Rise early to begin your wildlife drive to the northern limits of Kidepo Valley National Park. Your route takes you north through golden savannah plains covering the floor of the Narus Valley, glowing in the soft morning light as the sun rises over the surrounding rugged hillsides. This is an excellent time of day to spot a variety of game herds including Burchell’s zebra, Jackson’s hartebeest, oribi, African buffalo and Grant’s gazelle as you drive. Your route then passes over the seasonally dry Kidepo river, a likely spot to find large troops of baboons picking over the parched riverbed, before you drive on through a Borassus palm tree forest with the clatter of palm throngs filling the air around you. After winding through the forest you will emerge into the savannah scrub in the northern reaches of the park, where the Narus Valley and Kidepo Valley meet at the Kanangorok hot springs. This area is particularly known as the stomping ground for the flocks of ostrich found in the region, one of only two places in Uganda that you can view these charismatic birds. It’s also the best place to look for cheetahs, rarely found in Uganda, but which you’ll try to seek out. As the sun rises to its peak in the sky much of the wildlife retreats into what little shade they can find and you’ll make your way south back through the park into the Narus Valley.
Estimated excursion time: 6 hrs
Unwind at your lodge in unparalleled luxury in the heart of the wilds. Apoka Lodge is uniquely situated in the heart of the Narus Valley, meaning you can enjoy fantastic views over the savannah and towards the mountains in the distance. Take a dip to cool off from the heat of the day in the lodge’s private pool, unwind on the sun loungers, sink into comfortable sofas in the communal lounge to read a good book, or enjoy a cool drink from the bar with views over the waterhole to spot the local wildlife. Of course there are also the options of onsite massages or you can take a cooling bath on your private deck and enjoy the vista.
During the cooler hours of the day you will be driven out onto the savannah in the heart of the Narus Valley, where you will be joined by a Uganda Wildlife Authority ranger who will escort you on your walking safari. This is a great way to immerse yourself in wildlife to truly experience this unique savannah in an intimate way by getting up close and personal with nature. It’s also a refreshing change of perspective from driving in a vehicle. After a briefing you will leave your vehicle and walk at your own pace, with the length of the walking safari tailored to your preferences. Your ranger will help you track animals on foot on the savannah plains, answering all your questions about the park including its biodiversity and history. As you trek through the park you will mostly be on the lookout for game herds including the Burchell’s zebra, Jackson’s hartebeest, Grant’s gazelle and Rothschild’s giraffe. Don’t worry, you’re perfectly safe from the wilder animals in the park with your wildlife ranger!
Estimated excursion time: 3 hrs
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Apoka Safari Lodge, room.