6 DAYS BIRDING IN THE ALBERTINE RIFT
The Albertine Rift is an area of lakes, mountains and forests, which stretches from northern Uganda along its borders with Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Several species endemic to this area are found in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Semliki National Park, Rwenzori Mountains and Mgahinga. These include Green Broadbill, Grauer’s Swamp and Neumann’s Warblers, Shelley’s and Dusky Crimsonwings, Yellow-eyed Black Flycatcher, Strange Weaver, Rwenzori Double-collared, Regal, Purple-breasted and Blue-throated Sunbirds, Rwenzori Turaco, Handsome Francolin, Stripe-breasted Tit and several others. In the papyrus swamps around Lake Victoria and other lakes, the enigmatic Shoebill can be found, as well as specialities including Papyrus Yellow and White-winged Warblers, Carruther’s Cisticola, Papyrus Gonolek, Swamp Flycatcher and Orange Weaver.
- Birding in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
- Birding in Semliki National park
- Birding in Rwenzori Mountains
- Birding in Mgahinga Gorilla National park
Day 1: Arrival
Upon the arrival at Entebbe Airport, our company guide will pick you and drive you to Kampala and you can encounter a good range of bird species on your journey within a few hours in Entebbe Botanical Gardens and Kampala. The driver will take you up to your hotel in Kampala. Dinner and overnight at Avesta hotel/Rochester hotel/Speke hotel.
Day 2: Transfer to Semliki National park
Take your early morning breakfast and set off to Semliki national park in Bundibugyo which is about 379km and takes around 4 to 5 hours via Mbarara-Masaka road with stopover at the Uganda Equator for photo shooting, you will encounter the spectacular forests, lakes, mountains and wetlands/swamps. On reaching the park, have your lunch and after lunch, go for bird watching into the park.
Semliki has over 441 recorded species and the list is expanded by the riverine habitat and a fringe of grassland in the east of the park. Five species are endemic to the Albertine Rift ecosystem. Species to look out for here include the Nkulengu Rail, Yellow-throated Cuckoo, Piping Hornbill, Red-billed Dwarf Hornbill, Black Dwarf Hornbill, White-crested Hornbill, Black-casqued Wattled Horbill, Red-rumped Tinkerbird, African Piculet, White-throated Blue Swallow, Yellow-throated Nicator, Leaf-love, Swamp Palm Bulbul, Lemon-bellied Crombec, Maxwell’s Black Weaver, Crested Malimbe, Red-bellied Malimbe, Blue-billed malimbe, Chestnut-breasted Negrofinch, Orange-cheeked Waxbill. Dinner and overnight at Sempaya Rest Camp.
Day 3: Transfer to Rwenzori Mountains
Have your morning breakfast and then transfer to Rwenzori Mountains which covers a distance of about 58km and it takes around 1hour driving, and on this journey you will be rewarded with the spectacular vegetation from the windward side of Mountain Rwenzori to its leeward side in Kasese where the Rwenzori Mountains national park is located. Birding opportunities are greatest in the montane forest; few species choose to make their home in the inhospitable world of the high Rwenzori. Relax and have your lunch and proceed with bird watching in the afternoon.
You will encounter bird species like Bee-eaters, Robins, Sunbirds and Barbets which are some of the 217 species found in Rwenzori Mountains National Park. Other species to watch include the Rwenzori Turaco and Long-eared Owl, while higher up on the slopes, Bearded Vultures, Swifts and Black Eagles may be seen circling for prey. Dinner and overnight stay Rwenzori Turaco view campsite.
Day 4: Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable forest.
Enjoy your morning breakfast and start the journey to Bwindi Impenetrable national park which covers a distance of about 162km and takes around 2 to 3hours driving from the Rwenzori Mountains. Bwindi a varied habitat which is Uganda’s oldest forest and it is the ideal home for a variety of birds, with 350 species recorded, including 23 endemics. Relax a bit and enjoy your lunch.
In the afternoon, proceed to where birding takes place along the main trail, the Buhoma Waterfall Trail and along the bamboo zone and Mubwindi Swamp trail in Ruhija. You will be reward with a number of bird species such as the Short-tailed Warbler and Blue-headed Sunbird, the African Emerald Cuckoo, Common Bulbul, African Blue and White-tailed Blue Flycatchers and Red-headed Bluebill. Dinner and overnight at Sanctuary Gorilla forest lodge.
Day 5: Transfer to Mgahinga Gorilla National park.
Take your morning breakfast and start the journey of about 51km and takes around 1:30hours via Kisoro-Bunagana road from Bwindi Impenetrable forest to Mgahinga Gorilla national park. The best birding in Mgahinga also takes in some of its most beautiful scenery in the gorge between Mount Gahinga and Mount Sabinyo, through the bamboo forest, and in the montane forest, where the beautiful Rwenzori Turaco may be observed. Have your lunch and proceed for birding in the park.
In the afternoon, go for 3 to 4 hour Gorge Trail between Gahinga and Sabinyo which provides a spectacular sightings of the Dusky turtle Dove, Cape Robin-chat, Kivu-ground Thrush, Olive Thrush, Brown-crowned Tchagra, Bronze Sunbird, Regal Sunbird, Blue-headed Sunbird, Rwenzori Batis, Black-headed Waxbill and Streaky Seedeater, and the other good birding areas are at the bamboo belt and the tall montane forest. The Rwenzori Turaco is mostly sighted at around 2,700m. Along the Uganda-Congo border and on level ground, the Chubb’s Cisticola, Red-faced Woodland Warbler, Banded Prinia and Doherty’s Bush-shrike are vocal yet inconspicuous inhabitants of the tangled vegetation at the forest’s edge. Dinner and overnight at Mount Gahinga lodge.
Day 6: Depart to Kampala.
After your early morning breakfast, begin your journey back to Kampala which is approximately 484km and takes around 8 to 9hours driving from the park, with a stopover in Mbarara for lunch at Shaheen restaurant/Food Mart/Café Havana. After lunch continue with the journey to Kampala where you proceed from to Entebbe Airport for your departure flight.
END OF SAFARI
|NO. OF PAX
- Park fees
- Transportation a 4×4 vehicle with fuel
- English speaking drivers/guides
- Full board accommodation
- Tour activities per the itinerary
- Meals per the itinerary
- Bottled drinking water in the safari vehicle
- Flight fares
- Insurance costs
- Personal expenses
- Laundry costs
- Extra food and drinks
- Extra activities not in the itinerary