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Embark on an extraordinary 12-day journey through Uganda’s breathtaking landscapes, rich biodiversity, and vibrant cultures. This carefully curated itinerary blends adventure, wildlife encounters, and serene relaxation, offering unforgettable experiences in the heart of East Africa.

Start with a guided tour through the stunning Entebbe National Botanical Gardens, then witness the rare shoebill at Mabamba Swamp and enjoy a picturesque sunset cruise on Lake Victoria. In Murchison Falls National Park, experience thrilling game drives and a private boat cruise to the base of the spectacular falls, exploring Uganda’s largest national park’s rich wildlife.

In Kibale Forest National Park, choose between trekking to observe renowned chimpanzee families or dedicating a full day to birdwatching in one of the world’s top birding destinations. Discover Queen Elizabeth National Park’s diverse ecosystems, with a private cruise on the Kazinga Channel offering close encounters with hippos, elephants, and an array of bird species. The adventure continues with an unforgettable gorilla trekking experience in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, where you’ll encounter these majestic primates in their natural habitat.

Stay in carefully selected lodges and hotels that offer comfort, luxury, and proximity to nature. From the comfortable Protea Hotel in Entebbe to breathtaking views at Paraa Safari Lodge in Murchison Falls, the tranquil Turaco Treetops in Kibale, the luxurious Mweya Safari Lodge in Queen Elizabeth, and the serene Engagi Lodge in Bwindi, each accommodation ensures a perfect retreat.

This trip offers unmatched wildlife experiences, personalized adventures, and cultural insights. Luxury and comfort are guaranteed with premium lodges and seasoned guides enhancing your understanding and appreciation of Uganda’s natural wonders.

Book Early as places are limited to 6 participants.

Uganda Primate & Wildlife Expedition

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  • 12 Days
  • Max People : 6
  • 17-28 October 2024
  • Min Age : 15+
  • Wifi Available
  • Entebbe, Uganda

Departure & Return Location

Entebbe International Airport (Google Map)

Price Includes

  • 11 nights accommodation
  • Internal flight (Kihihi to Entebbe)
  • Transfers as specified in the itinerary
  • Meals as specified
  • Activities as specified – subject to change due to weather conditions
  • Private tour of Mabamba Swamp in search of the Shoebill
  • English-speaking guide throughout
  • Game drives in National Parks as per itinerary
  • Park fees

Price Excludes

  • International Flights
  • Visas
  • Gorilla Permit – USD 700
  • Chimpanzee Permit – USD 200
  • Travel and medical insurance
  • Meals and drinks not specified
  • Gratuities
  • Items of a personal nature (laundry, phone calls etc.)
  • Optional extras (touring, activities etc.)

Complementaries

  • The Africa Safari Co. Cap
  • The Africa Safari Co. Backpack
  • Travel Kit and documentation
What to Expect on the Uganda Primate & Wildlife Expedition

Embarking on this safari through Uganda promises an unparalleled adventure, seamlessly blending thrilling wildlife encounters with the enchanting beauty of the country’s diverse landscapes. From the outset at Mabamba Swamp, the quest for the elusive Shoebill takes centre stage, offering a unique opportunity to witness this endangered species in its natural habitat. The journey then unfolds into an extraordinary exploration, featuring both Gorilla and Chimpanzee Trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Kibale Forest, respectively. These encounters provide intimate glimpses into the lives of these remarkable primates, creating indelible memories for participants. For avid birdwatchers, the tour boasts excursions to renowned birding sites like the Royal Mile and the Kazinga Channel, where an array of avian wonders, including the rare Shoebill, await discovery. Game viewing in Murchison Falls National Park adds a touch of safari magic, while the tranquil boat cruises on the Kazinga Channel and Lake Victoria offer serene moments to appreciate the natural beauty of Uganda.

It’s worth noting that this safari caters to all enthusiasts; you don’t need to be a professional photographer to partake. Regardless of the device you carry, the captivating landscapes, diverse wildlife, and expertly guided experiences ensure that every participant captures unforgettable moments, fostering a deeper connection with Uganda’s rich biodiversity. Joining this safari is an invitation to explore, discover, and be inspired by the extraordinary wonders that define Uganda’s enchanting tapestry.

Itinerary

Day 1: 17 October 2024Entebbe

Upon arriving at Entebbe International Airport, you’ll be greeted and transferred to the Protea Hotel, a comfortable and stylish accommodation offering a peaceful retreat after your journey. Nestled near the shores of Lake Victoria, the hotel boasts modern amenities and a serene atmosphere perfect for acclimating to the Ugandan climate.

Afternoon at leisure to relax at the hotel or partake in an excursion to the Botanical Gardens.

In the afternoon, you can embark on a guided tour of the National Botanical Gardens of Uganda. Established in 1898, these gardens cover 40 hectares and showcase a stunning array of plant species, both indigenous and exotic. As you wander through the meticulously maintained paths, you’ll encounter towering tropical trees, vibrant flowering plants, and lush greenery. The gardens are also home to various bird species, making it a paradise for birdwatchers. Your knowledgeable guide will share insights into the diverse flora and fauna, the history of the gardens, and their role in botanical research and conservation. After the tour, return to the Protea Hotel for a relaxing evening, perhaps enjoying a delicious meal at the hotel’s restaurant, which offers a mix of local and international cuisine. (B)

Day 2: 18 October 2024Entebbe

Today’s agenda is set on the quest to find the elusive Shoebill at Mabamba Swamp. As the day breaks, venture into the tranquil waters of the swamp, guided by expert locals who know these wetlands like the back of their hand. The Shoebill, with its distinctive shoe-shaped bill, is a rare and remarkable bird, and spotting one in its natural habitat is a truly unforgettable experience. Glide through the swamp’s channels, surrounded by towering papyrus reeds and lush vegetation, keeping your eyes peeled for this iconic avian resident. Whether you catch a glimpse or not, the journey through Mabamba Swamp offers a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in Uganda’s rich biodiversity and pristine wilderness.

After your morning adventure, indulge in a leisurely lunch, savoring the flavors of local cuisine before heading back to the lakeshore for a scenic Lake Victoria sunset cruise. Step aboard a comfortable boat and set sail across the shimmering waters of Africa’s largest lake. As the sun descends toward the horizon, painting the sky with hues of gold and orange, relax and soak in the breathtaking panoramas. The tranquil ambiance, coupled with the gentle lapping of waves against the boat, creates a perfect setting for reflection and appreciation of nature’s beauty. Snap photos, enjoy refreshing drinks, and relish this serene moment before returning to shore. Tonight, unwind and recount the day’s adventures over a delightful dinner, sharing stories and creating memories to treasure. (B)

Day 3: 19 October 2024Masindi

After an early breakfast at the Protea Hotel, embark on a scenic road journey from Entebbe to Masindi. The drive, approximately four to five hours, offers a wonderful opportunity to witness the diverse landscapes of Uganda, transitioning from the bustling urban environment of Entebbe through lush rural areas and picturesque villages. As you travel northwards, you’ll pass through verdant forests, rolling hills, and expansive farmlands, providing a glimpse into the everyday life of Ugandan communities.

Your destination for the day is Masindi, a charming town with historical significance and a gateway to some of Uganda’s most renowned natural attractions. Upon arrival, check in at the Masindi Hotel, Uganda’s oldest hotel, dating back to 1923. This colonial-era establishment has hosted notable guests, including Ernest Hemingway and Katharine Hepburn, and offers a unique blend of historical charm and modern comfort. The hotel’s spacious gardens, vintage decor, and friendly service create a welcoming and nostalgic atmosphere.

In the evening, savor a delicious dinner at the hotel’s restaurant, which serves a variety of dishes, including traditional Ugandan cuisine and international favorites. (BLD)

Day 4: 20 October 2024Murchison Falls National Park

After breakfast, depart for Murchison Falls National Park, Uganda’s largest national park known for its diverse wildlife and dramatic waterfalls. En route, you’ll have the opportunity to explore the renowned Royal Mile in the Budongo Forest Reserve, one of the best bird-watching spots in the country.

The Royal Mile, named for its historical use as a leisure spot for the Omukama (King) of Bunyoro, is a breathtaking avenue of tall, ancient trees forming a natural cathedral. As you walk along the mile-long trail, your guide will help you spot a remarkable variety of bird species. The forest is also home to several primate species, such as chimpanzees, red-tailed monkeys, and blue monkeys. The serene beauty of the forest, combined with the rich biodiversity, makes for an unforgettable experience.

Continue your journey to Murchison Falls National Park. The drive offers more scenic views of Uganda’s lush landscapes, and you might catch glimpses of wildlife as you approach the park. Upon arrival, check in at Paraa Safari Lodge, a luxurious accommodation situated on the northern bank of the Nile River. The lodge offers stunning views of the river and the surrounding wilderness, with well-appointed rooms and top-notch amenities ensuring a comfortable stay.

In the afternoon, take some time to relax and enjoy the lodge’s facilities. You can cool off in the swimming pool, take in the panoramic views from the terrace, or simply unwind in your room. The lodge’s strategic location provides a perfect vantage point to observe the river’s wildlife, including hippos and crocodiles.

As evening approaches, gather for a delightful dinner at the lodge’s restaurant, which serves a variety of delicious dishes inspired by local and international cuisine. Reflect on the day’s experiences and enjoy the tranquility of the African bush, anticipating the thrilling wildlife encounters that await in the coming days at Murchison Falls National Park. (BLD)

Day 5: 21 October 2024Murchison Falls National Park

After breakfast, depart for a thrilling game drive through Murchison Falls National Park. As the sun rises, the park comes alive with wildlife activity, offering the perfect opportunity to spot some of Africa’s most iconic animals. With an experienced guide leading the way, traverse the park’s diverse landscapes, from savannahs and woodlands to riverine forests, in search of lions, elephants, giraffes, buffaloes, and various antelope species. Keep your binoculars handy for birdwatching, as the park is home to over 450 bird species.

In the afternoon, prepare for an unforgettable private boat cruise to the base of Murchison Falls. The journey begins on the tranquil waters of the Nile River, where you’ll have the chance to see hippos, crocodiles, and a variety of waterbirds up close. As the boat approaches the falls, the river narrows and the water’s power becomes increasingly evident. Murchison Falls, where the Nile River plunges through a narrow gorge with a thunderous roar, is one of the most spectacular sights in Uganda. From the vantage point at the base of the falls, you can fully appreciate the sheer force and beauty of this natural wonder.

During the cruise, your guide will share fascinating insights into the ecology and geology of the area, enriching your understanding of the park’s unique features. You’ll also have ample opportunities for photography, capturing the dramatic scenery and diverse wildlife.

After the boat cruise, return to Paraa Safari Lodge for the evening. Enjoy a delicious dinner at the lodge’s restaurant, recounting the day’s highlights with fellow travelers. (BLD)

Day 6: 22 October 2024Kibale Forest National Park

After breakfast, you’ll depart for Kibale Forest. This journey takes you through Uganda’s enchanting landscapes, transitioning from the open savannahs of Murchison Falls National Park to the lush, dense forests of Kibale. The drive, which spans several hours, offers picturesque views of rural life, vibrant markets, and verdant hills, allowing you to appreciate the rich tapestry of Ugandan scenery.

Upon arrival at Kibale Forest, head directly to the Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary for an afternoon swamp walk. This community-run conservation area is renowned for its incredible biodiversity and serves as a sanctuary for many species of birds, primates, and plants. As you traverse the swamp’s boardwalks and trails, guided by an experienced local guide, you’ll have the opportunity to spot a variety of bird species. The wetland is also a prime location for viewing primates such as the red colobus monkey, black-and-white colobus monkey, and grey-cheeked mangabey.

The swamp walk not only provides exceptional wildlife viewing but also offers insights into the local ecosystem and the important role of wetlands in environmental conservation. Your guide will share knowledge about the medicinal plants, traditional uses of the swamp, and the community’s conservation efforts.

After the swamp walk, you will transfer to Turaco Treetops, your accommodation for the next two nights. Nestled in the lush greenery near Kibale Forest, Turaco Treetops offers an immersive nature experience with its eco-friendly design and comfortable amenities. The lodge’s elevated wooden structures provide stunning views of the surrounding forest, and its tranquil ambiance ensures a relaxing stay. (BLD)

Day 7: 23 October 2024Kibale Forest National Park

The choice between trekking and photographing the chimpanzees or spending a full day birding at Kibale Forest presents two captivating experiences, each offering its own unique allure.

Option 1 – Trekking and photographing the chimpanzees: If you opt for this experience, you’ll embark on an exhilarating trek into the forest with experienced guides to search for and observe Kibale’s renowned chimpanzee population. The trek offers an opportunity to witness these fascinating primates in their natural habitat, observing their behaviours and interactions. Photographing these remarkable creatures amidst the lush forest setting can provide unforgettable moments and stunning photo opportunities.

Option 2 – Full day of birding: Choosing a full day dedicated to birding in Kibale Forest allows you to immerse yourself in the diverse avian life of the region. The forest is home to a multitude of bird species, offering birdwatchers the chance to spot various colorful and unique birds, including turacos, hornbills, barbets, and many more. Your day will be spent exploring different habitats within the forest, honing in on birding hotspots and capturing sightings of both resident and migratory bird species.

Both experiences promise an enriching encounter with Kibale Forest’s exceptional biodiversity. Whether you opt to spend time with the chimpanzees or indulge in a full day of birding, your stay at Turaco Treetops will offer a serene retreat amidst the natural splendor of the forest, allowing you to relax and reflect on the day’s adventures.

Both experiences promise an enriching encounter with Kibale Forest’s exceptional biodiversity. Whether you opt to spend time with the chimpanzees or indulge in a full day of birding, your stay at Turaco Treetops will offer a serene retreat amidst the natural splendor of the forest, allowing you to relax and reflect on the day’s adventures. (BLD)

Day 8: 24 October 2024Queen Elizabeth National Park

Your journey continues to the renowned Queen Elizabeth National Park, known for its diverse ecosystems and abundant wildlife.

Upon arrival, you’ll have the opportunity to embark on a private Kazinga Channel cruise in the afternoon. The Kazinga Channel is a natural waterway that connects Lake Edward to Lake George, attracting a wealth of wildlife, especially along its banks. This private cruise offers an intimate experience, allowing you to witness the rich diversity of animals such as hippos, crocodiles, elephants, buffaloes, and a variety of bird species that gather around the channel.

Following the captivating cruise, you’ll check in at the Mweya Safari Lodge for your overnight stay. The lodge offers breathtaking views of the park and the Kazinga Channel, providing a luxurious and comfortable setting amidst the wild beauty of Queen Elizabeth National Park. (BLD)

Day 9: 25 October 2024Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

The journey from Queen Elizabeth National Park to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is a scenic drive that takes you through beautiful landscapes and diverse terrains.

Upon arriving in Bwindi, you’ll check in at Engagi Lodge, a comfortable and inviting accommodation nestled in the heart of the forest. The lodge offers a serene atmosphere, allowing you to immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Bwindi as you prepare for an unforgettable gorilla trekking experience the next day.

Gorilla trekking is an incredible adventure that involves hiking through the dense forest in search of one of the habituated gorilla families. Your guide will lead you on this expedition, sharing insights about the forest and its inhabitants along the way.

It’s essential to prepare for the trek by ensuring you have suitable gear, such as sturdy hiking boots, comfortable clothing, rain gear, and a daypack with essentials like water and snacks. Additionally, following the guidelines provided by the park authorities is crucial for a successful and respectful gorilla trekking experience.

Take this evening to relax, soak in the ambiance of the lodge, and mentally prepare for the thrilling and awe-inspiring encounter with these magnificent mountain gorillas in their natural habitat. (BLD)

Day 10: 26 October 2024Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

The day begins with an early start for your much-anticipated gorilla trekking adventure in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. After a briefing by the park rangers about safety measures and gorilla trekking etiquette, you’ll set off into the dense forest in search of a habituated gorilla family.

The trek can vary in duration and difficulty, depending on the location of the gorilla group you’re visiting. As you navigate through the rugged terrain and lush vegetation, your experienced guides and trackers will lead the way, using their expertise to locate the gorillas.

Once you encounter the gorilla family, you’ll have a precious hour to observe these incredible primates in their natural habitat. You’ll witness their behaviors, interactions, and perhaps get the opportunity to take photos and create lasting memories of this extraordinary wildlife encounter.

After your magical time with the gorillas, you’ll trek back out of the forest, filled with awe and a deeper appreciation for these magnificent creatures and the conservation efforts to protect them.

Upon returning to Engagi Lodge, take time to relax and reflect on the incredible experience you’ve had today. Enjoy the comfort and hospitality of the lodge, sharing stories and reliving the highlights of your gorilla trekking adventure. This evening allows you to savor the memories of this once-in-a-lifetime encounter with mountain gorillas. (BLD)

Day 11: 27 October 2024Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

After the exhilarating experience of gorilla trekking, today offers a well-deserved opportunity to relax and unwind or to continue your exploration of Bwindi’s natural wonders. Whether you choose to relax at Engagi Lodge or embark on a birding walk, the day promises to be rejuvenating and enriching.

Option 1: Relaxation at Engagi Lodge

If you opt to relax, you can spend the day enjoying the serene ambiance of Engagi Lodge. The lodge’s comfortable and inviting setting, nestled in the heart of the forest, provides a perfect retreat to recover from the previous day’s trek. Start your day with a leisurely breakfast, savoring the flavors and the views from the dining area.

You might choose to spend your morning lounging on your private balcony or the lodge’s terrace, soaking in the tranquil sounds of the forest and the fresh mountain air. The lodge offers a peaceful environment where you can read a book, catch up on journaling, or simply reflect on the incredible experiences you’ve had so far. The attentive staff is on hand to ensure your comfort, and you can enjoy the lodge’s amenities at your own pace.

For lunch, the lodge serves delicious meals made with locally sourced ingredients, providing a taste of Ugandan cuisine. In the afternoon, you can continue to relax, perhaps indulging in a spa treatment if available, or taking a gentle walk around the lodge’s grounds. The day of rest will leave you feeling refreshed and rejuvenated, ready to continue your journey.

Option 2: Birding Walk with a Local Guide

For those with a continued sense of adventure and a passion for birdwatching, a guided forest walk with a local birding guide offers a wonderful way to explore Bwindi’s rich avian life. Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is a renowned birding destination, home to over 350 bird species, including several endemics.

After breakfast, you’ll meet your knowledgeable local birding guide, who will lead you on a walk through the forest trails. With their expertise, you’ll have the chance to spot and identify a variety of bird species, from colorful turacos and vibrant sunbirds to elusive forest species like the African green broadbill and the Shelley’s crimsonwing.

The walk not only provides excellent birding opportunities but also offers a chance to learn more about the forest’s ecosystem and the interconnectedness of its flora and fauna. Your guide will share insights into the behavior and habitat of the birds, as well as the conservation efforts in place to protect them.

After a fulfilling morning of birding, return to Engagi Lodge for lunch. The afternoon can be spent at your leisure, either continuing to explore the lodge’s surroundings or relaxing in your comfortable accommodation. Dinner at the lodge offers another opportunity to enjoy the local flavors and share stories of your day’s discoveries. (BLD)

Day 12: 28 October 2024End of Itinerary

After a hearty breakfast at Engagi Lodge, you’ll check out and embark on a transfer to Kihihi Airstrip for your flight back to Entebbe. The transfer to Kihihi Airstrip will likely involve a scenic drive through the beautiful landscapes of Bwindi.

Once you arrive at Kihihi Airstrip, you’ll board your scheduled flight to Entebbe. The flight offers stunning aerial views as you depart from Bwindi and journey back to Entebbe.

Your flight is expected to arrive at Entebbe International Airport around 11:25 am, marking the conclusion of your incredible journey through Uganda’s diverse and captivating landscapes, wildlife, and cultural experiences. (B)

Uganda Primate & Wildlife Expedition Map
Uganda Primate & Wildlife Expedition Accommodation

Protea Hotel by Marriott Entebbe

Masindi Hotel

Paraa Safari Lodge

Turaco Treetops

Mweya Safari Lodge

Engagi Lodge

Uganda Primate & Wildlife Expedition FAQ's

I'm a solo traveller, is there a single supplement?

Yes, Single Supplement = AUD $1,900

Which currency is most widely accepted on this tour?

– US Dollar (USD)

What is cancellation policy?

As per the terms and conditions of our Booking Form and Privacy Policy.

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