Kidepo Valley National Park is located in Kaabong District, Karamoja region in the northeastern corner of Uganda and comprises of 1,442Kms. Kidepo Valley is a rough savannah dominated by 2,750 meters Mount Morungole and transected by Kidepo and Narus Rivers. The park is approximately 520Kms by road northeast of Kampala Uganda’s capital and the largest city and the park is also 220Kms by road northwest of Moroto the largest town in the sub-region.
The park shares the boundary in South Sudan the northwestern and abuts against the Kidepo Game Reserve.
Kidepo Valley National Park on Uganda’s borders with Sudan and Kenya was gazetted as a national park in 1962, it has an abundance of enormous games and has over 77 species of mammals and also over 475 bird species.
Kidepo Valley National Park is Uganda’s generally isolated national park, yet the few who make the long travel northeast through the wild outskirts district of Karamoja would believe that it is also the most magnificent, for Kidepo ranks among Africa’s finest wildernesses. From Apoka, in the heart of the Kidepo Valley, a savannah scene enlarges far past the gazetted region, towards horizons outlined by distant mountain ranges.
Dodoth pastoralists and Ik agriculturists lived in the region before it was gazetted as a game reserve by the British colonial government in 1958. The intention was both to protect the animals from hunting and to avoid further clearing of shrubbery for tsetse fly-control. The expulsion of the inhabitant individuals and the resultant famine, particularly among the Ik, is referred to in contemporary protected region management as a sample of the unsatisfactory outcomes of not considering community needs into account when designating reserves. The recently free Government of Uganda under Milton Obote changed the game reserve into the Kidepo Valley National Park in 1962.
Tourist Activities in Kidepo Valley National Park
Birding in Kidepo Valley
Apoka Rest Camp is an incredible spot to start your Kidepo valley birding experience. Bird watching can additionally be carried out on the edges of the Narus and Namamukweny Valleys. Kidepo Valley National Park hosts different species of birds including; Abyssinian Roller, Purple Heron, Abyssinian Ground Hornbill and Clapperton’s Francolin, which is found only in Kidepo. The bird watching activity in the park can be organized both in the morning and evening.
Game Drives in Kidepo Valley
Wildlife is the most activity in the Narus Valley throughout early mornings and evening – 6am and 4pm are ideal times to start a game drive. You are encouraged to utilize a game ranger constantly; they will help you recognize some of the national park’s lions that may be sitting on the valley’s different rocks. Other wildlife incorporates elephants, leopard, shrub duiker, jackal, bushbuck, bush pig, Kavirondo bush baby, bison and much more.
Hiking / Nature Walks in Kidepo Valley
The Lomej Mountains could be arrived at by walking in four hours, the hike begins at 7am. Shorter guided strolls of around two hours might be taken through the Narus Valley extending over a 5km range from Apoka Tourism Centre.
Tourists can likewise wander along the unbelievable Kidepo River Valley between banks of attractive Borassus palm forest. Namamkweny Valley could be arrived at in one hour from Apoka. Tourists can likewise meet members of the IK tribe throughout prearranged hikes to the Morungole Mountains outside the Kidepo Valley National Park.
In case you’re interested in visiting the amazing wildlife in this park by road, you’re advised to hire a safari vehicle which is in a good condition because you will need to drive a long distance from Entebbe to the park which is approximately 454km that can take about 8 hours drive and some parts of the road to the park are not in good conditions.