped social weaver ,Purple heron ,Superb starling among others , Activities to Do in Kidepo Valley National Park
Kidepo Valley National Park gives visitors a great opportunity to interact with the local people like the Karamajong who live in the neighboring villages and the IK people who leave on top of Morungole Mountain. During the cultural encounter, you will be able to learn about the amazing lifestyle of these people, their history, and way of living, visit their locally amazing built Manyatta homesteads, learn how to make their traditional instruments like stools, spears,learn how bride price is done in their cultural,visit their craft shop where you can but crafted materials as well as enjoying their cultural entertainment in form of music, dance, and drama.
Best Time to Visit Kidepo Valley National Park
Kidepo Valley National Park; The park can be visited throughout the year though the best time without destruction is during the peak season which happens in June, July, August, September, December, January, and February. During the dry season, animals can be seen gathering around the water holes quenching for water thus making wildlife viewing much easier.
Wet seasons; Kidepo Valley National Park can also be visited in the wet seasons of March, May and November. And during low seasons accommodations rates becomes low and the park can be out of few crowds it’s a great opportunity for various bird species including migratory birds.
Travelers can choose to do wildlife viewing combined with Gorilla trekking in Bwindi National Park or Mgahinga Gorilla National Park home to the largest population of endangered mountain gorillas and around 120 mammals among others.