We established that the best months for game viewing in the KVNP are the dry months from Feb to April, but be aware that the park can be relatively crowded around Easter. The rains in the north of Uganda are from about May to early September, different to the rest of the country. During the dry months the animals are attracted to the central game viewing areas of the park, around the Narus River Valley. Although this river is smaller than the Kidepo River further north towards the Sudan, it retains much more water in pools and from springs.
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Although many will enter the park from Kenya when journeying from north to south, I will post the directions in detail as they may then want to travel onto Murchison FNP.
ROUTE. Paraa MFNP – Wankwar Gate MFNP – Purongo village – Anaka – Gulu – turn sharply right (east) a few km before Kitgum – Kitgum Matidi village – Namakoro village – follow signposts through various small villages to Katurum Gate KVNP – Apoka.
Total distance and time taken.
366km, 10hr 30min. 300km on dirt.
Route details and breakdown.
“Serendipity was my tour guide, assisted by caprice”.
So we spent 2 nights in all on the north bank in this pleasant enough campsite and had it all to ourselves. We set up camp as close to the Nile as possible in a fairly large, level, cleared area with a campfire area but minimal shade. Further up the hill was an open-walled thatch shelter that we used in the heat of the day. If other campers arrived they would have had to camp behind us and I estimate this site could comfortably accommodate about 3 groups.
We had 2 objectives for the day, firstly to visit the top of the Murchisons Falls and also to have a look at the campsites there, and then the boat trip to the base of the falls, already booked for 14H00 that afternoon. We were not all that sorry to leave Red Chili after a fairly disturbed night and early morning. Even though we are now veterans we found this camp a little too busy and noisy for our tastes, but it serves its functions for the younger set very adequately. Most of them stayed in pre-erected tents or the bandas.
I have already given the detailed directions to the Royal Mile birdwatching spot. It is shown on the official Murchison Falls NP map as part of the Budongo Forest Reserve (it is not actually in MFNP).
Our 3 course supper at Budongo Eco Lodge was very good (US$17pp), they do not really have catering facilities although they do state that they allow self-catering. The clouds came in with a vengeance that evening and we had quite a downpour. Thank goodness we were not camping or I suspect we would have gone to bed hungry. Once the manager arrived back that evening I established that he in fact would have allowed RTT camping in the parking lot with the use of a cabin’s toilet facilities, but that they do not encourage it and especially not ground tents.