Rwanda, Uganda and Kenya camping safari, gorillas & the Mara
Description of Rwanda, Uganda and Kenya camping safari, gorillas & the Mara
Begin with a resonant human encounter at a moving museum in Kigali reflecting on the 1994 conflict that killed over a million Rwandans, before lifting your spirits with another side of Rwanda - an unforgettable encounter in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest with a family of Mountain gorillas whose gentleness belies their giant size.
Heading to the Queen Elizabeth National Park in the Great Rift Valley, you skirt the jagged Rwenzori Mountains, pausing for lunch amid tea and sugar cane plantations. Alongside savannah plains, this Park offers rainforests, dense papyrus swamps and natural volcanic crater lakes creating one of the world's highest levels of biodiversity, including 600-plus bird species. There's also a river cruise along the Kazinga Channel to see the world's highest concentration of hippos.
Travelling on through Uganda, trek in the birdsong-filled Budongo Forest to encounter chimpanzee, Velvet and Colobus monkeys, wild pigs and forest elephants, then onto the Murchison Falls National Park where a ferry across the Nile heralds a game drive in search of elephants, giraffe, buffalo and Ugandan kobs (a local antelope) – plus the lions and leopards that hunt them. End a magical day with a journey up the Nile to the ‘Devil’s Cauldron’, where rainbows arch through dramatic spray at the base of the park's eponymous cascade.
Driving to Jinja on Lake Victoria, choose between the adrenaline rush of white water rafting, a trip to the source of the White Nile or walking to a local village to see a transformative community project in action.
Crossing into Kenya, the big game stars of the secluded Lake Nakuru reserve are black and white rhinos, complemented by gaudy flamingos and leopards lazing in fever trees. The grasslands of the Masai Mara provide a grand finale – and visit between August and October to witness vast herds of wildebeest, gazelle and zebra run the gauntlet of predatory cheetah, lion and crocodiles as they cross the Mara on their annual migration.
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The permit fee charged to see the Gorillas in in Parc National des Volcans and in Bwindi Impenetrable National Forest goes directly towards the preservation of this endangered species and their fragile but beautiful environment. By travelling with us, you ensure that rangers are paid a fair wage and have the provisions and personnel to protect themselves and wildlife against harmful poaching activity.
It all starts at home so we have first worked at reducing our carbon footprint in our UK offices. Through energy conservation measures and recycling policies, we are proud to be actively reducing the waste produced and our impact on the environment. We support various projects all over the world to try and give something back to the places we visit.
PeopleLocal Craft and Culture:
Although this is a largely nature based trip, we incorporate as much benefit to local people as possible. One of the ways to support local people and boost the economy is to buy crafts along the roads in the smaller villages which we pass. During the visit to the Masai Mara village clients will have the opportunity to buy wooden carvings, necklaces, bracelets and Maasai spears. These items are for sale and provide a significant form of alternative income. Guides are careful to explain that any souvenirs on sale over the duration of the trip which are made from animal parts, shells or local hardwoods should not be purchased.
Accommodation and Meals:
The accommodation on this trip is a combination of hotels, lodges and permanent tented camps. The vast majority of the staff is from nearby villages and they even offer accommodation for staff staying in villages further away. This industry is a great source of employment for local people, so by staying in these hotels we are supporting steady income for local communities. In terms of meals, hotels will source local produce as much as possible and clients are encouraged to explore local restaurants and markets if convenient. Main meals are typically based on a meat or bean stew and ‘ugali’ (maize flour and water) or ‘matooke’ (boiled and mashed green banana).