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Paraa Safari Lodge game drive

All Inclusive Uganda Gorilla & Wildlife Safari - 12 Days

Overview
Itinerary
Accommodation
Inclusions
Overview

All Inclusive Uganda Gorilla & Wildlife Safari - 12 Days

All inclusive 12 day Uganda tour and holiday to see primates, enjoy comprehensive game drives,  Uganda scenery,  with game viewing on the savannah plains of Queen Elizabeth National Park, Murchison Falls NP, Lake Mburo  - giraffe, elephant, lion, buffalo, hippo, and leopard among others. Track the fast moving chimpanzees in Kibale National Park and the endangered Mountain Gorillas in Bwindi.  Enjoy canoes trekking on the beautiful Lake Bunyonyi as well as the unique tree climbing lions of Ishasha sector.

This tour through Uganda is the perfect combination of nature, culture & animals and you will overnight in the best mid-range accommodations in Uganda.  

  • Day 1: Murchison Falls National Park | Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary
  • Day 2: Murchison Falls National Park | Game Drive | Boat Trip
  • Day 3: Kibale National Park | Fort Portal
  • Day 4: Kibale National Park | Chimpanzee Tracking | Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary (or upgrade to full day chimps habituation experience - extra $70)
  • Day 5: Queen Elizabeth National Park | Rwenzori Mountains
  • Day 6: Queen Elizabeth National Park | Game Drive | Boat Trip
  • Day 7: Queen Elizabeth National Park | Maramagambo Forest Bush Walk|  Tree-climbing lions in Ishasha
  • Day 8: Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
  • Day 9: MountainGorilla tracking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (or upgrade to Gorilla habituation experience - extra $900)
  • Day 10: Lake Bunyonyi canoe trekking
  • Day 11: Lake Mburo National Park | Game Drive
  • Day 12: Depart to Kampala 
Itinerary

Day 1: Murchison Falls National Park & Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary

After your breakfast, we drive through the famous Luwero triangle to Murchison Falls National Park.

Our first stop is Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary where you track the wild white rhinos. This sanctuary has now been established to breed black and white rhino, and restore rhino populations in Uganda's protected areas in a later stage. Take a stop over at Masindi Hotel for lunch.

We will continue through the park stopping at the top of the falls which is a fantastic sight. Here the Nile, the longest river in the world, is forced through a narrow gap in the rock (only 7 meters wide), before ferociously plunging down 43 meters. From here we will continue onto our accommodation place along the Nile river

Murchison Falls National Park is the largest in Uganda at 3,840 square kilometres. Here is the awe inspiring Murchison Falls where the River Nile hurls itself in convulsions through a narrow crevice and then plunges 40 metres in one breathtaking leap.

The park has a variety of vegetation ranging from riparian forests and swamplands to broad savannah, and provides visitors the opportunity of seeing large concentrations of wildlife including lion, leopard, civet, hyena, elephant, giraffe, buffalo, hippo, crocodile, a host of smaller game, small primates and many bird species, including the rare shoebill stork. The park is especially famous for crocodiles and hippos.

Apart from game viewing, the launch trip to the bottom of the falls is another memorable adventure giving you the experience of the mighty biblical Nile. On the launch you may see schools of crocodiles and hippos basking on the river banks as well as a variety of birds.

Accommodation Options (Full Board)

Up-market: Baker's Lodge | Lodge Paraa Safari Lodge

Moderate: Fort Murchison Lodge | Murchison River Lodge | Pakuba Lodge

Budget: Fort Murchison Lodge (tents) | Murchison River Lodge (tents) | Red Chilli Rest Camp

Day 2: Murchison Falls National Park | Game Drive | Boat Trip

After break fast head to the delta in search for bird life and enjoy the game drive to look for lions, giraffes, herds of elephants, buffaloes and many more. We will drive back to the lodge for lunch before taking an afternoon boat cruise to the foot of Murchison Falls.

This boat trip along the Nile is often cited as being the highlight of a trip to Murchison since it allows you to get up-close and personal with the animals. Along this stretch of the river, there are reported to be around 4,000 hippos in addition to some enormous Nile crocodiles. The bird life is stunning with brightly coloured kingfishers and bee-eaters darting along the riverbanks. If lucky, you may see the rare and prehistoric looking shoebill, which is a cross between the dodo and a dinosaur. The boat takes you to the base of the falls which only adds to their impressiveness.

Accommodation Options (Full Board)

Up-market: Baker's Lodge| Paraa Safari Lodge

Moderate: Fort Murchison Lodge | Murchison River Lodge | Pakuba Lodge

Budget: Fort Murchison Lodge (tents) | Murchison River Lodge (tents) | Red Chilli Rest Camp

Day 3: Kibale National Park & Fort Portal

Leave Murchison Falls National Park for Kibale Forest National Park via the Lake Albert escarpment, having a good view of the lake. Stopover at Kolping Hotel in Hoima for lunch and after drive across the interesting river Nkusi (flowing from the southern end of Lake Albert, through the villages of Kagadi, joining Victoria Nile). Both rivers join Lake Kyoga and flow through the Murchison Falls continue to Lake Albert and north to the Mediterranean sea.

Traveling on both asphalt and unpaved roads, you pass through traditional Ugandan villages where you see people at work tending their traditional crops of millet, sorghum, beans and maize. The lush rolling hills of this region provide good photo opportunities.

As you approach Fort Portal in the foothills of the Rwenzori Mountains, you enter Uganda's famous tea plantation region. A carpet of green spreads before you, as far as the eye can see, and seems an unusual contrast to the countryside through which you have just passed.

You arrive at Fort Portal, then, continue toward Kibale Forest, one of the great African rainforest research reserves. Years of study by scientists (who have cut a grid through the forest) have habituated many of its animals to human observers. This forest is famed for the variety of primates found here and it is a terrific area for birds. This rural Ugandan town is locally famous for its weaving and basketry, and we can spend some time briefly to examine some of this local art.

Fort Portal is a small and attractive city. The fort was built between 1891 and 1893 and named after Sir Gerald Portal, the British Consul General of Zanzibar who arrived in Uganda in 1892 to formalise the protectorate of Uganda. He died of malaria a few months after the fort was completed.

During the afternoon we have time to visit the scenic crater lakes region, checking out the superbly terraced tea estates. In the south of Fort Portal is Kasenda Crater Lakes region. It sits on the rim of Lake Nyinambuga—the back of the main building looks down over the lake, while the other side of the lodge looks out over another lake in the distance and, further off, the Rwenzori Mountains, which were perpetually shrouded in the clouds, except early in the morning. There’s plenty to do in this area and we can also take an hour’s walk around Lake Nyinambuga.

Accommodation Options (Full Board)

Up-market: Kyaninga Lodge | Primate Lodge Kibale | Ndali Lodge

Moderate: Kibale Forest Camp

Budget: Chimpanzee Forest Guesthouse

Day 4:Chimpanzee Tracking in Kibale National Park & Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary

Assemble at Kanyankyu River camp at 08:00 hours to go for the most popular activity in this park which is chimpanzee tracking.

Chimpanzees are man’s closest cousins though they are one of the most threatened primate species. More primates like black and white columbus monkeys, L’Hoest monkeys, grey cheeked mangabey, red tailed monkeys, bush babies, pottos and many bird species like the yellow spotted nicator, rumped tinker bird, little greenbul, green breasted pitta, the crowned eagle, black bee-eater and mammals like elephants can be seen on this walk.

Kibale National park, which averages about 3,300 feet in elevation, is an extension of the great rainforests of Central Africa. It is inhabited by three large communities of chimps, each numbering more than 100 individuals. Each community has a complicated social structure. The big adult males dominate the group and defend the community territory against incursions by male outsiders; the females usually wander in small family groups.

Typically, we locate the chimps by listening for their pant-hooting calls, then hustle to the area from which they are calling. We get to observe them as they feed in fruiting trees, lounge, and socialise with each other, or even, occasionally hunt.

In the afternoon we visit a nearby forest swamp that is excellent for viewing primates and other forest animals. At the eastern edge of Kibale forest is Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary which is maintained by the local community. You will expect birds like the great blue turaco, blue monkeys, baboons, otters, mongoose, bushbucks, bush pigs and others.

Accommodation Options (Full Board)

Up-market: Kyaninga Lodge | Primate Lodge Kibale | Ndali Lodge

Moderate: Kibale Forest Camp

Budget: Chimpanzee Forest Guesthouse

Day 5: Queen Elizabeth National Park & Rwenzori Mountains

Either a day’s walk in the foothills of the Rwenzoris, one of the great mountain ranges of the world, looking out for its forbidding peaks in the distance, or drive straight to Queen Elizabeth National Parl. The game seen will depend on the season; the Kasenyi plains are good for lion and the Mweya peninsula for a variety of animals.

Shift to Queen Elizabeth National Park this morning (about 3 hours driving). Leaving through Fort Portal town, you turn south and early this afternoon enter Queen Elizabeth National Park, which is dominated on its northern border by the snow-capped 16,000-foot Rwenzori Mountains - the famed "Mountains of the Moon".

This 767-square-mile conservation area is bordered on the north east by Lake George and on the south west by Lake Edward; its western border adjoins the Congo Parc du Virunga. You will expect to see teeming herds of impala-like Uganda Kob, as well as topi, elephant and lion, giant forest hog, Cape buffalo. There are also several soda lakes filling ancient volcanic calderas where flamingos reside seasonally.

In the afternoon enjoy a game drive in the northern part of the park, visiting the Baboon Cliff famous for its nice scenery, and good views of the shadows of the Mountains of the Moon – the Rwenzoris. The drive to the lodge leads through large expanses of savannah grasslands and plenty of wild game

Accommodation Options (Full Board)

Up-market/Luxury: Mweya Safari Lodge |  Katara Lodge

Mid-range: Ihamba Safari Lodge| Enganzi Lodge | Queen Elizabeth Bush Lodge | Simba Safari Camp | Buffalo Safari Resort 

Budget: Bush Lodge (tents)|  Simba Safari Camp (tents) | Pumba Cottages 

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 6: Queen Elizabeth National Park Game Drive & Boat Trip

We set out early in the morning for a game drive in the northern part of the park on the Kasenyi Track in search of lions, elephants and solitary buffaloes. This is the best time for opportunities of viewing the cats in action owing to the vast population of Uganda kobs. We have an excellent chance to view just about every animal here at very close range.

In the afternoon we will go for a launch trip along the Kazinga Channel. This gives you the opportunity to view wildlife up close: hippos huff and spray at a mere feet away from the boat, buffalo linger in the shallows. The shores of the channel are also home to an array of birds including pink backed pelicans, pied and malachite kingfishers, saddle billed stork and many others.

Accommodation Options (Full Board)

Up-market/Luxury: Mweya Safari Lodge |  Katara Lodge

Mid-range: Ihamba Safari Lodge| Enganzi Lodge | Queen Elizabeth Bush Lodge | Simba Safari Camp | Buffalo Safari Resort 

Budget: Bush Lodge (tents)|  Simba Safari Camp (tents) | Pumba Cottages 

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 7: Queen Elizabeth National Park & Maramagambo Forest Bush Walk

Another early start for a bush walk through the Maramagambo Forest.

This is one of the largest forests in Uganda, and forms a habitat for a number of primates and forest dwellers. Due to its location, Maramagambo also has a great diversity of butterflies and birds. The walk culminates in a visit to volcanic caves that are home to thousands of bats. Pythons are often observed in the crevices of the bats cave as they prey on bats. In this walk you will see the picturesque blue lake Kimeranjojo which got its name after swallowing an elephant. Other trails will lead you to the Crater Lake and habitats of the wild chimps and forest bird.

In the afternoon you will proceed to Ishasha Sector. Drive along the deep and wide dry craters that are occupied by savanna grasses and acacia. The drive takes you through the unique western rift valley escarpment and the (southern part of Queen Elizabeth National Park) Ishasha sector where you will take on yet another game drive in search of tree climbing lions in the afternoon and evening. 

Accommodation Options (Full Board)

Up-market/Luxury: Ishasha Wilderness Campsite

Mid-range: Enjojo Lodge | Ishasha Ntungwe River Camp

Budget: @ the River

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 8: Bwindi Impenetrable National Park & Cultural Visit

Early morning guided bush walk for a closer interaction with nature in Ishasha. The mid morning will be spent on a game drive for the tree climbing lions, elephants and other Big Mammals, thereafter proceed to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.

The journey takes about 2-3 hours but driving through interesting features. We shall be arriving in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in the evening. This park is home of the rare mountain gorillas plus 11 other primates species including the blue and red tailed monkeys. The forest itself is lush and green and there are streams running through it.

Accommodation Options (Full Board)

Up-market: Buhoma Lodge| Mahogany Lodge

Moderate: Engagi Lodge | Silverback Lodge | Gorilla Mist Camp | Nkuringo Gorilla Lodge

Budget: Rushaga Gorilla Camp | Ruhija Gorilla Friends Camp | Buhoma Community Campground

Day 9: Gorilla Trek in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

After breakfast, proceed for the morning briefing before enjoying the highlight of the trip - gorilla trekking, which may last the entire day.

We trek through the rainforest and bamboo covered slopes, accompanied by a guide and trackers, in search of a mountain gorilla family. The walking can sometimes be tough and long, but when you catch a glimpse of the magnificent silverback, any discomforts will be quickly forgotten. When sighted, visitors will be guided to within 6 metres from the gorillas, sit around them for a whole hour while gazing into their big round eyes.

Gorilla trekking is unpredictable. It's difficult to foresee how many hours you will hike. The gorilla excursion can take from 2 up to 8 hours. Expect to walk along distance in steep and muddy conditions, sometimes with rain overhead, before you encounter any gorillas. A good physical condition is recommended. For conservation purposes, time spent with the gorillas is limited to one hour. A ranger will brief you on how to behave with the gorillas.

While most of today's forests are no more than 12,000 years old, Bwindi's vegetation has been weaving itself into tangles over at least 25,000 years, in the process accumulating a lengthy species list. This includes 310 species of butterfly, 51 reptiles, 200 trees, 88 moths and an exceptional 120 types of mammal including 10 primates. The latter includes chimpanzee, L'Hoest's, red tailed and blue monkey, black and white colobus, baboon, and Bwindi's most famous resident, the mountain gorilla.

Bwindi is a prime destination for birdwatchers. Its 350 species include seven which are IUCN red data listed and 90% of all Albertine rift endemics, species which are difficult or impossible to see in any other part of East Africa.

Accommodation Options (Full Board)

Up-market: Buhoma Lodge| Mahogany Lodge

Moderate: Engagi Lodge | Silverback Lodge | Gorilla Mist Camp | Nkuringo Gorilla Lodge

Budget: Rushaga Gorilla Camp | Ruhija Gorilla Friends Camp | Buhoma Community Campground

Day 10: Lake Bunyonyi for Half Day Canoe Trekking, relaxing in afternoon

After having breakfast, we shall take a scenic drive to Lake Bunyonyi taking you through the beautiful terrain of the rolling hills with terraced landscape. A short drive leads us to the beautiful Lake Bunyonyi where we can relax and enjoy some reflection time. With its fresh water, bilharzias-free and beautiful landscapes, Lake Bunyonyi is a small paradise for travellers.

After meeting our local guide for the day, we are led out for a canoe trek as well as bird watching on the beautiful Lake Bunyonyi, traversing to the gorgeous Kyabahinga peninsula. Here you will be gladly welcomed with songs plus dances by the resident school children. You will enjoy with the locals at least a cup of “Obushera” which is a local brew. You will ascend the Kyabahinga slopes having a wonderful opportunity to enjoy the birdlife and the verdant terrain. The view is very breathtaking! The guide will certainly brief you about the history of the area.
Among the bird species you will see are the Dusky Tutle Dove, the Handsome Francolin and Alpine Chat. A renown herbalist who is a tradition healer -Omugurusi Jeremiah, based on the hill top will disclose to you some of the secretes about the flora on the tropical highland. 

Accommodation options available (all on full board basis)

Up-market: Bird's Nest | Acadia Cottages Lake Bunyonyi 

Moderate: Bird's Nest | Acadia Cottages Lake Bunyonyi 

Low Budget: Bunyonyi Overland Resort | Bushara Campsite

 

Day 11: Mburo National Park

We drive east to Mbarara, now one of Uganda’s major towns, but formerly capital of Ankole kingdom for over 400 years until disbanded by independence in 1962. In the days before modern Uganda came into being, the area had a series of fiercely independent tribal states.

From here you continue to Lake Mburo, a small but picturesque national park renowned for its herds of antelope and one of the only two Ugandan parks home to Burchell’s zebra. The park is also especially good for acacia-associated bird.

Upon arrival, you will go for the game drive which will give you insights of animal species like the zebras, topes, elephants, elands, impalas, buffaloes, antelopes and so many others.

Accommodation Options (Full Board)

Luxury: Mihingo Lodge | Mantana Tented Camp | Arcadia Cottages

Medium: Rakobo Rock Lodge or Lake Mburo Safari Lodge

Low Budget: Mburo Eagles Nest | Rwonyo Restcamp

 

Day 12: Lake Mburo National Park Game Drive, Return to Kampala / Entebbe

Rise early for breakfast before a short drive to the Rwonyo Park headquarters.

This has often been a good chance of seeing hyenas coming back to their dens, hippos walking back to the water, you will see buffalo, zebra, impala and topi and with a bit of luck maybe even a sitatunga, an antelope rarely seen living in the papyrus swamps.

After your early morning activities, return the lodge for a late breakfast and check-out.

We then bid farewell to the park’s friendly staff as we depart for Kampala / Entebbe.

En route we will stop at the Equator for photographs and ‘polar-water experiment', then local community crafts shops and fruit markets.

We will be in Kampala in the evening before for your flight back home.

 

 

 

 

Accommodation
Inclusions
  • Gorilla permits (each at US$600)
  • Chimpanzee viewing permits
  • Game drives
  • Accommodation with all meals during the tour
  • Services of  a goos and experienced safari guide
  • Bottled drinking water on the vehicle
  • Park fees for the various parks
  • Transport on tour using a 4x4 safari land cruisers
  • Entrance fees for tours mentioned in the programme
  • Boat rides as on the programme and Lake Bunyonyi canoe trek

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