Track Tree Climbing Lions of Ishasha on Your Uganda Safari

Learn in this post about the tree-climbing lions of Ishasha in Uganda, which are an uncommon sighting in all of Africa.

Many people rush down to Bwindi to visit the gorgeous mountain gorillas, but there is a secret gem located off the usual path in the southern region of Queen Elizabeth National Park.

Queen Elizabeth National Park is a simple add-on to any gorilla trekking trip and is only a short drive away (about 3 hours from Bwindi). After Murchison Falls, Queen Elizabeth National Park is the second-largest national park in Uganda. It occupies an area of 1,978 km2 and is situated on the western border of the Great Rift Valley. The park has expansive vistas as well as amazing volcanic features including cones and crater lakes, where salt is harvested from pans. Additionally, a wide variety of safari experiences are available, including chimp trekking, boat safaris, and wildlife drives. The Queen Elizabeth National Park is not simply known for its magnificent landscape; it is also home to a diverse range of species. It is one of the greatest places in Uganda to witness vast herds of buffalo and Ugandan Kob, as well as the renowned tree climbing lions in Ishasha.

tree climbing lions of Ishasha Uganda

tree climbing lions of Ishasha Uganda

Safaris in Queen Elizabeth National Park

tree-climbing lions in Queen Elizabeth National Park

2 Days Queen Elizabeth Safari is two days wildlife safari in Uganda to Queen Elizabeth National Park for a boat cruise and game drive. 2 Days Safari to Queen Elizabeth National Park

Queen Elizabeth National Park Wildlife - Tree Climbing Lions

3 Days Queen Elizabeth National Park Safari is three days Guided wildlife tour in Uganda to Queen Elizabeth Park famed for the tree-climbing lions of Ishasha.

4 Days Queen Elizabeth National Park Wildlife Safari Uganda

4 Days Queen Elizabeth National Park Wildlife Safari is a 4 days wildlife safari in Uganda to Queen Elizabeth National Park famed for tree-climbing lions.

These distinctive lions have established a home in the isolated areas of Ishasha, which is the southernmost point of Queen Elizabeth National Park. Any itinerary would benefit from seeing these gorgeous lions climbing the trees. Only one other park in East Africa, Lake Manyara in Tanzania, is home to this unusual behavior. If you see lions climbing trees in Ishasha, you won’t be looking out over the grasslands; instead, you’ll be looking at the massive Sycamore Fig Trees that dot the terrain. Only in this location would your eyes immediately lift in response to your guide’s exclamation, “Look, lions!”

Why do Ishasha’s lions climb the trees?

Nobody really knows why these lions have turned to the trees, but Sycamore Figs do offer good cover during downpours. Others claim that they love the cool breeze up in the trees and being away from the vermin on the ground. The locals claim that it is a part of the lions’ culture. It’s also very likely that you’ll spot these unusual lions relaxing in the trees, where you can enjoy watching the cubs play and jump in the branches above. Others mention the abundance of Tsetse (tzetze) flies as well. These flies go about on the ground and keep biting the lions. As a result, the lions seek refuge in the trees, where there is a marked reduction in fly activity. Leopards, buffalo, and antelopes are just a few of the local species that can scale trees.

Why do Ishasha's lions climb the trees

Tree Climbing Lions of Ishasha

Best Places to Stay for Tree Climbing Lions

There aren’t many other cars in this region, and there aren’t many places to stay, so you frequently feel like you have the park to yourself. On this page, we’ve included our top two hotels in Uganda where you may go on a safari in Uganda to see the lions that climb trees.

Ishasha Wilderness Camp

Ishasha Wilderness Camp is a beautiful getaway for those who genuinely love the wildness of the African bush. It is located on the banks of the Ntungwe River. In an undeveloped, secluded area of Queen Elizabeth National Park, this upscale camp provides great lodging in luxurious tents that are tastefully furnished and complemented by first-rate service. While you unwind and observe elephants bathing in the river and local troops of Black-and-White Colobus and Vervet monkeys hanging above the camp, wildlife is allowed to pass through the camp because it is located within the park.

Ishasha Wilderness Camp

Ishasha Wilderness Camp

Other favorite activities available at Ishasha Wilderness Camp

  • Grab a G&T for your sundowner drink and enjoy it in a picturesque setting, such as on the ridge with sweeping views as the sun sets or on the riverbank as you watch the hippos begin to emerge from the water.
  • Bush breakfasts can be prearranged so that your personal chef will join you on your morning safari and prepare a hearty, authentically African breakfast for you.

Agartha’s Taste of Uganda Tour is a distinctive choice offered in the Ishasha area and was developed by the Ishasha Community Uplift initiative. Agartha and her neighbors work to celebrate and reveal a little more about their culture to you. Agartha will proudly demonstrate to you how the Bakiga women make their preferred dish, millet porridge, a common food item in this region of the nation.

Agartha and her neighbors work to celebrate and reveal a little more about their culture to you. Agartha will proudly demonstrate to you how the Bakiga women make their preferred dish, millet porridge, a common food item in this region of the nation.

You may watch and even participate how they shift, grind, and boil the meal to ensure that the most crucial task—keeping it warm for the husbands—is accomplished. You can discover how they cultivate and harvest the dry millet.

Agartha encourages you to sample any food you may have helped prepare while on the tour as she spins tales of what it’s like to be a Bakiga wife. She then sends you off on your journey with a customary snack packed in and, if you’d like, a sample of the local beer!

Enjojo Lodge

Expect to encounter elephants and antelopes on the property since this wonderful resort is situated on 40 acres of acacia wilderness on the edge of the Queen Elizabeth Ishasha region. This location benefits from unfenced boundaries that allow wildlife to roam freely. This lodge was built entirely by local contractors using locally obtained materials to blend in with the surroundings, and the majority of the furniture and accent pieces were made by members of the neighborhood. There is a wealth of birds on the property here, and you can go on a guided nature walk throughout the reserve. The thatched huts make you a pleasant base as you explore this area.

Enjojo Lodge

Enjojo Lodge

Other favorite activities available at Enjojo Lodge

  • Fishing is popular in the lake Akanyanza, a tiny body of water near Enjojo.
  • You can borrow fishing rods from the front desk to try your luck at landing a tilapia, lungfish, or even a catfish in this fantastic location.
  • Visits to adjacent communities are also an option because Enjojo is outside the park, making it simple to plan a walk or bike ride to get to know the locals and learn a little about their way of life.

Itinerary suggestions to visit Ishasha’s Tree Climbing Lions

Uganda Flying Safaris

With this flying safari in Uganda itinerary, you may see the greatest three national parks in the nation without having to make a long trip. You will take a flight to Queen Elizabeth National Park for game drives and boat safaris after spending your first night there in Entebbe. After spending two nights in the park, you’ll continue on to Ishasha to observe the tree-climbing lions before spending the next two nights in Bwindi National Park, where mountain gorillas are found. Before returning to Entebbe for your international trip home, you will take a flight to Murchison Falls National Park for a special safari experience.

Gorilla Flying Safari

5 Days Uganda Fly-in Safari to Bwindi Impenetrable & Queen Elizabeth National Park is such a great safari in Uganda for Gorilla trekking and Wildlife viewing.

Gorilla flying Safari

This 8 Days Uganda Fly-in Safari includes a visit to three parks which are Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park, and Kidepo Valley National Park.

Gorilla flying Safari Bwindi

10 Days Fly in Uganda Safari: Bwindi, Queen Elizabeth, Kibale Forest & Murchison Falls National Parks is a gorilla trekking, wildlife tour and chimpanzee tracking safari in Uganda.

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