Uganda wildlife and activity holiday

Hylochoerus meinertzhageni2 hog

Highlights; Jinja Rafting and source of the Nile, Murchison falls, Queen Elizabeth, Bwindi, Lake Bunyonyi, Lake Mburo and Kampala city tour.

During this tour you experience life in Kampala capital city, visit the great river Nile, raft and or bungee jump. A visit to the Rhino sanctuary en-route to the safari to Murchison falls, Queen Elizabeth and Lake Mburo national parks, Chimpanzee tracking in Kibale forest and a visit to the local community chimp conservation site en-route to Bwindi forest for Gorillas and lastly visit the deepest lake Bunyonyi with a massive Bird life.

Day-by-day itinerary

Day 1:

Meet and greet at Entebbe International Airport. Transfer to Jinja. The trip takes approximately two and a half hours. Jinja was previously the industrial capital of Uganda. It is best known for the source of the River Nile at the now submerged Rippon Falls. Owen Falls Dam, located just downstream from the source of the Nile, provides power for Uganda and parts of Kenya. The Nile starts its 4000-mile journey to the Mediterranean from Lake Victoria. See the source of the Nile and the surrounding environs. Depart from Kampala, heading east to Jinja passing coffee, tea and sugar plantations and colourful roadside fruit/ vegetable markets. First stop is at Mabira Forest to see primates, birds and butterflies and on to the Owen Falls Dam and the submerged source of the Nile. Lunch at the Black Lantern for you to enjoy a variety of sumptuous dishes on offer. This is the place to be! Spend the afternoon relaxing in the Bujagali Area as you enjoy the beautiful views. Nile Porch for dinner and overnight.

Day 2:

After breakfast proceed to Nile River Explorers for white water rafting. This is the most exciting 31 km rafting trip on earth and includes a fantastic barbeque lunch and complimentary drinks after the trip. In the evening transfer to Nile Porch. Dinner to be paid directly by guests.

Day 3:

After breakfast begin the safari with panoramic drive north-west through the famous Luwero Triangle. Stop en route at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary to see Rhinos being reintroduced to the area. Then on to Masindi Town for lunch. Proceed Murchison Falls National Park, stopping at the spectacular Top of the Falls where you can see the Nile's beauty perfected! Marvel at the Nile, compressing from 50 meters to squeeze through a 7 metre canyon dropping 50 metres with a thunderous roar creating a beautiful rainbow, a plume of spray and the best thing that happened to the Nile..."the Murchison Falls". Enjoy the sunset as you arrive at your preferred accommodation. Enjoy dinner and service of Paraa Safari Lodge or Nile Safari Camp for up market safari or Red Chilli Rest Camp for budget accommodation.

Day 4:

Early morning game drive on the northern bank of the River Nile. Your guide will help you spot Elephant, Lion, Cape buffalo, Rothschild's giraffe, hartebeest, Waterbuck, Oribi, Bushbuck, Bohor reedbuck, hyena and if you are lucky, the leopard. After lunch, go for a boat safari upstream on the calm Victoria Nile to the base of the falls stopping just tens of metres from the "Devil's Cauldron". En- route, marvel at the toothsome hippos, crocodiles and over this 19 km stretch you will see many animals including elephant, waterbuck and Uganda Kob. This riverine zone is also home for many bird species like Goliath heron, Egyptian goose, Brown pelican, Red-throated bee-eater, various kingfishers, Fish eagles, cormorant and the rare shoebill stork. After taking shots of photogenic Murchison Falls, return to your preferred accommodation for dinner and overnight.

Day 5:

Whole day drive south via Hoima to Fort Portal through verdant countryside and past traditional homesteads and farms. Fort-Portal rests in the shadow of the fabled Mountains of the Moon. Dinner and overnight stay at Kibale Tented Camp at the edge of Kibale Forest or the Chimpanzee Forest Guesthouse for two nights.

Day 6:

Morning visit to Kibale Forest National Park, where you enjoy a guided walk in search of chimpanzee and 10 other primates including l' Hoestes, Red colobus, blue, red-tailed monkeys, brown monkeys and gray - cheeked mangabey. The guide will provide detailed explanations, not only on primates, but on all the forest fauna and flora and will ensure that your walk is informative and enjoyable. This walk is excellent for viewing bird life and seeing primates at close quarters. After lunch, visit the community and take a walk in Bigodi Swamp. Return to your accommodaiton for dinner and overnight.

Day 7:

Proceed to Queen Elizabeth National Park following the mystical Rwenzori Mountain range for much of the journey. A game drive en route to your accommodation may be rewarded with views of lion, elephant, leopard, buffalo, hyena and a variety of antelope species. Lunch on arrival. Enjoy the unique 2 hour boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel and into Lake Edward. This trip passes through possibly the highest concentration of hippos and many animals may be seen drinking at the water's edge. This launch cruise offers an excellent platform for photography, bird watching and game viewing. The prolific bird life is colourful and stupendous with well over 600 resident species. Dinner and overnight for a 2 nights stay at Mweya Safari Lodge or Jacana Safari Lodge (up-market) Mweya Hostel (budget).

Day 8:

Two game drives today. Queen Elizabeth National Park's diverse eco- system of grassy plains, tropical forest, rivers, swamps, lakes and volcanic craters is home to an incredible abundance of wildlife. Game drives in this park, with the massive Rwenzoris as a backdrop provides excellent opportunities to see lion, leopard, giant forest hog, cape buffalo, elephants, defassa waterbuck, Uganda Kob, Topi and bush buck. These two game drives and the boat trip (taken prior) are a memorable method of discovering a vast array of Ugandan wildlife.

Day 9:

Drive south to the Ishasha Sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park. Mammalian specialities in this area include Giant Forest Hog and the legendary Tree-climbing Lions. Dinner and overnight at Ishasha Wilderness Camp.

Day 10:

Drive through the "Switzerland of Africa" area known as the Kigezi Highlands, with its terraced hillside and winding roads to Bwindi. Dinner and overnight stay at Gorilla Forest Camp (up-market), Buhoma Homestead (mid-market) or Buhoma Community Bandas (budget).

Day 11:

Early morning entry into the Gorilla sanctuary. This rainforest is spectacular. It offers a dramatic steeply forested landscape,is incredibly dense, crisscrossed by numerous animal trails allowing access to tourists. Mammals recorded include the endangered Mountain gorilla, rare golden monkey, buffalo, elephant, black-fronted duiker, bushbuck, leopard, giant forest hog. This park is best known for the fascinating gorillas. The time taken and the terrain varies according to the movements of the primates. The thrill of observing the gorillas is a rare, moving, awesome and exciting adventure. The gorilla is a shy and peaceful animal and it is unforgettable experience to watch and photograph them as they interact. Dinner and overnight at your accommodation.

Day 12:

Transfer to Lake Bunyonyi which is surrounded by terraced hills. Enjoy Bilharzia - free swimming, dug out canoeing, sunbathing, hill climbing or mountain bike riding and cray fishing. Dinner and overnight stay at Nature's Prime Island or Lake Bunyonyi Overland Camp.

Day 13:

After an early breakfast, you will drive to Lake Mburo National Park. Enter the park through the Nshara Gate. Afternoon game drive along the Lakeshore track. With its own system of game trails and cleared walkways the "Kigambara Loop" offers interesting guided lakeside walks. Find here herds of zebra, Cape buffalo and eland. Oribi and topi are easily approached. Along with a game drive, many visitors enjoy a boat trip on Lake Mburo. Birdwatchers will enjoy the more than 250 species of birds found in Lake Mburo including Papyrus Gonolek, Brown-faced Lapwing, Carruther's Cisticola, the extraordinary White-winged Warbler and Bare-Faced-Go- Away bird. In the afternoon enjoy a boat ride on Lake Mburo and get quite close to pods of hippos. Return to Mihingo Safari Lodge (upmarket) or Lake Mburo Tented Camp (mid market) for candlelit dinners and first class service, all under canvas in the heart of the African Bush under the starry African sky.

Day 14:

After breakfast, proceed for a safari walk under the escort of an armed ranger. It is possible to see Lake Mburo's hyena in their cave if you are willing to get up early. The Kopjes are particularly interesting plus camouflage kilpspringers and topis. Due to cattle herding in the area it is amusing to see zebra grazing alongside the long horned Ankole cattle peaceably. Return for lunch which should be taken leisurely enjoying the view of the lakes in this park. Drive back to Kampala stopping at the Mpigi Royal Drum Makers en route where you will be able to watch ceremonial drums being crafted using methods passed down through generations. There will also be time to stop at the equator for photographs. You arrive in Kampala in the early evening. Check into preferred accommodation. Dinner to be paid by clients.

Day 15:

After breakfast proceed for a city tour of Kampala. This is inclusive of an English-speaking guide, Uganda Museum, National Theatre, Craft Centre, Owino Market, Kasubi Tombs, Kabaka's Lake, Kibuli Mosque, Bahai Temple, Namirembe Cathedral, Makerere University, and other areas of cultural interest. Lunch to be paid by clients. Transfer to the Entebbe International Airport for the onward flight.

9 days MountainGorilla

Highlights

See a mountain gorilla up close and personal, search for chimpanzees in Kalinzu Forest Reserve, photograph diverse wildlife, raft down the White Nile River in Jinja.

Tour description provided by Challengersafari.com

Meet mountain gorillas and the other amazing wildlife on this 9-day overland adventure. Spot chimps in Kalinzu Forest and join experienced trackers while travelling deep into the Ugandan forests for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to spot endangered mountain gorillas in their natural habitat. Our overland trucks are an adventurous and inexpensive way to see the highlights while wilderness camping will keep you in the thick of the action. Experience a world apart as you encounter the colourful cultures and wild landscapes of Kenya and Uganda.

Itinerary

Day 1 Kampala

Arrive in Kampala and make your way to the hotel. Attend a pre-departure group meeting with your CEO scheduled for the evening. Please make sure you have all of the necessary visas for this tour by the time of the welcome meeting. It is very important to read the Visa section in our trip details to make sure which visas you will need, if any. Please note that not all nationalities are able to obtain a visa on arrival.

Day 2 Kalinzu Forest Reserve

Enjoy an included chimpanzee tracking excursion through the scenic Kalinzu Forest Reserve. Trek along the ridges and valleys of the Rift Valley escarpment to visit chimpanzees in their natural habitat. The forest trails offer amazing views over the Rwenzori Mountains, Lake Edward, the Kazinga Channel and the Congo. The Kalinzu Forest Reserve is steeped in mysteries and rich with local legends. Learn about the folklore and uses of the forest from a local guide. Approximate Distance: 345 km; Estimated Travel Time: 7 hrs

Day 3-5 Gorilla Tracking/Lake Bunyoni

We travel through gorgeous countryside to Lake Bunyoni, our base for several days in the area. Our time in this lush, magical, mountainous region of Uganda is spent between enjoying the area of Lake Bunyoni and many activities that it has to offer, and an unforgettable guided trek deep into the forest-sloped volcanoes for a wild encounter of a family of mountain gorillas (Gorilla Permits Included). Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is the home to approximately half of the world’s population of mountain gorillas, the world's most endangered ape. One of Africa's major highlights, a close encounter with these amazing animals is simply breathtaking. Ugandan authorities are fiercely protective of this natural treasure and currently permit only a maximum of 8 people per day to visit a given gorilla family. As such, the group will be split into different sub-groups for the trek, and depending on the amount of travellers there are total, different sub-groups may do their trek on different days. In the morning of your trek, you will drive in smaller vehicles to park office and meet with your local mountain guides and porters, who can carry your personal items and assist you during the trek. The guides will brief you on the etiquette of gorilla trekking, after which, you set off into the forest. The trek can take from one to six hours and can exceed altitudes of 2500m. The terrain is rough and at times muddy and slippery. It is very important to bring along plenty of water. It can rain in a few minutes notice; hence waterproof clothing is essential along with protective bags for your camera and film. We also suggest dressing in 'layers' as often it's chilly at firs until you start trekking and long sleeves and long pants to protect you from Stinging Nettle found in the forests. Approximately 98% of the gorilla treks are successful but there is no guarantee that you will see the gorillas as they are constantly on the move. For the rest of your time in the area, you will have the chance of several options of activities to choose from such as : fishing. canoeing on the lake, visiting the local community, renting a mountain bike to explore the area, etc. The area of Lake Bunyonyi is extremely peaceful and is a nature lover's paradise. Often referred to as the Switzerland of Africa for it's picturesque setting. While at Bunyoni you may be offered the chance to visit 'Little Angels Orphanage'. G Adventures does not endorse this activity as we feel this experience does more harm than good to the children. Many orphanages rely almost entirely on donations from visitors to survive, and as such, directors may purposefully maintain poor living conditions for children to secure funds from visitors. By visiting orphanages and making a donation you may be fueling this system, and G Adventures thus advises against both visiting and donating to the aforementioned orphanage.

Day 6 Lake Nabugabo

Travel to one of Uganda's most beautiful lakes, situated about 150km south-east of Kampala. Lake Nabugabo boasts several species of tropical trees, monkeys, and annually hosts birds that seasonally migrate to the region. The site holds 15% of the world's blue swallows and supports five globally threatened bird species. It is a must-see area for bird watchers or those with a great appreciation for nature, as there are many nature walks, fishing trips and boating excursions that can be done in the lake region. Approximate Distance: 345 km; Estimated Travel Time: 9 hrs

Day 7-8 Jinja

Head south to the shores of Lake Victoria and renowned as the “Source of the Nile”, Jinja is fast becoming the thrill-seeker's capital of Africa. Spend a full day rafting or kayaking down the Nile River, mountain biking in the Mabira Forest, volunteering with a local project, or just enjoying the relaxed vibe of Jinja. Jinja, the second largest commercial centre in Uganda, was established in 1901. Lying in the south east of Uganda, 87 km north east of Kampala, it is located on the shores of Lake Victoria near to the source of the White Nile. The city is the chief town of Jinja District, and is considered the capital of the Kingdom of Busoga. The resident population of Jinja is approximately 106,000 with the majority being Bantu in origin. Lusoga and Luganda are the main local languages. Bujagali Falls (also spelled Budhagali) was a waterfall near Jinja where the Nile River flows out of Lake Victoria. Some consider it the source of the Nile, but now the once beautiful falls and world-class kayaking spot have become submerged by the recently built Bujagali Dam. Approximate Distance: 210 km Estimated Travel Time: 6 hrs

Day 9 Kampala

Transfer back to Uganda's capital where the tour finishes upon arrival in the late morning. Approximate Distance: 90 km Estimated Travel Time: 2-4 hrs (depending on city traffic)


Read more:www.challengersafari.com

Mountain Elgon which is the fourth highest mountain in East Africa, (locally known as Masaba) is found in the Eastern part of Uganda around 238km on the Kampala-Jinja Highway through Mbale town to Kapchorwa. the mountain borders Uganda in the east and to the west in Kenya.it is an extinct volcano reaching 4321m high the park has magnificent waterfalls, caves, gorges, and hotsprings.it is also excellent for hiking there are no major technical climbing skills required and all major peaks are accessible to hikers the full trekking circuit takes 4-5days but 3days hikes are also available . The mountain has two main trails, the Piswa and the Sasatrails.Hiking is more recommended in the dry season (June - August or December - February-although the weather today can be un-predictable), porters, guides and park rangers are always recommended.

The Park boasts of animals like Buffalos, Duikers, Tree hyrax and leopards. Elephants have been sighted in the park coming in from Kenya. There are also lots of primates found there.

Another attraction near Mountain Elgon is the Sipi Waterfalls which lie on the edge of the mountain.

Mount Moroto

Mount Moroto from the West side

Mount Moroto Lies in the extreme east of Uganda and is the most accessible place to see some of the dry northeastern " special ", many at the western edge of their ranges here in Karamoja province. One of a chain of volcanoes along the Kenyan border that begins with Mount Elgon in south and includes Mounts Kadam and Morungole, Moroto is a forest reserve protecting a range of habitats from arid thorn savanna to dry montane forest. Although a long hike is required to reach the higher areas, excellent arid thorn savanna and rocky slopes are accessible from the town at the foot of the mountain.

Province :- Moroto.

Elevation: - 920-3084m above sea level.

Size: - 483 km excluding surrounding areas.

Habitat: - Dry Combretum and Acacia savanna, dry montane forest

Status: Forest Reserve and public land.

Birds Recorded: - 225 species.

Timing: Year - round.

Time Required: 1-2 days

Key Species:

Stone Partridge, Black-headed Plover, White-bellied Go-away Bird, Jackson's Hornbill, Hemp Rich's Hornbill, Silver bird, Grey-headed and Pygmy Batises, Bristle-crowned and Superb Starlings, Eastern Violet-backed Sunbird, White-headed Buffalo Weaver, Purple Grenadier and Straw-tailed Whydah.

BIRD WATCHING

The dense thorn savanna around the T-junction with the Mbale road 11 km from town supports White-bellied Go-away Bird, Jackson's Hornbill, Fawn-colored Lark, African Grey Flycatcher, the handsome Silver bird, Yellow-bellied Eremomela, Mouse-colored Penduline Tit, Pygmy Batis, Brubru and Eastern Vilet-backed Sunbird. Drive south from the junction for 5 km, watching for Dark Chanting Goshawk, Yellow-necked Spur fowl, Crested Bustard and the smart Black-headed Plover at the roadside. The plovers and Temminck's Courser may also be seen on the airstrip closer to town. Pairs of d'Arnaud's Barbet are frequently seen engaged in their bizarre tail-wagging duets. Listen for the distinctive sound of pebbles being struck together that may reveal the presence of the Grey Wren Warbler....

OTHER WILDLIFE

Other wildlife is not plentiful in the Moroto area but may include Patas Monkey or the spectacular Golden Cat.

ACCESS, ACCOMMODATION AND MEALS

Moroto can be reached from Mbale either via Soroti (90 km tar, or 170 km 2 WD dirt, drive time required 6 hours ) or via the direct eastern route ( 230 km. 2 WD dirt, drive time required 7 hours ). There is good birding along both routes . To reach the Seminary from Moroto, turn right at the first roundabout in town and continue around the base of the mountain for 7.5 km.

The Moroto Hotel on the edge of town has double rooms for $ 30 person, although there are two more basic yet clean hotels on the main road . Restaurants serve local foods and basic provisions are available from numerous stores.

LOCAL ATTRACTIONS

The road from Moroto to Soroti crosses the Bokora Game Reserve 50 km from town and dry thorn bush at the roadside supports Yellow-necked Spurfowl, Mouse-coloured Penduline Tit, Northern White-crowned Shrike, Beautiful Sunbird and Grey-capped Social Weaver. Pink-breasted Lark favours the arid Acacia savanna in this area. Hartlaub's Bustard has been described as " common on the Bokora Plains ".and Red-fronted Warbler, a scarce species in Uganda, is known from arid scrub at the roadside between Kangole and Iriri villages ( 30 -65km from Moroto).

The direct eastern route from Mbale to Moroto is an excellent birding road although the journey takes longer than via Soroti. The stretch between Nakapiripit and Moroto is particularly good with Pygmy Falcon, Jackson's Hornbill and White- headed Buffalo Weaver common at the roadside although a fair selection of dry country " specials" may be found a mere 25km north of the Kapchorwa turnoff.

Lake Bisina and Lake Opeta from an eastern extension of Kyoga system and are included as sites for Uganda's only endemic bird, Fox's Weaver. Although no facilities are present, the lakes can be covered en route from Mount Elgon to Moroto or visited for the day form a base in Mbale or Soroti.

Lake Bisina is more accessible of the two and is easily reached on a good dirt road that branches north off the main Mbale-Soroti road at Kapiri, 20km southeast of Soroti. Continue along this road to the lake edge and arrange with a local fisherman to take you across to the northwestern corner where a colony of Fox's Weavers nest in the waterside vegetation. Numbers peak in March and April but there are at least a few present year-round. Quiet areas of water lilies support African Pygmy Goose and Lesser Jacana and Shoebill is fairly frequently seen at the edge of the extensive papyrus.

hiking

Arrival Day at Entebbe International Airport-You will be  met by our driver/guide from African adventure Travellers and you will be taken to an already reserved Hotel.Depending on the arrival time of your flight,you may decide to rest for a day after the long flight,or start your 6-days tour of Uganda the following morning.

Day 1-Travel to Lake Mburo National Park.

After your breakfast,the driver will meet you in the morning for the briefing,and embark on your journey to Lake Mburo National Park.you will have a stop over at the equator,lunch en-route and advance into the park with Zebras ushering us into the game trails.warthogs cannot be missed,impalas,waterbucks,Topis and many more.

You will end your day with an evening Boat ride at 5pm on Lake Mburo with Hippos,Crocodiles and Fish Eagle sightings.

Dinner and Overnight in Mihingo Lodge

Day 2-Travel to Bwindi National Park.
We shall have an early full breakfast,meet our park ranger and embark on a walking Nature walk in Lake Mburo,get out of the jungle and meet the driver at 8:30am,continue through Sanga Village with great views of traditional home steads,big banana plantations to Mbarara and continue to Kabale where we have our lunch.

We drive 2hrs to Kisoro town where we spend our night at the Volcano Safari Lodge Mgahinga.

Day 3-Gorilla Tracking.

We shall have early morning breakfast and report to the park headquarters by 7.30 for a briefing on gorilla tracking etiquette.After the briefing which is at the entrance of the park and starting point for gorilla tracking you shall penetrate the Impenetrable Forest to look for these gentle giants under the guidance of a knowledgeable guide.

The time taken tracking highly depends on how fast you will locate a gorilla community. It can take from a few minutes to an entire day.You shall return from this thrilling but highly tiresome adventure to a relaxation and

Overnight at Volcanoe Safari lodge-Mgahinga.

Day 4-Mgahinga Volcanoe Climbing.

Wake up to great views of the 3-Volcano Mountains,have your breakfast in the misty atmosphere,meet with your driver and embark on the days hiking adventure on either

Mt-Sabyinyo-3669M,

Mt-Muhavura 4127M,

Mt-Mgahinga 3474M

Return later in the day,check back into your room for dinner and relaxation.

Day 5-Travel to Lake Bunyonyi in Kabale.

We shall wake up at 8am,have our breakfast and finish it by 10am,park our bags and drive in the hilly Kisoro areas,drive along Lake Bunyonyi and check into Acadia Cottages with great views of the lake.lunch and later on go for swimming.

Day 6-Travel back to Kampala fo evening flight.

Morning breakfast,drive back to kampala.lunch enroute.the journey back to kampala is 8hrs.

END OF SAFARI!