The Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari

Starts/End: Entebbe / Kampala
Duration: 19 Days

Overview

An Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari adventure exploring the pure wilderness of Uganda’s virgin jungles. Uganda is a country of striking beauty and home to the deepest crater lake in all of Africa, Lake Bunyoni. Its national parks and wildlife reserves boast over 300 species of mammal and more than 1000 species of birds, though Uganda's major attraction is the approximate half of the 880 remaining mountain gorillas.

Spectacular wildlife viewing in Uganda’s most beautiful parks with very special wildlife encounters. This dynamically packed Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari allows you to touch and embrace magical Africa leaving you with a desire to discover more of this dynamic and diverse continent!

In David Attenborough’s all time favourite breathless encounter with mountain gorillas in 1979’s Life on Earth, back then, a mountain gorilla trekking experience had seemed as improbable as walking with dinosaurs, and just as dangerous. Today we have nothing to fear from these gentle and highly endangered primates. Visiting them in their natural habitat – the misty jungles of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest – has become one of the planet’s ultimate wildlife safari experiences. Expect to come face-to-face with a mountain gorilla on this Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari, go chimpanzee tracking, bird watching, see crocodiles, crater lakes, mountains hippos, buffaloes, elephants, butterflies and meet some of most amazing communities and forgotten tribes of East Africa.

Highlights of this Safari

  • Rhino Tracking at Ziwa
  • Boat safari to the Murchison Falls
  • Chimpanzee tracking in Kibale Forest
  • Exploration of the crater lakes
  • Game viewing in Queen Elizabeth NP
  • Gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
  • Explore the “Gorilla Highlands”
  • Boat cruise of the Kazinga Channel
  • Search for the tree climbing lions in Ishasha
  • Lake Bunyonyi beauty and tranquility
 

The Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari Detailed Itinerary

Day one: To Kitgum Town

After breakfast, you will be met by your Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari guide for briefing and thereafter drive to Kitgum town for overnight. All our tours to Kidepo National Park stop at Kitgum town to break the long journey.

Drive time: Approximately 6-7 hours
Meal plan: Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Boma Hotel

Day two: To Kidepo National Park

After breakfast, drive to Kidepo valley National Park located in north eastern Uganda. Check in your Accommodation property, relax and prepare for a later afternoon game drive. Kidepo National Park was once voted the best National Park in Africa and is the only place where you can see cheaters. Kidepo Valley National Park boosts of several prides of lions that can be easily spotted compared to other National Park, elephants, giraffes, buffaloes, and so much more in large number.

Drive time: Approximately 3 hours
Meal Plan: Breakfast, Packed Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: UWA Bandas

Day three: Morning and afternoon game drives

The Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari day three is another interesting adventure day where you will spend both morning and afternoon doing game drives in the savannah plains of Kidepo valley National Park. This park hosts a great variety of animal species in comparison to any other Ugandan parks. Of the Eighty species recorded in 1971, Twenty eight weren't known to exist in any other park within Uganda. Carnivore species distinctive to Kidepo are: the Hunting dog, Bat-eared Fox, Cheetah, Striped Hyena, Caracal and the aard Wolf. The more uncommon ungulates are: the greater & Lesser Kudu, roan antelope, Chandler's mountain Reedbuck, beisa oryx, Klipspringer and Bright's Gazelle, have been greatly decreased by poachers within the past few years.

Among the other big ungulates are: elephants, oribi, burchell's zebras, Jackson's hartebeests, bush pigs, bohor reed buck, warthogs, rothschild giraffes, defassa water bucks, cape buffaloes, elands, bush duskiers and bush bucks . Five primate species are found within the park of which the most endemic is the Kavirondo bush baby. Carnivores existing include lions, side-striped jackals, leopards, black-backed jackals, various small cats as well as spotted hyenas.

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: UWA Bandas

Day Four: Karimajongo villages and cultural visits

After breakfast, you will visit the homes of the Karamajongo, interact with the elders and get to know more about the lifestyle, culture and behaviours of the onetime pastoral group. Drive to Kitugum for overnight.

Drive time: Approximately 3 hours
Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Boma Hotel

Day Five: To Murchison Falls National Park.

After breakfast, you will drive to Murchison Falls National Park which is the biggest conservation area in Uganda offering riverine, forest and savannah environments. Depending on where you will be staying, afternoon game drive will be rewarding.

Drive time: Approximately 3-4 hours
Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Kabalega Wilderness Camp

Day Six: Morning game drives and boat cruise on the Nile

Your 6th day of the Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari will be action packed as you will need to wake up early for a morning game drive where you will be transferred by ferry to the northern banks of River Nile commonly known as paraa. This side of the park provides an opportunity to spot several antelopes, hippos, buffaloes, giraffes, buffaloes, and if luck, big cats such as leopards and lions. Return to the lodge for lunch and then a boat cruise to the base of the falls.

On your way from the jetty point to the bottom of the falls, you will spot several herds of buffaloes, crocodiles, hippos, water bird species and other wild animals as they flock River Nile to drink water. Continue upstream to the base of the falls to observe how water squeezes in a narrow gorge to later explode in what has been referred to the strongest and powerful falls on planet earth. Return to the Lodge for overnight.

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Kabalega Wilderness Camp

Day Seven: Morning game drive and late afternoon delta cruise

After an early breakfast will see you return to the northern bank of river to another game drive to search for wild that you can have missed out on your previous game drives. Return to the lodge and thereafter go a late afternoon boat cruise to Albert delta where there is a lot of action and activity. Depending on your luck, you may find elephants, buffaloes and hippos crossing, crocodiles every well as well as chances of spotting the rare shoebill stock.

Return back to the lodge for overnight:

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Kabalega Wilderness Camp
Day Eight: Hoima Town for a cultural walk

After breakfast, you will drive to Hoima town which is about 3 hour's drive from Murchison Falls National Park. Depending on the nature of the road, you may pass via Lake Albert for a scenic drive to the escarpments and then to Hoima town. Check in and go for a cultural walk or enjoy cultural performances at the lodge to learn more about cultures of the local people in the area.

Drive time: 3 hours
Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Kontik Hotel/Hoima Cultural Lodge

Day Nine: To Kibale National Park.

You will drive to Kibale National Park via Fort Portal town for Lunch before checking in at Rwenzori View Guest House. No major activity these day but if time allows, you may drive around Fort Portal town.

Drive time: Approximately 4 hours
Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Rwenzori View Guest House

Day Ten: Chimpanzee trekking and Bigodi Wetland Walk

After breakfast, you will be transferred to Kibale National Park headquarters at Kanyakyu to join other trekkers for briefing and eventual chimpanzee trekking. You will be led by a well-trained ranger/guide who will take you for a guided primate walk inside Kibale Forest National Park. This forest provides an opportunity to visit one of the habituated communities/part of chimpanzees and spend an hour with them observing and taking photographs. Kibale National Park is home to other 11 primate species coupled with forest birds. After your chimpanzee trek, you will drive to Bigodi Village for a wetland walk that was designed to benefit the local community living around Kibale Forest National Park.

Return to the Lodge for overnight.

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Packed Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Rwenzori View Guest House

Day Eleven: To Queen Elizabeth National Park

After breakfast, your will drive 3-4 hours from Kibale National Park to Queen Elizabeth National Park. You will have an opportunity of passing through small towns, seeing several foothills of Mountain Rwenzori, small rivers that originate from Rwennzori mountain ranges as well as crossing the equator at Kikorongo. Check in at Bush Lodge, relax as you prepare for a late afternoon game drive in Mweya. This section of Queen Elizabeth National Park is endowed with Antelopes, Buffaloes, Warthogs, elephants and many other wild animals including lions and leopards whose sight depends on your luck since this is nature.

Return to the Lodge for overnight.

Drive time: Approximately 3-4 hours
Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Bush Lodge or Buffalo Resort

Day Twelve: Game drive and Boat Cruise

After an early morning cup of tea, you will drive back to Kasenyi plains for a game drive to catch up with what you could have missed out on your earlier game drive. Its this time of the morning that big cats are out hunting for their prey and as such chances of spotting lions and or leopards are slightly high. Never the less, you will be guaranteed to see buffaloes, hippos, several species of antelopes, and many others. You may return to the lodge for lunch or drive directly to Mweya jetty for an afternoon boat cruise on Kazinga Channel. This two hour Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari boat cruise is one of the highlights in Queen Elizabeth National Park. It provides you an opportunity to view over 300 out of the 600 water bird species recorded here, antelopes, crocodiles, elephants, buffaloes and hippos.

Return to the lodge for overnight.

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner Lodging: Bush Lodge or Buffalo Resort

Day Thirteen: Chambura Chimp trekking and Katwe salt mines

After breakfast, you will be driven to Chambura to join other trekkers for briefing and their after start you chimpanzee walk in the gorge. Your experienced ranger guide will help you identify several flora and fauna resident in this gorge and once you find a community of chimpanzees, you will be allowed to spend one hour with them for photography.

Return back from the Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari trek for lunch and short relaxation at the lodge before moving out again to visit Lake Katwe salt mines. Lake Katwe is an explosive crate which is gifted with salt and it's the local community that mines/extracts salt from this lake. The local community guide will take you for a tour around salt mines explaining how salt extraction is done, challenges faced and opportunities available. Lake Katwe salt extraction project is one of the live examples supporting Queen Elizabeth as one of the conservation areas in the whole world where man is sustainably co-existing harmoniously with wildlife.

Return to the Lodge for overnight.

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Bush Lodge or Buffalo Resort

Day Fourteen: To Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

After breakfast, you will drive to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park located in south western Uganda and shared between three districts of Kabale, Kanungu and Kisoro. Your journey to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park will take you through rolling hills with terraced gardens of irish potatoes and sometimes tea. You will arrive late afternoon for overnight at the Lodge.

The Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari gets really interesting in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, home to almost half of the world's endangered mountain gorillas and the only National Park where wild chimpanzees co-exist with mountain gorillas.

Drive time: Approximately 5-6 hours
Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Broad Bill Forest Camp

Day Fifteen: Gorilla tracking and Village walk

After breakfast, the Ultimate Uganda Holiday Safari driver will transfer you to the park headquarters to join others for gorilla family allocation and full briefing about the dos and don'ts while with the gorillas. After that, you will be driven to the starting point of your allocated gorilla family to start your trek into the impenetrable Bwindi Forest. This trek may take from 30 minutes to three quarters of the day depending on where mountain gorillas will be. Thus gorilla trekking can be strenuous and as such a certain level of fitness is required. Once you find the gorillas, the experience will be worth it and you will be allowed one hour of observation and photography.

You will then return to the park headquarters where you will be awarded a certificate in recorgnition of your effort of helping to conserve the endangered mountain gorillas. Return to the lodge for relaxation followed by a village walk to learn more about the local people living around Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Broad Bill Forest Camp

Day Sixteen: To Lake Bunyonyi

Drive from Bwindi Impenetrable National Park to Lake Bunyonyi in Kabale District. Lake Bunyonyi is one of the three Lava damned Lake which was formed when lava flowing from one of the volcanoes blocked a river channel and water was forced to flow back hence filling the space to create lake Bunyonyi. Bunyonyi locally means small birds due to the abundance of small birds in this area. Lake Bunyonyi is said to be the deepest lake in Uganda and second deepest in East Africa. A person visit Lake Bunyonyi for its beauty and is one of the best place to relax after your gorilla trek.

Drive time: Approximately 3-4 hours
Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Bird Nest Overseas Cottages or Crater Bay Cottages

Day Seventeen: Canoeing or Hiking

After breakfast, you are free to admire the beauty of the lake and its surrounding hills. You will have a choice of either taking a canoe ride on the lake to explore different island with exciting history. You will for example visit the Punishment Island where girls who would produce babies out of legitimate tradition marriage would be dumped and left to die. This is a whole day activity and you will surely enjoy it. Alternatively, you can hike one of the hills around lake Bunyonyi.

Gorillas and Chimp Luxury Safaris Safaris supports some projects so those who want to do something on their tour can go for volunteer work. Return to the Lodge for overnight.

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Bird Nest Overseas Cottages or Crater Bay Cottages
Day Eighteen: To Lake Mburo National Park

After breakfast, drive to lake Mburo National Park via Great lakes museum or Igongo Cultural center to learn more about the cultures of ethnic groups in western Uganda. Lunch will be served en route arrive at Lake Mburo National Park for a boat cruise on the Lake followed by an evening game drive. Lake Mburo National Park is popular for animals such as impalas, Giraffes, Zebras and so much more. Return to the Lodge for overnight.

Drive time: Approximately 6 hours
Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Lodging: Lake Mburo Safari Lodge

Day Nineteen: Drive to Entebbe International Airport

After breakfast, you will start your journey to Entebbe International Airport with a stop at the Equator crossing for photography and stretching.

Drive time: Approximately 5-6 hours
Meal Plan: Breakfast and Lunch

End of the Gorillas and Chimp Luxury Safaris.


INCLUDES

  • Airport transfers on first and last day,
  • Transport in a 4×4 safari vehicle
  • Services of an English speaking driver guide
  • Fuel for the whole trip
  • Accommodation and meal plan as per the itinerary
  • All park entrance fees
  • Drinking water while in the vehicle
  • Gorilla permit at USD600.00 per person per trek
  • Chimp permit at USD150 per person per trek
  • Pre and Post accommodation in Entebbe or Kampala
  • Budongo Chimp Permit at USD95.00 per person per trek
  • Chambura Gorilla permit at USD50.00 per person per trek

EXCLUDES

  • International flight
  • Visa (USD $50)
  • Optional activities in the Park.
  • Meals and drinks not mentioned in the
  • itinerary
  • Items of personal nature
  • Laundry service
  • Tips