Murchison Falls

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Murchison Falls
Kabalega Falls
Murchison Falls, Uganda (23475021234).jpg
Murchison Falls is located in Uganda
Murchison Falls
Coordinates2°16′41.52″N 31°41′7.08″E / 2.2782000°N 31.6853000°E / 2.2782000; 31.6853000Coordinates: 2°16′41.52″N 31°41′7.08″E / 2.2782000°N 31.6853000°E / 2.2782000; 31.6853000
WatercourseVictoria Nile

Murchison Falls, also known as Kabalega Falls, is a waterfall at the apex of Lake Albert on the Victoria Nile in Uganda. At the top of Murchison Falls, the Nile forces its way through a gap in the rocks, only 7 m (23 ft) wide, and tumbles 43 m (141 ft), before flowing westward into Lake Albert. The outlet of Lake Victoria sends around 300 cubic meters per second (11,000 ft³/s) of water over the falls, squeezed into a gorge less than 10 m (33 ft) wide.

Some historians believe that a party of Roman legionaries dispatched by Nero may have reached the Murchison Falls in 61 AD, but there is major controversy about the feasibility of what would have been a very difficult achievement.[1]

Samuel Baker and Florence Baker were the first Europeans who definitely sighted them.[2] Baker named them after Roderick Murchison, the President of the Royal Geographical Society.[3] The falls lend their name to the surrounding Murchison Falls National Park.

During the regime of Idi Amin in the 1970s, the name was changed to Kabalega Falls, after the Omukama (King) Kabalega of Bunyoro, although this was never legally promulgated. The name reverted to Murchison Falls following the downfall of Amin.[4] It is still sometimes referred to as Kabalega Falls.[3]

Ernest Hemingway crashed a plane just downriver from Murchison Falls in 1954.[5] In August 2019, Uganda rejected a hydropower project by South Africa’s Bonang Power and Energy in order to preserve the Falls, one of the country's most lucrative tourism sites.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Vantini, Giovanni (2004). Da dove viene l'acqua del Nilo? Ricerche e risposte di antichi scienziati. Piroga: volume 8, numero 23, pgs. 88-91 (url= Archived 2018-01-14 at the Wayback Machine)
  2. ^ Middleton, Dorothy. "Baker, Florence Barbara Maria, Lady Baker (1841–1916)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/42346. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  3. ^ a b "Murchison Falls". Archived from the original on 2007-06-18. Retrieved 2007-04-04.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  4. ^ "United Nations Environment Programme". Archived from the original on 2007-09-30. Retrieved 2007-04-04.
  5. ^ "Murchison Falls National Park, Uganda Safaris, Murchison Falls Safari and Tours in Uganda". Murchison Falls National Park Uganda. Retrieved 13 December 2014.
  6. ^ "Uganda rejects planned power plant at Murchison Falls". Reuters. 2019-08-28. Retrieved 2019-08-29.

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