Northern Queen Elizabeth N.P
Rating: Intimately simple
Katara Lodge sits on escarpment farmland overlooking Queen Elizabeth National Park’s northeastern sector in western Uganda, A pleasant intimate, and simple safari lodge with eight cottages overlooking the vast park’s savannah plains. The Lodge is independently owned and operated.
Katara Lodge offers pleasant dining options that a usually of reasonably high quality. Meals are traditionally served at separate tables. In conventional restaurant-style with special diets such as vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, kosher, and other variations should not be a problem, so long as you notify your trip manager know at the time of booking.
Katara prides itself on offering a luxury safari experience while minimizing the impact on the environment. The materials used in the construction of the lodge are gathered locally from sustainable resources. The water system is run on rainwater harvesting, heated using solar water heaters, and the toilets use ultra-low-water flushing systems. Similarly, all lighting and electrical outlets are solar-powered and lighting with low-energy CF or LED bulbs. The swimming pool uses saltwater to avoid the use of harmful chemical.
There are power outlets in the rooms, which are British standard three rectangular pin format. Adaptors are usually available, but it is always worth bringing your own, in which case we recommend buying them in advance rather than trying to get them at the airport on the way since you may find unknown shopping challenges.
WiFi is available in the main areas at this property. Connection speeds are likely to be slow and could be intermittent, but mobile signals are present.
However, the camp is not specifically geared up for children, is unfenced, and potentially dangerous to unruly children. Adult supervision is essential at all times. Although the staff and guides will naturally try to tailor the experience to suit all guests, there are no special facilities for children, who are obliged to behave with due consideration for other guests.
Katara Lodge is located in the northeastern part of Queen Elizabeth National Park, and guests can reach it from Entebbe with a 1-hour flight plus a 2.5-hour drive from Kasese Airport. From Bwindi, Kihihi Airtrips, guests take a 15-minute flight or a 5-hour drive through the park.
Accommodation at Katara Lodge
Katara lodge’s accommodation is styles in eight spacious grass-thatched cottages on an escarpment overlooking the open savannah plains on Queen Elizabeth National Park. Each cottage is handcrafted in African architectural style using locally sourced materials and carved into the Katara village community’s hillside. The cottages combine wooden floors, grass-thatched roofs, and foldable canvas for the park’s uninterrupted views stretching out below.
Seven of the cottages are typically styled with single/double occupancy, have one ample open sleeping and ling area. The four-poster star beds in the room can be wheeled out onto the veranda to sleep directly under the African starlit sky (usually recommended only during the dry season). The ensuite bathrooms have a romantic roll-top bath, or a refreshing rain shower, providing a perfect way to unwind after an exciting safari day.
The family cottage has two separate bedrooms with a shared sitting area and an ensuite bathroom. It has a double bed in one bedroom and two beds (one is 3×6 ft and the second 4×6 ft) in the other bedroom which can accommodate up to three small children. It’s also styled with a small private outside sitting, a swing couch, and two hammocks.
Bathtub in all rooms
Restaurant & Bar
Drinks at the Bar
Kasenyi Plains offers the most outstanding wildlife viewing in Queen Elizabeth National Park and arguably in Uganda. This part of the park contains Kazinga Channel, Lake Albert, and the antelope breeding grounds, making it an excellent choice for the park’s big cats and a Wildlife Photographer’s heaven. You would need at least two nights in the park to fully exhaust the African bush wilderness experience in the Kasenyi Plains.
Boat trips on the Kazinga channel, not far from the lodge, are available on either a scheduled boat launch or private boat safari lazily floating on the channel’s shores, where you can watch a good spectacle of waterhole drama. On strategic shore locations on the channel are a great choice of exclusive safari lodges and camps.
Chimp trekking available in the low-key Kyambura Gorge forest reserve. Although chimpanzee sighting may not be highly probable, the gorge reserve offers a relaxing nature walk. Other animals you’ll quickly see in the riverine forest include red-tailed monkeys, black-and-white colobus, baboons, and vervet monkeys are seen.
The park is also known for its variety of avian species, including various falcons, the blue-headed bee-eater, the African finfoot, and 597 bird species recorded. However, Chimpanzee Tracking is what draws visitors to the gorge.
Mweya peninsula area is the most common choice for accommodation in Queen Elizabeth National Park. Still, camps and lodges can get very busy in high season, making room reservations expensive and scarce.
The main highway on the edge of the park separates the communities of people who live along the boundaries. The road connects the park to the capital city in the east and Kibale National park in the north and Bwindi Impenetrable Forest for Gorilla trekking. Along this highway is where you most probably will find decent safari lodges and camps.