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Lake Kikorongo in Queen Elizabeth National Park Uganda

Lake Kikorongo in Queen Elizabeth National Park Uganda is a mysterious small alkaline crater in the Katwe-Kikorongo Volcanic Field.

It is an extension of Lake George and is surrounded by lush green Uganda vegetation, proclaiming an arresting scenery. This, brings out the life of the landscape in this area, hence promoting an exhilarating Queen Elizabeth safari around this crater lake!

Unlike other lakes in the Katwe-Kikorongo expanse, Lake Kikorongo is less salty because of the sporadic flooding of Lake George into it. Therefore, this vaguely circular crater possesses both fresh and saline qualities. This contrasts with its historical very salty waters that once upon a time, favored the breeding of Lesser Flamingos.


Historical records from the first half of the 20th century prove that Lake Kikorongo was an attempted breeding ground for Lesser Flamingos.

Pitman for instance recorded in 1942 about the Lesser Flamingos’ first attempt at breeding around this lake in 1906.

Din and Eltringham’s report of 1976 shows how over 40,000 Lesser Flamingos tried to breed in the 1930s around Lake Kikorongo. However, only a few of them were attested in the 1950s.

Conversely, the tide turned in the 1960s when the Lesser Flamingos never returned. This was after the salty lake was diluted when Lake George flooded into it because of the heavy rains.

Yet, it is still a good Uganda birding tour destination, for the beautiful birds that live by its shores. Some of these wading birds feed on the high zooplankton diversity of Lake Kikorongo.

The Lesser Flamingos that migrate from Kenya’s Lake Turkana are now common at Lake Munyanyange, also in the Katwe-Kikorongo Crater Lake Area.

Tourists mostly do sightseeing in the Lake Kikorongo area. However, activities like birding also give a remarkable Uganda birding experience. Game viewing occurs mostly with the herds of Elephants that come to drink from the Lake Kikorongo waters.

Kikorongo Crater Lake is therefore both a historic and present-day place of importance to Uganda’s nature. Have a Uganda tour in the down South West and know what the crater tour is all about. Do not miss out!

Where Does Lake Kikorongo Get Its Name From?

Lake Kikorongo was named after the Kikorongo settlement in Queen Elizabeth National Park.

Kikorongo means “too much sunshine” in the Rukonjo language. The name reflects the climatic conditions at the Kikorongo settlement for its location near the Equator Uganda landmark line on its West.

This explains why the region has a tropical dry savanna climate of hot sunny weather for most parts of the year.

It is a true definition of the tropical heat in the African plains!

Location Of Lake Kikorongo In Queen Elizabeth National Park Uganda

Lake Kikorongo is in South Western Uganda in Kasese District in the Katwe-Kikorongo Crater Lakes Area.

It lies on the Western Rift Valley, North of Queen Elizabeth National Park, at an altitude of 923 meters (3,028 feet) above sea level.

Lake Edward and Katwe – Katunguru road borders the lake to the South and River Nyamugasani to the West. Kikorongo – Bwera road also borders Lake Kikorongo to the North and Katunguru – Kasese road to the East.

The Kikorongo Settlement Near Lake Kikorongo (Kikorongo Crater Lake)

Kikorongo village is 3km North West of Lake Kikorongo and just 22km away from Kasese Town. 

The settlement is blessed to have the gifted and artistic Kikorongo Women Community. These women perform at various lodges around Queen Elizabeth National Park through Music, Dance, and Drama.

Through them, you can enjoy the Kikorongo Equatorial Cultural Experience as you safari Queen Elizabeth National Park. This is an activity in which you get a live show of how these women go through their daily life.

Furthermore, Kikorongo African Art shops make and sell cultural materials made from African fabrics. These include baskets, bowls, purses, belts, and necklaces.

The lodges in the Kikorongo area favor visitors who would love game drives in the Kasenyi Plains and birding around Lake George. Additionally, they are good for nature drives around Kyarumba on the foothills of the Rwenzori ranges.

Things To See And Experience At The Lake Kikorongo Area In Queen Elizabeth Park 

Lake Kikorongo in Queen Elizabeth National Park Uganda is a major sightseeing vicinity. It comes with the yearning desire to experience Uganda like never before!

Below are the top three (3) things to see and experience on your Queen Elizabeth National Park safari in the Lake Kikorongo area.

  1. Kikorongo Women Community/ Kikorongo Equatorial Cultural Experience.
  2. Other crater lakes in the Lake Katwe Area(Katwe-Kikorongo Volcanic Area).
  3. Birds and Animals.

Kikorongo Women Community | Kikorongo Equatorial Cultural Experience 

Kikorongo Women Community is an indigenous community-based, youth-serving, and women-led organization in Queen Elizabeth National Park Uganda.

In addition to eradicating poverty through their African Artworks, they also aim to promote human rights and justice among vulnerable people, especially women.

They do this through laid-out strategies like empowering girls with income-generating skills.

They similarly mobilize families and communities to join and run with the ship of their inspirational vision.

The Kikorongo Equatorial Cultural Experience

Among the many things that this women’s community does are the cultural performances and hands-on production of craft-related pieces.

They hold Craft Workshops where they teach visitors how to weave baskets, bowls, purses, and belts using natural fibers.

Moreover, they even teach you how to recycle magazines into colorful paper beads to make unique cultural necklaces. Most important of all, the heat of the equatorial African plains at Kikorongo has not weakened the energy by which these women perform!

Their lively music, dance, and drama shows, by a campfire, take place in different lodges. Thus creating a memorable Queen Elizabeth National Park Uganda safari.

A local interpreter defines the meaning of the show, as you sit back and observe the village life unfold in front of you. Their vibrant, energetic, and entertaining cultural performances relay educational messages of general hygiene, drinking boiled water, safe motherhood, and awareness against poaching.

With these empowering messages, these women contribute immensely to the authenticity of Uganda tours and safaris.

Other Crater Lakes In The Lake Katwe Area (Katwe-Kikorongo Volcanic Area)

Lake Kikorongo is in the Katwe-Kikorongo area in Queen Elizabeth National Park.

This means that it is one of the great 8 crater lakes that are in this region.

The other seven lakes include

  1. Katwe Crater Lake
  2. Lake Munyanyange
  3. Lake Bunyampaka
  4. Lake Nyamununka
  5. Kyemengo Crater Lake
  6. Mahiga Crater Lake
  7. Kitagata Crater Lake

Katwe Crater Lake is the major salt mining area in Uganda’s Queen Elizabeth National Park.  It has young men and women tirelessly toiling in salt pans under the sun to get salt.

Lake Bunyampaka also supports salt mining, but on a smaller scale than Lake Katwe.

Lake Munyanyange is a major birding site that welcomes the migratory Lesser Flamingoes from Kenya’s Lake Turkana. The lake also homes a fewer number of the Greater Flamingoes and other birds.

Other lakes in the area as well support different wading birds in Queen Elizabeth National Park. In fact, the Katwe craters are more of a birding site than a game site. However, sometimes Elephants and Hippos pass by to quench their thirst.

Uganda Wildlife At Lake Kikorongo In Queen Elizabeth National Park Uganda

Lake Kikorongo supports few animal and bird species compared to other parts of Queen Elizabeth National Park. This is because it is a salty lake and most animals in Queen Elizabeth National Park prefer fresh waters.

Below are the most notable birds at Lake Kikorongo in Queen Elizabeth National Park.

·        Shoebill

·        Common Squacco Heron

·        Saddle-billed Stork

·        Sacred Ibis

·        Knob-billed Duck

·        Black Crake

·        African Jacana

·        Yellow Wagtail

·        Lesser Swamp Warbler

·        Greater Swamp Warbler

·        White-winged Warbler

·        Carruther’s Cisticola

·        Papyrus Gonolek

Common animals to also see in the Lake Kikorongo Area include

  • Elephants
  • Hippos
  • Warthogs and
  • Sitatungas

Best Season To Visit Lake Kikorongo

Lake Kikorongo Area is generally a dry place and so any time of the year is good for this Crater Lake visit.

However, January gives a better experience since it is a dry season.

Other dry seasons from around June to September will also give you a remarkable experience.

How To Get To Lake Kikorongo In Queen Elizabeth National Park

Using the A109 route from Kampala by road takes about 7 hours on a distance of 391km.

By air from Entebbe International Airport, your flight to Kasese airport will take about 40 minutes.  Your guide will then pick you up and lead you to Lake according to your itinerary.

Lodges Around Lake Kikorongo In Queen Elizabeth National Park

To re-echo, lodges around Lake Kikorongo are suitable for visitors touring the Katwe crater lakes, the Kasenyi area, and the Rwenzori region.

They include the following.

Luxury Lodges

Elephant Plains Lodge; stands on the Western Escarpment of the Western Rift Valley. It is strategically located near Lake Kikorongo which merges with its plains.

Consequently, this gives an outstanding view of the Elephants that drink from the shores. Thus, the name of the lodge.

Marafiki Safari Lodge; sits near the Equator line and the Kikorongo Crater Lake area. The lodge is built from African materials by artisans from neighboring communities. This gives it a serene wild environment experience for visitors.

Marafiki Safari Lodge overlooks Lake George near Kikorongo Crater Lake and the Rwenzori Mountain ranges.

Kikorongo Safari Lodge; this lodge lies on the steep escarpments of Kikorongo. It gives a unique view of Lake Kikorongo, Lake George, and the beautiful landscape. For some cottages, it also gives a view of the famous Kazinga Channel.

Midrange Lodges

Ihamba Lakeside Safari Camp; sits on the shores of Lake George and just North East from Lake Kikorongo. From this lodge, visitors can easily go birding and sightseeing around Lake Kikorongo.

Little Elephant Camp; is just about 10 kilometers away from the Equator and lake Kikorongo. Their accommodation includes tents with luxurious services.

Budget Lodges

The Elephant Home; this lodge is in Katunguru, just a few kilometers from Kikorongo, crossing the equator. The lodge offers craft shop and village tours around Kikorongo from where you can easily meet the Kikorongo Women Community.

Simba Safari Camp; sits on a hill overlooking Lake George and Lake Kikorongo. It also gives a spectacular view of the savannah plains in Kasenyi.

Other Budget Lodges near Lake Kikorongo

  • Songbird Safari Lodge & Campsite
  • Queen Elizabeth Bush Lodge

Lake Kikorongo manifests the beauty of Uganda’s crater lakes and what they can give for your crater lakes tour. With the neighboring craters and wildlife around it, you experience true Uganda nature in the sunny plains.

Visit this destination today and you will not regret it!!

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