This 18 day budget gorilla trekking safari in Uganda also takes you to Murchison Falls National Park, to Kibale Forest National Park for Chimpanzee Tracking, Queen Elizabeth National Park, and Bwindi Impenetrable Forest for Gorilla Trekking.
Budget Gorilla Trekking Safari in Uganda
Day 1 : Arrival Entebbe Airport – Kampala
Your 18 Days Budget Gorilla Trekking Safari in Uganda starts with our company representative meeting you personally upon your arrival at Entebbe airport, transfer to Kampala Serena/Hotel Africana (High end facility) or Cassia Lodge (mid range Lodge facility)or Red Chilli Hideaway (Budget facility) for overnight stay. Meal plan: Dinner
Day 2 : Day of relaxation at your hotel
Dedicated for relaxation and sightseeing around your hotel. Meal Plan B-L-D
Day 3 : Kampala – Murchison Falls National Park
Begin the panoramic drive north-west through the famous Luweero Triangle and, travel to Masindi via Ziwa Rhino Project. A visit to the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary for Rhino trekking is a must. After lunch, drive to Murchison at the spectacularly situated site at the top of the fall where you will see the Nile’s beauty perfected!! Marvel at the Nile, compressing from up to 1 km squeeze through a 7 meter canyon dropping 45 meters with a thunderous roar creating a beautiful rainbow, a plume of spray and the best thing that happened to the Nile…”the Murchison Falls”. Overnight at Paraa Safari Lodge / Chobe Safari Lodge (High end facility) or Sambiya River Lodge (Mid range facility)or Red chilli (Budget facility). Meal Plan B-L-D
Day 4 : Murchison Falls National Park
Begin the day with a cup of African Coffee. Thereafter, cross the Nile by ferry to the northern bank of the park. Your guide will help you spot Elephants, Lions, Cape buffaloes, Rothschild’s giraffes, hartebeest, Waterbuck, Oribi, Bushbuck, Bohor reedbuck, hyena and if you are lucky, the leopard. Return to the hotel for breakfast and lunch. After lunch, go for a boat safari upstream the calm Victoria Nile to the base of the falls stopping just tens of meters from the “Devil’s Cauldron”. En-route, marvel at the toothsome hippos, crocodiles and over this 17 km stretch you may see elephant, waterbuck and Uganda Kob, crocodile. This is also a zone of many bird species like Goliath heron, Egyptian goose, pelican bee-eater, kingfisher, hornbill, cormorant and the rare shoebill stork. There you leave the boat and start your “quite heavy” hike to the Top of the Falls (approx. 1 hour). See where the world’s longest river explodes violently through a narrow cleft in the Rift Valley escarpment to plunge into a frothing pool 43m below. Your driver/guide will be waiting for you to bring you back to the lodge. Overnight at Paraa safari lodge/Chobe safari lodge (High end facility) or Sambiya River Lodge (Mid range facility)or Red Chilli (Budget facility). Meal Plan B-L-D
Day 5 : Murchison Falls National Park – Kibale
Drive south via Hoima to Fort Portal through verdant countryside and past traditional homesteads and farms along Albertine Rift escarpments. Fort-Portal rests in the shadow of the fabled Mountains of the Moon. Meals and overnight at Mountains of the moon (Mid range Facility). A stunning location overlooking a dramatic Crater Lake and the fabled “Mountains of the Moon”. Or Fort Motel (Budget facility) or Chimps Nest (Budget facility). Meal plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.
Day 6: Kibale Chimpanzee Trekking & Bigodi Walk
After early breakfast, report at Kanyanchu Tourist Centre where tourist activities begin and set out to track chimpanzee in the forest. Chances of viewing the chimps are over 90% but not a guarantee. Kibale National Park is one of the beautiful and stunning forests in the Uganda. It is home to our closest living relatives the endangered Chimpanzee, the threatened Red colombus monkey and the rare L’hoest’s monkey. The forest also boasts of having one of the highest diversity and density of primates in Africa totaling 13 species including the Black and white colobus, Blue monkey, Grey-cheeked mangabey, Red tailed monkey and Bush babies and Pottos.
After lunch visit Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary from where you will take on a guided walk around the Swamp which will provide you with the opportunity to see a wide range of flora and fauna. View a variety of butterflies, birds and other insects. Have a tour of the crater region around Ndali lodge. You may also stop over at any tea plantation along the road if you wish. Return to your accommodation for dinner and overnight.
Have an evening tour of the crater region, visit “top of the world”, the natural bridge. On a clear day you will be able to have a view of the snow cap on the Rwenzori. Meals and overnight at Ndali Lodge (High end facility) or Mountains of the moon (Mid range Facility) or Chimps Nest (Budget facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.
Day 7: Kibale National Park – Queen Elizabeth National Park
After breakfast, drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park viewing the mystical Rwenzori Mountain range for much of the journey. Check in at your accommodation facility as you wait for your lunch. After lunch, take on an afternoon Launch cruise along Kazinga Channel one that joins Lakes Edward and George. The cruise is a wonderful way to see hippo, buffalo, kob and the occasional Nile crocodile (which up until recently did not inhabit this area) and a spectacular bird watching on the water bank. Many who experience the launch cruise consider it the high light of their entire African safari. Return for dinner and overnight stay at Mweya safari lodge/Jacana safari lodge (High end facility) or Ihamba Safari Lodge/Enganzi Lodge (Mid range facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 8: Queen Elizabeth National Park
Rise very early with your packed lunch take on a morning game drive to catch-up with the early risers and predators returning to their hideouts. You will most likely meet grazing Hippos, Elephants, and Lions, spotted Hyenas, bush buck, water buck, stripped jackal, comical warthogs and the elusive leopard. Proceed to Maramagambo forest. Many surprises await you here for example pythons are often observed in the crevices of the bat cave floor using the bats as a source of food. The cave is near a picturesque formerly Blue lake and Hunters cave. You may also see forest birds such as bat hawks, brown eared woodpecker and other primates. Return for dinner and overnight stay at Mweya safari lodge/Jacana safari lodge (High end facility) or Ihamba Safari Lodge/Enganzi Lodge (Mid range facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 9 : Queen Elizabeth National Park – Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
With previous day’s memories, enjoy your breakfast ready for guided Chimpanzee/primate walk along Kyambura Gorge to look for habituated chimps through the gorge.After the primate walk, proceed to Ishasha. You will drive along the deep and wide dry craters that are occupied by savanna grasses and acacia. The drive takes you through the unique western rift valley escarpment and the (southern part of Queen Elizabeth National Park) Ishasha sector where you will take on yet another game drive in search of tree climbing lions before proceeding to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.
The journey takes about 4 hours but driving through interesting features. Arrive Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in the evening. This park is home of the rare mountain gorillas. Apart from gorillas, there are a wide variety of primates to see including the blue and red tailed monkeys. The forest itself is lush and green and there are streams running through it. Dinner and overnight stay at Buhoma lodge/Gorilla Safari camp (High end facility) or Engagi Gorilla Lodge/Wagtail eco safari camp (Mid range facility) or Buhoma community bandas/Bwindi view(Budget facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 10: Bwindi Gorilla Tracking
After early breakfast, set off with guides to track the gorillas in Bwindi. The thrill of your encounter will erase the difficulties of the potentially strenuous trek. Bring jungle boots and rain jackets because the park is often wet. Spend time in awe watching the gorillas go about their activities. Each gorilla safari encounter is different and has its own rewards, but you are likely to enjoy the close view of adults feeding, grooming and resting as the youngsters frolic and swing from vines in a delightfully playful display.
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is a magnificent green swathe of dense rain forest, so ancient that survived the last ice age. A recently proclaimed World Heritage site, it’s one of the most biologically diverse areas on earth and its unique, precious flora sustains roughly half of the world population of mountain gorillas – believed to number just 720. There’s also a substantial chimpanzee population and research shows that Bwindi is the only forest in Africa in which these two apes live together.
Time permitting, spend the afternoon on a community foot safari to explore the life style of the people living and surrounding the park. Return to camp exhilarated to relieve the encounter with friends over a drink. Overnight stay at Buhoma lodge/Gorilla Safari camp (High end facility) or EngagiGorilla Lodge/Wagtail eco safari camp (Mid range facility) or Buhoma community bandas/Bwindi view(Budget facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 11: Bwindi Bwindi Impenetrable Forest – Lake Bunyonyi
After an early breakfast transfer to Lake Bunyonyi in Kabale. Lunch break is made in Kabale. The afternoon is spent for relaxation and sightseeing around the Lake. Overnight stay at Bunyonyi safaris resort (High end facility) or Bunyonyi Arcadia Cottages (Mid range facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 12 : Lake Bunyonyi
Whole day dedicated for relaxation and after Lunch break then take on afternoon boat ride to some of the islands on the lake. Overnight stay at Bunyonyi safaris resort (High end facility) or Bunyonyi Arcadia Cottages (Mid range facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 13: Lake Bunyonyi
After breakfast, you can choose to do swimming in the morning, relax or do some birding across the Island and the afternoon ready for a community walk or visit to explore the life style of the local people. Overnight stay at Bunyonyi safaris resort (High end facility) or Bunyonyi Arcadia Cottages (Mid range facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 14: Lake Bunyonyi – Lake Mburo National Park
After breakfast, drive to Lake Mburo National Park. This time a visit to Igongo cultural village to learn and experience the life style and culture of the Ankole and the Bahima. It is only at Igongo where the future meets the past. Overnight at Mihingo Lodge/Arcadia cottages (High end facility) or Mburo safari lodge (Mid range facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 15 : Lake Mburo National Park
Morninggame drive. The park is renowned for zebras, impalas, buffaloes, hippos, topi and elands including the rare shoebill, crested crane, pelicans, fish eagle, heron and many water birds. Afternoon boat cruise amidst the Hippos is amazing.Overnight at Mihingo Lodge/Arcadia cottages (High end facility) or Mburo safari lodge (Mid range facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 16 : Lake Mburo National Park
Dedicated for relaxation and sightseeing and more photography. Overnight at Mihingo Lodge/Arcadia cottages (High end facility) or Mburo safari lodge (Mid range facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.
Day 17: Lake Mburo – Kampala
After early breakfast, take on a morning Bush walk. Lake Mburo National Park is a very special place; every part of it is alive with variety, interest and colour. It contains an extensive wetland. You are likely to see elands, impalas, waterbucks, warthogs, and zebras. Thereafter drive to back to Kampala with a stopover at the Equator monument. Overnight at Kampala Serena/Hotel Africana (High end facility) or Cassia Lodge (mid range Lodge facility) or Red Chilli Hideaway (Budget facility). Meal plan: Breakfast, lunch, Dinner
Day 18: Kampala – Entebbe
Depending on your flight time, you can choose to have a morning shopping around the craft centers in Kampala and later transfer to Entebbe to catch up with your afternoon/evening flight back home. Meal plan: Breakfast, lunch.