Geography and Formation of the Murchison Falls.
Murchison Falls is also known as the Kabalega Falls and it is nestled within the largest and oldest national park – Murchison Falls National Park in northwestern Uganda.
The park is not only a home to the famous Murchison falls but also a biodiversity hotspot teeming with an array of wildlife, including elephants, lions, giraffes, hippos, and numerous bird species.
The Murchison falls are formed as the high-pressure waters of the Nile River – the World’s longest river, are forced through a narrow gorge within the narrow gorge.
At this 7m wide narrow point, high pressure causes the water to drop down at high speed nearly 43 meters, creating a thunderous roar and a mesmerizing display of falling water.
During Idi Amin’s regime in the 1970s, the falls were changed from “Murchison falls” to “Kabalega Falls”.
The name “Kabalega falls” was got from the Omukama Kabalega of Bunyoro, a legendary 19th-century ruler of the Bunyoro Kingdom who chose to die in these very waters during a battle with the British colonial forces rather than facing defeat.
These falls are also believed to be inhabited by ancient spirits, and local communities perform traditional ceremonies and rituals at this very site to seek blessings and protection.
Wildlife at the Murchison falls
Murchison Falls stands as a feast for the eyes due to its awesomeness, but in addition, Murchison falls is a natural sanctuary for a myriad of plant species which thrive along the riverbanks including the lush green vegetation, acacia trees, papyrus reeds, sycamore fig, Borassus palm, mahogany, and dombeya (wild pear) among others.
Animal species & Reptiles
The riverbanks of the Nile River are teeming with numerous mammals’ species and reptiles including Hippos, waterbucks, buffaloes, Nile Crocodile, Nile Monitor, and William’s African Mud Turtle.
Hippos along the Nile River
Along the riverbanks of Murchison Falls thrive numerous bird species, including the iconic African fish eagle, kingfishers, White eyed seed eater, Chestnut crowned sparrow weaver, rare shoebill, silver birds, Chestnut napped moosebird, Pel’s fishing owl, Spotted Verreaux eagle owl among others.
Activities to do at the Murchison Falls
Partake in the boat cruise experience which is among the thrilling activities to do and encounter the large concentration of hippos, crocodiles, and a wide variety of different bird species.
Also, witness the dramatic force up close of the waterfalls as the Nile River squeezes through the narrow gorge and creates the loudest thundering water sounds.
Boat cruise safari
A hike to the top of the falls is a popular experience you get to encounter only in the Murchison falls national park.
This is done by getting off the boat cruise and hiking up the rocks to the top of the waterfall as you stare at the strength of the stunning waterfalls.
This activity provides a unique opportunity to understand the local ways of life and support tourism initiatives.
You can engage in such cultural encounters by visiting nearby villages, interacting with the locals, and also participating in the local dances and performances.
Hot air Balloon safari
An awe-inspiring activity you get to encounter at the Murchison falls is a hot air balloon experience whereby you get a lifetime opportunity to witness the waterfall from a clear view above.
Hot Balloon safaris
One of the thrilling activities to do at the Murchison falls is nature walks and during this activity, you are led through hike trails on foot while discovering the park’s unique landscapes and learning about the natural ecosystems.