Tour duration: 6 Days
Destinations visited: Bwindi and Queen Elizabeth National Parks.
This bucket list adventure offers a once-in-a-lifetime experience of trekking the gorillas of Bwindi and exploring the lions plus bird-rich Queen Elizabeth National Park.
Detailed safari itinerary
Day 1: Welcome to Uganda
Your driver/guide will be at Entebbe Airport to pick you up from your flight and take you directly to your lodge in Kampala. Depending on the time of your arrival, you may be able to explore the sites in and around Kampala.
Day 2: To Queen Elizabeth N.P. Today we drive from Kampala to Queen Elizabeth National Park, Uganda’s second largest park, located at the base of the majestic Rwenzori Mountain range, adjacent to Lake Edward and Lake George. The park has prolific game, including gazelle, Uganda kob, warthog and waterbuck. Be prepared for huge numbers of Hippo and Elephant, and keep your eyes peeled for lions or a Leopard.
Your lodge is located on the edge of Queen Elizabeth National Park, overlooking the spectacular Kazinga Channel. Watch wildlife at the waterhole from your own private verandah and fall asleep to the grunts of hippos. This truly is Africa!
Lions are often sighted both in the park and at the entrance to the park. Be prepared for huge numbers of hippo and elephant, and keep your eyes peeled for a leopard lazing in the sunshine.
Time permitting; you will go for a short game-drive into the park in the late afternoon.
Day 3: Park Game Drive & Boat Safari
Today you wake up early. A little before sunrise coffee, tea and donuts will be served in the lounge before we head out for a long game drive in time to see the first rays of light. You will search for all the wildlife in the park and are likely to come across Elephant, Buffalo, Lion, Waterbuck, Leopard, Uganda Kob, and many Warthogs.
A well-deserved brunch will be served back at the lodge in the late morning.
In the afternoon you will take a boat safari along the Kazinga Channel which joins Lake George and Lake Edward.
Here, you will see a lot of hippos (more than you can possibly imagine!), as well as a variety of other animals which come to the waterhole to drink or bathe. You can expect to see buffalo, crocodile, bathing elephant, and a range of beautiful birds. This will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of your tour.
Optional activity: Hot Air Balloon Safari:
Experience the wildlife of Queen Elizabeth np in a new, unique way. Wake up early to catch the sunrise, as you silently fly over the plains of Queen Elizabeth National Park. Admire the herds of buffaloes, elephants and enjoy the serene tranquility of the African bush…
You will take off early at dawn for a flight that lasts for approximately 1 hour. Rise as the suns rises and float in whatever direction the winds of the morning take you. Fly higher than the trees and hills and enjoy the best of Uganda, with many great photo opportunities of the scenery and wildlife below.
After a smooth landing you can celebrate this amazing adventure with a glass of sparkling juice before returning to your lodge to continue your safari.
Optional activity: Lion Tracking:
For visitors who yearn to get up close to wild African fauna, a research trip is a rewarding adventure. This new and unique experience allows visitors to actively participate in monitoring some of lions in the park, using locator devices and learn habituation calls, as well as monitoring weather, surroundings and behavior. The results are added to researchers’ databases, contributing valuable information to the overall understanding of wildlife ecology – and helping to conserve this wonderful ecosystem. This will as well gives you a 95% chance to see the lions!
The number of people on each outing is limited in order to reduce stress on the animals and to increase the quality of the experience for visitors.
The experiential tourism activities currently available are Mongoose Tracking, Lion Tracking, Hippo Census, and Bird Counts. The number of people on each outing is limited in order to reduce stress on the animals and to increase the quality of the experience for visitors.
Experiential tours lasts between one and three hours. They usually take place in the early morning or evening, or occasionally at night. All activities must be booked through the Visitor Information Centre in Mweya at least 24 hours in advance.
Day 4: To Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
After breakfast, you will transfer to bwindi National park via Ishasha sector of the park in search of tree climbing lions. You proceed to cross a beautiful part of the country often referred to as ‘the Switzerland of Africa’ through bamboo forest to Bwindi highlands.
Day 5: Gorilla Tracking!!!
Today is the big day – prepare yourself for an encounter with one of Bwindi’s gentle giants: the rare mountain gorilla. For most people this is the absolute highlight of their tour in Uganda. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest boasts both mountain gorillas and chimpanzees – the only forest in Africa which can make this claim, in fact. It also hosts five other species of primate, 113 species of mammal, over 200 butterflies and 360 birds. En route to the gorillas, your guide will point out signs of previous gorilla activity, including dung, nests and chewed bamboo shoots.
The gorillas you track belong to one of nine habituated family groups who can tolerate the presence of humans for a brief period every day. The time taken to track the gorillas can be as few as 2 hours to as many as 7 hours. Your track will be an exciting journey along forested slopes, entwined vines, bushes and bamboo before you eventually reach the gorilla family. Once the gorillas have been located, your group will be allowed a maximum of one hour with them. Coming face-to-face with a mountain gorilla is a truly humbling and emotional experience. This is a fantastic and privileged opportunity to get up close and personal with Uganda’s very own ‘Gorillas in the Mist’.
Day 6: Back to Kampala/Entebbe
After an early breakfast at the lodge, we will drive back to Kampala or Entebbe (Airport)
Accommodation for tonight is not inclusive in the program. If you wish to depart tonight from Entebbe Airport, make sure your flight is at 10 pm or later. If you would like us to book one (or more) nights in Kampala and/or Entebbe, please let us know.
This marks the end of what we hope will be an adventurous trip!
✔ Arrival and Departure Airport transfers in Uganda.
✔ All meals EXCEPT on First & last day of Safari
✔ Transportation in a 4x4Safari vehicle with English Speaking Driver/Guide.
✔ Midrange accommodation in Lodges / Camps on safari.
✔1 gorilla trekking permit in Uganda for each person- $600 P.P
✔ Wildlife Safari in Queen Elizabeth National park.
✔ 1 boat Safari in the Queen Elizabeth National Park.
✔All park entry fees.
✔ All activities described on itinerary except those described as ‘Optional’.
❌ International Airfares to and from Uganda.
❌ Soft & alcoholic Drinks.
❌ Entry visas and airport taxes.
❌ Travel insurance.
❌ All personal expenditure such as tips, telephone calls.
❌ All activities NOT described on the itinerary.
Please observe our Additional checklist for Gorilla Tracking
✅ Long sleeve shirts and trousers (old clothes recommended as they can get very dirty and torn from the thorns and jungle foliage)
✅ Insect repellent and sunscreen
✅ Hat and sunglasses (although once in the jungle you are in the shade)
✅ Gardening gloves to protect your hand from the thorns and vines
✅ Good ,comfortable sturdy hiking boots with good ankle support
✅ Getters or Long socks to truck your trousers into
✅ Rain jacket
✅ Camera with lenses of different mill metres
✅ Waterproof rucksack (or plastic bags inside your rucksack)
✅ Plenty of water (the camp provides a packed lunch and lots of water
✅ For evenings at the camp it is worth taking a warm fleece as evenings can be chilly.