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Essential Uganda

Duration
10 Days
Prices From:
US$ 5,319

Explore Uganda with a unique safari experience that includes chimpanzees in Kibale Forest, game viewing in Queen Elizabeth National Park and of course, gorilla tracking in Bwindi.


Winston Churchill famously called Uganda ‘The Pearl of Africa’. Those embarking on this 10 day tour will find it hard to disagree.

Arrive in the morning on day one to enjoy an afternoon boat trip, visiting the chimpanzees of Ngamba Island. You can also visit the Wildlife Education Centre in Entebbe, Uganda’s main air hub on the shores of Lake Victoria.

As you head west in search of gorillas, stop in at Lake Mburo National Park to meet some of Uganda’s other inhabitants, including zebra, buffalo, topi and leopards. Go on to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, your first stop on a gorilla tracking adventure. Around half the world’s 700 or so remaining mountain gorillas reside in the park, alongside numerous endangered bird species, making 2 nights here a rare and unforgettable experience for nature lovers.

Your wildlife safari continues at Queen Elizabeth National Park, home to tree-climbing lions known for their unique black manes. Over 95 species of mammals and 500 species of birds also inhabit this enormous park, including hippo, elephants, leopards and chimpanzees. Enjoy game drives, a boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel, and chimp tracking in Chamburu Gorge.

The Kibale Forest provides a habitat for 13 species of primate, including chimpanzees, olive baboons and red-tailed monkeys. Leopards, buffalo and elephants also travel between the Forest and Queen Elizabeth National Park. For those who’ve had their fill of animal tracking, this area offers endless opportunities for hiking amid pristine rainforest. Your tour ends with a chimp tracking experience through Kibale – one last unforgettable memory to take away from this amazing country. At least, until you return.


 

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Duration
10 Days
Prices From:
US$ 5,319

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1

Arrive Entebbe

On arrival at Entebbe International Airportyou will be met by Goways local representative and transferred to the Boma Guest Lodge. Depending on your arrival time, a half day trip to Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary may be arranged at an additional cost. This could also be arranged at the end of your safari if you prefer. This evening, you will receive a short pre-trip briefing at the hotel.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Boma Lodge

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    Boma Lodge


    The Boma Lodge is set in a leafy suburb, a few minutes' drive from Entebbe International Airport and is ideal for stopovers. The Boma Lodge consists of fifteen bedrooms all of which combine the modern comforts one expects today with the charm and character of ...

    The Boma Lodge is set in a leafy suburb, a few minutes' drive from Entebbe International Airport and is ideal for stopovers. The Boma Lodge consists of fifteen bedrooms all of which combine the modern comforts one expects today with the charm and character of the original 1940's home. All the rooms are individually decorated in a mixture of African and European decor, and have been designed to reflect the original colonial architecture. The rooms do vary, but most include four-poster beds with mosquito nets, private verandah, ensuite bathroom, satellite TV, international power points, safes and wireless internet connection. A residents' and diners' bar set in landscaped gardens with lake views provide a charming and relaxed "country house" experience.

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Day 2

Entebbe to Bwindi

Today you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Bwindi. Upon arrival you will be met and transferred by vehicle to your lodge.

The park is located in South-western Uganda, covering parts of Rukungiri, Kisoro, and Kabale Districts. It is situated in a hilly countryside, which, together with some remnant lowland forest outside the boundary, constitutes an important water catchment area for many rivers, supplying the agricultural land of the surrounding region. This is the richest forest in Uganda, in terms of the number of plant species, as the area is one of the few large expanses of forest in East Africa where lowland and montane communities merge. The valley bottoms contain a dense ground cover of herbs, vines, and shrubs with only a few trees hence its name, the impenetrable forest. This is one of the richest faunal communities in East Africa. There exists about one half of the world's population of the endangered mountain gorillas. There are also several endangered species of birds with limited ranges. Gorilla tracking began on 1st April 1993. It is advisable to make reservations at least 3-6 months before your intended date of visit.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Duration3 Nights
Accommodation

Buhoma Lodge

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    Buhoma Lodge



    Buhoma Lodge commands spectacular and uninterrupted views of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park home to the rare and elusive Mountain Gorilla. Situated within the National Park, less than five minutes' walk, from the start of the gorilla trekking point. Eight, comfortable cottages have been ...

    Buhoma Lodge commands spectacular and uninterrupted views of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park home to the rare and elusive Mountain Gorilla. Situated within the National Park, less than five minutes' walk, from the start of the gorilla trekking point. Eight, comfortable cottages have been carefully built, each with its own private verandah, allowing wonderful views of the forest canopy of the National Park. An elevated lounge area, complete with bar and dining facilities, offers a cozy, comfortable environment, to discuss the day's activities around the fireplaces which add atmosphere and warmth in the cool evenings.

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Day 3

Gorilla Tracking

You will be escorted to the National Parks headquarters to meet your guides for your gorilla tracking experience. An early morning trek into the forest on the slopes of the volcanoes, led by experienced trackers will bring you amongst a family of Mountain Gorillas. These massive primates are extremely rare, only approximately 650 remaining. You will get within metres of the family, and be privileged to spend time amongst them. The trekking may be fairly strenuous; up to six hours or longer is not uncommon - at relatively high altitude. Mountain Gorillas are wild animals, as such sightings cannot be guaranteed; however the success rate is well over 90%.

The trekking may be fairly strenuous; up to six hours or longer is not uncommon-at relatively high altitude.

Mountain Gorillas are wild animals and as such, sightings cannot be guaranteed 100%.

PLEASE NOTE: on certain departures, due to Gorilla Permit availability, this leg of your safari may be undertaken in Rwanda. A similar standard of accommodation will be utilized in Rwanda, but there may be a surcharge depending on availability. Please check at time of booking.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 4

Bwindi

Today you will have the option of a second Gorilla Trek or Forest Walk in Bwindi. Please inform at the time of booking. In the afternoon relax or explore the local area on foot.

PLEASE NOTE: on certain departures, due to Gorilla Permit availability, this leg of your safari may be undertaken in Rwanda. A similar standard of accommodation will be utilized in Rwanda, but there may be a surcharge depending on availability. Please check at time of booking.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 5

Bwindi and Queen Elizabeth National Park

Today you will head in a northerly direction to the Ishasha area of Queen Elizabeth National park, from Bwindi approximately 3 hours' drive, to be welcomed to your established tented camp nestled under trees alongside a river. On a clear day views from the area stretch to the ice-capped Rwenzori Mountains to the north, and the Virunga volcanoes to the south, there are few places on earth to rival the scenery in this park. 'Birders' won't be disappointed with the enormous range of species in the area. The park spreads over an area of 1978 km2 in the western arm of the Great East Rift Valley. It is a home to a variety of wildlife including elephant, lion, hippo, buffalo, and Uganda kob, baboon, and birds, all typical of riverine and savannah habitats. In the southern part of the park is the Ishasha are with tree climbing lions and the Maramagambo, one of the largest surviving natural forests in Uganda. The northern part of the park is traversed by the equator and is dominated by the scenery of crater lakes with lots of flamingos on some of them. A launch trip from Mweya along the Kazinga channel, which joins Lake Edward and Lake George, provides one of the most memorable experiences of the park.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

Ishasha Tented Camp

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Location View map
  • Ishasha Tented Camp



    Ishasha Wilderness Camp with its' 6 Meru Style tents is located on the banks of the Ntungwe River and providing access to a host of game viewing including the famous tree climbing lions. Each tent has en-suite bathrooms with hot bush showers and eco-friendly toilets. ...

    Ishasha Wilderness Camp with its' 6 Meru Style tents is located on the banks of the Ntungwe River and providing access to a host of game viewing including the famous tree climbing lions. Each tent has en-suite bathrooms with hot bush showers and eco-friendly toilets. Ishasha Wilderness Camp is the perfect place to stop on the way to track the gorillas of Bwindi.

    Ishasha Wilderness Camp is located inside the Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park on the Ntungwe River; it is an idyllic retreat for people who truly want to experience the wilderness. This exclusive tented camp offers quality accommodation and services in this unspoilt remote southern sector of Queen Elizabeth National.

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Day 6

Queen Elizabeth National Park

A second day in Queen Elizabeth National Park with more game viewing opportunities available to you.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Duration0 Days
Day 7

Queen Elizabeth National Park

From Ishasha, you drive approximately 2 hours to the Mweya region of Queen Elizabeth National Park. During your visit here you will have time to enjoy game drives, a boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel and an opportunity to trek chimps in Chamburu Gorge (subject to permits being available and group size). Located on a peninsula overlooking the Kazinga Channel on one side and with spectacular views towards the Ruwenzori Mountains on the other, this upgraded and renovated lodge provides some of the best accommodation and service facilities in Uganda.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Mweya Lodge

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Location View map
  • Mweya Lodge



    Mweya Safari Lodge is located on a peninsula within the heart of the spectacular Queen Elizabeth National Park. Each luxurious room contains balconies, private bathrooms and electricity. The hotel also features a swimming pool, poolside bar, Tempo Safari Bar, souvenir shop, boardroom, conference room, DSTV, ...

    Mweya Safari Lodge is located on a peninsula within the heart of the spectacular Queen Elizabeth National Park. Each luxurious room contains balconies, private bathrooms and electricity. The hotel also features a swimming pool, poolside bar, Tempo Safari Bar, souvenir shop, boardroom, conference room, DSTV, satellite TV and the Kazinga Restaurant service global cuisine.

    Facilities

    • Bar(s)
    • Conference Facilities
    • Gift Shop
    • Pool (s)
    • Restaurant(s)

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Day 8

Kibale Forest

Today you will travel on a 2-3 hour drive from Queen Elizabeth National Park (north) on good roads. On a clear day you may get views of the Rwenzoris in the distance. Two nights spent in the area to allow time for chimpanzee tracking in the forest, (permits must be pre purchased). You can also do a forest walk (guided) during your stay, or simply enjoy the area and perhaps visit the Bigodi Swamps, or the Vanilla Farm close to Ndali. Kibale, 766 km2 is one of Uganda's enchanting forested parks. Here, you can hike in the park for hours observing the drama of life in a rain forest. The park contains pristine lowland tropical rain forest, montane forest, and mixed tropical deciduous forest. In addition to forest, you will also notice areas of grassland and of swamp. The forest is rich in wildlife. It is most noted for its primate population. Some of these are red-tailed monkey, diademed monkey, olive baboon, chimpanzee, black and white colobus. Some of the other mammals you might see are bushbuck, Harvey's red duiker, blue duiker, bush pig, and African civet. More difficult to spot are buffalo, waterbuck, hippo, warthog, and giant forest hog. Herds of elephant once travelled back and forth through the area. These elephants have become more and more rare, and now are seldom seen. The birdlike in the forest and grasslands of the forest is abundant. There are almost 300 species, which have been identified here. One particularly worth noting is the endemic to Kibale forest. There are 144 species of butterfly in the park and a diverse population of moths and other insects. A system of trails has been developed within the park, and tour guides are available to guide visitors.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

Primate Lodge

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    Primate Lodge



    Experience the world renowned Ugandan hospitality amidst unrivaled nature, scenery and serenity in the heart of Kibale rainforest National Park, Uganda's primates' paradise and home to over 13 different species of primates and numerous other mammals, butterflies and birds. Primate Lodge Kibale's principal edge is ...

    Experience the world renowned Ugandan hospitality amidst unrivaled nature, scenery and serenity in the heart of Kibale rainforest National Park, Uganda's primates' paradise and home to over 13 different species of primates and numerous other mammals, butterflies and birds. Primate Lodge Kibale's principal edge is location, tucked deep in the forest and right next door to the starting point for Chimpanzee tracking excursion as well as the incredible Chimpanzee Habituation, really, two of the most genuinely breath-taking wildlife experiences on the planet.

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Day 9

Kibale Forest

This activity will generally take place in the morning. You will either be driven or walk down to the Kibale Forest National Parks' headquarters to meet your guides for your morning's chimp tracking experience (depending which lodge you are staying at). The forest is alive with noise and you should be lucky enough to see the habituated chimps during your trek.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Duration1 Night
Day 10

Return Entebbe

After an early breakfast for the drive back to Entebbe, stopping for curio shopping on the roadside and a quick photo stop at the Equator. Arriving back in Entebbe, late afternoon. The remainder of the day is at leisure. (Departing flights to be booked to depart for after 8pm)

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch

Other Information

DEPARTURES:

2017: Jul  28; Aug 4, 25; Sep 8, 15; Oct 6, 20; Nov 10; Dec 22
2018: Jan 6, 26; Feb 9; Mar 29; Apr 27; May 25; Jun 8, 22; Jul 6, 20; Aug 9, 31; Sep 14, 26; Oct 12; 29; Nov 9, Dec 20

PRICE INCLUDES:

  • Meet and greet on arrival
  • Roundtrip airport transfers
  • Flight from Entebbe to Bwindi (Kihihi)
  • 9 nights' accommodation
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary
  • Tours/sightseeing as indicated in the itinerary
  • Services of a qualified driver/guide
  • 1 Gorilla permit
  • 1 Chamburu Chimp Permit
  • 1 Kibale Chimp Permit
  • Park fees

PRICE EXCLUDES:

  • International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes unless specified
  • Meals and beverages not mentioned
  • Gratuities
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Travel Insurance
  • Visa fees if applicable
  • Optional excursions

OTHER INFORMATION:

Due to the availability of the permits, the Gorilla trek may take place in Rwanda. 

Gorilla permits are limited so book early.  All gorilla permits need to be purchased at time of booking in addition to the regular deposit requirement.  Permit prices are government regulated and subject to change without notice. Once purchased, no changes or refunds. 

A 2nd Gorilla tracking opportunity is available on this itinerary but must be requested and paid for at time of booking and will be subject to availability. 

This trip can be done in reverse and departure flights on the last day must be after 8PM. 

TERMS AND CONDITIONS:

Prices are "from" per person based on twin/double share accommodation and for travel in low season. Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply. Limited seat/spaces and all pricing is subject to change and availability. Rates for single or triple travellers are available on request - please inquire.

TB WILDFROENT0215SA: UG8GCG
10 Nov 2017
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