This Accommodated African Mountain Gorilla Safari starts and ends in Kampala, Uganda. Highlights on this unforgettable wildlife safari include:
This accommodated budget safari to East Africa offers travellers the once-in-a-lifetime adventure of trekking the highly endangered mountain gorillas in the wild.
Welcome to Uganda and the start of our adventure in the 'Pearl of Africa'. On day one we drive northwest to Murchison Falls National Park, one of Uganda's oldest national parks. Murchison is rated as a top safari destination in the country. The national park covers about 3 840 km² (1 480 mi²) of wild habitat in the Albertine Rift Valley, a western part of Africa's Great Rift Valley.
The Victoria Nile river runs through the national park, plummeting through a narrow gorge to form the spectacular Murchison Falls, after which the park is named. Also known as Kabaraga Falls, Murchison Falls drops about 45m into the river after a series of rapids. Below the cascading falls the great Nile fans out into a broad and placid river flowing into Lake Albert.
Arriving at the hotel in Masindi, we settle in and meet to hear more about our upcoming trip from the guide.
An optional Activity Package is offered with this safari. The extra payment includes highly-recommended activities, considered as "essential activities" on the tour. This itinerary includes these activities. For those that can't afford all of these activities, there is the option of doing the basic safari without the Activity Package. Contact African Budget Safaris for a detailed breakdown of what is included in the Activity Package. See the Full Pricing Information above for the cost of the Activity Package.
This morning we set off on a chimpanzee trek in Budongo Forest, home to the largest population of chimpanzees in Uganda. East Africa's biggest Mahogany forest, Budongo is also home to eight other primate species, in addition to the estimated 600 to 700 chimpanzees. This sizeable forest is known for its incredible biodiversity, including 24 species of animals, over 360 bird species, 290 butterfly species, 130 species of moths, 465 tree species and numerous other plants and creatures.
In the afternoon we embark on a boat cruise in Murchison National Park, watching for wildlife and birds. In Murchison Park wildlife sightings include four of the Big Five (lion, elephant, buffalo, leopard), giraffes, antelopes and plenty of hippos and Nile crocodiles.
The chimpanzee trekking (included in the Activity Package) is done in groups of 12 guests, thus larger groups will be split up for trekking. The smaller groups will then go trekking in either the morning or afternoon, taking the boat cruise on the corresponding morning or afternoon.
On the morning of day three, we go to the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, where we take a bush walk in search of highly endangered rhinos. This 7000-hectare sanctuary is part of the rhino conservation program run by a non-profit called Rhino Fund Uganda (RFU). Rhinos are bred here for release back into the national parks of Uganda.
After our Rhino Walk (included in the Activity Package) in the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, we drive south to Kampala, the capital of Uganda. This afternoon you can explore the biggest city in Uganda, enjoying the leafy, upmarket neighbourhoods and jam-packed city centre of this interesting and modern African city.
Today we leave Kampala driving to scenic Lake Bunyonyi, dotted with 29 islands. Picturesque Lake Bunyonyi serves as the base for gorilla trekking excursions in the nearby Bwindi Impenetrable National Park of Uganda.
This small steep-sided lake set in the Ugandan highlands hosts an abundance of birdlife, with the name Bunyonyi meaning "place of many little birds". The crater lake is known for its scenic mountainous surroundings and numerous birds, as well as otters. The lake is safe for swimming and is a popular spot for watersports.
We stay at an eco-friendly resort on the shores of Lake Bunyonyi taking in the beautiful scenery, before our exciting trek to the mountain gorillas.
From Lake Bunyonyi we set off on our thrilling gorilla trekking expedition - a once-in-a-lifetime wildlife experience!
African Mountain Gorillas are critically endangered, with only around 800 wild mountain gorillas remaining in the world. By visiting the gorillas you will be directly supporting the efforts to protect these highly endangered primates. The money spent on trekking permits is used to help ensure the future of these rare mountain gorillas.
Gorilla Trekking permits are extremely limited, which calls for flexibility in our tour itinerary and the exact location of our trek, done in groups of a maximum of 6 people. The mountain gorillas' habitat spans across the borders of Uganda, Rwanda and the DRC (the Democratic Republic of the Congo). The Bwindi National Park in Uganda is our intended gorilla trekking destination, but this is subject to the availability of permits. If permits for Uganda's Bwindi Park are not available you will be informed beforehand and we will travel to neighbouring Rwanda or the DRC for mountain gorilla trekking.
On the day that you are not gorilla trekking (either day five or six), you will get to visit a village near Lake Bunyonyi. This included tour to Nyombi Village offers insight into the culture of the Pygmy people of Uganda.
Please note: The Gorilla Trekking permit is not included in the tour price and costs between US$ 630 and US$730 per person. Only one day is spent trekking the gorillas, even though there are 2 days set aside. This allows time for obtaining permits and visiting the gorillas in smaller groups if there are more than 6 people on the tour.
On the final day of this Accommodated Gorilla Trekking Safari, we return to Kampala where our African adventure of a lifetime comes to a close in the early evening.
For up-to-date and confirmed pricing info for optional items, please drop us an enquiry.
Our team has the destination knowledge to help you plan an unforgettable African adventure. We're based in Cape Town and ready to help.
We can also plan you an affordable private group or tailor-made tour. We built our business on turning luxury travel into affordable travel.