The 7 day best of Uganda mountain gorilla and wildlife safari’ is the ultimate safari tour for the enthusiastic naturalist.
Your 7 day best of Uganda mountain gorilla and wildlife safari will begin with the ATP-Tours driver-guide meeting you at your hotel/residence in Kampala – Uganda’s capital. After a briefing on how your tour will run, you will drive heading towards Nakasongola district and make your first stop at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary. The sanctuary is the only wildlife safari destination in Uganda where rhinos are bred. The sanctuary was set up to recover the rhinos population which had been depleted because of poaching. Besides trekking rhinos at the sanctuary, you will be able to see other wildlife including mammal species and bird species.
Your next stop will be in Masindi town for you to have a sumptuous lunch comprising of local or international delicacies, depending on your preference. You will then continue with your gorilla and wildlife safari, reaching Murchison Falls National Park – Uganda’s largest National Park in the evening. An evening nature walk within the park will expose you to a variety of wildlife. You will later have dinner and sleep over at your choice safari accommodation.
After having breakfast, you will head out to Murchison Falls headquarters where you will have a meeting with the wildlife game rangers and then head out for a guided game drive through Uganda’s celebrated Murchison Falls National Park. While on the game drive, you will be amazed at sight of wildlife animals.
In the afternoon after your lunch, you will enjoy a boat cruise on the Nile at the bottom of the Murchison Falls.
Your safari tour at Murchison Falls National Park will be concluded with a nocturnal drive through the park, a chance to see nocturnal creatures like the Bush babies, Leopards, Pottos, hyenas and serval cats which leave their hideouts in the night. You will then retire to your choice safari lodging for dinner and overnight.
After having breakfast, you will depart from Murchison Falls National Park very early in the morning and travel to Kibale National Park – Uganda’s prime primate tour destination. Once at Kibale National Park, you will drive to Bigodi Wetland – a jungle swamp renowned for its abundant natural endowments. The swamp has over 138 bird species including; the grand Blue Turaco, White-spotted Flufftail, hairy-breasted barbet, Western Nicator, Black-crowned Waxbill, Black Bishop, Superb Sunbird, Brown-throated Wattle-eye, White-breasted Negro-finch, Grey-winged Robin chat, Brown-crowned Tchagra and Black-and-white Shrike Flycatcher.
Bigodi wetland has primates including; the red colobus monkeys, black-and-white colobus monkeys, blue monkeys, baboons, chimpanzees, mangabey, Vervet monkeys, and the L’Hoest’s monkeys. The other wildlife animals to see during your Bigodi Wetland tour include; Sitatungas, Bushbucks, Mongooses, otters, Bush pigs, and Warthogs. Bigodi wetland has extensive variety of plant life and tree species – it is praised as one of Uganda’s conservation sights for vegetation and wildlife.
You will travel to Kibale National Park headquarters after your breakfast in the early morning. You will have a briefing from the experienced wildlife rangers and then embark on a chimpanzee trekking excursion. With a population of over 1400 individual chimps, Kibale National Park is ranked as the habitat with biggest population of the endangered chimpanzee species in Uganda. Over the years chimpanzee families have been habituated in Kibale National Park and tracking them is much easier as compared to trekking mountain gorillas.
Chimpanzee trekking normally takes between 2-6 hours after which you are normally able to discover the prized chimpanzees. You can then spend the next 1 hour watching them play, feed, communicate and mingle with each other. Your trail in pursuit of the chimpanzees will give you a chance to see other wildlife, mammal and bird species.
Upon concluding your chimpanzee trekking tour in the afternoon, you will travel to Uganda’s cherished Bwindi Impenetrable National Park – renowned for harbouring almost half of the world’s population of the endangered mountain gorillas. You will check in at your desired safari lodge for dinner and overnight.
You will travel to the park headquarters in the early morning after your breakfast. After a briefing on how to have a successful gorilla trekking experience, you will continue with your ‘gorilla – wildlife safari’ as you embark on one of the gorilla tracking trails in pursuit of the endangered species. About 9 mountain gorilla families have been habituated in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park to make gorilla trekking easier. These families include:; the Mubare, Habinyanja and Rushegura families found in Buhoma region, the Mishaya and Nshongi group found in Rushaga region, the Bitukura family found in Ruhija and the Nkuringo group found in Nkuringo region.
Mountain Gorilla trekking may take between 3-8 hours comprising hikes and trails which maybe exhausting but prove worthwhile when you at last find the sought-after mountain gorillas. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest abounds with wildlife - while trekking the mountain gorillas, you will encounter other primates, mammals and bird species.
After having your lunch, you will travel to Queen Elizabeth National Park – Uganda’s most famous national park renowned for its wildlife and tree-climbing lions in Ishasha. Once at Queen Elizabeth, you will check in at your safari, have dinner and a goodnight’s sleep. You can however choose to have a nocturnal game drive to see the park’s nocturnal wildlife.
You will embark on a game drive after having breakfast in the early morning. Queen Elizabeth National Park has about 200 km of well maintained game tracks. The probable game and wildlife trails include; the Mweya peninsula and the Northern circuit, Kasenyi area game drive and the Ishasha sector game drive. This morning drive will give you a chance to see herds of buffalos, elephants, lions, a variety of antelopes – duikers, bushbucks, oribis and topis.
In the midmorning you will embark on a boat cruise on Kazinga channel aimed at optimizing the opportunity of seeing Queen Elizabeth’s abundant wildlife. You will see massive crocodiles basking in the sun atop the waters, groups of hippos yawning, several water bird species flying over and floating on the water, swamp antelopes, spotted hyenas, warthogs and forest hogs.
Later in the afternoon, you will travel to Ishasha region of Queen Elizabeth National Park to see the tree climbing lions. You will be amazed to spot them nestled in tree branches and trunks. You will also be awed by Ishasha’s Riverine forests and Savannah grasslands – you get the awesome feeling of being locked up in a typical wildlife African jungle. You will be able to see a variety of wildlife in the peculiar Ishasha region. You have dinner and overnight in your choice safari accommodation in Ishasha.
The Katwe-Kikorongo craters are a group of volcanic craters within Queen Elizabeth National Park. A drive between Kabatoro gate and Queen’s pavilion will give you a spectacular view of the gigantic craters, circular lakes and the rift valley escarpment. You will also visit Lake Munyanyange a terrific birding spot which is not so far from the craters. If there is time, you can pay a brief visit to Maramagambo forest and Kyambura gorge before embarking on your journey back to Kampala – Uganda’s capital. Once in Kampala, the ATP-Tours guide will drop you at your hotel or drive you to Entebbe International Airport – Uganda’s main airport.