Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Baby, this ain't no zoo.

Murchison Falls National Park is the largest conservation area in Uganda, nestled in the north-western region of the country, and bisected by the Nile. This was my first time camping, ever. Having your first camping experience in Africa is definitely recommended. Now I can not only confidently assemble a tent, but can also accurately differentiate between the snort of a warthog and a hippo (both frequent night visitors to our campsite).
Photo op with Pumba

Hint: you can tell the grunt is that of a hippo when your tent vibrates with the sound...and you suddenly lose all willingness to make a midnight run to the latrines.

Our trip to the park took place over three days and consisted of two early morning game drives, and two boat safaris along the Nile(this made for some up-close and personal encounters with Nile crocodiles and hippos), all of which were spectacular. Eye-to-eye with some of East Africa's finest.
It was 'spa day' for the Buffalos
Oh hey there Beautiful!
Another one of East Africa's Finest. Too many of these were consumed over the course of this weekend, but it was justified in my opinion- a Nile on the Nile...be rude not to!

Now that's a lotta wata'!
My favourite part of the weekend was the trip to the Falls; these make Niagara look like a leaky faucet. It took us two hours with our boat, the aptly named 'African Queen', to reach the mouth of the falls  where only the first half is visible. You then have to hike for about an hour the rest of the way up to get the full view of where where the falls divide into two breathtaking plunges of mist (Murchison Falls and Freedom Falls). The sheer volume of water that flows through these narrow gorges is mesmerizing, to say the least.

Our safari 'Dream Team' consisted of two Americans, a Canadian, a Dutchie, a German, an Australian and a Ugandan; was a bit of a cultural safari if you may. I especially enjoyed having an Australian with us as I feel like it brought relevance to my Steve Irwin-inspired comments of "CRIKEY THAT'S A BIG CROC", which I shouted perhaps a few too many times while on the African Queen

The Murchison lands were ravaged under Idi Amin's rule in the 70s. He closed the doors to the park, and majority of the animal inhabitants were poached by his troops for skins, meat, and ivory. The park is now starting to regain its former numbers in terms of wildlife, though rhinos are still being re-bred in a small sanctuary in the south of the park and won't be released for another 30 years.


  1. camping in africa! you are so brave! My friends cant even drag me to the cottage in muskoka. And as usual, loving the pic's commentary!

  2. Haha.. I never thought of this until now, but how about this for a joke; What did the crocodile hunter say when the other man pulled down his pants; "Crikey that's a big croc!!!"

    Hope you likey ;)