After renewing our food supplies in Fort Portal, we headed south to Kasese. Soon after crossing the Equator line (markers on both side of the road), we turned right toward Kabatoro gate of QENP.
After paying our entrance and camping fees, we headed further to Mweya peninsula, where we camped for three nights in Mweya campsite. There is not much shade there, but as most of the time we were alone there, we could use the thatched lapa for our kitchen and living room – it provided a nice shade during the hottest hours of the day. The campsite is overlooking the Kazinga Channel and during the day we were regularly visited by a herd of watterbucks. During the nights we heard hippos graze right around our tent on several occasions.
Game-viewing tracks in a channel area of the QENP are very overgrown, so animal sightings are slightly limited by thick vegetation. But nevertheless, we saw plenty of elephants, buffaloes and plain antelopes. On the other side of the park, in Kaseny plains, typical savanna offers different experience, with broad views and only lonely trees here and there. There we saw the only pack of lions and a lonely leopard in an euphorbia tree on this trip.
Near peninsula campsite there is a nice restaurant, called Tembo Canteen, which offer inexpensive cold drinks and decent meals as well as excelent view accros Kazinga Channel.
We did a boat trip along Kazinga Channel, which connects Lake George and Lake Edward. We found this launch trip very worth-while. Beside the usual near-water animals, it offers splendid bird sightings.
At one occasion, when returning from Kasenyi plains, we took a “Crater drive”, as advised by one of the rangers at entrance gate the previous day. This 2-hour drive is really spectacular. Not in terms of game viewing (which is nearly non-existent in that part of the park), but in terms of scenery among numerous craters and crater lakes. The track itself is in parts very rocky and steep and offers some real challenges for your 4×4. The only fauna, that was in abundance on that drive, were tsetse flies.
After three nights in Mweya, we moved to the southern tip of the park for one more night, to Ishasha sector. That area of QENP again has a totally different character, with typical east African savanna. We liked it enormously. We stay at river campsite #1. Campsite #2 is even more private and isolated, but it doesn’t have running water from the tap. Campsites lay on the banks of Ishasha river, which also forms a border with Democratic Republic of Congo on the other side. We hired a ranger to guide us on a game drive around fig trees at the south corner of Ishasha, to help as locate tree climbing lions, for which this part of park is famous for. Unfortunately, we have had no such luck. Maybe next time.