13 Days Highlights of Uganda.
This 13 Days Highlights of Uganda Tour takes you to some of the most adventurous national parks in Uganda. as you embark on this 13 days Uganda safari to explore the ‘Pearl of Africa,’ you will get to do lots of interesting activities with your friends and family, and these include; Rhino Tracking at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, Game drive and Boat cruise in Murchison Falls national park, Chimpanzee Trekking in Kibale national park, Lion Tracking and a boat cruise in Queen Elizabeth national park, and gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and a boat ride on Lake Bunyonyi. Finally, enroute to Lake Mburo national park for a game drive and horseback riding, and later transfer back to Kampala or Entebbe for your departure.
Detailed Itinerary for 13 Days Highlights of Uganda Tour.
Day 1: Pick Up from Entebbe & Transfer to Kampala for a City Tour.
Transfer to Kampala & City Tour: Welcome to Uganda! On Day 1 of your 13 Days Highlights of Uganda Tour, you will be picked by your guide from Entebbe International Airport or your designated hotel in Kampala. You will then be transferred to Kampala City for a tour. While on your city tour, you will visit places such as; the Uganda Museum, Independence Monument, Craft village, Namugongo Martyrs’ Shrine, Kabaka’s Palace in Mengo, Bahai Temple, Kabaka’s Lake, Idi Amin’s Torture Chambers, Ndeere Cultural Center and Kasubi Tombs among others. You will have lunch in town and continue with your tour of Kampala City. You will get to visit some of our top shopping malls in the city like Kingdom Kampala, Acacia Shopping Mall, and Garden City to mention but a few.
Later head back to your hotel for dinner and an overnight.
Day 2: Transfer to Murchison Falls National Park.
Transfer to Murchison Falls: Wake up early in the morning and have a heartfelt breakfast before checking out of your hotel. Your guide will pick you up from your hotel and proceed with your drive to Murchison Falls National Park. This national park was first established in 1952 and covers a total surface area of 3,840km², making it the largest national park in Uganda. The national park is a habitat for a variety of wildlife animals such as; the African Savannah Elephants, zebras, giraffe, antelopes, buffaloes, warthogs, baboons, Hippos, Nile crocodiles and so many more.
Rhino Tracking at Ziwa: En route to Murchison Falls national park, you will visit the famous Luwero Triangle, have lunch in Masindi town. You will have a stopover at the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary where you will get to see rhinos in the wild. The sanctuary is the only destination where visitors can get to see rhinos in the natural habitat.
Later proceed with your drive to Murchison Falls national park.
Later check into your Lodge, freshen up, have dinner and a good night’s rest. Accommodation at Heritage Safari Lodge/Pakuba Safari Lodge/Paraa Safari Lodge.
Day 3: Morning Game Drive and Evening Boat Cruise.
Morning Game Drive: After an early breakfast, head out for a morning game drive on the northern bank of River Nile. Enjoy 3-5 hours of exclusive wildlife viewing in the park. While on the game drive, you will have a chance to sight wildlife species like Elephants, the Rothschild giraffes, zebras, buffaloes, Hartebeests, Uganda Kobs, Waterbucks, Oribis, Impala and so many others. Return to your lodge for Lunch and rest for a bit.
Evening Boat Cruise: Later in the afternoon, drive to the Paara dock for a boat cruise on the Albert Nile. Boat cruises in Murchison Falls commence at exactly 2pm in the afternoon. You will take a boat trip to the Delta where you will get a panoramic view of the majestic and mighty Murchison falls. Spend quality time (about four to five hours) marveling at nature’s beautiful gifts while sipping a cold beer or cocktail drink of your choice. You will also enjoy seeing crocodiles, hippos and various bird species such as the Kingfisher, cormorants, and the Rare Shoebill Stork among others.
Later drive back to your lodge for dinner and an overnight stay.
Day 4: Hot Air Balloon Safari and an Evening Hike to Top of the falls.
Hot Air Balloon: Wake up early in the morning and head out for an early morning hot air balloon ride in the park. The sunrise hot air balloon tours in Murchison falls national park start at exactly 5am in the morning till 9:30am. It offers you one hour of wildlife viewing from the sky and climaxes with a heart-warming bush breakfast and a complimentary bottle of Champaign. Enjoy your delicious African breakfast while soaking in the beautiful scenery at the park. Meet up with your guide and embark on a short game drive in the park before returning to your lodge for lunch and rest for the afternoon.
Hike to Top of the Falls: After having lunch at your lodge, you will head out for a guided hiking expedition to the Top of the falls. Trails around the top of the falls will lead you up to the water’s edge. You will get an opportunity to close to the narrow gorge through which the river plunges. This hiking expedition can take about 2 to 3 hours depending on your pace. Later head back to your lodge for dinner and an overnight stay.
Day 5: Transfer to Kibale National Park.
Transfer to Kibale: Wake up early in the morning and check out of your lodge. Meet up with your guide your lodge and proceed with your transfer to Kibale National park. Given that your drive from Murchison falls national park to Kibale national park is quite long, taking about 10 hours, you will have a stopover in Fort Portal town for lunch. After having lunch, you will take a short tour of the town and pay a visit to the royal burial grounds for the fallen Kings and queens of the Toro Kingdom. Proceed with your transfer to Kibale national park.
Once you get to the park, check into your lodge. Freshen up, have dinner and a good night’s rest. Accommodation at Chimpanzee Guesthouse/Primate Lodge/Kyaninga Lodge.
Day 6: Chimpanzee Trekking and Bigodi Swamp Walk.
Chimpanzee Trekking: This is one of the top highlights of any visit to. Wake up early in the morning and head out to Kanyanchu Visitor’s Center, where your chimpanzee trekking activity will commence. You will be expected to report to the park by 7am for a briefing from the head ranger at the park. Actual trekking begins at 8am after you have been placed into trekking groups that consist of not more than 6 members per group. Chimpanzee trekking in Kibale forest national park can take between 2-5 hours, depending on the location of the chimpanzees. You will be given an hour to spend with the chimpanzees once they have been located. Head back to the park headquarters in Kanyanchu for your chimpanzee trekking certificate and drive back to your hotel/lodge for lunch in case you didn’t not pack any in the morning.
Bigodi Swamp Walk: Later in the Afternoon, you will proceed to Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary which is just adjacent to the national park. Here, you will embark on a guided nature walk in the Swamp; where you will get to sight a number of bird species like; the Yellow-spotted Barbet, Hairy-breasted Barbet, Superb Sunbird, Black Bishop bird and the rare Shoe Bill Stock to mention but a few. There are about 138 bird species in Bigodi Swamp alone. Later head back to your lodge for dinner and accommodation.
Day 7: Visit Amabere Ganyinamwiru and Drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park.
Visit Amabere Ganyinamwiru: After having breakfast at your lodge, your guide will take you on a cultural tour to the renowned Amabere Ganyamwiru caves. Although the caves were formed as a result of stalagmites and stalactites, they have a rich cultural history attached to them, especially to the people of the Toro Kingdom. The Batooro people believe that the caves are the ancestral home of the ‘Bachwezi’ people and the birth place of their first king. The caves derive their name from an old legend of a King who cut off the breasts of this daughter as a punishment for her refusing to marry the man that he had chosen for her. The word ‘Amabere Ganyamwiru’ when translated into English means ‘breasts of Nyamwiru.’ Enjoy quality time exploring the caves and learning more about the Toro culture and its people. Drive back to lodge for lunch.
Transfer to Queen Elizabeth: After having your lunch, proceed with your transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park. The transfer from Kibale to Queen Elizabeth national park takes about 3 hours. Upon your arrival in the park, check into your lodge for dinner and overnight at Pumba Safari Cottages/Park View Safari Lodge/ Mweya Safari Lodge.
Day 8: Lion Tracking Experience and Evening Boat Cruise.
Lion Tracking Experience: Have your breakfast early in the morning and head out for a lion tracking experience in the national park. You will get to see the famous tree climbing lions of Ishasha and other animals as well like; hippos, savanna elephants, topi and buffaloes among others. Head back to your lodge for lunch and rest for the afternoon.
Evening Boat Cruise: After having your lunch break, head out for an evening boat cruise along the Kazinga channel. The boat cruise starts at exactly 1pm and can take approximately 2 hours. During your boat cruise, you may sight lots of wildlife such as hippos, Nile crocodiles, elephants and some species of birds like the great flamingos, Shoebill stock, Ibis and so many others.
Later return to your lodge for dinner and overnight stay.
Day 9: Morning Game Drive & Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.
Morning Game Drive: Have an early morning breakfast and proceed on a morning game drive in the park which begins at 6am. This morning game drive will give you a great chance to view nocturnal animals like leopards, serval cats and other wildlife such as African savannah elephants, hyenas, Uganda Kobs, heart beasts, giraffes, zebras and many more. Queen Elizabeth National Park is blessed with over 612 bird species thus making it a great destination for birding activities. While on your game drive, you may spot birds like the African skimmer, Chapin’s flycatcher, Shoebill stock, the great flamingos and Pink- backed pelicans. Drive back to your lodge for lunch.
Transfer to Bwindi: After having lunch at your lodge, your guide will transfer you to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park which is located in the southwestern park of Uganda, in Kanungu district. Bwindi Impenetrable National Park shelters half of the world’s remaining species of mountain gorillas. The national park is also home to about 120 mammals and 350 species of birds. Upon your arrival in Bwindi, you will embark on a guided nature walk to explore the beauty of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. Get to see the unique bird species inhabiting the forest and monkey species like the vervet monkeys, black and white colobus monkeys, red-tailed monkeys and so many more.
Check into your lodge for dinner and an overnight at Silverback Lodge/Buhoma Haven Lodge/Ichumba Gorilla Lodge.
Day 10: Gorilla Trekking & Batwa Trail Experience.
Gorilla trekking: This is the day you have been anxiously waiting for. Have breakfast very early at you lodge as your guide will pick you up at 6am. You will embark on a short journey to the Parks headquarters in Buhoma. You are supposed to be at Buhoma at exactly 7am for a briefing by the park’s head ranger which will begin at 8am and then you will be put in groups of 8 individuals per group depending on the gorilla group you are going to track. Tracking begins at exactly 8:30 am hence endeavor to always keep time.
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park has a total of 15 habituated gorilla groups that are tracked from four trailheads. Of these 15 habituated gorilla groups, 3 are found in Buhoma area in the northwest part of the park; while 4 gorilla groups are situated in Ruhija in the eastern part of Bwindi and 8 gorilla groups in Nkuringo and Rushaga respectively, located south of Bwindi.
Each tracking group consists of strictly eight individuals with each group having a park guide and ranger. Tracking can take about 1- 6 hours depending how easily and quick the gorillas are spotted. Once you have located a gorilla group, you will be give exactly an hour with them; hence you should maximize your time well and don’t forget to take lots of pictures without using your camera’s flash. The tracking trails can be very wet, steep and slippery thus you should wear a good pair of hiking boots.
Batwa Trail Experience: After your gorilla trekking experience in Bwindi Forest, you will proceed to do the Batwa Trail Experience, which is conducted by local Batwa guides. Get to learn more about the Batwa’s long and ancient history with the forest, and also learn how to make some local herbal medicines, and Batwa traditional hunting skills. Later head back to the park’s headquarters for your gorilla trekking certificate and transfer back to your lodge for dinner and overnight.
Day 11: Canoeing on Lake Bunyonyi & Drive to Lake Mburo National Park.
Canoeing on Lake Bunyonyi: Wake up in the morning and have your breakfast. You guide will drive you to Lake Bunyonyi, which is about 2 to 4 hours’ drive from depending on which sector of the park you are travelling from. You explore the lake on one of the traditional canoes. You can be able to see lots of bird species at the lake such as the Black Heron, woodpeckers, Golden black weaver birds, Grey crowned Crane, the African Harrier Hawk and so many more. You will also get to visit some of the main islands on the lake such as the Akampene Island, which is also known as the Punishment Island. The island has a rich cultural history attached to it. According to the Bakiga people, the island was used as banishing ground where they would leave unmarried girls who got pregnant out of wedlock. The young girls were left to die of hunger on the island. However, this practice was abandoned in the first half of the 20th century. Later have lunch and proceed with your transfer to Lake Mburo national park.
Transfer to Lake Mburo: Your guide will drive you to Lake Mburo national park which is located in the western park of Uganda. It is the smallest savannah national park in Uganda, covering 370 square kilometers. It will take you about 3 hours of driving to get to Lake Mburo National Park from Lake Bunyonyi. Check into your lodge for dinner and overnight at Rwonyo Campsite/Mihingo Lodge.
Day 12: Morning Game Drive and Evening Boat Cruise.
Morning Game Drive: After having your breakfast, you will embark on a 2- 3 hour morning game drive in the park. While on your game drive, you will view wildlife like; buffaloes, zebras, waterbucks, warthogs, impala, topi, duikers, hyenas, reed bucks, over 100 elands and if you are lucky, some giraffes which are a recent addition to the park. After your game drive, you will head back to your lodge for lunch and afternoon rest.
Evening Boat Cruise: Later in the afternoon, head out to Rwonyo for an evening boat cruise on the lake. The boat ride takes about 1- 2 hours and offers you great sights such as; crocodiles, hippos, buffaloes and some bird species such as; the white egret, fish eagles, kingfishers and Shoebill stock. The boat leaves Rwonyo every 2 hours starting from 8am.
Optional Nature Walk: After you boat ride, you can have an optional guided nature walk to the salt lake at Rwonyo. You will get to see wildlife converge at the lake as the take the salty water. Later head back to your lodge for dinner and an overnight.
Day 13: Horseback Riding and Departure.
Horseback Riding: Wake up in the morning and have breakfast from your lodge. Head out for a morning horseback riding safari in the park. There is nothing as thrilling and adventurous as exploring Lake Mburo national park on horseback. Get to see lots of wildlife animals up close like antelopes, impala, Sitatunga, giraffes, zebras and so many more. Horseback riding activities take between 1½ to 5 hours depending on your riding experience. Have lunch at your lodge and later drive back to Kampala.
Transfer to back to Kampala: On your journey back to Kampala city, you will have a stopover at the Equator monuments, where you will take some pictures and also visit the nearby craft shops to grab yourself a few souvenirs. Proceed with your drive to Kampala where your guide will drop you off at a hotel of your choice in the city or drop you off at Entebbe Airport for your flight back home. End of Tour.