Queen Elizabeth National Park

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Queen Elizabeth National Park
IUCN category II (national park)
2004-03-22 En route to QENP 12 - Crater Lake.JPG
Crater Lake
Map showing the location of Queen Elizabeth National Park
Map showing the location of Queen Elizabeth National Park
Location of Queen Elizabeth National Park
Location  Uganda
Nearest city Kasese
Coordinates 00°12′S 30°00′E / 0.200°S 30.000°E / -0.200; 30.000Coordinates: 00°12′S 30°00′E / 0.200°S 30.000°E / -0.200; 30.000
Area 1,978 square kilometres (764 sq mi)
Established 1954
Governing body Ugandan Wildlife Authority

The Queen Elizabeth National Park (QENP) is Uganda's most visited national park.


The national park is located in western Uganda, spanning the districts of Kasese, Kamwenge, Bushenyi, and Rukungiri. Its location is approximately 376 kilometres (234 mi), by road, southwest of Kampala, Uganda's capital and largest city.[1] The town of Kasese is just outside the northeastern edge of the park, while the town of Bushenyi is just outside the park's southeastern boundaries. The coordinates of the park are 00 12S, 30 00E (Latitude:-0.2000; Longitude:30.0000).


A Congo lioness in Ishasha Sector.
Hippopotamuses in the Kazinga Channel, Queen Elizabeth National Park

QENP occupies an estimated 1,978 square kilometres (764 sq mi),[2] of which about 17 percent lies in Kasese District, 50 percent in Bushenyi District, and 33 percent in Rukungiri District.[citation needed] The park area extends from Lake George in the northeast to Lake Edward in the southwest, and includes the Kazinga Channel that connects the two lakes.

The park is named after Queen Elizabeth II and was established in 1954.[citation needed] The park was later renamed Ruwenzori[citation needed] before it returned to its royal name. QENP is known for its wildlife, although many animals were killed in the Uganda-Tanzania War.[citation needed] Many species have recovered, including hippopotami, elephants, African leopards, Congo lions, and chimpanzees. It is now home to 95 species of mammal and over 500 species of birds. The area around Ishasha in Rukungiri District is famous for its tree-climbing lions,[3] whose males sport black manes, a feature unique to the lions in this area.[citation needed] Poachers killed five or six elephants in the park in 2015, triggering both anger and frustration within the Ugandan conservation community.[4]

The park is also famous for its volcanic features, including volcanic cones and deep craters, many with crater lakes, such as the Katwe craters, from which salt is extracted.[5][6]

QENP includes the Maramagambo Forest and borders the Kigezi Game Reserve, the Kyambura Game Reserve, and the Kibale National Park in Uganda, and the Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

QENP and the Queen Elizabeth Country Park in England are twinned in a project of "cultural exchange, mutual support and has its main emphasis on supporting Conservation through working closely with and empowering local communities".[7]

Services in the park include a telecenter run by Conservation Through Public Health[8] and the Uganda Wildlife Authority (neighboring The Queen's Pavilion), park lodges, game and scenic drives, and boat launches.

See also[edit]