Ishasha National Park

Technically this place is called the “Ishasha Sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park”, but I think it’s a lot easier and clearer to just call it Ishasha NP. So I’m going with that…

queen elizabeth park towards ishasha 720x480

On the way to the Ishasha entrance – hours and hours of this wilderness

This remote park lies on the very Western border of Uganda, butting up against – yes, you guessed it – the mighty DRC. I put in a huge day to get all the way there, with monster thunderstorms on the horizon for the entire journey.

As soon as I get close to the park entrance I know I’m on a good thing. I actually hear elephants trumpeting while chatting to the guy at the entrance gate! Way back in Gabon, Rep. Congo and the DRC I was shocked by the landscape – rather than the insanely dense jungle I had always expected, much of the landscape was green rolling hills with beautiful grasslands.
Here, again, I find the same thing and I’m extremely happy about it.

ishasha elephants 720x480

Within five minutes I spotted a huge herd of elephants roaming

mountains and animals 720x480

Rolling hills and wildlife

The scenery is simply stunning, and for around $90USD I decide the afternoon and morning in the park are well worthwhile, with a spot of camping in the middle.

ishasha trees and drc mountains 720x480

Stunning trees and DRC mountains

ishasha single tracks 720x480

These kind of tracks stretch endlessly into the distance

ishasha muddy roads and tree 720x480

Muddy roads and stunning scenery are a feature in Ishasha

This park is famous for lions that climb trees – one of the only places in the world where this is found. I keep my eyes peeled and search high and low all over the park, though I never do spot a single lion. The torrential rains keep the temperature down, and I’m told they move into the trees when the temperature skyrockets in the early months of the year.

ishasha mighty elephant 720x480

This massive guy was all alone, and I waited ten minutes for him to get off the road – he’s WAY bigger than the Jeep, so he has right of way

ishasha landscape road 720x480

Gravel and muddy roads beg to be explored

ishasha jeep 720x480

The landscape is breathtaking

The massive thunderstorms swirl around all afternoon and camping at night is a rainy affair. In the morning I’m moving before sunrise, exploring far and wide all over the park.

ishasha dirt road thunderstorm 320x480

Dirt roads lead to massive thunderstorms

ishasha curious beast 720x480

These guys are everywhere

ishasha camping 720x480

Camping in Ishasha, right on the hippo-filled river

As you can see the landscape is breathtaking, and I especially like the trees which have a special quality. At about lunch time the skies open with an enormous torrential downpour, and I take that as a signal to leave the park and move onto new adventures!

ishasha buffaloes 720x480

Herds of hundreds of buffalo roam in the grasslands

ishasha buffalo 720x480

Curious big guy


10 Responses

  1. Terry says:

    This is one of your best posts! I’ve added Ishasha to my list now!

  2. Wazungu says:

    I see you backtracked from Jinja to western Uganda, hence your long day – or days – on the road. When you were in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest – just after you had crossed the border from Rwanda – you were within a few hours drive of the Ishasha section of Queen Elizabeth National Park. I know you can read a map, but maybe others can’t…

    • Dan Grec says:

      Haha, Yeah it’s true.
      I went the way I did because I was catching up with a friend I have not seen in years and we wanted to get into Kampala together!
      Also my plans change my the minute. When I had just crossed the border I wasn’t really thinking about Ishasha, but then someone told me it’s incredible, so I decided to go back that way!


  3. C7GT1 says:

    I recently purchased 2 of The Road Chose Me Vol.1 paperback books, for me and for my brother. I was wondering how much money in US Dollars will be sent to you for the remainder of you African overlanding .

    • Dan Grec says:


      Thanks very much for buying the books, I really appreciate it and I hope you enjoy them.
      Please leave a review on Amazon after you have read the book!

      Amazon give me a percentage of the sale price, and trust me when I say it all helps and will keep me on the road to the end point of Cairo!!

      Thanks again very much,

  4. Dirk Rosseel says:

    In 2015 we camped in Ishasha at the same river campsite with the hippos. The other side of the river actually is the DRC and when rebels are noticed on the other side, camping is not allowed within 3 km from the river. We had a good sleep in our tent with hippos and 2 armed park guards around us. Uganda was one of our best travel experiences ever in an old Landy rented in Nairobi – Kenya.

  5. Fab says:

    Must have been exhilarating
    Africa is truly a Gem of the world

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>