Classics of Uganda Safari | 21 Days
The adventure lovers meet the actual description of nature in this 3 weeks road safari through magical Uganda! Our personable guides are ready to take you discovering the glorious nature of Uganda as they lead you through all the major tour destinations of Uganda comprised in National Parks, mighty rivers and falls, mountains and raised landscapes, forests, lakes and semi-arid remote areas. Join us if you are resilient, got the guts to adventure, backed with physical fitness and energy, and if you really love exploration and discovery!!
Uganda has diverse natural attractions and locations that allow a variety of outdoor activities! You may not get such array of attractions anywhere in the world in a single trip like this! This safari starts with rafting on the mighty River Nile in Jinja-Eastern Uganda. The safari then continues to the amazing scenic Sipi Falls before going through the rugged, rocky, dry, semi-arid and remote parts of Karamoja to the untouched wilderness Kidepo Valley National Park.
The safari takes a turn southwards starting with exploration of Murchison Falls National Park, then to hiking the Rwenzori Mountain Ranges, and thereafter we turn to Kalinzu Forest for chimps tracking. With a little break the safari resumes with an expedition to the Lion territory of Queen Elizabeth National Park and to the great highlight of mountain gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.
The last part of the 21-days Uganda safari takes you for relaxation at the beautiful Lake Bunyonyi, and then to the Zebra paradise of Lake Mburo National Park.
The tour finally ends with a search for the prehistoric-great Shoebill stork in Mabamba Swamp of Central Uganda.
If you wanted adventure, excitement and thrill, vacation, uncovering hidden treasures or even breathing fresh air while watching the sunrise at the lake side, we got you covered in this activity packed yet affordable safari through the pearl of Africa!
- Jinja town for white water rafting
- Marvelling at the Sipi Falls
- Exploring Kidepo Valley National Park
- Exploring Murchison Falls National Park
- Chimpanzee tracking in Kalinzu Forest
- Hiking the Rwenzori Mountains
- Exploring Queen Elizabeth National Park
- Gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
- Relaxation at Lake Bunyonyi
- Exploring Lake Mburo National Park
- Search for the Prehistoric Shoebill Stork at Mabamba Swamp
Day 1 — ARRIVAL AT ENTEBBE INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT AND RELAXATION IN PREPARATION FOR THE SAFARI
Upon arrival at the airport, you will be welcomed and transferred to your hotel by our company staff. The company guide will brief you about the safari that will be commencing the next day.
DAY 2 — White Water Rafting and exploration of the River Nile in Kayunga/Jinja
Commence this great adventure whilst taking the route to Kayunga/Jinja to conduct white water rafting on the mighty Nile River. It is planned that upon arrival you will go rafting! You may opt for the straining yet interesting grade 5 or a lesser tedious grade of at least grade 3. Whichever you opt for, safety, fun and thrill remain assured! Fish delicacies and golden beer produced from nearby domestic breweries will be available for you if you opt to taste! In any case, it is your time to enjoy, have fun and relax!
After this adventurous activity, relax at your lodge in preparation for the next day’s activities.
Day 3 — Adventure through Mbale/Bugisu Region and Hiking to Sipi Falls
Rise early and continue with the adventure by exploring Mbale and the Bugisu Region. Your guide will enlighten you about circumcision among the Bagisu people and all rituals associated to this cultural practice! When you get to Kapchorwa, be keen to learn about the Sebei people and the undesired cultural practice of Female Genital Mutilation!
Viewing the Wagagai peak of Mountain Elgon should be your interest! While this will be done from a distance, don’t miss to spot the 4321m peak of this Elgon Mountain that is shared by Uganda and Kenya! Your day’s ultimate activity should be hiking to the Sipi Falls! Keep your camera close and charged such that you can keep great pictures about this experience!
You will enjoy the beauty and scenery of the flow of the falls. You will also sight fauna and different floral species including Elgonensis lobelia and dotted clusters of peculiar groundsels. The aroma of the coffee produced in the Elgon areas is awesome. Don’t leave Kapwora without tasting this great coffee!
Day 4 — Travel to Moroto through Pian Upe game reserve
The safari gets more interesting as we board the safari vehicle and head to the wilderness of Karamoja. We will drive through Pian Upe game reserve while making occasional stop overs to spot animals and birds that keep crossing the route of Pian Upe game reserve. We will arrive in Moroto in the afternoon and conduct an optional community walk to Mountain Moroto.
Day 5 — Transfer to Kidepo valley National Park with a possibility of an evening game drive!
The tour continues on this day to Kidepo Valley National Park through vast plains and semi-arid savannah framed by jagged mountains and wild wooded hills. This is where you are more likely to feel what adventure is all about! The place is rugged, remote, vast, deserted and hot! You will feel isolated and in a typical wilderness!
Kidepo Valley National Park is one of the wildest and most spectacular reserves in Africa with a landscape of small hills, rocky outcrops and inselbergs. The temperatures in Kidepo are usually high, and this will certainly give you a good taste of adventure! While in Kidepo you can get stunning panoramic views of the Narus River Valley and wildlife such as Elephants, herds of Buffaloes, Jackals, Jackson’s Hartebeest, and Klipspringer among others.
The park is renowned for its exceptional variety of birds of prey. While there it is likely that you can spot Ostriches, Kori Bustards, Pygmy Falcons, Verreaux’s Eagles, Egyptian Vultures, Abyssinian ground Hornbills among others.
Should we maneuver the rugged terrain of Karamojae early, we will enter the park and do an evening game drive!
Day 6 — Explore Kidepo Valley National Park
Game viewing is central to this safari! This will be a great opportunity to encounter herds of buffalos, elephants, Zebras, Giraffes and antelopes among other animals of the wild. While big cats tend to be elusive, Kidepo Valley gives better chances to spot lions, leopards and cheetahs going about their hunting business! It is intended that you bisect the park such that you obtain more chances of encountering animals like the Hunting dog, Bat-eared Fox and other animals endemic to Kidepo National Park like the striped hyena.
We stated that this safari is designed to avail you with opportunity to learn more about Africa and experience life in Africa. After the game drive, you will have a cultural interaction with the Karamajong people at Karenna or Kapedo. You will meet the local elders and have an opportunity to interact with them as they show you the kraals, the grinding stones and many more interesting items used by them.
Day 7 — Transfer to Murchison Falls National Park
You will leave Kidepo Valley early and head southwards to Murchison Falls National Park. You will start the day in the morning and transfer through Gulu-Uganda’s biggest town in the North.
Murchison Falls is Uganda’s largest National Park and is a home to over 400 birds’ species. The park is also endowed with several attractions including mammal species with four members of the big five, the lion, the leopards, the elephants, and the Buffaloes. If any of these decides to be elusive in Kidepo valley, Murchison Falls provides a fresh opportunity to search for the elusive.
Other species include giraffes, bushbucks, Uganda kob, waterbucks, warthogs, giraffes, Jackson’s hartebeest, hyenas, hippos and crocodiles among other resident creatures. You will continue the drive through the flat scenic landscape with local villages while enjoying the Ugandan countryside. You will arrive at Murchison Falls National Park in the afternoon and check in at your lodge.
Day 8 — Explore Murchison Falls National Park with a Game-drive & boat-cruise
Early morning, set off for a game drive in search of the big five and other animals which might include, Lions, Elephants, Hippos, Jackals, Waterbucks, Kobs and Giraffes. If we are lucky we may spot Hyenas as well as the elusive Leopards.
In the afternoon, enjoy the boat cruise. During the boat cruise on the Victoria Nile which is the high spot of any Murchison Falls Safari, lots of animals can be spotted at a close encounter. On this amazing experience, there’re higher chances of spotting lots of hippos, Nile crocodiles, Elephants, Buffaloes, and many other animals that come to drink water, refresh and cool themselves off the scorching sun while other animals are seen grazing on the fresh grass along the river banks.
Day 9 — Visit to the Top of the Falls and transfer to Hoima town
Rise early and test your ability to dare with a thrilling trekking activity to the top of the mighty and ferocious Murchison Falls. The force, sound and speed of the Nile water as it is pushed through a small gap between the rocks is really frightening! If you are not that person who dares, you may not stand close to these falls! Test the person in you and get the thrill of this activity!
After the exploration and experience of the falls, we drive out of the park to Hoima town for overnight and relaxation.
Day 10 — Travel to the Crater Lakes Area and the Rwenzori Mountain Ranges
We will rise early and set sights on Kasese where upon arrival we will pitch camp in preparation for the next days’ hike of the Rwenzori Mountains.
Day 11 — Rwenzori hiking – (Firstday) through Montane Forest zone
The Rwenzori Mountains, with a legendary description as the Mountains of the Moon for their snowcapped peaks lie at the boarder of the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda. It is a world heritage site and attracts great number of visitors due to the wonders of nature presented at this site in the form of heavy tropical rain forests, high cliffs, the valley of great nine lakes, glaciers and snowcapped peaks, amazing plant life in the form of giant lobelia, moss and bamboo forests, great animal life that includes elephants, buffalos and primates, among other attractions.
The trek of the Rwenzori Mountains consists of very many climbs and descents and this requires great physical fitness. Considering that we will have engaged in earlier energy demanding activities, we will engage in exploration of the Rwenzori Ranges with a trek for 3 days.
On this day we intend to trek up to 2596 meters. The hike goes through the Afro Montane forest zone with a steady climb. We continue along a steep ridge, through the Enock’s Waterfalls until we get to Sine hut. We will close the day at Sine Hut and relax.
Day 12 — Rwenzori hiking-(day two) through Bamboo zone to Samalira Camp (3174 meters)
We rise early, get prepared and proceed with the trek as we enter the Bamboo zone and head to Kalalama camp. Upon arrival at the camp, we will get a short rest then climb high before crossing the thick forest covered with hanging mosses to a small lobelia garden. We will then descend through a mossy ridge to Samalira camp where the night will be spent.
Day 13 — Rwenzori slope down and transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park
We end our exploration and trek of Rwenzori as we descend down through the Bamboo zone to the base camp. We descend past forested ridges that habit plenty of primates and other animals. The likely primates to be seen are the black and white Colobus monkeys.
On arrival we rest and cruise towards Queen Elizabeth National Park. Time allowing, we will immediately dash to the lion territory and conduct an evening game drive.
Day 14 — Morning relaxation and afternoon game-drive in Queen Elizabeth National Park
Queen Elizabeth is greatly inhabited by the big five, various primate species as well as various species of birds! Exploration of Queen Elizabeth gives you opportunity to spot Elephants, Buffalos, lions, Leopards, Warthogs, Hyenas, water bucks, antelopes and hippos. As earlier indicated, Queen Elizabeth National Park has an incredible treat for a variety of bird species as it contains a variety of habitats that range from savanna, wetlands to lowland forests. This diversity is reflected in the list of over 600 bird species, the biggest of any protected area in East Africa. A majority of the birds found in this area are regarded as famous birds of East Africa and are a must see for birdwatchers in the world.
To ensure that we get a thorough exploration of the park, we will do two game drives. The first will be in the morning and then the second in the afternoon.
Day 15 — Chimpanzee tracking in Kalinzu forest and boat-cruise on Kazinga channel
Rise and brace yourself for an encounter with Man’s closest cousins; the chimpanzees in the forest of Kalinzu. Get your jungle boots on early and join the forest wardens to track chimpanzees!
Your time in the forest will also provide you with the opportunity to also see a variety of other primates (including the Colobus Monkeys and the Mangabey) and animals as well as birds and a variety of butterflies, flowers and other insects. Chimpanzees are the closest relatives to humans sharing about 98.7% of their DNA composition with humans. They are sociable, intelligent as well as communicative! Other interesting traits are their abilities to use stones to crush nuts, use empty pods to collect water plus using sticks for capturing termites from their holes. A successful track of the chimpanzees will give you good lessons about primates as well as beautiful lasting memories about Uganda.
After this expedition, you will have lunch and then in the afternoon, enjoy a 2hours Boat cruise on the famous Kazinga channel. Kazinga channel is a 36kms channel linking Lake George to Lake Edward. Here, you can see water and land adapted Hippopotamuses yawning and some slashing canines to each other and Crocodiles gaping along the Banks.
Day 16 — Travel to Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park with the game drive in the Ishasha sector
We continue with our adventure as we drive towards Bwindi. However before we get to Bwindi, we explore the Southern part of Queen Elizabeth that is renowned to habit tree climbing lions. This southern part of Queen Elizabeth is covered by savannah plains, thickets and fig trees that offer good hunting grounds for the tree climbing lions! Keep your camera close such that you do not miss the opportunity to take that great and memorable shot for your home gallery!
Upon arrival, we rest as we prepare for the highlight of this safari-Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi.
Day 17 — Gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable forest and transfer to Lake Bunyonyi
Wild animals may be found elsewhere in the world! However, Gorillas are only endemic to Uganda and some parts of Rwanda and DR Congo! Still, half of the world’s population is in Bwindi-Uganda! You get a great deal when you opt for this Safari to Uganda! You are almost certain that you will see the gorillas when you are in Uganda. Indeed you may not get any clear chance to encounter gorillas in any other place other than Uganda!
Be at your best and join the rest as you go gorilla trekking. This amazing activity is conducted through the densely forested steep hills until you finally meet these tranquil gorillas within the green plant cover. It is such a wonderful and memorable encounter.
Trekking Gorillas is a very interesting activity! It comes with anxiety before you meet the gorillas and when you spot them, you get filled with amazement!
Gorilla trekking groups are assigned on fitness levels. You can request a shorter or longer hike; it all depends on your preference.
After the trekking, we cool off in the mist of Bwindi and then proceed to Lake Bunyonyi.
Day 18 — Relaxation day at Lake Bunyonyi
While we draw closer to wind our expedition, we cool off with a deserved relaxation at Lake Bunyonyi. Laze at the shore of the lake and watch the sun sink behind the hills of Bunyonyi and Kabale! It is a nice moment to wine and enjoy the breeze of the lake!
Lake Bunyonyi is located in south western Uganda at 1962m above sea level and is surrounded by steep sided heavily cultivated hills of Kabale. Lake Bunyonyi (literary meaning ‘the place of many little birds’) is a beautiful place with 29 islands dotting the center of the lake and believed to be the 2nd deepest lake in Africa after Tanzania’s Lake Tanganyika. While here, you will also enjoy canoeing and swimming!
Day 19 — Transfer to Lake Mburo National Park
After the exhilarating experience of Lake Bunyonyi, we embark on the journey to the calm and beautiful Lake Mburo National Park. The wooded grassland section of the park is endowed with giraffes, herds of buffalos and a large numbers of antelopes like Elands, Topis, Impalas, Waterbucks, Bush duikers, and Zebras.
Lake Mburo National Park is peculiar; as it is the only place in Uganda’s parks where you can do a walking safari and come up close to friendly animals like giraffes and Zebra! What a photograph you may take in such environs!! The entire Lake Mburo Park is a place of magical beauty; “a place where the vision of a deep red sunset silhouetting the thorny acacia shrub along the extensive marshy area can be experienced.
On arrival, go for the afternoon boat cruise on Lake Mburo and experience a variety of aquatic life in the make of hippos, crocodiles. Different bird species can also be seen during this boat cruise. These may include ; African Finfoot, Shinning Blue Kingfisher, African Fish Eagle, Little Bittern, Black crowned –Night Heron, White crowned Night Heron among others.
We will do a morning walking safari or game drive as we continue to explore the beauty of the park.
Day 20 — Morning game drive in Lake Mburo National Park and travel to Kampala
We rise early and conduct a morning exploration of the park and then proceed with our safari through the Western and Central Regions of Uganda.
As we cruise towards Kampala, we will stop at the equator crossing, take the best photo shots and engage in some of the activities and experiments that people normally engage in when they reach the equator. The experiments engaged in are not scientifically tested/proved but fun to watch. These experiments involve pouring water in the basin while observing how it swirls in opposite directions in the northern & southern hemispheres of the equator line.
While here, enter the Curio and Souvenir shops and get some mementoes to keep your memories about this awesome Africa safari.
Day 21 — Shoebill search at Mabamba swamp and flight
We wind our exploration of Uganda with a search for the prehistoric shoebill stork at Mabamba Swamp.
Mabamba is an extensive marsh stretching through a long narrow bay, fringed with papyrus towards the western main body of Lake Victoria in Mpigi District. Mabamba is an Important Bird Area (IBA), and other than the Shoebill, it is home to other species of water birds like the African Jacanas, Yellow billed Ducks, White faced whistling ducks, Long toed Plovers, Village Weavers, Purple Swamphens, Northern brown throated weaver, Malachite kingfisher, Grey headed gulls, Gull billed terns, White winged warbler, Papyrus Gonolek, African darter, Rufous bellied heron among others. We will get on boats and paddle through the channels of the swamp in search of the Shoebill.
Generally; it takes between two to three hours to locate the Shoebill. After this memorable encounter with the shoebill, we drive to Entebbe for a flight back home.
- Park entrance fees
- Gorilla Trekking
- Chimpanzee tracking
- Boat rides
- Ferry crossing
- Vehicle entrance fees
- Ground transport
- Bottled water in the safari vehicle
- Tour guide services
- Vehicle park fees
- Mabamba Swamp
- Game drives
- All mentioned activities except for the optional ones
- All extras at the accommodation that is, drinks, telephone, laundry among others.
- Charges for the porters during gorilla trekking
- Flight tickets
Price — US $5520 per person (For two people)
The price slightly increases if you decide to travel as a solo traveler. Conversely, the price payable per person reduces from the stated amount if the tour is booked by more than two people.