Mountain Elgon national park is the home of the famous extinct volcanic mountain commonly known as mountain Elgon that stands at a height of 4321metes. This mountain gets its name from the Elgonyi tribe that once lived in the caves on the south side of the mountains.
This relief feature lies on the border of Uganda and Kenya and is situated in Mbale in eastern Uganda. This mountain is the fourth highest mountain in East Africa with the highest peak being Wagagai among the 5 mountain peaks.
This national park was originally known as Masawa on the Ugandan side and “ Ol Doinyo Lagoon” on the Kenyan side. The mountain is believed to have last erupted over 24 million years ago.
In addition, this mountain is believed to have been higher than the legendary Mountain Kilimanjaro which is currently the highest in Africa.
One of the Mountain Elgon peaks was named after explorer Fredrick Jackson who was the first European to climb Mt. Elgon in 1889.
Over 24 mammal species are found in this park, these include; Bush Duiker, Bushbucks, Antelopes, Civets, Wildcats, and the elusive Leopard on the mountain slopes, as well as Hyenas, Jackals, Rock Hyrax, Buffalos, and Elephants in the forests.
The park is also the home of over 300 birds and these include; Jackson’s Francolin, Moustached Green Tinkerbird, and Alpine Chat. Mountain Elgon is one of the few places in Uganda where the endangered Lammergeyer can be spotted soaring above the caldera and Suam gorge.
Mountain climbing on Mount Elgon– this activity is by far the most exciting activity in the park, this is because you are given the thrilling opportunity to enjoy nature at its best. Mountain Elgon trails are not very strenuous but have a variety of activities. It takes a few days to reach Wagagai which makes the activity convenient.
Birding is also another exciting activity at Mountain Elgon, this is because Mountain Elgon is the home of a variety of birds including the endangered Lammergeyer. The best birding location while at this park is Kapkwai forest exploration center, the secondary forest and thick shrub along the loop trail to Cheptui falls, in particular, are the most Favourable.
Hiking/nature walks is yet another fascinating activity. The hiker’s trails lead past caves, viewpoints, and waterfalls. On this expedition, they are able to see primates and various birds as well as tree species.
The tourists will also have an encounter with the cultural community. They will be able to meet the Bugisu farmers who are famous for their Arabica coffee and you will see how coffee is grown.
Other Mountain Elgon national park safaris include visiting the beautiful Sipi falls and Cave exploration.
Your accommodation needs will be taken care of at a variety of lodges such as; Mount Elgon Hotel, Mbale resort hotel, Sunrise Inn, Kapkwata guesthouse, Siam guesthouse, Masha hotel, Noah’s Ark, Savanna Guesthouse, Sipi river lodge, The crow’s nest camp, Lacam lodge, Sasa river camp, and several other lodges as well campsites.
You can take a 235km drive to Mountain Elgon via Mbale to Kapchorwa. Alternatively, you can take a flight from Entebbe to Soroti.
The Uganda Safari are categorized into 3 major categories namely Short safaris, medium safaris, and long safaris. The short safaris range from 1-3 days, the medium safaris range from 4-6 days and the long safaris range from 7 days and beyond.