NATURE WALKS IN SEMLIKI NATIONAL PARK

August 29, 2023 | Bujo Safaris

Semliki national park is one of the oldest gazetted areas that was once a forest but later taken up to be a national park. This place is known to be the best birding haven that offers amazing birding safari experiences especially to one whose interest is bird watching. 

Semliki national park is located in the remote areas of Bundibugyo in a place called Bwamba. This was the first protected and gazetted area on the foothills of the Rwenzori mountains in the southern part of lake albert. This national park has undiscovered woodlands in the lowlands of the tropical forest in East Africa.

The national park is known as a bird haven having over 435 different bird species that are beautiful to look at like the Capuchin Babbler, Dwarf Honeyguide, Forest Ground Thrush, Blue-headed Crested Flycatcher, Sassy’s Olive Greenbul, White-tailed Hornbill, Purple-breasted Sunbird and orange weaver. 

Because the forest joins with the D.R.Congo border, some species unique to central Africa can be found here too like the orange weaver, Black-watt led Hornbill, Lyre-tailed Honeyguide, Long-tailed Hawk, forest ground thrush, purple-breasted sunbird and the Congo Serpent Eagle among others.

It also has other stunning features such as the hot springs, swamps, historic ancient woods among others. Not forgetting the amazing wildlife found in the park such as the bush babies, bay duikers, civets, dwarfs, antelopes, flying squirrels, fruit bats, forest buffaloes, elephants, Uganda kobs, leopards, fire footed rope squirrel, waterbucks, among others. 

There are also the excellent butterflies of about 300 different species with beautiful colors that are filled in the national park. You can as well encounter primates such as the chimpanzees, blue monkeys, colobus monkeys, olive baboons, and the nocturnal animals like the Pattos and the galagos. 

NATURE WALKS IN SEMLIKI NATIONAL PARK

Nature walks are one of the top activities done in Semliki national game park. This activity requires you to take part and walk in the forests where you will be able to spot different features like the birds, vegetation, butterflies, primates and among other things. 

The nature forest walks commonly begin from the Sempaya hot springs gate and end at the hot springs. There are different kinds of trails for example the Sempaya nature walk which is 8 km long, the red monkey walk at 11 km long and finally the Kirumia trail which is estimated to be 13 km long. 

The Kirumia trail at 13 kilometers is usually done in the morning. This walk passes through the forest going towards river Semuliki. This trail is a very good walk for birders because you are able to spot very many different kinds of bird species and butterflies along the way since it’s a forest canopy which is a good breeding place for them. 

The red tailored monkey trail which is 11 km long is a very nice walk especially for tourists who love to see primates. This place is filled up with monkeys hence its name. This walk starts from Sempaya hot springs through the forest and ends at the park headquarters. You are able to encounter different primates such as olive baboons, red tailored monkeys, colobus monkeys among others. 

The Sempaya nature walk starts from the gate and ends at the hot springs. This walk can take from morning to evening but you can cut it short in case you aren’t flexible or if you get tired along the way. This walk leads you to see the male hot spring shaped like a swimming pool and the female hot spring that has a boiling jet. You can feel free to boil some of your things at the female hot springs such as eggs, bananas among others. 

During these walks, you are able to learn about the difference between the two hot springs, that is the male and the female hot spring. 

Apart from the nature walks, one is able to go bird watching since the park has half of the birds that are in DRC. Birding is usually done around the Sempaya hot springs. 

Some of additional bird species that can be spotted apart from those mentioned above include the Black-collared Lovebird, Ayres Hawk-Eagle, Red-thighed Sparrows, African Goshawk, Great Sparrows, Dwarf Kingfishers, bates’ Nightjar, African Piculet, Cassin’s Spinetail, White-spotted Flufftail and Black Dwarf Hornbill. 

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