About the Safari

20 Days Rwanda Uganda Gorilla Safari is one of those comprehensive Rwanda and Uganda safari packages that are designed to explore these two destinations in detail. Stretching from the virgin wilderness of Kidepo in the north west of Uganda surrounded by Karimojong pastoral communities through the savannah landscapes of Murchison Falls National Park with the Big five except Rhinos to the forested landscapes of Kibale with great counts of primates including the common chimpanzees, the towering mountains of the moon – the Ruwenzoris, the flat rift valley flats of Queen Elizabeth with countless wildlife and water bodies including the famous 45km long Kazinga Channel which connects Lakes Edward and George, the hilly Impenetrable forest of Bwindi with populations of the world’s critically endangered mountain gorillas, to the scenic Lake Bunyonyi, Batwa heritage encounters in Mgahinga, the gorilla trekking in Virunga Volcanoes, golden monkey tracking coupled with colobus monkey tracking and Nyungwe canopy walk among other activities combine to make the 20 Days Rwanda Uganda Gorilla Safari memorable and worth undertaking.

Safari highlight

Day 1: Transfer to Kitgum
Day 2: Transfer to Kidepo & do game drive
Day 3: Do game drive & community tour
Day 4: Transfer to Murchison Falls National Park
Day 5: Do game drive & boat cruise
Day 6: Transfer to Hoima & encounter Bunyoro heritage trail
Day 7: Transfer to Kibale National Park & do Mpanga tea estate cycling & hike the top of the world.
Day 8: Full day Chimpanzee habituation experience in Kibale National Park
Day 9: Encounter Sempaya hot springs and do Fort Portal Crater Lake hike & visit the Amabere g’ Nnyinamwiru caves.
Day 10: Hike Mount Rwenzori & transfer to Queen Elizabeth National park
Day 11: Do game drive & Kazinga Channel Launch cruise
Day 12: Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park & encounter tree climbing lions en route in Ishasha
Day 13: Do gorilla trekking & transfer to Lake Bunyonyi
Day 14: Explore Lake Bunyonyi & transfer to Mgahinga National Park
Day 15: Undertake the Batwa heritage trail & transfer to Volcanoes National Park
Day 16: Do gorilla trekking in Volcanoes National Park
Day 17: Do golden monkey tracking & transfer to Lake Kivu
Day 18: Transfer to Nyungwe National Park
Day 19: Do colobus monkey tracking & Nyungwe canopy walk.
Day 20: Transfer to Kigali

Tree climbing lions in Ishasha

tree-climbing-lions-ishasha

Description:

Day 1: Transfer to Kitgum

After breakfast, embark on the journey to the north accompanied by your guide. You will drive through the flat rangelands of Nakasongora and continue to cross the mighty Karuma falls on River Nile. The journey takes you through Gulu and then rest for overnight in Kitgum.

Accommodation:

Sheraton Kampala Hotel (Upmarket/Luxury), Cassia Lodge (Midrange/Standard) or Buziga Country Resort (Budget/Basic).

Accommodation:

: Fuglys guesthouse Kitgum

Day 2: Transfer to Kidepo & do game drive

Continue on the journey to Kidepo after breakfast. You will arrive early for lunch after which you will embark on the game drive in the evening in the Narus valley. The sights of wildlife grazing in the valley are very interesting and buffaloes, zebras, antelopes might not be missed.

Accommodation:

Apoka Safari Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Ng’moru Wilderness (Midrange/standard) or Apoka rest Camp (Budget/basic)

Day 3: Do game drive & community tour

Wake for an early morning breakfast, and then set off for a game drive to encounter early risers and predators before they disappear from sight. Have opportunity to view real African game including; lion, elephants, giraffe, eland, oribi, Zebra, cheetah among others though not wholesomely guaranteed as they are wild animals alongside a number of bird species like Ostrich and other endemics. Return to the lodge for relaxation and lunch. Take a community walk through the Karamajong villages in the afternoon

Accommodation:

You will have dinner and overnight at your previous lodge.

Day 4:Transfer to Murchison Falls National Park

After breakfast, transfer on the surface drive to Murchison falls National Park passing through the flat open grasslands of northern Uganda as you wonder over the traditional home steads and their architecture that lie scattered in a vast landscape. The remains of the LRA rebel activities still stand as you will see the once flourishing trading centers now standing in ruins. Arrive in Murchison falls in the afternoon for relaxation and overnight.

Accommodation:

Paraa Safari Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury) Murchison River Lodge (Midrange/Budget) or Red Chili Rest Camp (Budget/Basic).

Day 5: Do game drive & boat cruise

Wake up very early for a cup of coffee and then head to Paraa ferry crossing at 7:00am to the northern sector of the Park where game drives are carried out. The possible sights of various wildlife including; elephants, buffalo, Jackson hartebeest, Kobs, lion, leopard, giraffe among other wildlife will leave you with a taste of African savannah wilderness. The activity takes 3 – 4 hours after which you will return to the Paraa ferry crossing at 11:00am to go back to your lodge for relaxation and memory sharing. After your stimulating lunch, gather at the Paraa for an after boat cruise on the Nile at 02:00pm. This boat trip has got captains and guides who have cruised on this waters for years and will be glad to share with every piece of information that you would wish to gather on this trip including any bird species and wildlife both aquatic and land that might present its self. The shoebill stork can be luckily seen on this boat while the great sights of Nile crocodiles – the second largest reptile in the world and the Hippos would make up your trip up to the base of the falls. The boat takes 3 hours after which you will have marked the end of your day’s adventures.

Accommodation:

You will spend an overnight at your previous lodge.

Day 6: Transfer to Hoima & encounter Bunyoro heritage trail

After breakfast embark on the transfer to Hoima town in the south of Murchison falls National Park. You will visit the Bunyoro heritage exploring the tombs of the famous Omukama (King) Kabalega who is known for resisting British rule. The Bunyoro Kitara regalia are also interesting to encounter.

Accommodation:

Kontik Hotel/ Kolping Hotel.

Day 7: Transfer to Kibale National Park & do Mpanga tea estate cycling & hike the top of the world.

After an early breakfast, embark on the drive to Fort Portal area. You will make a stop at Mpanga tea estates for a cycling tour through the tea plantations after which you will visit the tea factory to get acquainted with the process of tea growing and processing. You will proceed for lunch in Fort Portal town after which you will continue to Kibale National Park and in the evening, you undertake a hike to the top of the world to have great scenic of views of Ndali – Kasenda crater field. Retire for overnight.

Accommodation:

Primate Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Chimpanzee Guesthouse (Midrange/Standard) or Kibale Forest Camp (Budget/Basic).

Day 8: Full day Chimpanzee habituation experience in Kibale National Park

After taking a heavy early breakfast, you will gather at Kanyanchu Tourism Centre at 06:00am to set off for the full day Chimpanzee habituation experience. Unlike Chimpanzee trekking which involves one hour encounter with chimps, the chimpanzee habituation takes full day as you will have chances of seeing chimps as they get out of their nests, setting out to feed, watch their social moments, playful tactics, and their amazing sounds until they form new nests in the evening for overnight. It is a comprehensive Chimpanzee encounter that you can have while on safari in Uganda.

Accommodation:

You will have dinner and overnight at your previous lodge.

Day 9: Encounter Sempaya hot springs and do Fort Portal Crater Lake hike & visit the Amabere g’ Nnyinamwiru caves.

After breakfast, transfer to Semuliki National Park to encounter the Sempaya hot springs both female and male as they spur hot water from the ground forming a natural pool around themselves. The nature walk also gives you chances of seeing primates and various flora species. Return and embark on the Fort Portal Crater Lake hike and a visit to the Amabere g’ Nnyinamwiru caves – a great heritage site that dates back to the Chwezi people. Hiking the Kyeganywa hill to gain impressive views of the crater lakes and crater hollows that surround it and distant views of Mount Rwenzori is very memorable. Retire to Fort Portal town for overnight.

Accommodation:

Kyaninga Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Mountains of the Moon Hotel (Midrange/Standard) or Rwenzori View Guesthouse (Budget/Basic).

Day 10: Hike Mount Rwenzori & transfer to Queen Elizabeth National park

Transfer very early after breakfast to Kasese 135km about 3 hours’ drive to undertake an active activity of Mount Rwenzori hiking. The hiking encounter exposes you to raised landscapes of Mount Rwenzori offering impressive scenic views of the ridges and glaciers and the rift valley flats below. The activity is a whole day experience and upon return, you will transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park 72km about 2 hours’ drive for relaxation and overnight.

Accommodation:

Mweya Safari Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Enganzi Lodge (Midrange/Standard) or Pumba Safari Cottages (Budget/Basic).

Day 11: Do game drive & Kazinga Channel Launch cruise

Depart at 06:00am to encounter the rewarding Queen Elizabeth National Park game drive through the Kasenyi tracks. This early departure gives you possibilities of seeing the early risers and the night hunters retreating to their hiding places including the rare leopard, side stripped jackal, hyena, and owls among others. The morning game drive will also give you a possibility to see herds of elephants, buffalos, pride of lions, warthogs and a range of antelopes. You will retire from the 3 – 4 hours game drive and embark to the lodge for relaxation and lunch. In the afternoon, embark on the transfer to Mweya for Kazinga channel launch cruise that starts at 3pm lasting for two hours. You have opportunities of spotting hippos, Nile crocodiles, birds on the water shore and counts of wildlife like elephants and buffaloes drinking on the channel side. Retire for dinner and overnight.

Accommodation:

You will spend an overnight at your previous lodge.

Day 12: Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park & encounter tree climbing lions en route in Ishasha

After breakfast, embark on the transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in the south (Rushaga) 309km. You will drive through Ishasha in search of tree climbing lions, have lunch en route and arrive in Bwindi in the evening for relaxation and overnight.

Accommodation:

Chameleon Hill Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Gorilla Valley Lodge (Midrange/Standard) or Wagtail Eco-Safari Camp (Budget/Basic).

Day 13: Do gorilla trekking & transfer to Lake Bunyonyi

Wake up for an early cup of coffee, before gathering at Park Headquarters at Rushaga for briefing about the gorilla trekking activity at 08:00am always conducted by park rangers. This gives highlights about the dos and don’ts while trekking gorillas. After briefing, you will traverse the jungle in search of the splendid mountain gorillas in the company of the park ranger guide which stretches between 2 – 8 hours. You will walk through the luxuriant vegetation, climb raised gradients, ascend down the valleys before you encounter the great mountain gorillas as they munch their food and get astonished by the young gorillas playing and demonstrating their tactics which will prompt you to use up your camera space unknowingly. Your one hour with gorillas is done and return to the starting point after which you will embark on the transfer to Lake Bunyonyi for relaxation and overnight.

Accommodation:

Bird nest @Lake Bunyonyi Resort (Upmarket/Luxury), Bunyonyi Eco- Resort (Midrange/Standard) or Byoona Amagara Island Retreat (Budget/Basic).

Day 14: Explore Lake Bunyonyi & transfer to Mgahinga National Park

After breakfast, embark on the boat ride on Lake Bunyonyi for 5 – 6 hours. The boat encounter on the second deepest Lake in Africa marked with over 29 islands amidst the rolling highlands of Kigezi is very rewarding. The encounter also exposes you to Island communities with their heritage including the Batwa people. Retire from the activity for lunch and then embark on the transfer to Mgahinga National Park 80km about 2 hours’ drive for overnight.

Accommodation:

Volcanoes Mount Gahinga Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Mucha Lodge (Midrange/Standard) or Amajambere iwacu Camp (Budget/Basic).

Day 15: Undertake the Batwa heritage trail & transfer to Volcanoes National Park

After breakfast, set off for the Batwa heritage trail a half day activity that takes you through the forests of Mgahinga in the company of the indigenous Batwa guides as they interpret every forest landscape and what it meant in their traditional life. The hike stretches up to the Garama cave the ancient dwelling of the Batwa – one can call it their capital in the forest of Mgahinga volcanoes. The cave is a natural shelter that always provided a refugee for the Batwa in times of danger. You will listen to the sorrowful songs being sung by the Batwa women taking you through the course of their tradition; it is a rich taste of the fading typical African culture. Return from this activity and embark on the transfer to Volcanoes National Park 120km for relaxation and overnight.

Accommodation:

Mount Gorilla View Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), La Palme Hotel (Midrange/Standard) or Muhabura Hotel (Budget/Basic).

Day 16: Do gorilla trekking in Volcanoes National Park

Wake up for an early cup of coffee, before gathering at Kinigi Park Headquarters for briefing about the gorilla trekking activity at 08:00am always conducted by park rangers. This gives highlights about the dos and don’ts while trekking gorillas. After briefing, you will traverse the jungle in search of the splendid mountain gorillas in the company of the park ranger guide which stretches between 2 – 8 hours. You will walk through the luxuriant vegetation, climb raised gradients, ascend down the valleys before you encounter the great mountain gorillas as they munch their food and get astonished by the young gorillas playing and demonstrating their tactics which will prompt you to use up your camera space unknowingly. Your one hour with gorillas is done and return to the lodge for relaxation after which you will undertake a cave walk at Musanze to encounter these natural tunnels in their exciting stature.

Accommodation:

You will spend an overnight at your previous lodge.

Day 17: Do golden monkey tracking & transfer to Lake Kivu

Wake up very early to catch up with golden Monkey tracking at 08:00am. The activity exposes you to the rare and endangered golden monkeys that only dwell in the Virunga volcanoes in Africa. The activity takes about 4 hours and starts at 08:00 am from the park headquarters – Kinigi. The trek involves passing the lush vegetation of Volcanoes up to the Bamboo zone where the golden monkeys prefer to dwell. Upon, reaching them, you will marvel at their golden skins and their distinctiveness from other monkey sub species. You will return from this activity to the lodge for lunch after which you will embark on the transfer to Lake Kivu (Gisenyi) 110km about 2 hours’ drive for dinner and overnight.

Accommodation:

Lake Kivu Serena Hotel (Upmarket/Luxury), Hotel Gorillas Lake Kivu (Midrange/Standard) or Paladise Malahide (Budget/Basic).

Day 18: Transfer to Nyungwe National Park

Transfer after breakfast to Nyungwe forest National Park 240km about 6 hours’ drive to the south of Gisenyi. The journey is quite interesting as it involves the drive along Lake Kivu and the landscapes that overlook it. The resort town of Kibuye is interesting to encounter. Continue on the drive to Nyungwe for relaxation and overnight.

Accommodation:

Nyungwe Forest Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Nyungwe Hill Top View Lodge (Mid-range/ Standard) or Gisakura Guesthouse (Budget/Basic).

Day 19: Do colobus monkey tracking & Nyungwe canopy walk.

Wake up for an early cup of tea before embarking on the colobus monkey tracking to encounter one of the most treasured primates with amazing body adornment. Their black and white skin is one of those rare things that you will ever have. Enjoy the versatile form of these colobus monkeys allowing you to view for some prolonged time as they do not move so fast. Interestingly, Nyungwe has the largest grouping of colobus monkeys n the whole African continent about 400 members. Return to the Lodge for relaxation and Lunch. In the afternoon, embark on the Nyungwe Forest canopy walk, the third of its kind in Africa and the First of its kind in East Africa. The 90m long and 50m tall walking platform offers rewarding views of animals, birds, butterfly and great flora.

Accommodation:

Spend an overnight at your lodge.

Day 20: Transfer to Kigali

After breakfast, embark on the transfer to Kigali city 268km about 6 hours’ drive without stops en route via the verdant country side that is shaped by hilly scenic views. You will make stops in Butare to visit the National Museum, visit the Kings palace in Nyanza and the Nyanza and Murambi genocide memorial sites. You will have Lunch en route and arrive in Kigali in the evening.

End of safari.

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Wild Facts

    Hyrax

  • Scientific Name: Rock hyrax (Procavia capensis), yellow-spotted hyrax (Heterohyrax brucei), tree hyrax (Dendrohyrax dorsalis)
  • Size: 12 inches at the shoulder
  • Weight: 5 to 9 pounds
  • Lifespan: 12 years
  • Habitat: Dry savanna to dense rain forest
  • Diet: Herbivorous
  • Gestation: 7 months
  • Predators: Leopard, pythons, large birds, servals, civets