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Location: Map

Height: 14,138 ft (4,300 m)

Mount Elgon National Park

Mount Elgon National Park







Description of Mount Elgon National Park


Mount Elgon National Park is a protected area in the Eastern Uganda on the border with Kenya. Mount Elgon National Park covers an area of 14,138 ft (4,300 m) and named after mount Elgon, an extinct volcano, that stands in the park. Area of Mount Elgon National Park is most famous for its 'Elephant caves' that inspired many stories including a novel 'King Solomon's Mines'. Mount Elgon National Park lies on the border between Uganda and Kenya around extinct volcano Mount Elgon. Elgon first erupted 24 millions years ago and over a course of its activity it spewed lava that covered an area of 50 to 80 kilometers. Today this area is very popular with hikers. Most popular time to come here is during drier season between June to August and December to March. Some visitors prefer lodges and hotels in the nearby settlements, but Mount Elgon National Park does offer five basic (very basic) campsites around perimeter of its borders.


Mount Elgon National Park has numerous attractions and notable destinations. This include spectacular views, hot water springs where water can reach 48 C and many others. However Mount Elgon National Park is most famous for so called Elephant Caves. These natural formations were formed in the ancient deposits of salt from a evaporated sea. Original natural erosions were further increased by the herds of wild animals, most notably elephants that came here in search of salt. They licked salt deposits thus further adding to the erosion of the caves.


Kitum Cave

Kitum Cave is one of the largest of the so called "Elephant caves" situated in Mount Elgon National Park. It extends for over 200 meters (700 feet) below ground. Kitum Cave became famous in the 1980's when two European visitors contracted deadly Marburg virus presumably from bats that lived within depths of this natural formation. Both people died from a virus. In September 2007 scientific expeditions were undertaken in the area of Mount Elgon National Park and its surroundings. They found evidence that suggested that cave dwelling species of bats (Egyptian fruit bats) and their guano (excrement) were in fact reservoirs for the deadly virus. Apparently tourists inhaled particles left by these animals that allowed further colonization of unsuspected hosts. So keep this in mind as you choose to explore these destinations.









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