Uganda highlights tour

Description of Uganda highlights tour

Explore the bustling city of Entebbe, observe the tree-climbing lions of Ishasha and go gorilla trekking in Bwindi National Park.

This Uganda Highlights itinerary offers a chance to see the key highlights of Uganda within two weeks. Even though much more time can be spent exploring this amazing country, this suggested itinerary will ensure you visit Uganda's best destinations with ample time to experience them.

After spending your first night in Entebbe, you値l fly to Queen Elizabeth National Park for game drives and boat safaris. Next, you値l drive to see the tree-climbing lions in Ishasha, before heading to Bwindi National Park to encounter families of critically endangered mountain gorillas in their natural habitats.

Day-by-day experiences

Day 1:Arrive in Entebbe & Transfer to Kampala - Upon arrival in Entebbe, you'll be collected by your guide and transferred to your hotel in Kampala. Depending on your arrival time, you may be able to explore Kampala and the surrounding area this afternoon. We recommend visiting the Royal Mile (Lubiri Palace and Bulange Parliament), Ndere Cultural Centre, Kasubi Royal Tombs and Kampala Central Mosque, where you can take in the panoramic views of the city from the Minaret.
Day 2:Transfer to Murchison Falls National Park - Today, you'll drive for seven hours through spectacular scenery to Murchison Falls National Park in northwestern Uganda. Depending on your arrival time, you may have an opportunity to explore the mighty Murchison Falls either on a boat trip or on foot.
Day 3:Safari in Murchison Falls National Park - This morning, you can enjoy a game drive on the plains of Murchison Falls National Park, where you値l have a chance to spot giraffe, spotted hyena, lion, leopard, spotted hyena, buffalo, kob and hartebeest. We also recommend that you take a boat tour on the river towards the base of the waterfalls where it meets the Nile. On the banks of the river you値l see hippo, Nile crocodile, elephant, and if you池e lucky, the elusive leopard. There is prolific birdlife within the area too, including the extraordinary looking shoebill stork.
Day 4:Transfer to Kibale Forest - Today, you値l have a long drive through the plantations and mountains that are exemplify the beauty of the Ugandan countryside. This afternoon, you値l arrive at your lovely lodge in Fort Portal, at the foot of the Rwenzori Mountains and the base of the Kibale Forest.
Day 5:Chimpanzee Tracking in Kibale Forest - You値l have an early start this morning as you値l be required to meet park rangers at 8am for a briefing about your chimp trekking adventure. After the briefing, you値l head deep into the Kibale Forest to track the troops of chimpanzees that live there. As you trek through the dense forest in search of the chimpanzees, you値l hear them screech and hoot around you and it will feel as if the jungle has come alive. Once you致e found a family of chimpanzees, you can spend one hour watching them swing through the trees, play on the forest floor and build nests for their afternoon naps. It is a truly magical experience. The forest is also home to other primates, including colobus monkeys and red tailed monkeys, plus colourful giant butterflies. We also recommend the "swamp walk," which is a two-hour trek through the swamps to meet a local community living in this hostile environment. There is stunning scenery and some incredibly rare wildlife to spot en route.
Day 6:Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park - After breakfast at your lodge in Kibale, you値l travel to Queen Elizabeth National Park at the base of the Rwenzori Mountain range, adjacent to Lake Edward and Lake George. This spectacular national park is full of game and known for its large elephant population. After checking in to your lodge, you値l head out for an afternoon game drive and a sundowner before dinner.
Day 7:Safari in Queen Elizabeth National Park - Today, you値l have a full day to explore Queen Elizabeth National Park. You値l have morning and afternoon game drives, plus you can also enjoy a boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel, a guided nature walk in the Maramagambo Forest or you can take an early morning hot air balloon flight over the savannahs of Queen Elizabeth NP.
Day 8:Transfer to Lake Matunda - Today, you値l drive to Lake Matunda in southwest Uganda. This region is known as ''Little Switzerland'' due its lush mountains and freshwater lakes. It's the ideal base for a number of activities beyond gorilla tracking, including hiking, mountain biking, cultural village tours, bird watching or boat cruises on the lakes.
Day 9:Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park - After an early breakfast, you値l drive to the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park HQ, where you値l begin your gorilla trek. You will be allocated to one of nine habituated groups and your experienced guide and park ranger will lead you deep into the forest in search of your allocated family. Your trek could last from a few minutes to a full day, depending on the exact location of the specific gorilla family which you池e tracking. When you meet the gorillas, you値l have the chance to spend up to one magical hour quietly observing 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. In the late afternoon, you値l be transferred back to your accommodation, where you can spend the evening reflecting on your incredible encounter with the wild mountain gorillas of Uganda.
Day 10:Explore Lake Matunda - Today, you値l have a full day to explore Lake Matunda, plus the nearby lakes and Virunga Volcanoes. We highly recommend that you participate in the Batwa cultural experience. This fascinating full-day excursion offers an opportunity to hike in the forest with a Batwa guide and learn about the history, culture and traditions of the Batwa pygmies who inhabited Bwindi forest for centuries.
Day 11:Transfer to Mburo - After breakfast this morning, you値l drive for around six hours to Lake Mburo National Park. This is a small but spectacular national park with plenty of African wildlife, including buffalos, leopards, lions, hyenas, warthogs, giraffes, hippos and crocodiles, plus over 350 bird species. On arrival at the park, you値l enjoy a game drive, plus you may also have the opportunity for a bush walk or a mountain bike or horse riding safari.
Day 12:Depart from Entebbe - Sadly your Ugandan adventure comes to an end. This morning, you値l have breakfast and then you値l be driven back to Entebbe 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

Uganda highlights tour

Carbon reduction

Your holiday will help support local people and conservation. We must also reduce CO2. Learn about the CO2 emissions of this holiday and how to reduce them.

Environment

On this itinerary you値l track endangered mountain gorillas in Uganda's 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. These regulations will be repeated to you 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池e 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池e with the gorillas and you池e 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痴 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.

You will visit several national parks on this itinerary including Bwindi Impenetrable NP, Queen Elizabeth NP and Murchison Falls NP. In our detailed pre-departure travel pack we have included a note to remind you not leave any litter in the national parks everything you carry in, you must carry out. Aside from the environmental damage, litter can be harmful to the wildlife.

Throughout Uganda we use locally owned and managed hotels, guest houses, lodges and camps - such as Ndali Lodge in Fort Portal. 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池e 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痴 wildlife and culture.

One of the accommodation options we use on this itinerary is Ndali Lodge in Fort Portal, at the foot of the Rwenzori Mountains and the base of the Kibale Forest. This lodge has established a wonderful partnership with the local community. As well as providing employment and development opportunities, the lodge also provides sponsorship to over 20 students from pre-school through to university. In 2013 the lodge built a new nursery school for up to 90 children in the local area and it continues to support education initiatives in region.

During your time in Uganda we encourage you to try 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 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値l be able to help collect vegetables, herd the cattle, prepare dairy products, play local games and listen to the Karamojong warriors tell stories as you sit around a campfire.

We also highly recommend that you participate in the Batwa cultural experience during your time in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. This is a fascinating full day excursion offers an opportunity to hike in the forest with a Batwa guide and learn about the history, culture and traditions of the Batwa pygmies who inhabited Bwindi forest for centuries.

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