Gatatu Safaris. Authentic African Safari Experience

9 Day Forest, Wildlife, and Primate Safari


Are you prepared to visit one of the most attractive National Parks in Uganda and track the chimpanzees? Well, the chimpanzees are awaiting your arrival in Kibale National Park! Other primates are also waiting for you, as well as a vast rockery of birds of 375 species, and an array of other wild animals. Kibale National Park is nestled in the elevated Fort Portal plateau’s lush tropical rainforest.

An exciting visit to a celebrated UNESCO Biosphere Reserve! Queen Elizabeth National Park is host to a remarkable variety of ecosystems. It is located on the western arm of the Great Rift Valley. In its vicinity is Lake George, a Ramsar Site. It also has Lake Edward, both of which provide for food and income for the locals.

Then, be ready to embark on one of the most unique experiences in your life! Well, get ready to have a life changing encounter the Mountain Gorillas that can only be found in special areas in the world like in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Bwindi is known to be the home to about 300 of 700 mountain gorillas. There are only a few special places like it. So, be prepared to be mesmerized by these gentle giants.

After, have Lake Bunyonyi, “the place of many little birds” captivate your senses. Bask in the warmth of the sun and cool down in its wondrous waters. The verdant scenery is relaxing and peaceful. A sight and experience to behold.

Finally, this 50-kilometer wetland system will enchant you! Host to special wildlife, and a small savanna, Lake Mburo National Park is small but still a very special destination as it is host to globally endangered animals which are being conserved and protected.


Categories: Uganda


Price Ranges: USD $ 3000-5999

Activities:

  • Gorilla Trekking
  • Cultural Immersion
  • Chimpanzee Tracking
  • Boat Cruise
  • Bird Watching
  • Wildlife Game Drive

Days: 8-9 Days


Activities:

  • Gorilla Trekking
  • Cultural Immersion
  • Chimpanzee Tracking
  • Boat Cruise
  • Bird Watching
  • Wildlife Game Drive

Upon your arrival, please expect to be welcomed by your enthusiastic tour leader who will take good care of you. You will be brought to your accommodation in Kampala. You can take this time to rest and charge up in preparation for the long Uganda-Rwanda adventure.

Main destination: Kampala
Accommodation: Cassia Lodge
Meals: Lunch and dinner are included

After breakfast, we shall checkout and from Kampala, we will head west to reach Kibale National Park in Fort Portal. We will take the route towards Mubende which will let us pass through the verdant country side where we can see traditional homesteads, and tea plantations. On the way to Fort Portal town, we will have lunch. Later in the afternoon, we shall then proceed to our lodge to rest.

If your flight arrives later in the day, you can choose to rest first in Kampala for a while. Then, as we head out to Kibale National Park, expect that we will arrive in Fort Portal in the evening already.

Main destination: Kibale Forest National Park
Accommodation: Chimpanzee Forest Guest House
Meals: All meals included

CHIMP TRACKING / PRIMATE WALK
After breakfast, we must be at the Kanyanchu Visitors Center at 0800H where the Chimp Tracking activity commences. The hike is seasonal, only during the dry season (January to February, June to September, mid-November to December). It is about 12 kilometers and will take about 2-3 hours. Apart from the chimpanzees which humans share 98% of DNA with, be surprised to see other primates, and a vast rockery of birds. Kibale National Park is has the highest density of primate life in the world and is home to about 375 bird species which include the Grey-Throated Flycatcher, Masked & Black-Capped Apalis. The park also showcases traditionally used plant wildlife. Packed lunch will be prepared by our accommodation.

Here are some guidelines:

  1. Participants should be 13 years old and over, alternative activities are offered to children 12 years and younger
  2. Those experiencing diarrhea, or flu will not be allowed to participate
  3. Wear sturdy shoes with a good grip for muddy slopes
  4. It is recommended that you wear thin long sleeved tops to avoid scratches while traversing the forest
  5. Bring rain gear since weather can easily shift
  6. Flash photography is not allowed, fast film setting is recommended
  7. It is recommended that you bring binoculars for ease of viewing
  8. Make sure to distance yourself at least 8 meters
  9. Do not provoke them
  10. Please avoid eating near the primates
  11. Carry drinking water to rehydrate and some quick bites to curb hunger during the trek
  12. There will be six people in each group

 

BIGONDI WETLANDS SANCTUARY / BIGONDI VILLAGE
This activity begins after lunch. From Kibale National Park’s Kanyanchu Visitor Center, it is a 6 kilometer drive south via Kamwenge Road to Bigondi which is located in the Magombe swamp.

The Bigondi Wetlands Sanctuary tour will take about 3 hours, starting at 1500H. It is necessary that a trained sanctuary guide accompany you on your tour. We will be passing by boardwalks which run above the water. We will see many different wildlife – from animals such as primates, reptiles, birds, to plants and vegetation. The most celebrated primate species in the area include colobuses varying from red, white, and black, baboons, red-tailed monkeys, vervets, mangabeys, grey-cheeked blue monkeys, L’Hoest monkeys, mongooses, and occasional chimpanzee sightings. Other mammals include otters, bush bucks, bush pigs, civet cats, sitatunga (endangered swamp antelope). There are many birds in the sanctuary. It is a haven to birdwatchers as it boasts about 138 bird species. Skilled birdwatchers can find about 50 species of birds including cuckoos, flycatchers, hornbills, kingfishers, papyrus gonoleks, waxbills, and weavers. The Great Blue Turaco remains to be the favorite of visitors. Your tour in the wetlands will be lined with lush vegetation and plant biodiversity, showcasing many different trees, vines, shrubs, and flowers.

The Bigondi Village is an eco-tourism destination behind the “Mountains of the Moon” or known locally as Ruwenzori Mountains. This destination is community-based and is operated and managed by its locals. The Kibale Association for Rual and Environmental Development (KAFRED) is at its forefront. Local handicrafts are also showcased in the village. Eco-tourism helps uplift the community and improve its economy and community. Funds generated through eco-tourism have fueled many community projects and have funded Bigondi Secondary School. Moreover, 10% of the handicraft sales account for the establishment of nursery and primary schools, conservation education, and AIDS orphan care.

To conclude the day, we return to our lodge to have dinner, and take a much deserved rest after an action-packed day of adventure.

Main destination: Kibale Forest National Park
Accommodation: Chimpanzee Forest Guest House
Meals: All meals included

After breakfast, we shall check out from our accommodation, and drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park. The drive is about 2 hours via the Mbarara-Kasese Road. After arriving Queen Elizabeth National Park, we shall check in to our accommodation and have lunch. After which, we shall do a game drive in the Kasenyi Plain. In that area, we can have a chance to see lions, hyenas, and leopards. After the day’s activity, we can have dinner back at the accommodation, and call it a day and rest for the night.

Main destination: Queen Elizabeth National Park
Accommodation: Mweya Safari Lodge
Meals: All meals included

We can have an early breakfast as we travel to the nearby Kyambura Gorge. During the walk, you may spot chimpanzees, other monkeys, elephants, hippopotamuses, elephants, lions, and birds, among other animals.

After lunch, we shall go to the Mweya Peninsula for a boat ride along the Kazinga Channel. There will be plentiful wildlife along the banks. There will be a good chance we can see buffaloes, elephants, birds, and hippopotamuses.

The Mweya Peninsula is a sight to behold as it overlooks the Katwe bay of Lake Edward. It is considered as the ‘heart of sightseeing’ in the park. Subsequently, the Northern area of Kazinga Channel is near Mweya Peninsula. It is the body of water joining together Lake Edward and Lake George. It is about 40 meters long. We can view a lot of different wildlife along the banks. There will be a variety of mammals, reptiles, and birds. After the day’s activity, we can return to our accommodation to have dinner and get well-deserved rest aftert his action-packed day of adventure.

On this day of adventure, we shall have a nice picnic lunch. Then, we return to our accommodation to have dinner, and rest for the night.

Main destination: Queen Elizabeth National Park
Accommodation: Mweya Safari Lodge
All meals are included

After breakfast, we checkout and forge forward to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park. The drive will take about 5 hours. We will be passing through Kabale in the Kizengi District. Kabale is known as the Switzerland of Uganda because of its green terraces, lovely climate and scenic vista. As we travel on, and reach Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, we can check in to our accommodation to have dinner and get well-deserved rest after this action-packed day of adventure.

Main destination: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park
Accommodation: Asyanut Gorilla Safari Lodge
Meals: All meals are included

After breakfast we shall proceed to the park offices to begin our adventure with the gentle giants. A briefing will take place at the park headquarters. The duration of the activity will depend on the sighting and movement of the gorillas. It can span from 1 to 8 hours. The sight of the mountain gorillas will be truly an experience to remember. Mountain gorillas are endangered ape species and there are only few left in the world. Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is a unique destination since it is the only place in Africa that mountain gorillas and chimpanzees co-exist. Packed lunch will be prepared by your accommodation. Your visit to them will help, as the park permits which you have purchased to enter the park will fund conservation.

Here are some guidelines:

  1. It is recommended that you wear thin long sleeved tops and pants to avoid scratches while traversing the forest
  2. Wear lightweight sturdy waterproof shoes that have ankle-support
  3. Gloves to hold on to some foliage
  4. Have a light, preferably weather-proof backpack for extra clothes, water, snacks like trail mixes or energy bars
  5. Have a hat with a brim
  6. Bring rain gear since weather can easily shift
  7. Have your cameras ready – fully charged up
  8. It is recommended that you bring binoculars for ease of viewing


After the day’s action-packed adventure, we shall return to your lodge to checkout and drive towards Lake Bunyonyi. The drive will take about 2 hours via the Muko-Bufundi Road. We shall then check in, have dinner, and rest for the night.

Main destination: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park/Lake Bunyonyi
Accommodation: Bird’s Nest Resort
Meals: All meals are included

After breakfast, we shall go around Lake Bunyonyi. There are about 29 islets and we can visit the 6 main ones – Akampene (Punishment Island), Bushara, Kyahugye, Bwama, Njuyeera, Bucuranuka (Upside down). It will be interesting to know stories that are linked with these islands. It will provide a lot of cultural insight. Since the lake is known to be free of bilhazaria, you can take a swim. It is very safe and does not have crocodiles or hippos in the water. In any water activity, it is important to take precaution. You can also ride a canoe to explore the lake further. We can also take a short trek to get a good vista of the whole lake. Cultural immersion and interaction can be done with the local settlers in the area. We can see the farmers, playful children and women clad in their traditional kanga wraps. There is a children’s concert where we can hear the kids sing. Then after the day’s activity, we return to our accommodation, and checkout. We will then head on over to Lake Mburo National Park. It will take about 5 hours to get there via the Kabale-Mbarara Road. When we arrive, we shall check in, have dinner, and rest for the night.

Main destination: Lake Bunyonyi/Lake Mburo National Park
Accommodation: Mihingo Lodge
Meals: All meals are included

After breakfast, we can go for an early morning game drive in Lake Mburo National Park where we can spot some wildlife of about 350 bird species, buffaloes, Defassa waterbuck, eland, hippos, hyenas, impalas, leopards, oribis, reedbucks, topis, and zebras. It is noteworthy to mention that there are globally threatened animals like impalas, some bird species, and the cichlid fish species which can only be seen in the lake. After the activity, we shall go back to our accommodation to checkout. We will then travel to Kampala. We will have lunch along the way. We can stop over at the Equator to buy souvenirs. We will drop you off either to the Entebbe International Airport or to your hotel in Kampala. This marks the end of our tour.

Main destination: Lake Mburo National Park/Kampala
Accommodation: None, end of tour
Meals: Breakfast and lunch are included

ACCOMMODATION OPTIONS
All accommodation options are based on standard double or twin rooms. You also have an option for a single room. Accommodation options are either budget, mid-range, or high-end. The accommodation options have been carefully selected for you. Options which have been considered for you were based primarily on its location, and service quality, relevant to its accommodation classification.

MEAL PLAN
The cost of the tour includes most meals. Meals which are included are indicated day-by-day in the itinerary.

INCLUSIONS:

  1. English speaking Tour Guide
  2. Four-wheel drive vehicle with pop-up roof and fuel
  3. Accommodation
  4. Park Entrance Fees
  5. Most meals (it is indicated per day in the itinerary)


EXCLUSIONS:

 

  1. International Flight Ticket
  2. Entry Visa to Uganda
  3. Medical and Travel Insurance
  4. Accommodation in Kampala
  5. Meals not included in the itinerary
  6. Personal expenses (example: bar bills, optional activities, laundry, and souvenirs, etc.)
  7. Gratuities and tips

 

 

Price per person:


1 adult (1 room) 2 adults (1 room) 3 adults (1 room) 4 adults ( 2 rooms) 5 adults (2 rooms)
  $3,750 $3,690 $3,290 $2,290