Cheetahs In Kidepo Valley National Park

Cheetahs are described as the fastest land animals and most admired animal with striped dots, it’s one of the unique animals that can be seen during a game drive in kidepo valley national park in Uganda given the fact that it’s the only park in Uganda where cheetahs can be seen.


Kidepo valley national park, known as ‘the true African wilderness’ is Uganda’s most  isolated national park  due to its distance from Kampala, the capital city of Uganda,  but still stands out to be one of the best virgin places every wildlife viewer can visit. The park is located in the northeastern corner of Uganda right at the core of a savannah landscape next to a few mountainous bodies. It covers an area of  1442 square kilometers of  land in the karamoja region. It lies in the rugged, semi-arid valleys of Uganda, bordered by Sudan and Kenya. The distance from Kampala the city of Uganda to Kidepo Valley National Park, is over 571km, and you will need to drive for at least 13 hours with a number of stopovers on the way.

It was gazetted as a national park in 1962, and it has a provision of almost 86 mammals as well as around 475 bird species. During dry season, the only permanent water in the park is found in wetlands and remnant pools in the broad Narus valley near Apoka. It was the ketebo verb meaning ‘help us’. The ketebo are the inhabitant farmers and hunters who lived in the area since 1800 before it was gazetted as a game reserve. The purpose of gazatting this park was to protect the animals from being hunted and to further prevent further clearing of the bush for tsetse fly control. The ketebo were forcefully relocated to other areas within Birae.gNapotpot,kalo kudo,loriwo and naurkori in south Sudan, it was converted to kidepo valley national park in 1962 by the newly independent government of Uganda under Milton obote.

Kidepo valley national park is a home to a number of wildlife like four of the big five animals that is lions,buffaloes,elephants,leopards. Other animals include the, giraffes,zebras,the African hunting dogs, bushpig, bat eared fox, cheetahs among others. And the notable birds like the ostrich, kori bustard, red and yellow barbet, littlebee eater among others can be seen. The  cheetahs make this park a unique one since it’s the only park where cheetahs are found in Uganda.


A cheetah is a large cat of the sub family which can be found in east Africa and inhabits dry forests, savannah and shrub forest. It has a slender body with small rounded black tear marks  like streaks on the face stretching from their eyes down to the mouth, long spotted tail and long thin legs.

It measures 70-90cm on the shoulder and it can weigh 21-72kgs.

Female cheetahs live with their offsprings in home ranges, whereas adult males are sociable despite forming their own group called coalitions. They can run at a speed of only 64km/h while hunting due to their unusual ability to accelerate. Theyhave got a gestation period which is close to 3 months and results into offsprings of typically 3-5 in exceptional cases up to 8 cubs.

They are much lighter than lions, females weigh 126 kg while males weigh 186kgs. They have smaller heads compared to other wild cats. They are said to be the world’s fastest land  mammals and Africa’s most endangered wild cat specie.

They are so active during day especially in the cool mornings and in the late evening whose major activity is hunting. They mainly prey on small antelopes and gazelles which they stalk within 100-300meters, charge towards them and kill them through biting their necks until suffocation. They have nice looking black tear like marks that runs down its face and then reflect light from the sun, this brings unique separation from the similar leopards.

Despite the fact that they are the fastest animals, they aren’t the strongest, instead they are weakest among the big cats.

Other tourist activities within Kidepo Valley National park.

Bird watching

It’s the second park with a wide range of notable bird species in Uganda. So it’s one of the places recommended for birding for those that would like to  enjoy bird watching on their safaris would visit this true African wilderness.

Nature walks

You can also visit the IK tribe who live in the mountainous areas . Visit the kanangorokhot springs,visit the Karamojong people and also overlooking the vast wilderness in the Narus valley where you can discover the hidden treasures of the park.

You can combine Kidepo Valley National Park with other national park like Murchison Falls National Park, the Cultural tours in Karamoja, Pian-Upe wildlife reserve and others to have lifetime safaris.

All these unique stunning attractions can only be seen when you visit Kidepo valley national park in Uganda with KENLINK TOURS & TRAVEL.

This information was collected by Namagembe Lovince, one of our safari lady guides in Uganda that guides and takes care of our clients while on safaris, and on other communications.

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