Attractions in pian upe wildlife reserve

Attractions in pian Upe wildlife reserve

Attractions in pian upe wildlife reserve : Pian Upe wildlife reserve is a highly ranked conservation area found in the northern eastern region of Uganda, the reserve lies in the karamoja region covering an area of 2,788 square kilometers. pian Upe wildlife reserve is part of the great Mount Elgon conservation area and borders Bokora wildife reserve and Matheniko game reserve.

History of pian Upe wildlife reserve

The area today known as pian Upe wildlife reserve was a battle ground for the Karamojong a pastoral tribe in northern Uganda and the pokot a pastoral group which originated from Kenya, the communities of these two groups were separated by a boundary formed by the present day main road which leads through the reserve to matheniko and Bokora wildlife reserve. This boundary was usually crossed by warriors of each group mostly in the period of ruthless cattle rustling purposely to raid each other’s cattle which resulted into war. In 1958 the southern section of the area was gazetted as the Debasien animal sanctuary, when the government of Uganda established an agriculture production project south of Girik river the boundaries of the sanctuary were threatened. In 1964 the boundaries of the sanctuary were expanded northward and the area was renamed to pian Upe game reserve, since then the reserve

Attractions found pian Upe wildlife reserve

Pian Upe wildlife reserve is a great tourist destination with many fascinating attractions which make the park more attractive as listed below.


  • Mammals

Pian Upe wildlife reserve is a home to many wildlife species, this reserve is dominated by plateaus, and mountains cut in between by rock strewn ridges and kopjes with green, golden and wooden grasslands allover flat plains. These plains host a huge population of animals such as cheetahs, common elands, zebras, hartebeests, Gunther’s dik-dik, Oribis, impalas, cape buffalo, Uganda Kob, waterbuck, blur and common duiker, klipspringers, spotted hyena, leopards, lions, serval cats, civets, jackals, wildcats, crested porcupine, rock hyrax, aardvarks, four-toed hedgehogs, olive baboons, vervet and patas monkeys. These animals make game viewing experience in pian Upe wildlife reserve amazing, for fact pian Upe wildlife reserve is one the best places in Uganda with high chances of spotting cheetahs the earth’s fastest animal.

Pian Upe wildlife reserve is also a home to various species of reptiles such as venomous puff adders, savannah monitors, common agama, skinks, geckos, rick pythons, chameleons, geckos and savannah monitors. These reptiles are found around river Girik.

  • Primates

Primates are among the wildlife found in Pian Upe wildlife reserve, these primates live in the forest dominated area of the reserve and they include olive baboons, four toed hedgehogs, rick hyrax, Aardvarks, crested porcupine, African hare, vervet monkeys and pata monkeys

  • Reptiles

Pian Upe wildlife reserve is a home to many species of reptiles which thrive in the wooded savannah and shrub dominated plains, reptiles in the reserve include geckos, rock pythons, skinks, venomous puff adders, common agama, savannah monitors and crocodiles which are found in river Girik.

  • Birds

Pian Upe wildlife reserve has been recognized as in important birding site as it is a habitant to an incredible number of bird species recorded to be approximately 242 species, thus making it an ideal site for bird watching. Pian Upe wildlife reserve is partly dominated by loporokocho swamp which is a habitant to many exciting birds including rare birds such as the shoe bil, the uncommon ostrich, Jackson’s hornbill, great Hartlaub’s bustard and white headed buffalo weaver and many more. Other bird species that are easily seen in Pian Upe wildlife reserve include karamoja apalis which is endemic to  northern eastern Uganda, green bitta, Abyssinian ground hornbills, superb sterling’s, secretary birds and fox’s weaver bird which is a rare bird only found in two locations in the world with pian Upe wildlife reserve as one of it. Pian Upe wildlife reserve is also a home to fox’s weaver bird which are only found in two places in Uganda including the reserve itself

  • Culture

Pian Upe national park is situated near Karamojong communities which are found along its boundaries, it’s from the Karamojong slag pian and Upe  were the reserve derives its name with pian meaning goof sprinted and Upe meaning enemy. Karamojong are one of few communities in Uganda with culture and transition not affected by modernity and technology

Physical features

Pian Upe reserve is dotted with many physical features which create a beautiful scenery in the reserve and these include

Lake Opeta

Lake Opeta is an in the south region of pian Upe reserve, this lake is dotted with an extensive wetland system which make it a perfect habitant for a variety birds and animals in the reserve that is why it is listed among the 33 important birding area in Uganda and in 2006 it was listed as a Ramsar-listed wetland of international importance.

Cheposukunya hot springs

Cheposukunya hot springs are magnificent feature situated in the park, many tourists get amazed when visiting this features which spill out hot water from the ground, cheposukunya hot springs is a great birding habitant in the reserve and as you visit it you spot many birds.

Mount kadam and the rocky hills

Pian Upe wildlife reserve consists of hilly features including mount kadam, mount kadam is situated on the border of karamoja Uganda covering a region of pian Upe wildlife standing at an elevation of 3,063 metres. The mountain and other hilly features in the reserve facilitate mountain climbing and hiking experiences in the reserve.

Where to stay while on a safari in pian Upe wildlife reserve

Pian Upe wildlife reserve consists of affordable accommodation facilities which offer accommodation to tourists while on a safari in this reserve, accommodation facilities include shalosa hotel, Hotel leslona limited, lavender inn, mount Moroto hotel, karamoja safari camp and many more.

How to get to pian Upe wildlife reserve

Pian Upe wildlife reserve is easily accessed from Kampala, the reserve is situated 90 kilometers from Kampala and reached using Mbale-Moroto road. the nearest city to Pian Upe wildlife reserve is Mbale and from Mbale it is 11 kilometers to the reserve.

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