Best of Uganda wildlife tour

Description of Best of Uganda wildlife tour

Track chimpanzees in Kibale Forest National Park, see large herds of elephants in Queen Elizabeth National Park, spot the tree-climbing lions of Ishasha, then come face to face with endangered mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.

Flying into Entebbe, you'll start you wildlife-watching in Kibale Forest National Park, tracking the troops of chimpanzees that live in the national park. Your next destination is Queen Elizabeth National Park, located at the base of the Rwenzori Mountains. This spectacular national park is full of wildlife and known for its large elephant population. Drive from Queen Elizabeth National Park to Bwindi, visiting Ishasha along the way.

A true highlight of this wildlife adventure is the chance to encounter families of mountain gorillas in their natural habitats. In Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, you will be allocated one of the nine groups of mountain gorillas. Learn more about these fabulous primates that are increasingly on the verge of extinction from your guide.

Day-by-day experiences

Day 1:Arrive in Entebbe & Transfer to Kibale Forest National Park - Meet your guide at the airport upon arrival in Entebbe and drive to Kibale Forest National Park. Enjoy wonderful views of Lake Victoria as you leave Entebbe, bypassing the busy city of Kampala. Travel through Uganda's stunning countryside to your lodge in Fort Portal, at the foot of the Rwenzori Mountains.
Day 2:Tracking Chimps in Kibale - You’ll have an early start this morning as you’ll be required to meet park rangers at 8am for a briefing about your chimp tracking adventure. Head deep into the forest to track troops of chimpanzees that live there. Hear them screech and hoot as you make your way through the bush. You have one hour to spend watching these primates in their natural habitat. The forest is also home to colobus monkeys and red tailed monkeys, plus colourful giant butterflies. You have the option to go for a "swamp walk" after tracking chimps; a two-hour trek through the swamps to meet a local community living in this hostile environment.
Day 3:Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park - Head for Queen Elizabeth National Park, spread over at the base of the Rwenzori Mountain range, after breakfast. Located near Lake Edward and Lake George, this spectacular national park is full of animals and is known for its large elephant population. Go out on an afternoon game drive after checking in at your lodge.
Day 4:Safari in Queen Elizabeth National Park - Explore Queen Elizabeth National Park with morning and afternoon game drives. You also have the option to book a boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel (look out for hippos and Nile crocodiles) or go for a guided nature walk in the Maramagambo Forest. You can also book an early morning hot air balloon flight over the savannah.
Day 5:Transfer to Bwindi - Leave Queen Elizabeth National Park and take a short drive through Ishasha. Try spotting the famous tree-climbing lions before continuing to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.
Day 6:Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park - Drive to the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park HQ after an early breakfast to start your gorilla trek. You will be allocated one of the nine gorilla groups in the national park, then join an experienced guide and park ranger, who will lead you deep into the forest in search of your allocated family. Your trek could last anywhere from a few minutes to a full day, depending upon the exact location of the specific gorilla family you have been assigned. Spend up to one hour quietly observing these magnificent primates upon spotting them. The gorillas are likely to be just a few metres away from you and they will continue to go about their daily lives, feeding and interacting with each other, under the watchful gaze of the silverback.
Day 7:Today marks the end of your Uganda adventure. Have breakfast in the morning and drive across the Uganda-Rwanda boarder to Kigali for your international flight home.

Travel Team

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Departure information

This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Best of Uganda wildlife tour

Environment

On this Ugandan adventure you’ll track endangered mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. Well managed tourism practices have helped to save the last of the mountain gorillas from extinction, and your trekking permits and national park fees contribute to the ongoing conservation efforts in Bwindi National Park.

Before you depart for Uganda you will receive a detailed travel pack in which we outline the rules and regulations for gorilla trekking in Uganda. These regulations will be repeated by your guide before you embark on your trek and it is essential that you adhere to them. You will not be allowed to track them if you’re suffering from any illness including a cold or flu which can be transmitted to the gorillas. You will be instructed to talk in a low voice whilst you’re with the gorillas and you’re requested to keep a seven metre distance from them. You must not touch the gorillas under any circumstances - although they are used to seeing people on a daily basis, they are wild animals and they can sometimes react unexpectedly so it is essential that you listen to your guide’s and trackers’ instructions. You will also be advised to disable the flash on your camera before you get to your group of gorillas as flash photography is not permitted.

On this itinerary you will also trek deep into the Kibale Forest to track the troops of chimpanzees that live there. As with the gorilla tracking, similar rules and regulations have been set out by the Uganda Wildlife Authority to govern this activity in order to protect the chimpanzees and their environment and we expect our clients to adhere to them.

Throughout Uganda we use locally owned and managed hotels, guest houses, lodges and camps, including Kibale Forest Camp, Katara Lodge and Mutanda Lake Resort. We believe that by using locally owned properties, rather than international chains, we ensure that as much revenue as possible remains in Uganda, and it also provides a more authentic travel experience for our clients.

Fresh water is limited in many areas of Uganda, therefore we encourage our clients to take short showers and to use water sparingly. We ask our clients to follow any environmental policies that their hotel, guest house, lodge or camp may have in place - for example, they may give guests the option to not have their towels or bed linen washed everyday and by reducing the quantity of towels/linen they wash, they reduce water consumption, energy and use of detergents.

Recycling facilities are limited in Uganda, however many properties have bins to collect plastic bottles. All glass bottles should be returned to the place you bought them to be re-used. In our detailed pre-departure travel packs we include a note to advise clients that they should take their empty shampoo and shower gel bottles back home and recycle them at home. We also request that people take all batteries home with them as they cannot be safely disposed of in Uganda.

Community

We are committed to responsible, sustainable and ethical tourism in Uganda and we’re proud to work with a fantastic supplier who shares our core values with regards to responsible tourism practices. We also use expert local guides who offer our clients a fascinating insight into Uganda’s wildlife and culture.

During your time in Uganda we encourage you to interact and engage with the Ugandan people as this will offer a much more meaningful and enriching travel experience. We recommend that you talk to your local guides and drivers and make an effort to get to know them!

This itinerary is flexible and if you’re interested we can include cultural experiences such as spending the night in a Karamojong kraal in the northeast region of Uganda. This is a wonderful opportunity to interact with Karamojong people and get an insight into their way of life - you’ll be able to help herd the cattle, collect vegetables, prepare dairy products, play local games and listen to the Karamojong warriors tell stories as you sit around a campfire.

Whilst in Uganda we encourage you to support the local economy by buying authentic handmade products such as wood carvings, fabrics, pottery and jewellery at markets, villages and small-scale souvenir shops rather than hotel tourist shops or on organised shopping trips. In Kampala we recommend that you visit a Banana Boat outlet - they sell handmade crafts from around the country and they support local initiatives.

We also encourage you to be adventurous and eat in local restaurants and cafés. Not only does this help to support the local economy, but it will also give you a more authentic holiday experience.

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