Tree Climbing Lions in Uganda

Tree Climbing Lions in Uganda: Tree climbing lions of are rare species of Lions found in Uganda the pearl of Africa within Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth national park. You could be wondering whether lions actually climb the trees but the truth is that there are rare species of Lions termed as Tree Climbing Lions reason being that they prefer climbing up in the tree branches as they overlook their prey. In East Africa and Africa at large, these rare tree climbing lions have only been spotted in Queen Elizabeth national park in Uganda as well as Lake Manyara national park in Tanzania. Taking on a Uganda safari to Queen Elizabeth national park is the only way you can have a glance at the King of the jungle, sleeping lazily up in the tree branches of acacia and fig trees within Ishasha sector.

However, the major reason as to why these lions enjoy climbing up in the tree branches is still myth and up to to-date, no one knows the reason behind all this. Some people think that these lions be escaping from hot grounds during the day thus seek some cool shelter up in the tree, others think that it’s their culture to show off their pride over other animals as the Kings of the jungle, we as well think that these Lions climb up in the tree to have a clear view of their prey then they come down once and catch their next targeted meal including the Uganda Kob which is always their major prey, Impalas, and many others. Some people also think that these lions be running away from insect bites and many more. But no one has come up with a supporting evidence to their suggestions thus their reason for climbing trees remain myth.

You should not be misled with other normal Lions since they do not climb trees, these tree climbing Lions are a rare species and  are not seen any how just on a park’s game drive.  The best way to get closer to them is by using an experienced guide who truly knows how to differentiate these Lions from the rest of other Lions and as well knows well where to find them with In Ishasha sector.

The best thing with taking on a game drive in Ishasha sector is that guests are rewarded with a golden opportunity of viewing other several wildlife species that call Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth national park their home such as Uganda Kob, Buffaloes, Leopards, Buffaloes, Antelopes, and several species of birds among others.

Best time to see tree climbing lions in Uganda,

Like any other savanna parks in Uganda, Queen Elizabeth national park can be visited all year round but trust me, dry months are the best choices one could make to see the tree climbing Lions. This is because the savanna vegetation of the park is minimal thus easy to view these Lions in tree branches and also all the trails be dry and passable. Also in dry months, the park is hot and these lions are always forced to climb in the trees escaping hot and harsh conditions on ground. This makes the dry season to be the best time for a visit to tree climbing lions as compared to rainy months when the park is muddy, and the vegetation cover is thick making it hard to view these Lions and other park dwellers but you will as well be able to see them chilling in the tree branches.

When to stay on a safari to see tree climbing Lions in Uganda,

Since these tree climbing lions thrill in Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth national park, this implies that you need to book your accommodation in the park either in Ishasha sector or any other sector. The park offers both Budget, Midrange and Luxury accommodations that cater for any one’s budget. Some of these accommodations include; Enjojo lodge, Eco lodge, Ishasha wilderness camp, Park View lodge, Mweya safari lodge, Ihamba Lodge, Kasenyi safari camp and many more that will offer you thrilling nights during your Uganda safari to see tree climbing Lions.

How best can one get to tree climbing Lions in Uganda?

As we well know that in Uganda, tree climbing lions are found only in Ishasha sector in southern part  of Queen Elizabeth national park, we have various ways of getting their mainly by road. 

  • From Kampala, the road drive is always considered a full day drive but in real life it takes about 6-7 hours to get to the heart of Queen Elizabeth national park in Mweya peninsula and 2 hours to Ishasha sector thus most people usually choose to do other park activities and then visit tree climbing lions in Ishasha sector on their way to Bwindi impenetrable national park.
  • From Fortpotal, it’s approximately 4 hours to get to Ishasha sector. 
  • From Lake Mburo National park, it is approximately 4 hours’ drive to Ishasha sector.

However, whichever way you choose to get to Ishasha sector, ensure that you use a 4×4 safari vehicle to avoid getting stuck.


Tree climbing lions should be one of the major reasons to Queen Elizabeth national park as your next travel destination in Uganda the pearl of Africa. But worry not, you are as well able to find these tree climbing lions in Lake Manyara national park within Tanzania. Let us plan your next safari to any destinations with in Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Democratic Republic of Congo.