Game drive in Uganda is an interesting activity where you drive around in the wild or in a national park while viewing the animals in their natural habitat, capturing the moments, enjoying and exploring what the national park has to offer on your safari in Uganda. A Game drive can either be done in the morning where you will be able to see the animals getting out of their sleeping nests, animals grazing, mating, see the morning sunset among others hence the best time for game drives and can also be done in late afternoon where you will be able to see animals constructing new homes for the night, the evening sunset among others which give a wonderful experience to the visitor on a game drive safari.
Game drives in Uganda are done in various national parks including Queen Elizabeth national park, Murchison falls national park, Kidepo national park, Lake Mburo national park among others. You will be able to view different wildlife like animals, a green environment, singing birds in the trees among others at a close range. During the game drive, different vehicles can be used which are comfortable, reliable, with spacious adjustable seats, individual charging facilities, drinking water, spacious windows for great panoramic viewing, for example, a 4X4 pop up roof vehicle, an extended land cruiser, salon car, coaster for a big group of visitors. The visitor can either do a self game drive or a game drive with a park ranger or a driver-guide which is always advisable because the guide knows most of the tracks in the national parks and where the animals can be viewed properly.
When doing the game drive in the national parks the visitors are free to stop the car so as to see the animals clearly and take wonderful photos. However the park rules are to be followed during the game drive which includes not driving off the trucks, not sounding the motor horns because they disturb the wildlife, not exceeding the speed limit of 40km per hour, not destroying the vegetation in the park, not littering on the environment, not driving in the park between 7:30 pm and 6:00 am unless you are on the night game drive among others.
Visitors going for the game drive in the national parks should carry the cameras which are used to capture the game drive moments with plenty of photos, binoculars which are used to see the animals in far distances and those that will be hiding in the shrub bushes, for example, the lions in Queen Elizabeth national park are always seen at a distance, sun protection equipment like sunscreen, sunglasses, hat among others.
Game Drive destinations in Uganda
- Murchison Falls National Park Game Drive: Murchison falls national park located in the northwestern part of Uganda, the largest national park, takes 5-6 hours drive from Kampala and is a home of various wildlife species including 76 mammals species, 450 bird species among others that can be viewed during the game drive in the park. In Murchison falls there is an early morning game drive which starts at 7 am and the afternoon game drive which starts at 4 pm, however, the morning game drive is the best for a great experience. You follow different tracks in the national park which will lead you to a wide number of wildlife including the Buligi track which is a 7km track north of Paraa and is the commonly used due to the wildlife viewed during the game drive, Albert Victoria and the Queens tracks in the northern bank of river Nile. During the game drive you will be able to see the big 4 animals which are the elephants, buffaloes, lions, and leopards, the leopards are rarely spotted during the day game drives and other animals which will be viewed grazing in the savannah grasslands, some hunting and so on like bushbucks, Uganda kobs, waterbucks, warthogs, giraffes, Jackson’s hartebeest, hyenas, hippos, baboons, monkeys among others and some bird species including the Abyssinian ground hornbill, secretary birds, black billed bustards, window birds, open bellied storks, marabou stork among others, Game drives in Murchison falls national park are an all year round activity and best done during the dry season when the grass is short because animals will clearly be viewed and take approximately 2 to 5 hours hence giving you lifetime memories.
- Queen Elizabeth National Park Game Drive: Queen Elizabeth national park is located in western Uganda in Kasese, Kamwenge, Rubirizi and Rukungiri districts, it takes approximately 400kms from Kampala, the second largest national park in Uganda and the most beautiful protected area with 95 mammal species including the tree climbing lions in Ishasha sector, 10 primate species and over 600 bird species among others. Game driving is one of the common activities in Queen Elizabeth national park where the visitors get an opportunity to view wildlife in its natural environment. the park has the morning which is the best game drive and the late evening game drive in a comfortable pop up roof vehicle with a driver-guide who knows different tracks in the park for example the Kasenyi track in the northeastern sector, Kaguta track among others where you will see the big 5 animals like hippos, elephants, buffaloes, leopards and tree climbing lions and other animals like antelopes, Topi, warthogs, waterbucks, chimpanzees, monkeys, hyenas, Uganda kobs, giant forest hog, sitatunga antelopes. Queen Elizabeth national park is a charming destination for bird lovers with a wide number of bird species some of which will be viewed during the game drives around the park including the purple heron, Abyssinian ground hornbill, clapper tons francolin, African jacana, western yellow wagtail, black crake, black-bellied bustard, crowned plover among others which make your game drive safari in Queen Elizabeth national park a memorable one. However queen Elizabeth national park offers other activities apart from game drives like bird watching, boat cruise on Kazinga channel, chimpanzee tracking in Kyambura gorge, nature walks or hiking in Marammagambo forest, cultural encounter in the surrounding villages, Katwe salt lake tour among others which give you the best experience on your safari in Uganda.
- Lake Mburo National Park Game Drive: Lake Mburo national park is the smallest part in Uganda located in Mbarara district western Uganda. The park offers the morning and the late evening game drives which lasts for 3 to 4 hours and the Game drives in Lake Mburo national park are best done in the dry season when the animals assemble around the water bodies like the lakes and swamps. The visitors follow different tracks in the park during the game drive including the zebra track which connects to Ruroko track junction, traverses through the wetland and thick acacia woodlands where you will view the olive trees, euphorbia tree species and animals like the Burchell’s zebra along the roadsides and other animals like elands, giraffes, bushbucks, Oribi, reedbucks, impala, buffaloes, hippos among others, the Kazuma track which passes through the grasslands dotted with wood species and explore the five lakes in lake Mburo on top of Kazuma hill, during the game drive on this track you will see the water environment , swamps that surround lake Mburo with water birds like the black-billed bustard, crowned cranes, crested francolin, southern red bishop, pelicans, herons among others for the bird lovers to explore. Lake Mburo national park is one of the three national parks in Uganda that harbor the Burchell’s zebra, the park offers other activities apart from game drives including bird watching for the bird lovers, boat cruise, cultural encounter, nature walks, sport fishing, guided biking and horse riding hence the only park in Uganda that offers an opportunity to visitors to explore around the park on a horseback.
- Kidepo Valley National Park Game Drive: Kidepo national park is an isolated national park located in Kaabong district in northeastern Uganda and takes approximately 12 hours by road from Kampala and can also be accessed by air transport means. The park is a great destination for game viewing because it’s a home of 80 mammal species, 28 of which are endemic to only Karamoja region and they can be viewed during the game drives around the park. Kidepo national park has the morning game drive which starts at around 6 am and the evening game drive which starts at 4 pm. Game drives around the park are interesting when you go with the a guide who will help you to see the good grassland, open savannah vegetation which is very interesting to look at in the park, spot the wildlife species like Uganda kobs, elephants, duikers, reedbucks, waterbucks, antelopes, elands, giraffes, zebras, buffaloes, Oribi, lions, leopards, Oryx, Nile crocodiles and some bird species like the ostriches, yellow-billed hornbill among others. Kidepo national park can be visited any time throughout the year however the dry season between September to March is the best time to visit when the park is less crowded and with short grass for great wildlife viewing, the park also offers other activities including bird watching, nature walks, visiting the Karamoja village among others which give you interesting, exciting and unforgettable moments on your safari in Uganda.
- Semliki National Park Game Drive: Semliki national park is located in Bwamba County in Bundibugyo district in the western region of Uganda and borders with DRC. The park is a home of over 60 mammals, 400 bird species, 8 primate species, 300 butterfly species which are viewed during the game drive on a safari. Game drives are either done in the morning or in the afternoon where you drive through the savannah grasslands and the forest of Toro Semliki wildlife reserve to view different animals like the buffaloes, hippos, waterbucks, warthogs, bushbucks, Uganda kobs, bush babies, forest elephants, monkeys, leopards, pygmy flying squirrel, baboons among others. The park offers other activities like bird watching, primate walks, nature walks, boat rides on Semliki, hiking to Nyaburogo gorge, visit Semliki hot spring, cultural encounters among others which give you a lifetime experience on a safari in Uganda. The game drive is an interesting and adventurous activity that the visitors in Uganda explore and enjoy by viewing different wildlife, taking a lot of photos and recording videos of the environment, the landscape, their favorite animals, birds among others for great memories and experience on a safari in Uganda.