14 DAYS UGANDA WILDLIFE SAFARI

Uganda is a multicultural country in East Africa whose diverse landscape encompasses the snowcapped Rwenzori Mountains and immense Lake Victoria – the principal source of the great River Nile. With abundant wildlife such as Chimpanzees, Gorillas, famous Big Five at the Ten Savannah Parks, and Over 1000 rare bird species. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park is a renowned mountain gorilla sanctuary, while Kidepo Valley National contends for best destination in Africa for wild game drives.

Tour highlights

  • Gorilla trekking
  • Chimpanzee tracking
  • Rhino trekking
  • Game drive
  • Bird watching
  • Boat cruise
  • Cycling/Mountain biking
  • White water rafting
  • Horseback riding
  • Nature walks and Cultural encounters

Day 1: Arrival at Entebbe Airport

Upon the arrival at Entebbe International Airport, a team of Prime Tours representatives will welcome you and transfer you to Kampala at your hotel. Dinner and overnight stay Hotel Africana/Speke hotel/Rochester hotel.

Day 2: Transfer to Lake Mburo

Enjoy your morning breakfast and then set off for the 3hour journey to Lake Mburo National Park which is approximately 230km driving from Kampala.  Have lunch in Mbarara at Agip motel/Café Havana/Shaheen restaurant. After lunch, proceed to the park which is about 30km away from Mbarara town. Check in at the lodge.

In the afternoon, go for a boat cruise, followed by the evening game drive. Return to the lodge for dinner and overnight stay Mihingo lodge/Mburo Safari lodge/Eagle Nest camp.

Day 3: Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest

After your morning breakfast, embark on the 5hours journey to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park which covers a distance of about 296km driving. You drive through savannah grasslands seeing banana plantations and herds of Ankole cattle with their incredible long curving horns. You then ascend into kigezi highlands, known as the Switzerland of Africa with terraced farming and mountain scenery. Drive to Bwindi arriving in the afternoon. Check in at the lodge and have lunch at the same lodge.

In evening, you will visit Batwa community and later retire at your lodge for Dinner and overnight at Gorilla Mist Lodge/Gorilla Heights lodge/Sanctuary Gorilla forest lodge.

Day 4:  Gorilla Trekking

After an early breakfast, you will have a briefing by a ranger guide; enter the gorilla sanctuary for your adventure. The beauty of this rain forest is spectacular. The area offers dramatic steeply forested landscape and is incredibly dense, but crisscrossed by numerous animals’ trails allowing access to tourists. Have your packed lunch in the forest. The time taken and the terrain vary with the movements of these great primates. The thrill of spending time observing these gentle and endangered giants is an awesome, exciting experience to be long savored. Dinner and overnight stay Gorilla Mist Lodge/Gorilla Heights lodge/Sanctuary Gorilla forest lodge.

Day 5: Birding and Cycling

Have your morning breakfast at around 7am, and then head along the main trails of Buhoma waterfall trail, bamboo zone and Mubwindi swamp trail in Ruhija where bird watching is best done. You get the opportunity to encounter some of the birds and the 14 bird species that are not found anywhere else in Uganda apart from in Bwindi Impenetrable national park out of the 350 estimated bird species that are in the park. You take the chance to see birds like; African green pigeon, African harrier hawk, Cinnmon chested, Crowned hornbill, Giant kingfisher among others.  Turn back at the lodge for lunch and relax a bit.

In the afternoon, start cycling which is 13km from the park’s headquarters along Buhoma to the Ivi River. This provides agreat looks of wildlife like the bushbucks, black and white colobus and red monkeys among others. Have lunch and relax in the afternoon, then continue with the mountain biking in the hills in Buhoma as you encounter the views of the Bwindi Impenetrable forest, valleys, Ivi River flowing and many more. Retire in the evening and turn back at your lodge. Dinner and overnight at; Buhoma lodge, Gorilla Heights lodge and Sanctuary Gorilla forest lodge.

Day 6: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park

After an early morning breakfast, drive a distance of about 272km to Queen Elizabeth National Park which takes around 5hours passing through the southern Ishasha sector famous for Tree climbing lions in the Park.  After a short game drive, you will check in at the lodge, have lunch at the lodge and relax.

Go for an evening game drive in Kasenyi plains. Queen Elizabeth National Park’s diverse eco-system of grassy plains, tropical forest, rivers, swamps, Lakes and volcanic craters is home to an incredible abundance of wildlife. Game drive in this park provides excellent opportunities to see lion, leopards and giant forest hog, Cape buffalo, elephants. Defassa waterbuck, Uganda Kob, Topi and bush buck. Dinner and overnight at Mweya Safari lodge/Tembo Safari lodge/Simba Safari lodge.

Day 7: Crater lakes and Boat Cruise

After early morning breakfast, proceed to visit the crater lakes of Queen Elizabeth National Park. You will be stunned by the astonishing view of these small yet spectacular lakes. Head back to the lodge for lunch.

In the afternoon boat-cruise offers an excellent platform for photography and game viewing. The birdlife is colorful and abundant. Enjoy a sundowner while admiring the view. Dinner and overnight stay Mweya Safari lodge/Tembo Safari lodge/Simba Safari lodge.

Day 8: Transfer to Kibale National park

After breakfast continue to Kibale National Park, check in at the lodge and have lunch at the lodge. In the afternoon, go for nature walk at Bigodi swamp, expect to see attractive bird species like dusky crimson wing, black-capped apalis, blue-headed sunbird, collare apalis, among others and butterflies. Dinner and overnight at Primate Lodge/Bigodi Community lodge/Kibale safari lodge

Day 9: Chimpanzee Tracking

Take your morning breakfast at 8:00am. The forest opens its doors for a sensational chimp tracking in Kibale forest is reputable of having the greatest variety and highest concentration of primates in East Africa. Have your packed lunch in the forest and enjoy a guided nature walk in the tropical rainforest in search of the wild chimpanzee, red-tailed monkey, black and white colobus monkey and many others. In the afternoon return at the lodge for lunch and rest. Dinner and overnight stay Primate Lodge/Bigodi Community lodge/Kibale safari lodge.

Day 10: Cultural encounters and Nature walks

After your morning breaskfast, you will be escorted by the local guide into the village.The daily life of the Batooro can be discovered during the village walks. The tour stops by the village’s primary school, church, and traditional healer. You will learn about the role of women in the village and traditional ceremonies, and the history of Bigodi is told through the story of the “Village of Two Tribes”, describing when the indigenous Batooro were joined by migrating Bakiga from southwestern Uganda. Go back at the lodge for lunch and relax.

In the afternoon, a local guide will take you along the boardwalk through the Magombe swamp wetlands. You are likely to see wildlife at close-hand, including several of the 200 species of birds, eight varieties of primates and numerous butterflies, along with unusual swamp vegetation. Dinner and overnight stay Primate Lodge/Bigodi Community lodge/Kibale safari lodge.

Day 11: Transfer to Jinja

After your morning breakfast at 6:00am, say goodbye to the home of the people’s closest relatives-relatives-the chimpanzee and take a long ride of about 375km over hills, down valleys, through villages and trading centers to Jinja which takes about 7hours driving. After checking at the lodge, you will have lunch, refresh at the lodge.

In the afternoon, head to Bujagali falls for white water rafting for about 2hours and after proceed for a 1hour horseback ride along the banks of River Nile. Return to the lodge for Dinner and overnight at Jinja Nile Resort Surjios/Guest House/Brisk Hotel Triangle.

Day 12: Transfer to Murchison falls

After an early morning breakfast at 7:00am, check out of the lodge and then drive about 234km to Budongo forest which takes around 5hours from Jinja. Upon reaching Masindi town, have lunch at Traveller’s conner restaurant/Jazz restaurant/Kabalega restaurant. Proceed to the forest to track habituated chimpanzees. Once you have found the chimpanzee family, you will spend about an hour observing them sharing the moments with them. After then drive a distance of about 17.5km to Murchison falls National Park for an evening game drive. Dinner and overnight at Heritage Safari lodge/Paraa Safari Lodge/Fort Murchison lodge.

Day 13: Murchison Falls National Park

Enjoy your early morning breakfast, go for a morning game drive, and expect to see Elephant, lion, Buffalo, Giraffe, hartebeests and many more.  After the game drive, turn back at the lodge for lunch and relax a bit.

In the early evening, enjoy a boat trip on the placid Victoria Nile, upstream to the base of the falls. En route you will see hippos, crocodiles, waterbuck and a wide variety of birds like the unusual shoebill stork. The boat stops just tens of meters from the “The Devils Cauldron”. Take pictures of the photogenic and majestic Murchison Falls. Dinner and overnight at Heritage Safari lodge/Paraa Safari Lodge/Fort Murchison lodge.

Day 14: Transfer back to Kampala via Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary

Take your early morning breakfast. Check out of the hotel and then embark on the journey to Kampala. Make a stopover at Ziwa Rhino sanctuary for Rhino Tracking thereafter, have lunch in Nakasongola at WamRelax restaurant/Tesus restaurant. After lunch, you will be transferred to Kampala or at Entebbe International Airport for your flight back home.

 

END OF SAFARI

 

NO. OF PAX 1 2 3 4 5 6
PRICE ($) 8,240 8,180 8,110 8,030 7,940 7,840

 

COST INCLUSIONS

  • A 4×4 Safari vehicle
  • Park entrance fees
  • Full board accommodation
  • Professional English speaking guide
  • Gorilla permit
  • Chimpanzee permit
  • Tour activities as per the itinerary
  • Meals as per the itinerary
  • Bottled drinking water
  • Government levies & taxes

COST EXCLUSIONS

  • Visa costs
  • Insurance costs
  • Personal expenses
  • Laundry costs
  • Extra food and drinks
  • Telephone costs
  • Tips

Commonly Visited Gorilla Destinations

Bwindi Impenetrable national park a large primeval forest located in the South Western part of Uganda is a home to over half the worlds 1,000 mountain gorillas.

mountain-gorilla-in-bwindi-impenetrable-national-park

Bwindi Impenetrable national park

BWINDI IMPENETRABLE NATIONAL PARK

Bwindi Impenetrable National park is found in southwestern Uganda in Kanungu district. It covers an area of 332kms. When we talk of gorillas in Uganda, we talk of Bwindi and this is Africa’s oldest rainforest, it hides much more than just gorillas but more other wild animals but when gorilla tracking became an activity it made it even more appealing. Bwindi is commonly known for its 400 endangered gorillas with many families, Batwa trails, the Batwa are the first and last forest people who anciently lived in the forest for a long time also known as hunters, gatherers and fierce warriors and 350 bird species. Buhoma as one of the gates apart from gorillas it’s the right place for bird watching.

ACTIVITIES
Bwindi impenetrable National Park is found in southwestern Uganda in Kanungu district, when we talk of gorillas we talk of Bwindi, but it not being the only activity, Bwindi has a variety of activities all incredibly good and as Gorilla Trips Africa here are some of the activities

Gorilla Tracking
Gorillas in Bwindi are habituated making them less dangerous and this is one of great activity done, the tour guides guide tourists through the forest on their way to track gorillas, gorillas act more like humans which keeps you wondering about God’s will, you can interact with them offer them yellows and even can have pictures with them creating memorable moments. Bwindi has a number of gates for example Buhoma gate with three gorilla  groups habituated, Nkuringo gate with two groups , Ruhija with four groups of gorillas habituated, and Rushaga with the most habituated groups and others are still under habituation with six groups

Gorilla Habituation Experience
During habituation Gorillas are tamed to be more of human, not to be dangerous around people, tour guides will take you through the process they go through while habituating the gorillas, it’s a terrifying experience but worth to go through and this is so because the gorillas are not yet fully habituated, this is most popular at Rushaga gate it being with the large gorilla habituation

Batwa Trail
Experience the ancient life of Batwa people. The Batwa trail is a celebration of the forest first people and still they are the last forest people who are also known as hunters, gatherers and fierce warriors. When you get a chance to see them you can see the forest in their lives and all through their eyes, this trail is guided by the Batwa guides who provide insights into their traditional forest life and culture. It runs  from the lower slopes of the muhavura and Gahinga volcanoes and ends in the Batwa community, throughout the trail you will be surprised all through for example showing you how incredibly  they made fire using friction of sticks, having a taste of the wild berries which they used to eat before going to hunter, seeing the huts the built using the tree leaves lastly after reaching the Batwa community you will get the unforgettable performance of your life since the Batwa are well known for their music and dance.

Nature Walks
Tourists who have a short time for nature walk usually do it near river Munyanga and river Ivy on the way you get an opportunity to see baboons, monkeys and birds. And if you continue to the Batwa pygmy community you will be surprised by the energetic dance of the Batwa, you will meet woman making craft giving you and opportunity to buy craft from the Batwa. Nature walk to the Mubwindi swamp is the right spot for the birders and if you use the path of the forest descending through the majestic rainforest it will give you great scenery of the green nature. Amazingly the name Bwindi came from Mubwindi swamp.

Bird watching
Bwindi is one of the best birding destinations in Uganda the pearl of Africa, it being the oldest forest in Uganda surely means it’s the ideal habitat for the variety of bird species, Bwindi is estimated to have around 350 bird species for example Jameson’s Antpecker, pink-footed puff back, Waller, crested Guinea fowl, Barred long-tailed cuckoo, Grey crowned crane, White headed saw wing and so many more. Migratory birds are present from November to April and if you want the main spot for bird watching is along Buhoma waterfalls trails.

gorilla-in-mgahinga-gorilla-national-park

Mgahinga Gorilla national park

MGAHINGA GORILLA NATIONAL PARK

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is in the southwestern corner of Uganda, located in Kisoro district although the volcanoes stretch to the far parts of Rwanda and DRC. Mgahinga National Park was gazzetted in 1991 despite it being declared an area of game sanctuary in the early 1930s by the British Administration and it covers 33.9 square kilometers. As the name “Mgahinga” suggests, the park was mainly established to protect gorillas that inhabit the depth of the forest, other than that the park has a significance to culture “the Batwa culture”. Most importantly Mgahinga National Park has great features which are the beautiful extinct volcanoes, a great fauna, primates which include mountain gorillas and golden monkeys, bird species include handsome francoin, red throated alethe, Rwenzori batis, collared apalis, mountain masked apails, stripe-breasted tit, blue- headed sunbird, strange weaver, red –faced woodland warber, regal sunbird, Rwenzori turaco among others.

Top Activities Done At Mgahinga National Park

Gorilla Trekking

Mgahinga National Park is the right place for gorilla trekking and that’s so because it has half of the world’s Gorillas thus making it the most popular activity done at Mgahinga, it has one habituated gorilla family called “Nyakagezi Gorilla family” and this family at times moves to the parts of Rwanda and DRC. Gorilla trekking at Mgahinga usually starts from 8:30 in the morning and it takes 3-8 hours, trackers take visitor through the routes to the place they had left Gorillas a day before and that’s where they begin the trekking from, Gorillas are habituated making them less dangerous to humans. All in all Gorillas trekking is best done in dry seasons because it makes the hikes easier for tourists.

Golden Monkey Trekking

Mgahinga National Park is the best place for Golden Monkey trekking and it’s among the most interesting activities done for primate safari, the estimated number of golden monkeys at Mgahinga is 3000-4000. If you participate in this activity you will have an excitement of your life time since it offers you an opportunity to view, take pictures of the monkeys before heading back to the lodges.

Volcano Hiking

At Mgahinga Gorilla National Park despite Gorilla trekking visitors have an opportunity for hikes to the summit of Mountain Muhabura which requires more than one day to hike it but still tourists who prefer a one day hike can opt Gahinga trail aa their best and this takes 6 hours. During this hikes you will come across various bird species, also have a view of the famous extinct volcanoes.

Batwa Trail

Batwa are also known as the forest people. While at Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, the Batwa trail begins from the Muhavura cave with the Batwa guides who will give you an insight of their ancient life and culture in the forests where they lived in harmony with the gorillas. Batwa people lived as hunter-gatherers, built houses using tree leaves but later they were displaced from the park although some are still with in the park taking part in tourism as tour guides and others as porters.

Bird Watching

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is the ideal place for birders because its blessed and enriched with over 180 bird species all unique in one way or the other and these birds can be spotted in the wetland areas , forests, Buffalo wall among others. These unique bird species include Rwenzori turaco, regal sunbird, strange weaver, mountain masked apails, stripe-breasted tit, handsome francoin, red throated alethe, collared apalis among others.

Garama Cave Exploration

Beneath a plateau northern edge of Mgahinga Gorilla National Park you will come across the great Garama Cave lying on the length of 342meters and this believed to have been used as a retreat and council for the Batwa where they met to solve conflicts and problems among Batwa members.

gorilla-in-volcanoes-national-park

Volcanoes national park

Volcanoes National Park

Volcanoes National Park also referred to as Parc National des Volcano in French and Pariki y’Igihugu y’Ibirunga in Kinyarwanda local language. The park is situated in the north-western province of Rwanda in a small town called Musanze formerly Ruhengeri.

The park is the oldest national park in the African continent and harbors the endangered Mountain Gorillas of Rwanda. Gorilla tracking is Rwanda’s main tourism activity. Volcanoes National Park borders Virunga National Park in DRC and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in south-western Uganda. Besides its huge population of Mountain Gorillas, it also harbors the endangered Golden Monkeys, primate specie that apparently offers the best diverse tourism activity within the national park at the moment.

Volcanoes National Park also shelters five of the eight volcanoes of the Virunga massifs which are: Mount Karisimbi, Bisoke, Muhabura, Gahinga and Sabyinyo: covering over 160 km2 of rain forest and bamboo. The park acted as a base for American zoologist Dian Fossey.

Fauna of the forest in addition to endangered species of mountain gorilla includes: golden monkeys, buffaloes, black-fronted duiker, hyenas then bushbucks. A few reports also clam that a small number of elephants can be found at the park but on very rare occasions. The bird life spans at 178 species, with about 12 of the main species and 15 of the subspecies being endemic to the Virunga conservation area and the great Ruwenzori Mountains.

The Volcanoes National Park is one of the three other only habitats for Mountain gorillas on the planet and the only possible destinations for Mountain gorilla trekking expeditions in Rwanda. The rainforests are at a higher altitude and temperatures are generally lowest in the African region. The tropical sun brings with it effects of heat, evaporation of vapor and rain forming. In Volcanoes National Park, it rains at any time regardless of the season. Factor is the volcanic soils that are fertile and very rich in plant mineral content, resulting in an evergreen rain forest; some parts have bamboo trees, small patches of shrubs and grassland areas, swamp and wetland vegetation in the valleys, and heath on the tips of the volcanoes. These are the ideal conditions for the survival and the existence of the Mountain gorillas and other unique wildlife species.

Mammal species

Volcanoes National Park is a rich ecosystem, a habitat with vibrant and unique mammal species. Mountain gorillas and Golden monkeys are most recognized than other wildlife species because the Virunga volcanoes region is their only habitat on earth. There is high mammal presence in the park, though harder to spot because of hilly and rugged terrain, coupled with  a thick and enclosed rainforest. The mammals in such habitat adapt to a solitary or pair lifestyle, shy away from intruders and are very aggressive if cornered. Save for rare physical encounters, there are signs that indeed show Forest elephants, buffaloes, bushpigs, bushbucks, giant forest hogs, spotted hyenas, bushbucks, duikers, vervet and colobus monkeys and other primate species reside in the park. Volcanoes National Park is very popular as a Rwanda gorilla trek and Golden monkey tracking destination. There are other Rwanda travel destinations to easily spot and have maximum interaction with the rest of mammal species.

Predominant activities include:

Gorilla tracking, Golden Monkey tracking, twin lakes visit, mountaineering, visiting Dian Fossey’s tomb, Iby’Iwacu cultural village and other community visits.

Rwanda is an exciting destination with a number of national parks in addition to the famous Volcanoes national park; say the Akagera and Nyungwe national parks plus Lake Kivu for water excursion.