gorilla safaris
gorilla safaris

9 days Rwanda and Uganda safari

This tour will take you to Uganda’s  and  Rwanda’s Gorilla   tracking national parks and other two Safari national Parks in Uganda that Include Queen Elizabeth Np and   Murchison Falls Np

Day 1; –   Transfer to Murchison Falls National Park

A representative from AA safaris and tours will pick you up from your hotel in Kampala and drive  towards the Northern part of Uganda to start the Uganda Safari section of the tour. You will pass via Luwero and then Masindi . Visit the Zziwa Rhino Sanctuary a home to some of the rescued Rhinos . You will indulge in Rhino tracking and then have lunch . After transfer to Murchison falls NP. Murchison Falls National Park  is a magnificent Savanna Wildlife National Park found in North western Uganda.  The park covers 3,840km2 and has the most intense concentration of animals along the river.  The park has the spectacular Murchison Falls where the River Nile  plunges  itself  into  a narrow gorge 48  from a 7 metres wide crevice – an amazing outlook!. The  park  has a  variety of vegetation ranging from riparian forests and swamp lands to broad savannah and it  provides the opportunity of seeing many of the animals found in Uganda almost all Uganda’s National Parks . In the southern section of the park is the beautiful  Budongo  Forest which harbors  a variety of primates that include Chimpanzee.    Dinner and over night at
Budget –  Red Chillis Camp /  Sambiya Bandas /  any other budget accommodation around  in case there is no availability in any of the above mentioned.
Standard- Sambiya  River Lodge Cottages / Budongo Eco Lodge
Luxury – Nile Safari camp / Paraa safari Lodge .

Day 2; Game drive and Boat cruise on the Nile. 

Take a cup of coffee or tea to warm up for your early morning game drive.  You will then transfer to the northern sector or Murchison Falls Np. Indulge in  a game drive. Your driver guide will help you search and spot the savannah wildlife in this park that include; giraffe, Elephants, Hyenas,  the Uganda Kob , bush backs, water bucks, leopards, oribi and many other animals, birds like the crested crane,  black and white eagle will be seen along the search and if you are lucky , you will encounter the legendary shoe bill and many other animals. Return to the lodge for mid morning breakfast and then relax as you wait for lunch.

In the afternoon, you will assemble at the starting point of the launch for a cruise along the Victoria Nile.  The River Nile is a home to one of Africa’s densest hippo and crocodile populations and a stunning diversity of water birds which include the world’s most accessible wild population of the rare shoebill stork. The rangers will give you a clearer explanation whilst on the boat after which you will reach the bottom of the falls. A sight of the crocodiles sun bathing as well as hippos yawning  is an exhilarating experience.

You will return to your accommodation for dinner and over night.

Day 3- Transfer to Hoima

You will transfer to Hoima. Have lunch at Hoima Kontik hotel and then later relax at the hotel . There are several activities  that you can indulge in at Hoima Kontik .Horse riding is a well-liked activity for knowledgeable and apprentice riders,Watch the weekends big sports events on our wide screen TV .

Bird Watching in your gardens is  a famous  activity  for apprentice birders. Over 50 species can be observed within a stones throw especially in the early morning hours.Kontiki boosts of a well maintained fruit orchard where our guests get to harvest fresh fruits for their breakfast.

Note ; that the above activities are optional and anyone interested in them must inform us and ask for quotes at the time of booking .  You are advised to book just one of them because the next morning needs an early morning start.

Dinner and over night at Kontik Hotel .

Day 4; – Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park.

You will be transferred to Queen Elizabeth Np. The 1978Km2 Queen Elizabeth Np  is strategically located on the rift  valley Floor in between Lake Edward and George where a medley of habitat supports 95 mammal species  and  an extraordinary   assortment  of avian species  above 612 .  40 years ago, Douglas  Willock 2nd  lieutenant in the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry  described Queen Elizabeth Np   as a home of diverse features. The park forms part of  an extensive  system of contiguous protected areas which include  the Kyambura  Wildlife reserve, Kalinzu Forest reserve as well as Kyambura game reserve and it is neighbored by  Kibale Np  and the 2000 Km 2DRC’s Virunga National Park. Rwenzori  Np a is also Nearer to the park as well as Bwindi Np. You will arrive in the late afternoon and have lunch after which you will indulge in an evening game drive. The game drive in Queen Elizabeth  Np  will expose you to several unique Animals that Queen Elizabeth harbours amongst which is the Elephants, Leopards, Hartebeests , Lions, Hyenas, bufallos, the Legendary Eland  and Topis  and many more .The bird species that you may spot include the Martial eagle,  Chapin’s Flycather, pink-backed buttonquail, African Skimmer , pin-backed pelican , white winged webler  among others. You will later retire for dinner and over night   at
Budget – Bush lodge / Simba safari Camp
Standard – Ihamba Lodge or Hippo Hill Camp
Luxury – Mweya safari Lodge / Jacana safari /  Kyambura Game lodge / Katara Lodge.

Day 4;- Game drives in Queen Elizabeth Np and launch cruise along the Kazinga Channel

Having taken a cup of tea or coffee to warm up, you will then head to Kasenyi for an early morning game drive.  You will search for those animals that you may have missed out in the evening game drive with the aid of your driver guide. Return to the lodge for mid morning breakfast and then relax as you wait for lunch.

In the afternoon, you will go for a launch cruise along the Kazinga channel.  The 40Kilo metres long canal connects Lake George to Lake Edward  and gives the park  a major wildlife display.  Its banks attract a  big  number of birds, mammals and reptiles all year around.   It is here that most animals come to take water   while a bird watcher will be on a treat of so many migrant and non migrant birds just standing on the bank – an amazing eye catch!  The guide on the boat will provide you will details of all encounters. Dinner and over night at your lodge.

Day 5; Chimpanzee Tracking  in Kyambura – Transfer to Bwindi. 

Wake up early enough to take breakfast and drive to the starting points of Chimpanzee trekking. You will indulge in chimpanzee tracking in either the Kyambura gorge or Kalinzu depending on where the chimp permits will be available. Subject to booking chimpanzee permits in advance.

The Kyambura Wildlife reserve  protected the southern bank of the Kazinga channel and it has 4 crater lake in which 1000s of Flamingos  occasionally assemble. It is where the Kyambura Gorge is found.  The 100m deep gorge carved by the Kyambura rivers is a home of the few left and threatened Chimpanzees.  Later, you will  drive via Ishasha sector for a picnic lunch and if weather allows, you will have a short game drive to search for tree climbing Lions.

Ishasha is located 100km south of the Mweya Peninsular and it has a diverse habitat where Ishasha river flows. The savannah woodlands here harbor  a lot of birds  while the swampy lake Edward  floor supports the popular tree climbing lions and the rare legendary shoe bill stork .

After  you will head to Bwindi National park .

Home to the worlds only few left Mountain Gorillas,  Bwindi Np supports tremendous biodiversity.  It is one of the few refugia forests that persisted after the ice age when most of the African Forest perished. Its slopes extend over a huge altitudinal array of 1447m to generate  habitats that range from lowland forests at 1160m to  unique afromontane vegetation higher than 2600m. Bwindi’s busiest tourism site is buhoma which is the trail head for 5 gorilla tracking  families which include Rushegura, Mubare, Habinyanja, Butukura and  the newly habituated Oruzugo .  There are  more  gorilla tracking families and these can be found in southern Bwindi. They include; Nkuringo , Nshogi which has the biggest number of gorillas and Kahungye. Though Gorilla trekking is the  main tourists activity, Bwindi also has other activities like bird watching , village walks, nature walks , pygmy visits that many  other tourists can indulge in .Your will retire for dinner and over night at

Budget – Buhoma Community Bandas/ Bwindi View Bandas / Virunga Hotel or Nkuringo safari centre  (Full Board)
Mid range L. Kitandara Luxury Camp/ Nkuringo Campsite/ Nkuringo safari  Lodge
Standard Engagi lodge / Buhoma lodge / Wagtail Eco lodge / Nkuringo  safari Lodge / Travelers’ rest Hotel/ Gorilla safari Lodge
Luxury- Gorilla Resort Camp / Gorilla Forest camp/ Clouds lodge/ Gahinga Volcanoes Lodge.

Day 6; Gorilla Safari

Take your early morning breakfast and don’t forget to carry your packed lunch ,  summon for update and briefing from the  ranger guides.     Your guides will take  care of all the formalities needed about gorilla permits .  The rangers will then lead you to the  forest for Gorilla trekking. The time taken to search for and find the gorillas is unpredictable . This is because you will be tracking gorillas in their own habitat and sometimes finding them depends on how they move to look for food in their habitat.  The encounter is an amazing experience . One of our clients once said;

“And with the Gorillas??? 😉

Well … it was “one of those moments” and it leaves you speechless.”
You will be privileged to spend some time with the only few left endangered gorillas and after return to the lodge for dinner and overnight.

Day 7; Transfer to Volcanoes National Park- Rwanda.

This park was gazetted in order to protect gorillas from being poached, it is a small area surrounded by Karisimbi, Bisoke and Mikeno and the very first absolute national park to be created in Africa.
Dian Fossey an American naturalist also used this park s abase for her research into gorilla in 1967, she also set up the Karisoke Research Centre between Karisimbi and Bisoke. She spent most of her time in the park, she would spend an hour in the park watching them do their daily routines like feeding, playing and resting. She managed to save so many gorillas from extinction for which she credited. Unfortunately she was assassinated by unknown assailants at her home in 1985, a crime that was attributed to poachers since she had spent so much time of her life fighting against.  She is buried in the park in a research center amongst the gorillas which had become her life and her life was presented on the big screen in the film Gorillas in the Mist. Her grave site is a 2 hours trek and very memorable.

The Volcanoes National Park later 1992 became a battlefield in the course of the Rwandan Civil War, and the research centre was vacated and all tourist activities were stopped like gorilla visiting until 1999 when the place was declared safe for all people. Today this national park is has the best ecosystem in the area of blending evergreen and bamboo forest with open grassland, swamps and heath.

Dinner and over night at ;

Budget accommodation: Kinigi Guest Hotel, Muhabura Guest house in Musanze
Mid-range / Moderate / Standard accommodation: Gorilla Nest Lodge, Gorilla Mountain View Lodge/ Gorillas Hotel / Le Bambou Hotel
Luxury accommodation: Virunga lodge or  Sabyinyo silverback lodge

Day 8; Gorilla safari Rwanda

Assemble at ORTPN for briefing from game rangers  as your driver carries on the formalities for gorilla safari  You will start the trek from your allocated families. Gorilla trekking in Rwanda takes a shorter time than that of Bwindi and it is easier because the terrain is on a plateau.  On encounter, stay with the gorillas for  some time- It is a worthwhile experience ! A clients of AA safaris and tours once said;
“I have been very lucky to see 3 weeks old baby Twin !!! 🙂

At one point, we had a hard time to obey the “stay 7m away” rule because … we were surrounded and had no were to go back 🙂 :-)”.

After your  may have to transfer to Kabale  to Shorten to distance from Rwanda to Kampala or if you are flying out of Kigali then you will be transferred to Kigali  for your dinner and over nights at  either,

Budget Bushara Island camp – Kabale
Standard – Arcadia cottage / Bunyonyi Overland camp
Luxury – Heritage Lodge formerly known as Habuharo Island camp
In Kabale

Or Budget – Hotel Chez Lando
Moderate – Hotel Gorillas or Umubano Hotel / Hotel Des Mille Collines.
Luxury – Kigali Serena Hotel

Day 9; Transfer to Kampala or Kigali.

If you stayed in Kabale, you will be transferred to Kampala . Lunch en route, Stop over at the Equator.
Say Fare well to both the pearl of Africa and the Land of Thousand Hills. End of Uganda and Rwanda Safari.

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