8 Days Uganda Gorilla Trekking & Wildlife Tour
The safari includes a visit to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. This Park is home to half of the remaining population of mountain gorillas. Much as gorilla trekking is the most popular activity, visitors also get a chance to see other smaller primates and forest creatures. The safari also includes a visit to Murchison falls and Queen Elizabeth National Parks. The Murchison Falls National Park is the largest wildlife conservation in Uganda, with the world’s most powerful waterfall. Expect diverse safari activities and rich wildlife while visiting, you also have an opportunity to visit the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, where the endangered White rhinoceros are conserved. Queen Elizabeth is the most visited national park in Uganda, and is home to tree climbing lions, crater lakes and other amazing landscape.
Day 1: Pickup from Kampala or Entebbe – transfer to Bwindi impenetrable National Park
After an early breakfast, the driver will pick you up from the hotel and start the 9 hours journey to the south western part of the country to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Once you reach the park, you will drive to the hotel for check-in. Dinner and overnight stay at Ichumbi |Gorilla lodge (midrange), Bwindi Nkuringo Gorilla Lodge (Luxury) and Gorilla closeup lodge (Budget)
Day 2: Gorilla Tracking – Batwa cultural experience
Wake up early for breakfast, briefing for gorilla trekking begins at 7:00am and it’s carried out by the park Rangers and Warden, who share information about the forest, the gorilla families in the particular sectors, what to expect and how to conduct yourself while with the gorillas. Gorilla groups in Bwindi will be allocated based on your overall fitness and age. After the briefing, visitors set off in different directions to look for the primates.
Gorilla tracking will expose you to the thick tropical forest with opportunities to see smaller primates, birds, butterflies, rare plants, waterfalls, streams, rivers, valleys and large mammals. Trekking can take about 30 minutes to 5 hours depending on which gorilla group you are assigned and their location on the day of your trek. Each gorilla family offers a different experience. Some gorilla families may have more babies or silverbacks hence offering a more interesting experience. Watch as the family members feed, groom, rest and play. After this experience, you will be led back to the starting point where you’ll receive your certificate of participation. The company Guide/Driver will take you back to the hotel for lunch.
You’ll set off to visit the local Batwa community after lunch. These were the original inhabitants of Bwindi Forest, You will be amazed by their culture, traditional dances, songs and their history. After this exciting experience, the driver will transfer you back to the hotel for dinner and overnight at Ichumbi |Gorilla lodge (midrange)Bwindi Nkuringo Lodge (Luxury) and Gorilla closeup lodge (Budget).
Day 3: Transfer to the Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth-game drive 1
After breakfast, you will checkout out of the hotel and start the journey to the Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park, which is about 2 hours, and check in at the luxury Mweya safari lodge, Park View Safari Lodge (Midrange) or Eganzi Lodge for budget rooms.
The Isasha sector of the park is not as popular as the Kasenyi plains or Mweya Peninsula but it is characterized by the tree climbing lions which are only found in Uganda, Tanzania and South Africa. The lions spend most of their afternoons on top of fig and acacia trees. About 4 prides of tree climbing lions can be found in the area. The lions are said to love trees because they protect them from bugs living on lower ground. From the top of their trees, they can have an aerial view of their prey and plan where to go during the night. Visitors can also see about 1000 elephants, Uganda Kobs, Topis, other antelopes and warthogs. After spotting the lions and other park creatures, you will go back to your hotel for lunch and refreshments. The driver will then take you to the Kazinga Channel for the afternoon launch cruise.
The Channel is a magnet for all wildlife in the park. It boasts of a great variety of bird species like (flamingos, malachite kingfishers, papyrus Gonolek, pink backed pelicans, red chest, shoebill stork, water thick-knee, yellow crown and yellow-billed stork) more than any other destination in Africa. Expect to spot crocodiles, elephants, buffaloes and hippos bathing or swimming in the waters. The launch cruise takes 2 to 3 hours. After the boat cruise, you will then be transferred back to the hotel for refreshments and later have dinner and overnight stay at mweya safari lodge(luxury), Park View Safari Lodge (Midrange) or Eganzi Lodge for budget rooms.
Day 4: Morning game drive at the Kasenyi Sector – Transfer to Kibale National Park – Visit the Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary.
You will wake up early and have breakfast at your hotel and head for the second game drive at the Kasenyi sector. This game drive is even more rewarding than the first because of the high concentration of wildlife and striking scenery. Expect to spot crater lakes, lions, elephants, hyenas, warthogs, Uganda Kobs, Defassa Waterbuck, Topis, Cape buffaloes, black and white Colobus. The game drive goes all the way up to the shores of lake Edward where you can spot birds like the black bee-eater, broad billed roller and Cassin’s grey flycatcher.
The game drive takes 3 hours after which you will be transferred to Kibale National Park with en-route lunch. On arrival at Kibale forest, you will be taken to your hotel for check-in before heading for a tour of the Bigodi wetland sanctuary. This sanctuary is home to 12 species of primates and is one of the most visited birding sanctuaries in Uganda. Expect to spot over 300 recorded species as well as butterflies.
Dinner and overnight will be at crater safari lodge for luxury travelers, Chimpanzee Forest Guest House for budget and mid-range facilities.
Day 5: Chimpanzee Habituation Experience
Wake up early and take your breakfast, The Guide will pick you up from your hotel. It is important to come with packed lunch as you will have a very long day out in the forest. Chimpanzee habituation starts earlier than normal chimpanzee trekking with a briefing at the Kanyanchu visitor information center. The plan is to follow a chimpanzee group from the time they wake up until they make their nests later in the evening. During the activity, you will have opportunities to spot many of the smaller primates like Red Colobus, Red-tailed monkeys and Grey cheeked Mangabeys among 10 other species.
Before heading out to the forest, the experienced Park Ranger will brief you on what to expect while ensuring that the whole activity is very informative and more of a learning experience. If you are interested in birds and butterflies, you will enjoy hiking in the forest. Of all the birds, look out for the beautiful Great Blue Turaco, olive long tailed cuckoos, superb black bee eaters and the joyful greenbul. Kibale has a population of about 1500 individual chimps. 4 are habituated are being habituated. Kibale National Park is the best place to spot chimpanzees in the world because the chances of seeing them is very high. Unlike chimpanzee trekking which allows only one hour with the chimps, the habituation experience allows you over 4 hours with the primates excluding the time taken tracking them and heading back to the starting point. Dinner and overnight will be at crater safari lodge for luxury travelers, Chimpanzee Forest Guest House for budget and mid-range facilities.
Day 7: Transfer to Murchison falls – Visit the top of the falls
Wake up at leisure and take breakfast. The Driver will pick you up, start the long journey to the Murchison falls National Park via Fort Portal, Hoima and Masindi. Enjoy the beautiful landscape, and the countryside with several small towns and trading centers. Lunch will be taken along the way. Once you reach the park, the driver will take you straight to visit the top of the falls. Here you will be able to witness the river Nile force its way through a 7-meter gorge, before falling 45 meters before continuing with a mighty roar. The area around the falls has incredible natural beauty and is excellent for photography.
Dinner and overnight at the Luxury Paraa Safari Lodge, Pakuba Safari Lodge (midrange) or the budget Red Chili Rest Camp
Day 8: Morning Game drive – Afternoon Launch cruise on the river Nile-transfer back to kampala
This is the final day of the tour, be ready to wake up very early in the morning and have breakfast, you will need to check out of the hotel as well. This game drive starts at 6:30am so the driver will be ready by this time. This is designed to allow visitors to spot the early rising animals and those retreating back to their dens after hunting at night. This is the best time to spot leopards, hyenas and other predators. The game drive goes through the northern banks of the great river Nile all the way up to the Nyamsika plateau. Along the way, will spot the Uganda kob, cape buffaloes, hartebeest, Bohor reedbuck, Rothschild’s giraffes and waterbucks. Expect to also encounter small primates inside the park including the common baboon, vervet monkeys and colobus monkeys.
After the morning game drive, the driver will take you back to the hotel for lunch and refreshment. In the afternoon, you will go for a boat cruise along the river Nile.
The section of the Nile right after the falls has one of the largest concentrations of wildlife in Uganda. Expect to spot countless hippos and crocodiles. Birders should expect to spot over 300 species including bee- eaters, cormorants, Egyptian geese, goliath heron, hornbill, kingfishers, pelican, shoebill stork and saddle-bill stork. The boat cruise ends close to the waterfalls in a place known as the “Devil’s Cauldron”. Disembark and walk up to the top of the falls where the driver would be waiting to start on a journey back to Kampala. Time may not allow you for a visit to the Rhino sanctuary, The Ziwa Rhino sanctuary was created to protect the remaining Rhino and help in breeding until their numbers are enough to allow for reintroduction into the wild. Otherwise, the driver will transfer you back to your hotel in Kampala or Entebbe international airport for your flight.
End of Tour
- The 8 days Uganda Gorilla trekking and wild tour package includes;
- Gorilla permits
- Chimpanzee permits
- Batwa visit
- Game drives
- Boat cruises
- Lake Bunyonyi tour
- Ziwa Rhino sanctuary
- Park Entrance and Ranger fees
- All activities included in the tour package
- Transfers to and from the airport
- A standard 4X4 tour van with a professional driver
- Accommodation for 7 nights including meals and water
- Meals and water outside the hotel
- Government taxes
The safari excludes;
- International flights and entry visas to Uganda
- Medical and Travel insurance
- Gratitude to the gorilla trekking porters, rangers and staff at the hotels
- Expenses on alcohol, cigars, phone calls, soft drinks, souvenir and anything that can be considered personal
- Covid 19 certificate