Safari in Uganda? Yes, please!

The car was speeding on a twisting road that cuts through the green of the hills around Lake Bunyonyi. On the side of the road, some baboons were chilling and the driver stopped so I could get a closer look. This wouldn’t have happened if I were traveling by bus, but happily, there were no buses going to Kabale for the rest of that day so I took a ride in a private car, together with three locals going the same route. As we all got out of the car, the driver casually asked if anybody had any food.

“Of course it’s safe! They don’t do anything” he said, and I believed him.

I had a couple of small bananas in my bag so I gave one of them to a fellow passenger who had no issues with feeding the baboon while I was at a safe distance. Five seconds later, when the monkey was done with his snack, he knew exactly who to go to for more food: me. I obviously kept my calm and slowly proceeded to the vehicle in order to keep myself safe from the wild primate. Either that or I rushed inside the car and freaked out when I was not able to close the window fast enough to keep out the big scary bold male baboon. I might have thrown the last banana to keep him away longer and by the time he came back for more I was calm and ready for a portrait photo shoot.

I was super impressed when the driver stopped so I could get a good look at the baboons, but in hindsight, I honestly believe he stopped for his own entertainment.

cheeky male baboon wants more bananas in Uganda
the cheeky male baboon wants more bananas

And so my wildlife adventure started before I even had my safari planned.

And while you usually don’t find Uganda topping National Geographic’s lists of ‘best places to go for safari’, it does have some pretty amazing wildlife that will not disappoint. Life around the mighty Nile is truly thriving and you will find everything from small critters to representatives of the big five. Here are a few moments of my time in the Murchison Falls National Park.

red dragonfly on the shore of the Nile, Uganda, Africa
red dragonfly on the shore of the Nile
some lazy birds hitching a ride on an elephant in Murchison Falls, Uganda, Africa
some lazy birds hitching a ride on an elephant
a pied kingfisher chilling on the side of the Nile, safari in Uganda, Africa
a pied kingfisher chilling on the side of the Nile
the rare shoebill Balaeniceps rex in safari in Uganda, Africa
the elusive (but not particularly pretty, if you ask me) shoebill graced us with its presence
Jackson's Hartebeest in safari in Uganda, Murchison Falls
just like most parks in Africa, you’ll find loads of antelopes, including the less famous Jackson’s Hartebeest
warthog in safari in Uganda, Africa
for a split second this guy stopped from the characteristic running and said ‘hi’
bird on a water buffalo in safari in Uganda, Africa
is this a water buffalo enjoying some grooming from the bird or another lazy bird hitching a ride?
hippos in water in safari in Uganda, Africa
and of course it wouldn’t be a trip to see the Nile if you don’t also see hippos
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