Friday, April 6, 2012

Bat Cave Walk and Mweya Safari Lodge

A magnificent bat cave is located just into the forest, near Jacana Lodge, so we took a guided walking tour to see the many thousands of bats in their habitat. The forest in the area was actually a beautiful secondary forest. After walking across a river filled with fresh water crabs, we spotted lovely birds and saw a few spider monkeys. During certain times of the year several species of monkeys come into the forest for the fruit on the trees.

The walk was about 2 hours total and was quite easy. Halfway through the walk we reached the bat cave…wow! That was quite the site, and smell, and sound. It was pretty impressive to see so many bats in one place (they don’t know how many are actually there, but definitely thousands upon thousands!).

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After our forest walk, we drove back to the main road (about 20 mins. on a dirt road to get in/out of Jacana Lodge) and continued on the paved road for about 15 mins. through the park before reaching another dirt road that took us up to Mweya Lodge (about 25 mins.).

Mweya Safari Lodge is part of the same group as Paraa Safari Lodge and has a similar feel, but is considerably more updated and offers more in terms of luxuries and amenities. The lodge is quite big and feels very big. Car parks line the entrances of the rooms and it doesn’t feel very wild.

We enjoyed a great lunch at Mweya, the views of the Kazinga Channel are lovely and for those travelers (or larger groups) who are looking for the services and amenities of a larger hotel, this is a great option. I just found that the hotel wasn’t as intimate as Kyambura or Jacana, simply based on size alone.

The details: Mweya Safari Lodge offers 32 standard rooms (fans only, no A/C), 12 deluxe rooms with A/C, 2 suites, the Presidential Cottage (which would be nice for a family or 2 couples traveling together), the Queen’s Cottage (same as Presidential), 2 family cottages and 4 tents (which are fairly new); 2 are luxury tents and 2 are standard. The Standard rooms and the tents really had the best views.

The public areas were nicely refurbished and well decorated. Warthogs and mongoose were running around on the grounds, which added a fun element to the experience. It is certainly a good option for travelers who don’t mind staying at a larger property.

(See more in my full Uganda trip report from November 2011)

Contact us for more info about lodging, trekking and tours with Classic Africa Safaris.

Photos by Lyndsay Harshman/The Kusini Collection

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