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Uganda Grand Safari - 20 Days

Uganda Grand Safari

  • Mabamba swamp tour
  • Kampala city tour
  • Day hike on Mount. Elgon
  • Sipi falls walk
  • Coffee tour
  • Visit Nyero rock paintings
  • Kidepo Valley National Park
  • Community Visits
  • Boat Rides
  • Chimpanzee Tracking
  • Bigodi swamp
  • Gorilla trekking

Day 1
Arrival in Entebbe

On arrival at Entebbe International Airport in Uganda and after finalizing the immigration formalities, you shall be welcomed by your guide, who will then drive you to your accommodation. Depending on your time of arrival, you may choose to take a stroll in the calm Entebbe town or visit the Botanical gardens.

Day 2
Visit Mabamba swamp, Kampala city tour and drive to Jinja

After breakfast proceed to Mabamba swamp; a birding hotspot in Uganda. This is home for many birds’ species and also a haven for migratory birds some from as far as Europe. You will take a boat ride in search for the rare Shoebill Stork, Squacco, Goliath, Purple and Grey Herons, a variety of Egrets and ducks.

Afterwards you will drive to the capital Kampala where you will take a guided tour to some of the historic landmarks. You will visit the Kabaka’s palace in Mengo; the seat of Buganda kingdom. Here you will be told about the rich history and culture of the Kingdom. You will also visit Rubaga cathedral and Gadhaffi mosque. In the evening you will drive to Jinja in Eastern Uganda.

Day 3
Optional activities White Water Rafting, Bungee jumping Or Quad biking, City tour of Jinja

Jinja is a very significant town in Uganda as it is home to the source of the Nile; the world’s longest river. Along the course of the Nile presents a fantastic opportunity for optional adrenaline rush activities such as White water rafting and Bungee jumping. You may also choose to go Quad biking through the villages closer to the Nile.

Alternatively you may have a city tour of Jinja. Here you may visit a brewery, a local market or take a walk through the streets. You may also have a boat cruise to the Source of the Nile.

Day 4
Hike Mt. Elgon

In the morning you will drive to Mount. Elgon passed Mbale town. On your hike to the falls you can refresh yourself by a dip in the cold river. In the afternoon, take a hike in Mount Elgon National Park, walking through the forest in the lower region of the Park. The forest is dominated by Podocarpus and cedars. Due to the dense vegetation, there are not only Buffalos, Leopards and Elephants, but also Blue Monkeys, Colobus Monkeys and Giant Forest Hogs live in the Park.

Day 5
Sipi Falls nature walk and coffee tour

After an early breakfast, depart for Kapchorwa town in order to have a nature walk to the Sipi falls. These are a series of 3 waterfalls. You shall walk to the base of the falls and relax while taking a dip in the cool water of the falls, located at the base of Mt Elgon. The Sipi Falls area, found at the base of Mount Elgon is particularly famous for Bugisu Arabica Coffee produced and grown by the local farmers. Bugisu Arabica only grows at an altitude of between 1,600 and 1,900 metres, it is the main cash crop in the area and genuinely one of the finest coffee's in the world. You will visit coffee farmers and learn how they grow, harvest, dry and roast their coffee.

Day 6
Drive to Kidepo stop by the Nyero rock paintings

Today you will drive to Kidepo Valley National Park; you will stop on the way and visit the Nyero rock paintings. They comprise of a three-tiered rock shelter with primitive paintings on the inner surface that dates back to the Iron Age. You will proceed to Kidepo and head to your accommodation. Being home to 77 mammal species and almost 500 birds makes the drive to Kidepo valley worth it. Along the way; you will be able to enjoy the beautiful scenery of open savannah grassland and hilltops capped by rock kopjes.

Day 7
Game drive and nature walk

After your breakfast, start your game drive that will take you through the Narus Valley as well as to Hot springs. Along the way you shall see Elephants, Zebra, Giraffe, huge herds of Buffalo, Warthog, Duiker, Jackson’s Hartebeest, Lion, Leopard, Cheetah and hundreds of bird species. Other animals that may be seen roaming around include: Jackal, Antelope, Waterbuck, Eland, Oribi, etc. The park boosts of being the highest concentration of birds endemic to Uganda like: Ostrich, Kori bustard, Vultures, Pygmy Falcon, Hornbills, Eagles etc. In the afternoon you will have a guided nature walk in the Park.

Day 8
Game drive and community or cultural visit

After breakfast, you will embark on an afternoon game drive that will lead you to herds of Buffaloes, Elephants, Giraffes, Zebras and hopefully some Lions, Leopard and the elusive Cheetah. This will also enable you to be in full sight of varieties of bird species. In the afternoon you will go for an interactive cultural tour in the Karamajong community. Here you will spend a wonderful evening with Karamajong people and have an insight of their way of life and beliefs.

Day 9
Drive to Murchison Falls National Park

After breakfast you will set off for Murchison Falls National Park via Gulu. You will drive through the relatively flat country side and enjoy beautiful views of the landscape dotted with artistic round huts. In the afternoon you will have a game drive as you enter Murchison Falls National Park. The Park is the largest in Uganda and is drained and divided by the majestic River Nile. In the evening you will drive to your accommodation across the Nile.

Day 10
Game drive and boat cruise on the Nile

After an early breakfast, proceed for a game drive across savannah, borassus palm forest and grassland. Drive in the open expanse in search for Lions, Leopard, Hyena, Buffalo, Elephant, Jackson Hartebeest, Oribi, Waterbucks, Uganda Kobs, and enjoy spotting various bird species such as the Secretary Bird, Black Chested Snake Eagle, Tawny and Marshal Eagles Carmine and Swallow Tailed Bee-Eaters, and many more. In the afternoon, you will go for a boat ride to the bottom of the whence the park derives its name. Enjoy the sights and sounds of this wonder by taking a hike to the top of the falls. This will present spectacular photo opportunities.

Day 11
Delta boat ride and optional game drive or leisure at the lodge

After breakfast, you will go for a boat ride to the Nile Delta. Another interesting but more placid activity through the extensive papyrus delta through which the Victoria Nile flows into Lake Albert. Here again there are plenty of animals and birds to see with an excellent chance of seeing the rare Shoebill. This trip takes four to five hours. You will then opt for either another game drive or relax at the lodge.

Day 12
Drive to Fort Portal

After breakfast, you will leave Murchison Falls National Park and go to Fort Portal, driving past the Rift valley Escarpment. You will also bypass many tea plantations where you may stop to take some pictures.

Day 13
Chimpanzee tracking and bigodi swamp walk

Today you will track the most famous inhabitants of Kibale National Park, the Chimpanzees. With over 1,450 individuals protected within the park, Kibale forest is home to the largest number of the endangered Chimpanzees in Uganda, as well as the threatened Red Colobus Monkey and the rare L’Hoest’s Monkey.

The forest has one of the highest diversity and density of primates in Africa totaling 13 species including the Black and White Colobus, Blue Monkey and Grey-Cheeked Mangabey, Red tailed Monkey, Bush babies and Pottos. In the afternoon after tracking, you have the opportunity for a guided walk through the swamps of Bigodi. This is a hub for many birds’ species. Alternatively you can visit the snow white Mahoma waterfalls or crater lakes on your way back to the lodge.

Day 14
Basket weavers and bee keeping project and game drive

After breakfast you will drive to Rubona Town in Kabarole district and get a chance to visit the Rubona basket weavers. Rubona Basket Weavers Association is made up of a group of 200 women trained and dedicated to weaving basket “masterpieces.” They use naturally dyed raffia to make baskets of all sizes, which are then sold to international markets.

You will then visit Bunyangabu Beekeeping Cooperative (BBC) a community of 1000 farmers who came together to market their products like honey, wax and candles from bee keeping. These farmers use both traditional and modern methods of bee keeping from which they earn a living. You will continue to Queen Elizabeth National Park where you will have an evening game drive.

Day 15
Game drive and boat ride on the Kazinga Channel

Today you will enjoy an early morning game drive in Uganda’s most famous National Park. The park’s diverse ecosystems which include savanna, humid forests and marshes make is a classic habitat for big game, primates and 600 recorded birds’ species.

The mammal species include Lions, Hippos, Buffaloes, Leopard, Spotted Hyena, Elephants and the elusive Giant Forest Hog which can be seen on a game drive.

The Primates include Chimps, Black and White Colobus Monkeys, Blue, Black faced Red Colobus, and Red tailed Monkeys and Olive Baboons. In the afternoon, you shall have a boat ride on Kazinga Channel. Here you will get to see many more mammal and birds.

Day 16
Game drive in the Ishasha sector and drive to Bwindi

Today you will leave the northern sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park driving through the thick woodlands to the Southern Ishasha sector. This part is most famous for tree climbing Lions which have specific trees in which they rest. You will have a game drive in search of tree climbing Lions. Afterwards you will continue your journey through the hilly countryside to your accommodation located at the border of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.

The 331sq Km Park is the oldest and most biologically diverse rainforest with over 400 flora species, 120 mammals, 346 birds, 202 butterflies, 163 trees, 100 ferns and many more amphibians. It is a UNESCO world heritage site; popular for Mountain Gorillas.

Day 17
Gorilla trekking, drive to Lake Bunyonyi

This morning you will get up early to experience the most poignant and exciting wildlife encounter; Gorilla trekking. The trail to the Gorillas takes you through various attractions such as rivers, swamps and extremely steep slopes but is worth every drop of sweat. You will be led by an experienced ranger who will tell you interesting facts about flora and fauna and the lifestyle of the Gorillas. In case you need to trek a nearer Gorilla family, this can also be arranged by your guide. You will be allowed an hour in the vicinity of these gentle giants within which you can take as many photos as possible.

After trekking you will drive to Lake Bunyonyi; an area fondly referred to as the Switzerland of Uganda.

Day 18
Relaxing and optional activities at Lake Bunyonyi

Lake Bunyonyi is an ideal place to relax after long driving hours. Here you can enjoy a swim at the lodge or take a canoe boat around numerous Islands. You may also visit Batwa communities or a local market nearby. You can also visit a school where you can attend class with the local pupils.

Day 19
Drive to Lake Mburo National Park

Today, drive to Lake Mburo National Park. Even at the entrance to the park you can watch Impalas and Zebras. You will have a game drive as you enter the park. The Lake Mburo National Park forms a mosaic-like habitat with rocks, dry slopes, open and wooded savannas, forests and swamps increases. This diversity of habitats has the diversity of bird life with 313 bird species recorded in the park, including Flame Head Barbet, Long-tailed Zitting Cisticola (Tabora), African Bins Rail, Collared Barbet, Binding Bush singer among others. You will have a game drive as you enter the Park.

Day 20
Morning nature walk, drive to Entebbe and depart

You will get up early morning for a guided nature walk where you will experience wildlife on a completely new perspective. You will return to the hotel for a hearty breakfast and thereafter set off for Entebbe. You will stop at the equator to buy souvenirs or for photo opportunities before heading to the airport to catch your flights back home.

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