16 Days Gorillas, Chimps and Wildlife Safari

DAY 1: ARRIVAL – ENTEBBE – KAMPALA.
On arrival at the airport, you will be warmly welcomed by a representative from Virunga Adventure Tours and transfer you to your hotel.

Overnight at Sheraton Hotel /Cassia lodge/ Kenlon Hotel.

DAY 2: KAMPALA MURCHISON FALLS NATIONAL PARK.
After breakfast, transfer to Murchison Falls National Park having a break at the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary in Nakasongola to view the rhinos. Uganda's rhinos became extinct in the early 1980s, after a period of civil unrest and heavy poaching. This sanctuary has now been established to breed black and white rhino, and restore rhino populations in Uganda's protected areas in a later stage. The sight of the Nile River, the world's longest river, winding its way through the park and plunging through a narrow gap is unforgettable.

Overnight at Paraa Safari lodge/ Murchison River lodge/ Fort Murchison/ Red Chill Camp.

DAY 3: MURCHISON FALLS.
Enjoy an early morning game drive to the rolling plains expecting to see lions, giraffes, hartebeests, buffalos and elephants. For the birders amongst you, these areas support the Secretary Bird, Black Chested Snake Eagle, Tawny and Marshal Eagles Carmine and Swallow Tailed Bee-Eaters, to pick just a few. This is a beautiful drive across Borassus Palm Forest and grassland savannah down to Lake Albert where the Albert Nile heads north to the Sudan.

This afternoon, you will go for a boat trip to the foot of Murchison Falls where the Nile thunders through a small 7-meter gap, or down river to the delta where the Nile empties into Lake Albert. This is an experience not to be missed! The banks of the Nile are home to many species. You may see huge Nile crocodiles, big pods of hippos and other wildlife that may come down to drink from the river. Return to the lodge for your dinner and an overnight at Paraa Safari lodge/ Murchison River lodge/ Fort Murchison/ Red Chill Camp.

DAY 4: TOP OF THE FALLS – KIBALE.
Early game drive to the Top of Murchison Falls where you can have a close look into the gorge where the Nile squeezes in to a 7 meter gorge dropping 40 meters. The falls are spectacular and thunderous with a beautiful rainbow displayed on sunny days. Then head for Kibale Forest National Park. Kibale Forest is a large protected block of rainforest, which has the highest number of primates in Africa such as chimpanzees, Grey cheeked Mangabey, Red tailed Monkey and Red Colobus.

Dinner and overnight at Kyaninga lodge/ Primate lodge/Kibale Forest Camp.

DAY 5: CHIMP TRACKING AND BIGODI WALK.
Enjoy chimpanzee tracking in the Kibale forest, expect to see a lot of interesting bird species e.g. Green-breasted Pitta, Blue Turaco, Grey-Throated Flycatcher, Masked & Black-Capped Apalis, Chestnut-Winged Starling, Orange -Tufted & Tiny Sunbirds among others.

Dinner and overnight at Kyaninga lodge/ Primate lodge/Kibale Forest Camp.

DAY 6: KIBALE – QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK.
This is Uganda’s second largest park and is located base of the majestic Rwenzori Mountain range adjacent to Lake Edward and Lake George. The park has prolific game, including gazelles, Uganda kobs, warthogs and waterbucks; lions are often sighted both in and at the entrance to the park. Be prepared for huge numbers of hippos and elephants, and keep your eyes peeled for a leopard lazing in the sunshine. Your lodge is located on the edge of Queen Elizabeth National Park, overlooking the spectacular Kazinga Channel, which is often visited by elephants and hippos. Watch wildlife at the waterhole from your own private veranda and fall asleep to the roaring of lions on the distant savannah. This truly is Africa!

Dinner and overnight at Mweya Safari Lodge/Bush lodge.

DAY 7: QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK – GAME DRIVE AND KAZINGA CHANNEL BOAT TRIP.
Today before sunrise you will go for a game drive in the pack to search for predator and nocturnal dwellers as they return to their hide outs. Expect species such as elephants, buffaloes, side stripped jackals, hyenas, leopards, lions, warthogs, Uganda kobs and giant forest hogs.

After lunch, you will take a boat trip along the Kazinga Channel. Here, you will see a lot of hippos (more than you can possibly imagine!), as well as a variety of other animals which come to the waterhole to drink or bathe. You can expect to see: buffalos, crocodiles, bathing elephants and a range of beautiful birds. This will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of your tour.

Dinner and overnight at Mweya Safari lodge/Bush lodge.

DAY 8: GAME DRIVE IN ISHASHA.
In the morning transfer to Ishasha Game Reserve in search for tree-climbing lions, we continue to Bwindi.

Dinner and overnight at Golden Monkey Guest House / Travellers Rest/Mutanda Lake Resort/Chamelion Hill lodge.

DAY 9: GORILLA TRACKING BWINDI IMPENETRABLE NATIONAL PARK.
Today, after an early morning breakfast prepare yourself for an encounter with the incredible Mountain Gorillas. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest boasts both Mountain Gorillas and chimpanzees - the only forest in Africa which can make this claim in fact. It also hosts five other species of primate, 113 species of mammal, over 200 butterflies and 360 birds. Given the fact that gorilla tracking time is unpredictable, it is difficult to foresee how many hours you will actually hike. The escapade of tracking the gorillas in the superb ecosystem of the park will be passionate for the adventurers. It may take 2 hours up to 9 hours or more and you should be prepared to walk long distance in steep and muddy conditions, sometimes with rain overhead, before you encounter any gorillas. “The excitement of seeing the gorillas makes it all worthwhile!” Briefing will always be given on how to handle or behave with these gentle giants. This is a fantastic and privileged opportunity to get up close and personal with Uganda’s very own ‘Gorillas in the Mist’.

Dinner and overnight at Golden Monkey Guest House / Travellers Rest/Mutanda Lake Resort/Chamelion Hill lodge.

DAY 10: SABYINYO VOLCANO HIKING ADVENTURE.
Climbing the extinct volcano is done in south western Uganda and this consists of climbing 3peaks. Our hike to Sabyinyo takes us through muddy trails often on wooden ladders with expectations of patchy/partial rain and clearing clouds as you get to the beautiful view of Rwanda and Democratic republic of Congo. At this time, the view is at times reduced to 10ft, reach the summit view and from here you will be able to see and stand in all the three countries: Uganda, Rwanda and Congo. This hike sometimes involves walking straight high up the mountain without going round it. The views and challenges of hiking Mt. Sabyinyo makes it worth for the adventurers.

Alternatively hike: the Muhavura or Gahinga Volcanoes.
Mt. Gahinga offers a gentler hike through the bamboo forest on the lower slopes and marshy craters at the peak. The lower slopes are rich with forest birds and the marshes near the summit are home to bushbuck, elusive duiker and Golden Monkeys.
Mt. Muhavura which has a crater lake on top is the most challenging peak in the park. The hike will take most of the day, but the adventurous will be rewarded with great sense of accomplishment and on a good day - spectacular views.

Dinner and overnight at Golden Monkey Guest House / Travellers Rest/Mutanda Lake Resort/Chamelion Hill lodge.

DAY 11: TRANSFER TO LAKE BUNYONYI.
After breakfast at 9:00 am you will head to Lake Bunyonyi or ‘Place of Little Birds’. The lake lies close to the border with Rwanda, and is thought of as one of the most beautiful places in western Uganda. It is the second deepest lake in Africa and also one of the few places in the country where it is considered safe to swim (as it is bilharzias free) and canoe tracking. The islands on the lake are wonderful for relaxing, trying water sports and simply immersing yourself in the natural beauty of your surroundings. The nearby hills and papyrus swamps offer many opportunities for bird watching and the shady Eucalyptus trees provide peaceful places to sit and read a book.

Overnight at Birdnest/Arcadia Cottages/ Byona Amagara Island.

DAY 12: TRANSFER TO LAKE MBURO.
After breakfast transfer to Lake Mburo. Enjoy an evening nature walk in the park. Expect to see topis, zebras, buffaloes, warthogs, baboons and different antelope species including the impalas plus various savanna related birds.

Dinner and overnight at Mihingo lodge/Arcadia cottages/ Eagles Nest.

DAY 13: LAKE MBURO – KAMPALA.
After an early morning breakfast you will have a game drive and later transfer back to Kampala.

Overnight at Sheraton hotel /Cassia lodge / Kenlon hotel.

DAY 14: TRANSFER TO NGAMBA ISLAND.
After breakfast our guide will transfer you for a motorized boat to Ngamba Island. This is a 45 minutes sail on Lake Victoria to this beautiful Island.

Overnight at Ngamba Island Camp.

DAY 15: FOREST WALK.
For those who have had the required set of medical inoculations, a forest walk with the chimps is a unique experience. The playful chimps climb on you, pull your hair, or just walk along holding your hand! (Clients must have specific up to date vaccinations for this activity, which is restricted to three people at any one time, and should ask for further details before booking). After this wonderful experience return to the mainland at Entebbe.

Dinner and overnight at Lake Victoria Serena/ 2Friends Beach hotel/Sunset Guesthouse.

DAY 16: DEPARTURE
This day is reserved for a Kampala city tour, last minute shopping of souvenirs and an airport transfer for your scheduled flight.

Uganda