Fort Portal



This pleasant town in western Uganda lies near the Rwenzori Mountains. It has a colorful market, and there are some scenic crater lakes in the surrounding hills. Drives through the Rwenzori foothills can be made to the nearby Semliki National Park and Wildlife Reserve, whose attractions include Pygmy tribes, the Sempaya Hot Springs, boat trips on Lake Albert and a rich variety of Congolese bird species found nowhere else in East Africa. In the other direction, Kibale Forest National Park is part of the great equatorial rain forest that once spread across the whole of Africa before deforestation took its toll. Today, it is still home to a population of around 500 chimpanzees that can be tracked from the Tourist Centre in the middle of the park. Some of the chimps have been habituated to humans, but unlike the gorillas, there is no guarantee of seeing them—when you do, they are likely to hightail it off across the canopy of trees. 160 mi/260 km west of Kampala.

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