8 Day Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari

Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari

Destinations:
Murchison Falls National Park
Kibale Forest National Park
Queen Elizabeth National Park
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Overview

This Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari takes you to the Murchison Falls National Park, the largest national park in Uganda, renowned for its scenic beauty and the spectacular falls from which it derives its name. The sight and sound of the falls as the Mighty Nile River crashes through a 7 meter gorge before tumbling 40 meters down in a thunderous explosion makes a memorable assault on the senses. You will enjoy memorable game drives, a boat cruise and viewing of the mesmerizing scenery in this national park.

The safari will continue to Kibale Forest National Park, the primate capital of the world, to trek the wild but habituated chimpanzees and for a walking safari in the wild to see other primates, colourful birds, rare flora and picturesque volcanic landscapes. This safari will take you to Queen Elizabeth National Park where you will see abundant bio-diversity of wildlife, amazing picturesque scenery and to enjoy a relaxing boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel with awesome opportunities to spot water birds and animals basking on the shores.

The climax of Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife safari will be an encounter with the elusive Mountain Gorillas in the famous Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and to interact with the former forest people, the Batwa, who used to live in this forest before it was gazetted as a national Park. 

Safari Highlights

  • Tracking Rhinos in their sanctuary
  • Game drives in Murchison Falls and Queen Elizabeth National Parks
  • Launch cruises on the Nile River and Kazinga Channel
  • Chimpanzee tracking in Kibale National Park
  • Nature walk in the Bigodi swamp for bird Watching
  • Gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
  • Interaction with the Batwa people
  • Equator experience

Travel Schedule

Day 1: Arrival in Uganda and transfer to Kampala
Day 2: Travel to Murchison Falls National Park
Day 3: Game drive and Boat launch on the Nile River
Day 4: Visit to the top of the falls and travel to Kibale Forest National Park
Day 5: Chimpanzee safari and Bigodi swamp walk
Day 6: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park and Boat cruise
Day 7: Game drive in Queen Elizabeth National Park and transfer to Bwindi
Day 8: Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi forest and Batwa trail
Day 9: Travel to Kampala

 



DETAILED ITINERARY

Day 1: Arrival in Uganda and transfer to your hotel in Kampala/Entebbe

Day 2: Travel to Murchison Falls National Park (5-6hrs)

The 9 day Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari will start by travelling to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary for an opportunity to trek the endangered white Rhinos that are being restocked in this part of the country following their extinction through poaching in the late 70s. White rhino tracking is done on foot for 1 and half hours. You will after the Rhino trekking continue to Murchison Falls National Park via Masindi Town where you will have a lunch break arriving in the evening. The entire journey takes 7-9 hours. Dinner and overnight will be at the lodge of your booking.

Luxury: Paraa Safari Lodge/ Nile Safari Lodge/ Bakers Lodge
Mid-range: Fort Murchison (in rooms)/ Murchison River Lodge
Budget:
Fort Murchison in tents/ Murchison River Lodge in tents / Red Chili
Meal Plan:
Full Board Basis

Day 3: Game drive and Boat launch on the Nile River

Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari - Boat Safari in Murchison

The Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari with an early start (6.30am) and set off at for a sunrise game drive in the Murchison Falls National Park to see the Cape buffaloes, Rothschild’s giraffes, Uganda kob, hartebeest and waterbucks. You may also spot oribi, bushbuck, Bohor reedbuck, shy sitatunga, bush duiker, warthog and bush pig plus large carnivores including lions, leopards and spotted hyenas. Chimpanzees and olive baboons head the list of six species of primates found in this park. Crocodiles and hippos will be seen along the banks of the Nile River. Some of the more common birds that can be seen include goliath heron, Egyptian geese, pelican, bee-eaters, kingfishers, hornbill, cormorant, saddle-bill stork and the rare shoebill stork. You will return to your lodge for a late breakfast and some relaxation and later set off in the afternoon for a boat cruise on the placid Victoria Nile, upstream, to the base of the falls. En route you will see hippos, crocodiles, water bucks and a wide variety of birds like the unusual shoebill stork. The boat stops just tens of meters from the “Devil’s Cauldron” for pictures to be taken of the photogenic and majestic Murchison Falls.

Luxury: Paraa Safari Lodge/ Nile Safari Lodge/ Bakers Lodge
Mid-range: Fort Murchison (in rooms)/ Murchison River Lodge
Budget: Fort Murchison in tents/ Murchison River Lodge in tents / Red Chili
Meal Plan: Full Board Basis

Day 4: Visit to the top of the falls and travel to Kibale Forest National Park

Uganda Safari - Murchison Falls National Park Safari

You will after your breakfast visit the “top of the thunderous Murchison falls”, where you will observe the Nile River squeezing itself in a 7 meter gorge before tumbling 40 meters down in a thunderous explosion and then flows down into a very peaceful river whose water banks are swarmed with a profusion of water and land animals as well as birds.

Continue the Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari with a 9 hour journey to Kibale Forest National Park.  The drive is incredibly scenic passing through the verdant countryside of undulating hills dotted with traditional homesteads, farm gardens and tea plantations. There will be a stopover in the town of Fort Port allocated at the foothills of the Rwenzori, the fabled “Mountains of the Moon”.

Dinner and overnight will be at the lodge of your booking.

Luxury: Ndali lodge/Primate lodge/Kyaninga lodge
Moderate: Mountains of the moon/Kibale forest camp/crater safari lodge/ Primate Lodge
Budget: Rwenzori travelers/Kibale forest camp/Chimpanzee forest guest house
Meal plan: Full Board Basis 

Day 5: Chimpanzee trekking and Bigodi swamp walk

chimpanzee tracking

After breakfast you will go for chimpanzee tracking in Kibale Forest National Park, where the greatest variety and highest concentration of primates in East Africa is exceptionally represented. The most famous of its 13 primate species is the Chimpanzee, a very delightful ape. The walk may take 2-3 hours before coming across a family of habituated chimpanzees with which you will spend one hour enjoying their acrobatic antics as they squabble and playfully swing in the tree branches. It is also possible not to come across the targeted chimpanzees therefore we cannot guarantee you to see them; they remain wild animals much as they are habituated!

Kibale forest is also home to other primate species like the rare I’Hoest’s monkey, the black and white Colobus, Blue monkey, Grey cheeked mangabey, Red tailed monkey and Olive baboon, among others. You will come across many of these as you walk in the forest and the ranger will be explaining to you their interesting characteristics. The bird life in the forest is also prolific and includes the beautiful Great Blue Turaco. If you are very lucky on this Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari, you may even catch a glimpse of the meandering herd of Forest Elephants.

You will return to your booked Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari lodge for lunch after which you will go for the Bigodi swamp walk that will take you through swampy grassland, local communities and some beautiful scenery. It is usual to spot 3 or 4 different primate species during this walk and to see a variety of rare bird species and other smaller mammals. Alternatively you can opt to go for sightseeing of the scenic beauty of crater lakes characteristic of this region. You will after the walk transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park.

Luxury Lodge: Mweya Safari Lodge: Katara Lodge/ Jacana Lodge
Moderate:  Bush Lodge (in rooms) / Simba Safari Camp in rooms/ Buffalo Safari Resort/ Enganzi Lodge/ Ihamba Safari Lodge
Budget facility: Kazinga Channel View Lodge/ Simba Safari Camp in tents/ Bush Lodge in tents
Meal Plan: Full Board Basis

Day 6: Game drive and boat cruise in Queen Elizabeth National Park

game drive in queen elizabeth n. park

After your morning breakfast, you will have an early morning Game drive where you will see the lion, leopard, giant forest hog, Cape buffalo, elephant, defassa waterbuck, Uganda Kob, topi and bushbuck among others. You will return to your reserved Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari lodge for lunch and in the afternoon go for a 2-hour boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel. It is a 42kms channel that joins Lake Edward and Lake George. This Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari trip passes through possibly the highest concentration of hippos and offers an excellent platform for photography, bird watching and game viewing. The prolific bird life is colorful, with well over 550 resident species. Dinner and overnight will be spent at your reserved lodge.

Luxury Lodge: Mweya Safari Lodge / Katara Lodge / Jacana Lodge
Moderate:  Bush Lodge (in rooms) / Simba Safari Camp in rooms/ Buffalo Safari Resort/ Enganzi Lodge/ Ihamba Safari Lodge
Budget facility: Kazinga Channel View Lodge/ Simba Safari Camp in tents/ Bush Lodge in tents
Meal Plan: Full Board Basis

Day 7: Game drive in Ishasha Sector and transfer to Bwindi

 

Queen Elizabeth National Park Safari

Tree Climbing Lions in QENP

You will set off early (about 6.30am) for a morning game drive in the Southern sector of the Queen Elizabeth National Park, Ishasha, an awesome opportunity to spot the animals in their natural habitats. Expect to see the famous Big Five, Bush bucks, Giant forest hog, Hyenas, Leopards, Waterbucks as well as birds. The big prize of this game drive will be to spot the “tree climbing lions” which are seen during the hot hours of the day, as they rest in the tree branches.

You will return to the lodge for lunch after which your Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari driver/guide will transfer you to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park which is the natural habitat for the endangered mountain gorillas. Your journey to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park will take you through rolling hills punctuated with human habitations, skillfully terraced gardens and tea plantations. The scenery is amazingly beautiful!

Budget: Buhoma community Rest camp / Ruhija Gorilla Friends Camp / Gorilla Valley Lodge
Moderate: Gorilla Resort Bwindi /Gorilla Safari Lodge / Lake Mutanda Resort/ Gorilla Mist Camp.
Up market: Mahogany Springs Lodge / Buhoma Lodge / Rushanga Gorilla Satari Lodge.
Meal plan: Full Board Basis

Day 8: Gorilla trekking in Bwindi and Batwa cultural experience

Gorilla trekking in Bwindi

You will have an early morning breakfast and move to the Park headquarters to join other trackers in a briefing about the gorilla trekking rules and procedures at 7:45 am. You will then start the trek under the guidance of a trained ranger through thick creepers and undergrowth to find the Gorillas, which can take you 1-8 hours. The steeply forested landscape is incredibly dense but crisscrossed by numerous animal trails allowing access by tourists. As you move your guide will point out signs of previous Gorilla activity, including dung, nests and chewed bamboo shoots. Once sited, you will have one hour to stay with the Gorillas at close range (three meters) and watch them as they communicate, feed, play and bond with their young. The experience on this Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari is sensationally humbling and one that will leave you with memories to last a lifetime!

You will return to your Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari lodge for a rest and later go for a cultural walk among the Batwa people who used to live in the Bwindi forest before it was gazetted as a National Park. You will learn about their life and culture as a forest people and be amazed by the wealth of knowledge they have on native medicinal plants which they use to treat a wide array of human sicknesses.

Alternatively you will watch a skillful black smith as he manufactures local iron tools for use in everyday life the way it used to be done in the ancient days or witness the making of local beer. Your cultural tour will be crowned with a traditional dance performance whose antics are fabulously entertaining.

Budget: Buhoma community Rest camp / Ruhija Gorilla Friends Camp / Gorilla Valley Lodge
Moderate: Gorilla Resort Bwindi /Gorilla Safari Lodge / Lake Mutanda Resort/ Gorilla Mist Camp.
Up market: Mahogany Springs Lodge / Buhoma Lodge / Rushanga Gorilla Satari Lodge.
Meal plan: Full Board Basis

Day 9: Transfer back to Kampala with stopover at the Equator

You will after breakfast start the Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari journey route back to Kampala with a stopover at interesting tourism attractions, arriving in the evening. Among the attractions will be a stopover at the Equator where you will have an opportunity to stand in two hemispheres at the same time and take some photos. You will arrive in Kampala in the late afternoon and either be transferred to the airport for your departure flight or to the hotel of your booking for dinner and a well deserved rest.

END OF SAFARI


Requirements for the Gorilla Trek Uganda & Wildlife Safari

  • A Visa – you can apply for the visa online or very easily get one at the point of entry into the country (airport)
  • Chimpanzee and Gorilla trekking permits – You can apply and secure these on line but experience has shown that it is better coordinated when you send money to the tour firm to handle it for you at no extra cost to the standard fee (USD600)
  • Travel &Health insurance – This should be arranged by you in your home country before you travel.
  • Physical fitness

The Safari package includes:

  • Accommodation as per the itinerary
  • 4WD safari vehicle with popup roof
  • Bottled drinking water
  • Rhino trekking fees
  • Ferry crossing fees
  • Boat trips
  • Visit to the top of the Murchison falls fee
  • Chimpanzee trekking permit in Kibale forest
  • Gorilla trekking permit for $600 per person
  • Services of an English Speaking Driver/guide.
  • Game drives
  • Community visit fees
  • Guided nature walks
  • Picpup and Return airport transfers.

The Safari package excludes expenses of a personal nature such as:

  • Other drinks
  • Laundry
  • Tips to local guides
  • Telephone expenses
  • Porter fees while trekking Gorillas and chimpanzees
  • Personal insurance
  • Cigarettes

Request a quote for this safari

Wildlife ViewingBirdingGorilla TrekkingPrimates TourCultural TourWhitewater RaftingMountaineeringHoneymoon Holiday
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