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5 Days Gorilla Tracking Safaris in Uganda

  • Bwindi Impenetrable National Park - Mweya - Queen Elizabeth National Park

Overview

Gorilla Tracking in Uganda

  • Gorilla tracking in Bwindi
  • Game drive in the Kasenyi plains
  • Boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel
  • Trip to Ishasha to see the tree climbing lions
  • Park and game ranger fees
  • 4 nights accommodation
  • Gorilla permit
  • Daily meals

Join this national park tour and gorilla tracking in beautiful Uganda. Uganda is best-known around the world for its gorilla tracking experience. The gorillas, also known as gentle giants, which are famous in Uganda are popular among the visiting tourists. Apart from gorillas, you will also see the abundant wildlife that made the jungles of Uganda their home.

  • 4 activity days
  • English
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Buhoma lodge

Buhoma lodge commands spectacular and uninterrupted views of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park which is home to the rare and elusive Mountain Gorilla. Situated within the national park, Buhoma lodge is a short distance from the meeting point for gorilla tracking and other activities in the area. Ten comfortable cottages have been carefully built, each with its own private verandah, allowing wonderful views of the forest canopy of the national park.

Inside the spacious cottages, you will find comfortable beds, a well appointed en-suite bathroom with flushing toilet and a hot shower, and some rooms with bath tubs. An elevated lounge area, complete with bar and dining facilities, offers a cozy, comfortable environment, to discuss the day’s activities around the fireplaces which add atmosphere and warmth in the cool evenings.

Katara lodge

Situated on the Great Rift Valley escarpment with uninterrupted views of the savannah, Lake Edward, and the Virunga and Rwenzori mountain ranges beyond, Katara lodge is a 20-minute drive away from the main entrance of the Queen Elizabeth National Park, Uganda’s premier safari destination and one of the most biodiverse reserves in the world.

The park’s varied habitats, which include open savannah, dense papyrus swamps, crater lakes, extensive Maramagambo Forest and forested Kyambura Gorge, are home to almost 100 mammal species and over 600 bird species. Katara lodge is the ideal base from which to explore the park. It offers many activities including game drives, bird watching, the famous launch cruise along the Kazinga Channel, chimpanzee tracking in the Kyambura Gorge, and forest walks in the Kalinzu or Maramagambo forests, all of which provide truly memorable wildlife experiences and incredible opportunities for nature photography.

Mweya safari lodge

Mweya safari Lodge offers visitors an unforgettable experience. Located on a peninsula within the heart of the Queen Elizabeth National Park, Mweya safari lodge is surrounded by the magical Rwenzori Mountains aptly described as the "mountains of the moon". To the east lie the guardians of the birthplace of mankind, the Great Rift Valley hills, separated from the "mountains of the moon" by the meandering Kazinga Channel. Here, the water flows endlessly into two giant lakes, Lake George and Lake Edward.

Simba Safari Camp

Simba Safari Camp, renowned for excellent hospitality, is nestled atop a hill overlooking Lake Kikorongo on the edge of Uganda’s most popular park, Queen Elizabeth National Park. The camp has panoramic views across the park’s extensive savannah plains teeming with wildlife as well as Lakes George and the famed Kazinga Channel.

It is the closest accommodation to Queen Elizabeth’s Kasenyi plains on the edge of Lake George, the famed mating grounds for the Uganda Kobs and thus the most preferred area for game viewing drives. It is also closest to the other areas of northern Queen Elizabeth National Park including the Mweya Peninsula and the Kazinga Channel, well-known for launch cruises, close range game-viewing, and bird-viewing. You'll have an opportunity to go for guided chimpanzees tracking in Kyambura Gorge.

Day 1 - Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Early morning, you shall set off from Kampala to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, the home of mountain gorillas. It is estimated that half of the world’s surviving population of mountain gorillas, more than 300, are to be found within Bwindi boundaries. The drive is long but enjoyable with lunch en route. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park offers a dramatic steeply forested landscape and is incredibly dense and crisscrossed by numerous animal trails allowing access to tourists.

Apart from the gorillas, there is a variety of primates to be seen including the blue monkeys, red tailed monkeys, and black and white colobus monkeys. The great blue turacos, which are often seen, are a marvelous sight even for a non-bird watcher. You shall arrive late afternoon and settle at your tranquil accommodation. You'll have dinner and stay overnight at the accommodation in the area where you will be tracking.

Day 2 - Gorilla tracking

After breakfast, you shall proceed to the park offices to begin your adventure with the gentle giants. A briefing will take place at the park headquarters. The time and terrain vary from one to eight hours according to the movement of the gorillas. The sight of the mountain gorillas will be memorable. You'll return to your lodge for overnight stay. You'll have dinner and stay overnight at the accommodation in the area where you will be tracking.

Day 3 - Ishasha and Queen Elizabeth National Park

After early breakfast, you will head for Ishasha in the southern sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park, famous for the tree-climbing lions. Ishasha is dominated by acacia woodland and scrubland and features the meandering Ishasha River banked by a riparian forest. You shall enjoy a picnic lunch before heading northwards to Mweya Peninsula. You will arrive late in the afternoon.

The Mweya Peninsula is located on the northern bank of the impressive Kazinga Channel at the convergence of the channel with Lake Edward. The area of the Mweya peninsula includes the channel track all the way down to Katunguru gate, then across to Kabatoro gate which has a chunky ground cover with dense vegetation dominated by Candelabra Thorn. There are a number of tracks for a game drive, which are well-maintained. You'll have dinner and stay overnight at the accommodation in the area where you will be tracking.

Day 4 - Mweya

You shall do an early morning game drive in the Kasenyi plains. The Kasenyi plains are on the western shores of the adjacent stunning Lake George, just near to the area where the Kazinga Channel confluences with this lake. This area is also known as the Mweya or the Kasenyi sector as a dissimilarity from the renowned Ishasha sector found in the southwestern region of the park.

The region around Kasenyi is actually an open savannah which is swarmed with various wild animals with the Ugandan kob being dominant. Actually, this place is the major breeding area for the Ugandan kobs within this park. For that reason, lions are commonly seen here during the various game drives as they are drawn by the large kob populations, which is their main prey in this area.

In the afternoon, you shall toast the day with a boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel which adjoins the Lakes Edward and George. You'll have dinner and stay overnight at the accommodation in the area where you will be tracking.

Day 5 - Departure

Today after breakfast, you shall drive to Kampala through Fort Portal town, and have lunch en route. The drive will take you through breathtaking scenery like the tea plantations on the Fort Portal, Kampala highway, and the lush green vegetation. You shall arrive late in Kampala, where you will end your trip.

  • Boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel
  • Game drive in the Kasenyi plains
  • Gorilla tracking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park
  • Trip to Ishasha to see the tree climbing lions
  • Kenneth Muhindi

    Kenneth was born in Uganda and graduated from high school. He is also a safari leader is also the head of tour guides. Kenneth has been the head of game rangers for the last 20 years in Mgahinga national park, Bwindi impenetrable national park, and Queen Elizabeth National park. He retired from UWA work and is now working as a tour guide and has the knowledge of all national parks in Uganda. Two years ago, he worked for several safari companies in Uganda because of his knowledge and experience.

  • George Shindishi

    George is a Ugandan and Omukiga by tribe and was born, raised in southwestern Uganda, He graduated from high school in 1999 and worked with ICRAF in Uganda, In 2005, he was trained as a safari guide in all the national parks in Uganda and Rwanda. he started worked for safari companies in Uganda, George is the most experienced guide among the Ugandan safari guides and he likes being a guide in Uganda and Rwanda.

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is situated in the southwestern part of Uganda. The park is inhabited by a population of about 400 mountain gorillas (gorilla beringei beringei) known as the Bwindi population, which make up almost half of all the mountain gorillas in the world. The rest of the worldwide mountain gorilla population is in the nearby Virunga National Park. A 2006 census of the mountain gorilla population in the park showed that its numbers had increased modestly from an estimated 300 individuals in 1997, to 320 individuals in 2002, and to 340 individuals in 2006.

There are 11 species of primates, including chimpanzee, and monkey varieties such as Hoest’s, red-tailed and blue monkey, black and white colobus, and olive baboon. Especially, Bwindi is home to about 400 gorilla beringei beringei, a half of the total remaining world population. There are 346 species of birds registered in here, as Bwindi contains 90% of all Albertine Rift endemics, which is hard to experience in any other place in East Africa, and 200 species of butterflies.

Gorilla tracking is the park’s main tourist attraction. Tourists wishing to track gorillas must first obtain a permit to do so. Selected gorillas families have been habituated to human presence and the number of visitors is tightly controlled to prevent degradation of the habitat and risks to the gorillas. Tourists can visit the park any time throughout the year, although conditions in the park are more difficult during the rainy season.

The cost of the tour includes most meals. On the day you go on gorilla tracking, a packed lunch is provided by your accommodation.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

The following dietary requirements are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
(If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation)
  • 4 nights accommodation
  • Boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel
  • Daily meals
  • English speaking tour guide
  • Fuel for vehicle
  • Game drive in the Kasenyi plains
  • Gorilla permit
  • Game ranger and entrance fees
  • Gorilla tracking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
  • Transport in a four wheel drive vehicle
  • Trip to Ishasha to see the tree climbing lions
  • Accommodation in Kampala
  • Airfare
  • Medical and travel insurance
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Visas

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flights to Entebbe International Airport (EBB). Gorilla Tour will pick you up from the hotel or guesthouse of your choice in Entebbe.

  • The deposit is fully refundable if the booking is cancelled up to 2 days before the arrival date.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.

Testimonials

  • Review by Robert from Durban

    "My friend and I went on a fantastic 6 day tour to Queen Elizabeth park on safari, trekking with the chimps and gorillas, and then to Lake Bunyonyi Richard was great with communication and planning, and our guide/driver Deo was a legend! Safari was great fun, but it was the trekking with the chimps and gorillas that was the most impressive part. Lake Bunyonyi was then an excellent relax at the end of the tour. Accommodation was a great mix, with more budget places right near the safari at the beginning and then fancier places at the end - but I believe they are happy to tailor to people's preferences. "

    "Most impressive though was the real passion these guys have for conservation, education and Uganda as a whole! Hearing them talk about the protection of animals in the parks or describing the work the company does supporting local schools - it was very moving. Keep up the great work you guys, and I would 100% recommend them!"

    TripAdvisorWebsite, edited

  • Review by Liz W

    "We booked our three day safari to Queen Elizabeth Park at the Gatatu office in Kabale, explaining to the Director, Richard, that each of us had different priorities, ranging from serious wildlife photography to extending knowledge of birds gained on many previous safaris to a botanist's interest in plants and a first encounter with African wildlife and birds. Quite a challenge to set them! Our guide, Shindishi George Mugabe, met the challenge beyond our expectations."

    "The vehicle was spacious and ideal for game viewing as we had 360 degree vision. Shindishi has the eyes of a hawk and spotted animals and birds which we would never have seen ourselves, including leopard on two occasions. He showed immense patience and courtesy to us throughout the trip and we had wonderful views of lions, elephants, hippos, buffalos, Ugandan kobs, waterbucks and warthogs. Our friend who had never done any bird watching in Africa totalled up over 70 birds she would now recognise."

    "We took the excellent boat trip on the Kasinga Channel from Mweya Lodge where we had adequate budget accommodation in the nearby hostel and very good meals in the main lodge. We thought this excellent value for money."

    "We would certainly recommend this Kabale company to anyone wishing to book a tailor made safari."

    TripAdvisorWebsite, edited

  • Review by A Guest

    "We went to Rwanda and Uganda for a private two people Safari (12 days). The Communication with the company during the initial inquiry and ongoing preparation of our tailor-made tour war always quick and pleasant. All the suggested luxury accomodations were well managed, clean and breath taking. The driver (Steven) was very friendly, careful and always available when needed. We can highly recommend Richard and his team ."

    TripAdvisorWebsite, edited

  • Review by A Guest

    "We went to Rwanda and Uganda for a private two people Safari (12 days). The Communication with the company during the initial inquiry and ongoing preparation of our tailor-made tour war always quick and pleasant. All the suggested luxury accomodations were well managed, clean and breath taking. The driver (Steven) was very friendly, careful and always available when needed. We can highly recommend Richard and his team."

    TripAdvisorWebsite, edited

  • Review by Arjen Kemper

    "We met Steven on our camping in Entebbe on the morning we would actualy go by bus to Rwanda but were too lazy to get up that early because of heavy rain. He offered us a ride to Kabale. It turned out to be a great ride for us. Steven was very nice and helpful to us in arranging a bus ride for the next day and a sleeping spot for the night. "

    "All in all we don't know about the tours of gatatu but got a good taste of the hospitality and friendliness of one of their top employees."

    TripAdvisorWebsite, edited

  • Review by Sergei

    "Gatatu Safaris is well organized and Richard is a really friendly guy. We started early in the morning to get there (just me and a friend of mine) in Richard´s car and were there on time to see the gorillas. To see these impressive animals was one of the best thins I did in my life!! On the way back, Richard stopped with us at a really nice viewpoint to see the lakes."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Norma

    "I traveled with this company for a week in Uganda with a friend and we were so pleased with all of the many activities - never a dull moment! Dao was our amazing driver who was so kind and lovely to us! The trip was fantastic with slick service from the Gatatu team and all of the people in the hotels and restaurants during our trip. We did the most amazing safaris, treks and boat tours - highly recommend a canoe trip in Lake Bunyonyi with Fred organized by Gatatu..this was an excellent day in the most beautiful setting! Defiantly book with this company to guarantee a truly memorable and enjoyable trip! Thank you once again for such a special holiday!"

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Katya

    "The owner, Richard, was so pleasant to work with and always replied to our endless emails (my husband wanted to personalize the entire trip of course). Per our request, we even got to visit the school that he helps fund with a portion of the money from Gatatu Safari. The kids were adorable and seeing all the plans that Richard has in store for the school was so inspiring. As for the main reason we went, I can't recommend seeing the gorillas enough. It was such an amazing experience. Their facial expressions and personalities. Oh yes, they each clearly have their own personality! were so much fun to watch! Even better, a portion of the money raised by gorilla tourism is given back to the local communities. Uganda as a country is beautiful and all we met were so welcoming and friendly. We loved every minute of our trip! The only heads up is that this company requires a wire transfer for a downpayment. While this may raise an alarm in America, it is normal for small businesses in Africa. We did a safari trip in Tanzania the other year and did the same, both times without issues. So not to worry. Richard is 100% trustworthy and if you have any questions feel free to get in contact with me (I will likely even share some of our could be straight-out-of-National-Geographic gorilla pics with you. All in all, we loved our trip so much that we are going back in the near future and Gatatu Safari will be our number one choice! Keep up the great work Gatatu and thanks again for a once in a lifetime experience!"

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Anthony

    "My friend and I booked onto a week-long tour with Gatatu Safaris in August 2016 and had the most fantastic time. Gatatu were the best value option that we could find amidst the huge number of safari operators in Uganda and bent over backward to personalize the tour for us. Although we went for the budget option, they did not cut any corners and took us to really great restaurants which were included in the price. While the accommodation was basic (as expected under the budget option) all of the places we stayed were incredibly clean, friendly and welcoming. We stayed at some great places off-the-beaten-track, the highlight being a three-night stay at Entusi Lodge on Lake Bunyonyi. Our tour guide, Dao, was so lovely and never complained at our numerous requests for toilet and water stops! Everything ran smoothly and on-time and the Director of Gatatu, Richard, was really helpful in the run-up to the tour. I highly recommend Gatatu Safaris for a personal, quality and memorable safari experience."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Kate

    "I found out about Gatatu Safaris about three weeks before my trip to Rwanda and Uganda. By that time I had already planned almost everything. The only outstanding issue remaining was to arrange for the transfer from Lake Bunyonyi to Kigali so I can take my flight back home. I searched the net trying to find a local tour operator to arrange for the transfer. Gatatu was one of the operators I contacted. After receiving all the quotes (I think I contacted three to four different operators) I was amazed at how much cheaper Gatatu Safaris was from the rest. I exchanged quite a few emails with Richard, the director of Gatatu. His replies were immediate. Upon arriving in Lake Bunyonyi I texted him in order to confirm our transfer, again his reply was immediate. On transfer day the car was waiting for me at the pier (I stayed in Byooni Amagara Lodge which is a small lodge on an island in the lake). No delays at all. The two-hour transfer went flawlessly, and the driver even helped me sort out the immigration papers at the border. Even though this was just a short transfer from Uganda to Rwanda, my overall experience with Gatatu is A+. Again, if you are on a budget but don't want to cut corners, do yourself a favor and contact them, you won't regret it."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

Gatatu Safaris offers a range of safari tours based on wildlife tours, cultural tours, and canoe trekking on Lake Bunyonyi.

Speaks English

Offers starting at --

5 days / 4 nights

FREE cancellation

The deposit is fully refundable if the booking is cancelled up to 2 days before the arrival date.

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