Uganda - The Pearl of Africa
- Gorilla Trek in Bwindi
- Boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel
- Chimpanzee Trek in Kibale
- Kibale National Park
- Queen Elizabeth National Park
- Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
In the days of colonial rule Winston Churchill described Uganda as “The Pearl of Africa”. Join us and discover this exceptional African country. The Equator as well as the Rift Valley runs through Uganda, resulting in a unique ecosystem. Uganda is also well known for its game reserves, magnificent scenery, lakes, rivers, waterfalls, and rich culture.
It is said that the people of Uganda are the friendliest in Africa. Queen Elizabeth National Park is described by many as the most beautiful park in Africa. However, the highlight of the tour will be gorilla trekking and a close-up encounter with a family of mountain gorillas in their natural habitat in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. It is estimated that the total number of wild mountain gorillas is just over a thousand individuals.
Nothing can prepare you for that moment when you get that first glimpse of a mountain gorilla… Observing their family life for an hour is an overwhelming experience. They are in the wild, but you can recognise many human characteristics: affection, teasing, anger, leadership, caring, sadness, joy, and jealousy. This golden hour of your life will be engraved in your memory forever.
Once in Uganda for gorilla tracking, you can also choose to add a chimp tracking experience. The best place in Uganda to do this is in the Kibale Forest National Park with 1 500 habituated chimps and 12 other primate species.
DAY 1: ARRIVE ENTEBBE
Arrive at Entebbe International Airport where you will be met by your driver/guide. As check-in will only be after 14:00 we will depart on a city tour of Kampala.
Depending on flight arrival time the tour can include the Uganda Museum, Makerere University, Nakasero Market, Craft markets, Namirembe Cathedral, Rubaga Cathedral, Kibuli Mosque, Kabaka's Palace, Buganda Kingdom Parliament and more. Enjoy a continental or traditional Uganda style lunch (own account) at a local favourite restaurant before returning to your hotel.
Check-in and enjoy dinner at the hotel.
O/N Admas Grand Hotel or similar (dinner)
Admas Grand Hotel
This 4-star hotel blend urban landscape with golf course views. It is 5-minutes’ drive from Entebbe International Airport. The Deluxe rooms as spacious with all the rooms except 4 having balconies. The en suite bathrooms have showers and guests will have access to wifi and IPTV. Sip on a drink in the Bar or Lounge while reflecting on your day.
DAY 2: ENTEBBE TO KIBALE
After breakfast, check out and drive via Kampala, Mityana and Kyajonjo heading for Port Portal. This is about a 6-hour drive through breathtaking landscape that forms part of the Albertine Western Rift Valley. You will stop en route to enjoy your packed lunches.
The drive will continue through remote villages passing homesteads and farms.
Arrive late afternoon and check in at Turaco Treetops. Dinner and overnight at the lodge.
O/N at the Turaco Treetops or similar (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
Turaco Treetops is Kibale Forest’s newest semi-luxe lodge. They believe in creating an uncomplicated and warm-hearted atmosphere and offer guests a unique experience in the forest with stunning views over the snow-capped Rwenzori Mountains. Turaco Treetops is the place to go on a chimpanzee trek. Share tasty meals, laugh, read a book next to the fireplace, learn about nature, play a game, or take dip in the refreshing pool. Not to mention enjoying that well-deserved hot shower and comfortable beds that help you get ready for a new day of exploration in the Kibale Forest region.
DAY 3: KIBALE TO QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK
Breakfast at the lodge and check-out. This morning we go in search of the cheeky chimpanzees and other primates in the Kibale Forest.
Kibale National Park covers an area of about 795 square kilometres and offers one of Uganda’s most beautiful tropical forests. It’s a habitat for different forest wildlife and amongst these are a variety of primate species. The forest occupies the northern as well as the central part of the park. The highest point in the northern park is a peak of about 1,590 metres above sea level. The northern part is also the wettest area with an annual rainfall of about 1,700 mm. The rainy months include March to May as well as September to November. It has an average temperature of about 14 to 27°C and temperatures are high in the south because of the landscape dropping into the scorching rift valley floor.
Enjoy a picnic lunch after the chimpanzee trek.
Drive via Kasese to Queen Elizabeth National Park and check in at Mweya Safari Lodge.
Enjoy a late afternoon game drive, returning to the lodge before dusk for dinner and overnight.
O/N Mweya Safari Lodge similar (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
Mweya Safari Lodge
Mweya Safari Lodge offers visitors an unforgettable experience. Located on a peninsula within the heart of the Queen Elizabeth National Park, Mweya Safari Lodge is surrounded by the magical Rwenzori Mountains, aptly described as the 'Mountains of the Moon’. To the east, lie the guardians of the birthplace of mankind, the Great Rift Valley hills, separated from the Mountains of the Moon by the meandering Kazinga Channel. Here the water flows endlessly into two giant lakes – Lake George and Lake Edward.
DAY 4: QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK
Depart on an early morning game drive in the Kasenyi area, within Queen Elizabeth National Park. Be on the lookout for lions, buffalos, elephants, and large numbers of Uganda Kobs and other antelope.
Queen Elizabeth National Park occupies an estimated 1,978 square kilometres. The park is known for its abundant wildlife. Overall, the park is home to 95 mammal species and over 600 bird species. The area around Ishasha in Rukungiri District is famous for its tree-climbing lions.
Return to the lodge for breakfast and relax until lunch time.
At 14:00, we will enjoy a boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel (approx. 2 hours in duration), hoping to encounter hippos, crocodiles, great herds of buffaloes, and lots of water birds.
The Kazinga Channel is a 32-kilometre long natural channel that links Lake Edward and Lake George, and is a dominant feature of Queen Elizabeth National Park. The channel attracts a varied range of animals and birds, with one of the world's largest concentration of hippos and numerous Nile crocodiles. Lake George is a small lake with an average depth of only 2.4 metres which is fed by streams from the Rwenzori mountains. Its outflow is through the Kazinga Channel which drains into Lake Edward.
Dinner will be at the lodge.
O/N Mwenya Safari Lodge or similar (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
DAY 5: TO BWINDI
Depart to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, home of the endangered mountain gorilla. Arrive late afternoon at the lodge and check in.
The Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is in southwestern Uganda. The park is part of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and is situated along the Democratic Republic of the Congo border, next to the Virunga National Park, and on the edge of the Albertine Rift. Composed of 321 square kilometres of both montane and lowland forest, it is accessible only on foot.
Species diversity is a feature of the park. It provides habitat for more than a 100 species of mammals, 348 species of birds, 220 species of butterflies, 27 species of frogs, chameleons, geckos, and many endangered species. Floristically, the park is among the most diverse forests in East Africa, with more than 1,000 flowering plant species, including 163 species of trees and 104 species of ferns.
The park is a sanctuary for colobus monkeys, chimpanzees, and many birds such as hornbills and turacos. It is most notable for the 400 Bwindi gorillas, half of the world's population of the endangered mountain gorillas. Fourteen habituated mountain gorilla groups are open to tourism in four different sectors of Buhoma, Ruhijja, Rushaga and the Nkuringo in the Districts of Kanungu, Kabale and Kisoro respectively, all under the management of Uganda Wildlife Authority.
Arrive early afternoon and at leisure.
Enjoy dinner at the lodge.
O/N Mahogany Springs Lodge or similar (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
Mahogany Springs Lodge
Mahogany Springs Lodge is the perfect base for your gorilla trekking adventure, offering privacy and optimal comfort in a spectacular setting. Perched on top of the Munyanga River, overlooking Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Mahogany Springs consists of 12 Luxury Suites, surrounded by beautiful gardens and panoramic views of the verdant valley.
DAY 6: GORILLA TREK
Breakfast and then take a short transfer to Bwindi National Park headquarters where you
will meet up with excellent local guides / rangers and trackers, who will give a briefing on the etiquette of gorilla trekking. Thereafter, hike into the forest with your packed lunch in search of the gorilla group that was allocated to your tracking party.
Words cannot describe the emotion and feeling when you set eyes for the first time on a gorilla family in their natural environment. The golden hour that you will spend with them passes in a flash. This is an experience that will stay with you forever.
Only eight people are allowed to visit a specific gorilla family per day. Guests might be divided into different tracking groups. You might find the gorilla group within the first two hours while tracking, or it can take the whole day. It is therefore recommended that you are walking fit and be able to keep up a slow pace at an incline for a few hours.
Return to the lodge and your afternoon / evening is free to relax and process this amazing experience.
Dinner at the lodge.
O/N Mahogany Springs Lodge or similar (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
DAY 7: DEPARTURE ENTEBBE
After breakfast transfer to Kihihi Airstrip for Aerolink flight to Entebbe, departing at 09:45 arriving 11:25. Met by our representative for transfer to Protea hotel Entebbe for lunch. Day rooms are included until transfer to the airport for late evening flight to Johannesburg.
DAY 8: ARRIVE JOHANNESBURG
Arrive in Johannesburg. Proceed through immigration and collect your luggage.
END OF SERVICES
08 June 2024 – 15 June 2024
LAND PACKAGE COST
Minimum group size 12 guests.
Per person sharing: USD 3 750 (± R 69 375 per person)
Single supplement: USD 740 (± R 13 690 per person)
To be added to the tour cost:
Gorilla trekking permit per person: USD 700 per gorilla trek.
Chimpanzee tracking permit per person: USD 200 per person.
The quoted Rand value is just an indication based on a USD 1.00 / R 18.50 exchange rate. The exchange rate on date of payment will be used to convert the USD for the final payment.
There are no direct flights from Johannesburg to Entebbe. At time of booking Live the Journey will select the most cost-effective and suitable flight route. Budget approximately R 7 500 for the return flight from Johannesburg to Entebbe.
- Arrival airport transfers as per itinerary.
- Exclusive transport in custom-made 7-seater safari land cruiser driven by an English-speaking driver/guide.
- Accommodation in standard room on DBB in Entebbe. FB on safari as indicated on the itinerary.
- Gorilla and chimp permit (Quoted separately)
- Shared boat cruise on Kazinga channel.
- Schedule one way flight Kihihi/Entebbe – baggage allowance is 15 kg in soft duffle bags.
- Park entrance fees and activities as per itinerary.
- Unlimited bottled mineral water in the safari vehicles.
- Emergency medical evacuation by flying doctors – all hospital bills to be settled by the client directly.
- All international flights to/ from Uganda.
- Any optional activity.
- Drinks not specified (sodas, beer, wine, spirits).
- Tourist visa: USD 50, single entry. Kindly apply online prior to arrival.
- Medical and travel insurance.
- Tips, telephone and personal expenses.
- Any other concept not indicated as included.
- This tour requires a minimum of 12 guests to offer it at the quoted price.
- Gorilla and chimpanzee permits are non-refundable & non-transferable.
- Prices for gorilla and chimpanzee trakking permits, domestic flights, airport taxes or park fees may be changed without prior notice. This is beyond our control and any increase levied will be for the guest’s account.
- Health Requirements:
- Proof of a Yellow Fever certificate is compulsory.
- Uganda is in a Malaria area and precautions must be taken against this.
- Please consult your doctor or travel clinic at least 6 weeks prior to departure.
- South African Passport Holders require a visa to enter Uganda. A passport valid at least 6 months after date of return with sufficient blank pages is required.
- For pocket money and payments made in cash while on tour, please note that USD 1 bills and notes older than 2013 are not accepted in Uganda.
Fill out the form below to request a full itinerary.