13 Days Gorilla Safari in Uganda

Overview

The 13 Days Gorilla Safari in Uganda starts and ends on Entebbe Uganda. The safari features impressive Uganda safari micro destinations talking you to Lake Mburo National Park with its Impala antelope, the topis, Burchell’s Zebras, Rothschild giraffes among others before continuing to explore the mountain gorilla habitat of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, the Queen Elizabeth National Park with its impressive tree climbing lions along worth elephants, buffaloes, leopards, Nile crocodiles and Hippos, Kibale National Park dubbed he primate capital of the world with good counts of habituated chimpanzees, Murchison Falls National Park with impressive views of the falls, the Nile River, Jackson Hartebeest, the shoebill stork and eventually the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary with its white Rhinos.

Safari Highlights

Day 1: Arrive in Uganda & transfer to the lodge

Day 2: Drive to Lake Mburo NP. Stop at Uganda Equator crossing Kayabwe en route and undertake a boat cruise in the afternoon on arrival

Day 3: Undertake a game walking safari in the morning and visit the Banyankole community in the afternoon

Day 4: Drive to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and relax at the lodge

Day 5: Undertake Gorilla trekking & visit the Batwa community in the afternoon

Day 6: Drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park & drive through its southern sector of Ishasha in search of tree climbing lions

Day 7: Undertake a game drive in the morning and Kazinga channel boat cruise in the afternoon

Day 8: Undertake chimpanzee trekking in Kyambura gorge in the morning and afternoon Maramagambo forest walk

Day 9: Drive Hoima & explore the Royal tombs of the Bunyoro Kingdom

Day 10: Drive to Murchison Falls National Park & explore the top of the falls

Day 11: Undertake a game drive in the morning and Nile launch cruise in the afternoon

Day 12: Drive to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary & track white Rhinos

Day 13: Drive to Entebbe International Airport for departure

Detailed Safari Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Uganda & transfer to the lodge

Depart from your country of origin and board a flight to Uganda landing at Entebbe International Airport which is apparently the main gateway to the country. You will find a company representative who will offer you a courteous welcome and transfer you to the lodge for relaxation, dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Sheraton Kampala Hotel (Upmarket / Luxury), Cassia Lodge (Midrange / Standard) or Buziga Country Resort (Budget / Basic).

Day 2: Drive to Lake Mburo NP. Stop at Uganda Equator crossing Kayabwe en route and undertake a boat cruise in the afternoon on arrival

lake-mburo

Depart from Kampala after breakfast at your place of stay transferring to the south west of Uganda 240km about 3 – 4 hours’ drive excluding stops en route. You drive 77km and make a stop at the Uganda Equator crossing to encounter the world’s main latitude that divides it into the northern and southern hemispheres. It is a unique site for photography. If you wish, you can also perform water experiments justifying the geographical divide between these two spheres. Continue on the drive to Lake Mburo National Park arriving in time for lunch after which you will slope to the lake jetty to embark on a thrilling boat cruise exploring the lake landscapes dotted with counts of Hippos and Nile crocodiles. Birds like African fish eagle can also be encountered on the trees close to the shore. Retire for overnight.

Accommodation: Mihingo Safari Lodge (Upmarket / Luxury), Arcadia Cottages Mburo (Midrange / Standard) or Eagles Nest (Budget / Basic).

Day 3: Undertake a game walking safari in the morning and visit the Banyankole community in the afternoon

Embark on the game walking activity after the sun rise exploring the savannah landscapes of the park that are greatly covered by acacia vegetation adjoining the grassland open plains and rock kopjes marking most of the hill tops. The walk offers you impressive wild game viewing including the Impala, Burchell’s Zebra, Eland, Buffaloes, Topis, Warthogs, bushbucks, waterbucks, Rothschild giraffes among others. The activity tends to last 3 – 4 hours after which you will return to the lodge for relaxation and lunch. In the afternoon, you will pay a visit to the surrounding Banyankole community and in particular the Enyemebwa center where a selection of beautiful Ankole long horned cattle are known to exist. You encounter the herdsmen herding them in the traditional rangelands of the Bahima pastoralists with his flute and amazing sounds that they have played for these cows for centuries past. You have a chance to participate in this experience. You proceed to visit their traditional homestead with its impressive architectural hut. They also have impressive art and craft not forgetting their traditional performances. Retreat in the evening for relaxation, dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Mihingo Safari Lodge (Upmarket / Luxury), Arcadia Cottages Mburo (Midrange / Standard) or Eagles Nest (Budget / Basic).

Day 4: Drive to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and relax at the lodge  

Embark on the drive to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park further in the south west after breakfast. You drive past Igongo Cultural Center and Mbarara town and other countryside landscapes of southwestern Uganda. The hills of Ntungamo and the fascinating Kigezi highlands present remarkable views en route. Arrive in Bwindi in the evening for dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Chameleon Hill Lodge (Upmarket / Luxury), Gorilla Mist Camp (Midrange / Standard) or Broadbill Forest Camp (Budget / Luxury).

Day 5: Undertake Gorilla trekking & visit the Batwa community in the afternoon  

Gather at the respective park headquarters for briefing at 8am after which you will head to the mist in search of the critically endangered mountain gorillas.  The hills of Bwindi and its deep saddles are soaked by dense forest cover with mature trees and thick undergrowth that have earned it the Impenetrable name.  Hiking through these landscapes is very impressive too and a rewarding experience of its own. The activity tends to last between 2 – 8 hours inclusive of one hour direct encounter with these ancient apes. You marvel at them as they forage and socialize. Your pictures are the memorabilia that you can always look at to refresh the memories of this unforgettable experience. Retreat from the activity and transfer to the lodge for relaxation. In the evening, you tour of the Batwa community. These are known to be among the last groups of the short surviving people in the world and they have impressive traditions and performances. Retire from the activity and relax the lodge for diner ad overnight.

Accommodation: Chameleon Hill Lodge (Upmarket / Luxury), Gorilla Mist Camp (Midrange / Standard) or Broadbill Forest Camp (Budget / Basic).

Day 6: Drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park & drive through its southern sector of Ishasha in search of tree climbing lions  

Embark on the drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park in the north of Bwindi. You will drive through impressive rural landscapes of Kihihi and Kanungu before arriving in the southern sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park named Ishasha. You undertake a game drive in Ishasha sector in search of tree climbing lions that tend to lie on fig tree branches overlooking their prey in the plains. Continue on the drive to the upper part of the park for relaxation, dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Mweya Safari Lodge (Upmarket / Luxury), Enganzi Game Lodge (Midrange / Standard) or Pumba Safari Cottages (Budget / Basic).

Day 7: Undertake a game drive in the morning and Kazinga channel boat cruise in the afternoon

Drive to the rolling plains of Queen Elizabeth National Park with its extensive savannah grassland for amazing game viewing experience after breakfast. The drive through the Kasenyi tracks enables you to explore a range of game including the elephants, lions, buffaloes, leopards, water bucks, side stripped jackals among other species. The activity tends to last 3 – hours after which you will return to the lodge for relaxation and lunch. In the afternoon, you gather at Mweya jetty for an afternoon boat cruise starting at 2pm for Marasa and 3pm for UWA with the interval of 2hours to make a round trip for another turn. The encounter offers you opportunity of encountering the Nile crocodiles, the Hippos and water birds along the channel. The wild game also tends to come to the channel shores to quench their thirst. Retreat from that and do a game drive along the channel track as you connect to the lodge for overnight.

Accommodation: Mweya Safari Lodge (Upmarket / Luxury), Enganzi Game Lodge (Midrange / Standard) or Pumba Safari Cottages (Budget / Basic).

Day 8: Undertake chimpanzee trekking in Kyambura gorge in the morning and afternoon Maramagambo forest walk  

Following an early morning breakfast, connect to Kyambura gorge for a thrilling chimpanzee trekking experience. The chimp trek in the valley of Apes as it is popularly referred lasts about 2 – 5 hours inclusive of one hour direct encounter with these apes. You hike the impressive gorge slopes with lush forest cover that surprisingly thriving below the sea level. In fact, Kyambura gorge is 100m deep. Coming across the chimpanzees as they forage, munch fruit, make pant hooting calls and socialize is very rewarding. Retreat from the activity and embark on the transfer to the lodge for relaxation and lunch. In the afternoon, you connect to Maramagambo forest for an impressive forest hiking. You walk under the lush canopy of Maramagambo with counts of birds and amazing trees before approaching the amazing bat cave.  After breakfast, embark on the transfer to Kyambura gorge for a thrilling chimpanzee trekking encounter. The 2 – 5 hour activity takes you through the steep forested gorge slopes which have lush mature tropical forest here thousands of bats thrice alongside python. You explore this from a well set viewing platform. Retreat from the activity and embark on the transfer to the lodge for relaxation and overnight.

Accommodation: Mweya Safari Lodge (Upmarket / Luxury), Enganzi Game Lodge (Midrange / Standard) or Pumba Safari Cottages (Budget / Basic)

Day 9: Drive Hoima & explore the Royal tombs of the Bunyoro Kingdom

Transfer to Hoima after breakfast passing through impressive sceneries of Rwenzori Mountains, Fort Portal town, the rural landscapes of Kyenjojo and Kagadi before arriving in Hoima in early afternoon. You settle for lunch and short relaxation after you drive to Bunyoro Kingdom palace to visit the Royal tombs of the Kings of Bunyoro including the famous King Kabalega who is worldly known for haven resisted the British rule. You also encounter the general heritage of the Banyoro people. Retreat from the activity for dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Kontiki Hotel

Day 10: Drive to Murchison Falls National Park & explore the top of the falls  

Embark on the transfer from Hoima to Murchison Falls National Park. You drive along the Albertine rift escarpment with impressive views of the area and Lake Albert. You enter the ark through the Bugungu gate and continue to visit the top of the falls. You marvel at the mystical Nile forcing its way through a less than 8m ravine before falling 43m below to what has been termed as the Devils Cauldron forming a plume of spray marked by thunderous roar and a trade mark rain bow. You retreat from this encounter and connect to the lodge for relaxation, dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Paraa Safari Lodge (Upmarket / Luxury), Pakuba Safari Lodge (Midrange / Standard) or Heritage Safari Lodge (Budget / Basic).

Day 11: Undertake a game drive in the morning and Nile launch cruise in the afternoon

Drive to the park’s northern section for a morning game drive offering impressive wild game viewing encounter.  The 3 – 4 activity takes you through the designated park tracks including Buligi, Queen, Albert and the entire delta area with possibilities of encountering the lions, elephants, Rothschild giraffes, Leopards, Jackson’s Hartebeest, waterbucks, Oribis, Kobs among others.  The open savannah grassland intercepted with scattered borasus palms also present a unique landscape worth viewing. Retreat from the activity and return to the lodge for relaxation and lunch after which you gather at Paraa jetty for afternoon boat cruise to the bottom of the falls. The 3 hour boat encounter opens you to the thrilling Nile waters in their relaxed flow as they join the Albert delta. The views of Hippos, Nile crocodile and shoebill stork might impress you along the adventure. Retreat from the activity and retreat to the lodge for relaxation, dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Paraa Safari Lodge (Upmarket / Luxury), Pakuba Safari Lodge (Midrange / Standard) or Heritage Safari Lodge (Budget / Basic).

Day 12: Drive to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary & track white Rhinos

Transfer to Ziwa Rhino sanctuary in the south of Murchison Falls National Park after breakfast passing through Masindi town. You branch off from main road to Kampala at Nakitooma for 7km to Ziwa Sanctuary headquarters where upon arrival you will embark on a thrilling white rhino tracking encounter. The natural savannah thicket with enough grass to support these counts of Rhinos makes the trek rewarding. Retreat from the activity and relax the lodge and eventually dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Amuka Lodge

Day 13: Drive to Entebbe International Airport for departure

Embark on the drive to Kampala after breakfast and eventually Entebbe International Airport for your flight departure back home. The drive through the flat landscapes of Nakasongora is rewarding too.

End of safari

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