Day 1: Welcome to Uganda!
Your driver/guide will be at Entebbe Airport to pick you up from your flight and take you directly to your lodge in Kampala. Depending on the hour of your arrival, you may be able to explore the sites in and around Kampala.
Gracious and elegant, the Emin Pasha evokes another era when taste, gentle service, ambience and comfort were the hallmarks of a good hotel. Located on one of the calm leafy hills of the city, you will have the option of eating at the excellent on-site restaurant or any of a number of nearby choices.
Day 2: Fort Portal
Today you will drive to Fort Portal in western Uganda. The route is incredibly scenic, passing through tea plantations and the lush green countryside which characterizes so much of Uganda.
You will be staying at a wonderful lodge just outside the town of Fort Portal where you will have a spacious room and an amazing view over one of the many crater lakes in this area!
This afternoon you can sit back, relax and enjoy the landscapes. If you prefer to get active, you can make a crater lake hike, have a swim, visit Fort Portal town, or visit the nearby botanical gardens.
Day 3: Kibale Forest National Park
Kibale Forest National Park boasts the highest number of primate species in the world, including our delightful cousins, the chimpanzees. Today, in Uganda, there are approximately 5,000 chimpanzees in the wild, which makes it a perfect place to spot them!
An experienced forest ranger will take you chimp tracking in the morning or afternoon. You might also see other monkey species that live in this tropical forest. Once you locate them, you will spend a full hour with the chimps. Since they are still wild animals, we can never guarantee you to see them and might have to settle with hearing their hoots and hollers.
The forest and swamp of Kibale Forest are home to 12 primate species including the Red Tailed Monkey, Olive Baboon, Black and White Colobus Monkey, and the Blue Monkey. The bird life in the forest is also prolific and includes the beautiful Great Blue Turaco.
Your two- to three-hour swamp walk will take you through grassland, small communities and some beautiful scenery, where the locals are likely to greet you with enthusiastic waves. It is usual to spot three to four different primate species during this walk, though the highlight is catching a glimpse of the Great Blue Turaco!
Day 4: Queen Elizabeth National Park
After a relaxed breakfast, you will continue your journey to Queen Elizabeth National Park.
Queen Elizabeth is Uganda’s second largest park, located at the base of the majestic Rwenzori Mountain range, adjacent to Lake Edward and Lake George.
The park has prolific game, including gazelle, Uganda kob, warthog and waterbuck. Lions are often sighted both inside and at the entrance to the park.
After about 2 hours driving, you reach the entrance of the park. The last 1½ hour of today’s journey is a game drive towards the lodge.
You stay overnight at the beautiful Mweya Safari Lodge, located in the heart of Queen Elizabeth National Park on the Mweya peninsula. Watch wildlife from your own private verandah and fall asleep to the roaring of lions on the distant savannah. This truly is Africa!
Day 5: Park Game Drive & Boat Safari
Today you wake up early. A little before sunrise, coffee, tea and donuts will be served in the lounge before you head out for a long game drive in Queen Elizabath N.P. in time to see the first rays of light.
You will search for all the wildlife in the park and are likely to come across elephant, buffalo, lion, waterbuck, leopard, Uganda kob, and many, many warthogs.
A well-deserved brunch will be served back at the lodge in the late morning.
After lunch, you will take a boat safari along the Kazinga Channel which joins Lake George and Lake Albert.
Here, you will see more hippos than you can possibly imagine, as well as a variety of other animals which come to the water to drink or bathe. You can expect to see buffalo, crocodile, bathing elephant, and a range of beautiful birds. This will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of your tour.
After de boat safari you game drive back to the lodge.
Day 6: Ishasha - Tree-climbing lions
After a relaxed breakfast you will proceed to the southern part of Queen Elizabeth N.P. - an area called Ishasha famous for its tree-climbing lions.
To escape from the heat during the day, the lions here have learned how to climb the fig trees. If you are lucky you might spot a few during your game drive, so keep your eyes open and look up!
Besides these famous lions, there is other interesting wildlife to be seen, like buffalo and the Uganda kob.
After the game drive in Ishasha, you will travel to Mahogany Springs Lodge which offers privacy and serenity blended with optimal comfort in a spectacular setting along the Munyanga River and facing the Bwindi Impenetrable forest - home of the Mountain Gorillas
Get a good night's sleep because tomorrow you have to be fresh for the gorilla tracking.
Day 7: Tracking the Gorillas
Prepare yourself for an encounter with one of Bwindi’s gentle giants: the rare mountain gorilla. For most people this is the absolute highlight of their tour in Uganda. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest boasts both mountain gorillas and chimpanzees - the only forest in Africa which can make this claim. It also hosts five other species of primate, 113 species of mammal, over 200 butterflies and 360 birds.
The gorillas you track belong to one of nine habituated family groups who can tolerate the presence of humans for a brief period every day.
En route, your guide will point out signs of previous gorilla activity, including dung, nests and chewed bamboo shoots. Your track will be an exciting journey along forested slopes, entwined vines, bushes and bamboo before you eventually reach the gorilla family.
The time taken to track the gorillas can be as few as 2 hours to as many as 7 hours. Once the gorillas have been located, your group will be allowed a maximum of one hour with them. Coming face-to-face with a mountain gorilla is a truly humbling and emotional experience. This is a fantastic and privileged opportunity to get up close and personal with Uganda’s very own ‘Gorillas in the Mist’.
Day 8: Back to Kampala/Entebbe
After an early breakfast at the lodge, you will drive back to Kampala or Entebbe (Airport) stopping at the equator for the requisite snapshot and a bit of souvenir shopping.
Accommodation for tonight is not inclusive in the programme. If you wish to depart tonight from Entebbe Airport, make sure your flight is at 10 pm or later. If you would like us to book one (or more) nights in Kampala and/or Entebbe, please let us know.