Located at the border between Kenya and Uganda, Mount Elgon is said to have the largest surface area of any extinct volcano in the world and a caldera which covers over 40km2 at the top of the mountain. The highest peak, Wagagai, sits at 4,321m and is the second highest in Uganda (after Rwenzori) and the eighth highest in Africa.
Mount Elgon was once the highest mountain in Africa, but volcanic activity reduced over the centuries to where it is now. It is no longer an active volcano and is the largest intact mountain caldera in the world. Many visitors interested in mountain climbing see Mount Elgon as an easier mountain to climb and it is. You do not need to be a skilled mountain climber to enjoy a mountain climbing experience on mt Elgon. An average hiker or biker can enjoy this experience as well. There are qualified guides and porters to guide up and down the mountain, and to carry your heavy gear and lighten the climb.
Things to do in Mount Elgon National Park
You can still enjoy your time around Mount Elgon without hiking the mountain. You can visit the park and see some wildlife, or go bird watching, go on nature walks, or explore the villages, caves and interact and learn about the Bamasaba people who live in the area. You can also go mountain biking. You can visit the forest exploration center and other trails on the foothills of the mountain. The forest exploration center is found near sipi town and used to be an educational center, but is now a trail-head for those who want to go mountain climbing. It however is still the perfect starting point if you want to explore caves, and see the various waterfalls, escarpments, and valleys. The avid birder can also have some fun. There are various bird species that you can spot in the area such as: Eastern Bronze-napped Pigeon, Hartlaub’s Turaco, Lemon Dove, African Hill Babbler, Alpine Chat, Dusky-Turtle Dove, Black-throated Wattle-eye, Thick-billed Honey guide, Mountain Yellow Warbler, Grey Cuckoo-Shrike