7 Days Exciting Gorillas Trekking Safari in Uganda

  • Murchison Falls - Kibale Forest - Bwindi Forest, Uganda

Uganda Gorilla Safaris

Join the Uganda safari topped with gorilla trekking adventure that takes you to the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park as it is a home to half of the mountain gorillas. It is noted that Bwindi protects 400 species of Mountain gorillas and it has now 10 gorilla families launched for gorilla trekking safari and gorilla tours. More activities to encounter in the Uganda safari adventure at this park include the bird watching, nature walk safaris, and the Batwa cultural performances!

Highlights

  • Visit the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary
  • Game drives in Murchison National Park
  • Gorilla tracking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest with permit
  • Tracking the chimps and primates in the Kibale National Park
  • Boat cruise in Murchison Falls National Park
  • Visit the scenic Kasenda Crater Lakes
  • Daily breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • 6 nights accommodation
  • 6 activity days
  • English
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During the exciting safari, you will stay in various accommodations of your choice. Accommodation is based on a standard double, twin, or single room in your choice of accommodation. This can either be budget, mid-range, or high-end. All accommodation options are selected by its location and service standard compared to its price. When you are with one, three, or five persons, one single supplement is included. If you want a single supplements, you can inform Travel Explore Africa Safaris.

Accommodation options

Murchison Falls

  • Red Chilli Rest Camp or Budongo Eco Lodge

Kibale Forest

  • Chimpanzee Forest Guesthouse

Bwindi Forest

  • Buhoma Community Restcamp, Ruhija Gorilla Friends, Gorilla Valley Lodge, or Travellers Hotel

Day 1 - Briefing on the safari

You will start for Murchison Falls National Park safari with a chance to visit the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary. After breakfast, you will drive through the famous Luwero triangle. You can choose to visit and track white rhinos at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary at 40 USD per person. 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.

You will then take a stop over at Masindi hotel for lunch. You will continue through the park stopping at the top of the falls which is a fantastic sight. The Nile is the longest river in the world and it is forced through a narrow gap in the rock (only seven meters wide), before ferociously plunging down 43 meters. From here, you will continue to your accommodation along the Nile River.

Day 2 - Safari game drives at the Murchison Falls National Park

After breakfast, you will head to the Delta in search for bird life and enjoy the game drive to look for lions, giraffes, herds of elephants, buffaloes, and much more. You will drive back to the lodge for lunch before taking an afternoon boat cruise to the foot of Murchison Falls. This boat trip along the Nile is often cited as being the highlight of the trip to Murchison since it allows you to get up-close and personal with the animals.

Along with this stretch of the river, there are reported to be around 4,000 hippos in addition to some enormous Nile crocodiles. The bird life is stunning with brightly colored kingfishers and bee-eaters darting along the riverbanks. If you are lucky, you may see the rare and prehistoric-looking shoebill, which is a cross between the dodo and a dinosaur. The boat takes you to the base of the falls which only adds to their impressiveness.

Day 3 - Drive to Kibale National Park for chimps and primates tracking

You will leave Murchison Falls National Park for Kibale Forest National Park via the Lake Albert escarpment, having a good view of the lake. There will be a stopover at Kolping Hotel in Hoima for lunch and after that, you will drive across the interesting Nkusi River (flowing from the southern end of Lake Albert, through the villages of Kagadi, joining Victoria Nile). Both rivers join Lake Kyoga and flow through the Murchison Falls continue to Lake Albert and north to the Mediterranean Sea.

Traveling on both asphalt and unpaved roads, you will pass through traditional Ugandan villages where you can see people at work tending their traditional crops of millet, sorghum, beans, and maize. The lush rolling hills of this region provide good photo opportunities.

As you approach Fort Portal in the foothills of the Rwenzori Mountains, you will enter Uganda’s famous tea plantation region. A carpet of green spreads before you, as far as the eye can see, and seems an unusual contrast to the countryside through which you have just passed. You will arrive at Fort Portal, then, continue toward Kibale Forest, one of the great African rainforest research reserves.

Years of study by scientists (who have cut a grid through the forest) have habituated many of its animals to human observers. This forest is famed for the variety of primates found here and it is a terrific area for birds. This rural Ugandan town (Fort Portal) is locally famous for its weaving and basketry, and you can spend some time briefly to examine some of this local art.

Fort Portal is a small and attractive city. The fort was built between 1891 and 1893 and named after Sir Gerald Portal, the British Consul General of Zanzibar who arrived in Uganda in 1892 to formalize the protectorate of Uganda. He died of malaria a few months after the fort was completed.

During the afternoon, you will have time to visit the scenic crater lakes region, checking out the superbly terraced tea estates. In the south of Fort Portal is Kasenda Crater Lakes region.

The Kasenda Crater Lakes region sits on the rim of Lake Nyinambuga - the back of the main building looks down over the lake, while the other side of the lodge looks out over another lake in the distance and, further off, the Rwenzori Mountains, which were perpetually shrouded in the clouds, except early in the morning. There’s plenty to do in this area and you can also take an hour’s walk around Lake Nyinambuga.

Day 4 - Chimpanzee tracking in Kibale National Park, Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary

You will assemble at Kanyankyu River camp at 8:00 a.m. to go for the most popular activity in this park which is Chimpanzee tracking. Chimpanzees are man’s closest cousins though they are one of the most threatened primate’s species.

More primates like black and white Columbus monkeys, L’Hoest Monkeys, Grey Cheeked mangabey, Red-tailed monkeys, Bush babies, Pottos, and many bird species like the Yellow Spotted nicator, Rumped Tinker bird, Little greenbul, Green Breasted pitta, The Crowned eagle, Black Bee Eater and mammals like elephants can be seen on this walk.

Kibale National Park, which averages about 3,300 feet in elevation, is an extension of the great rainforests of central Africa. It is inhabited by three large “communities” of chimps, each numbering more than 100 individuals. Each community has a complicated social structure. The big adult males dominate the group and defend the community territory against incursions by male outsiders; the females usually wander in small family groups.

Typically, you locate the chimps by listening for their pant-hooting calls, then hustle to the area from which they are calling. You will get to observe them as they feed in fruiting trees, lounge, and socialize with each other, or even, occasionally hunt. In the afternoon you will visit a nearby forest swamp that is excellent for viewing primates and other forest animals.

At the Eastern edge of Kibale Forest is Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary which is maintained by the local community. You will expect birds like the great Blue turaco, Blue monkeys, baboons, otters, mongoose, bushbucks, bush pigs, and among others.

Day 5 - Drive to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park for Gorilla Trek

You will depart early morning for Bwindi, for your gorilla tracking. If the seasons allow, you will drive through the Ishasha sector in search for the tree-climbing lions. Nowhere in Africa do you stand a better chance of seeing this than in the large low-limbed fig trees of Ishasha. This game drive en route will expose you to some of the animals that you might have missed seeing while on your game drives in Kasenyi and Queens Mile. You will arrive in Bwindi in the late afternoon.

Day 6 - Gorilla trekking (Bwindi Impenetrable National Park)

On day six, you will enjoy yourself by tracking the Mountain Gorillas and other primates. After breakfast, you will proceed for the morning briefing before enjoying the highlight of the trip - Gorilla trekking, which may last the entire day.

You will trek through the rain forest and bamboo covered slopes, accompanied by a guide and trackers, in search of a mountain gorilla family. The walking can sometimes be tough and long, but when you catch a glimpse of the magnificent silverback, any discomforts will be quickly forgotten.

When the gorilla is sighted, visitors will be guided to within seven meters from the gorillas, sit around them for a whole hour while gazing into their big round eyes. Gorilla trekking is unpredictable. It is difficult to foresee how many hours you will hike. The gorilla excursion can take from two to eight hours. Expect to walk the distance in steep and muddy conditions, sometimes with rain overhead, before you encounter any gorillas.

A good physical condition is recommended. For conservation purposes, time spent with the gorillas is limited to one hour. A ranger will brief you on how to behave with the gorillas.

Day 7 - Leave the Gorilla trek park, return to Kampala

You will have early breakfast before embarking on your return to Kampala, driving down the grassed and terraced escarpments of southwestern Uganda while taking in the breathtaking sights of the hills of the region dubbed ‘the little Switzerland of Africa’. This area is a highly fertile, mountainous region with steep-sided hills covered from top to bottom in neatly terraced cultivated rows.

Not to miss as you traverse Mbarara are the impressing long horn Ankole cattle. A remarkable highlight of this journey is the Equator line and surely you will cross it as we have a brief stop here. You will be in Kampala in the evening before for your flight back home.

A boat cruise in Murchison Falls National Park is included in the price.

The safari will take place throughout Murchison Falls, Kibale Forest, and Bwindi Forest, Uganda.

Bwindi’s Impenetrable Forest

Bwindi’s Impenetrable Forest is a true equatorial jungle, inhabited by four gorilla groups. Amongst the dense vegetation, the Columbus Monkey jumps from branch to branch, chattering its warning to its fellows hidden by the foliage.

Kibale Forest National Park

Kibale National Park contains one of the loveliest and most varied tracts of tropical forest in Uganda. Forest cover, interspersed with patches of grassland and swamp, dominates the northern and central parts of the park on an elevated plateau.

Murchison Falls National Park

The park is bisected by the Victoria Nile, which plunges 45 meters over the remnant rift valley wall, creating the dramatic Murchison Falls, the centerpiece of the park and the final event in an 80 kilometer stretch of rapids.

Queen Elizabeth National Park

Queen Elizabeth National Park is understandably Uganda’s most popular tourist destination. It has a total size of 1,978 square kilometers. It was founded in 1952 as Kazinga National Park and renamed two years later to commemorate a visit by Queen Elizabeth II.

You will be served with daily breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Food is available on full board basis depending on your dietary requirement. Bottled drinking water is also included during the safari.

  • Enjoy the game drives
  • Explore the accommodation's surroundings
  • Meet and interact with the locals
  • Relax at your accommodation
  • See the stunning views
  • Take photos of the wildlife and sceneries
  • 1 gorilla tracking permit
  • 6 nights accommodation
  • A boat cruise in Murchison Falls National Park
  • All meals
  • All park entrance, related fees, and boat fees
  • Bottled drinking water on safari
  • English speaking Ugandan driver guide
  • Game drives as per itinerary
  • Rhino tracking at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary
  • Transport in a 4 x 4 safari motor vehicle for excellent safari viewing
  • Tracking the gorilla in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
  • Accommodation in Kampala
  • Drinks
  • Entry visa to Uganda
  • International air fares
  • Laundry
  • Meals that are not part of your accommodation
  • Optional activities
  • Personal expenses
  • Souvenirs
  • Tips and gratuities to rangers, driver, guide, hotel staff, etc

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flights to arrive at Entebbe International Airport (EBB).

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 21% of the total price.
  • 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 Kat from Denmark

    "From our very first mail contact Travel Explore Africa fully understood our need. We needed someone to take us around to visit national parks in Uganda and as we were traveling with two small children we needed to take it a bit slow, with a reasonable level of comfort and to a reasonable price. We were not disappointed! The agency put together an itinerary for us, was fast in replying on all mails and always very service minded. We visited Murchison falls and Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary. Our driver Charles was wonderful. Fun, informative, good with the children, a good driver and very service minded and determined to make our trip memorable. We stayed in wonderful lodges, had marvelous food every day and we saw so much fantastic nature, met wonderful people and saw an incredible number of wild animals including rhinos, giraffes, hippos, monkeys, crocodiles, etc. Cannot do anything else than fully recommend everybody to visit Uganda and use TravelExploreAfrica to help plan the visit! Thanks for a wonderful experience!"

    Travel Explore Africa Safaris website, edited

  • Review by Franklin Bowman from Canada

    "We had a wonderful time with our driver guide Byarugaba Charles Faultless! He was ever smart and he kept the vehicle clean through the whole tour, his English was excellent, he was highly intelligent and interesting and gave us a great perspective about Uganda. He was so caring and he put us his first at all times, for example he would come and pick us to go the local bars, to watch premier league matches ,took us to great local restaurants that were cheap and clean and served great local cuisine). He made the trip a great experience as much as the gorillas!"

    Travel Explore Africa Safaris website, edited

  • Review by Benjamin Alexander from United Kingdom

    "We had a truly fantastic trip and cannot stop thanking for it. Our guide Wilson was brilliant, very informative, polite, and pleasant and a pleasure to spend our trip with. And I can say he is an asset to your team! Seeing the gorillas in their natural environment was unbelievable. We are recommending this trip to family and friends. Keep up the good work! We shall look forward to booking another trip with you in future!"

    Travel Explore Africa Safaris website, edited

  • Review by Toine José from The Netherlands

    "A few years earlier, we were for the first time together in Kampala and we knew for sure; we will come back to this beautiful country to celebrate our 25-year friendship! "

    "Travel Explore Africa made us the perfect trip; one day after arriving in Jinja we were already on the bike to make a sporting tour through Bujagali falls. Along the way we met several nice people and drunk some home-brewed beer in a local malwa."

    "We were introduced to the beautiful scenery in the Mabira where we walked surrounded by different species of local deer and monkeys. We drove routes through a lot of varies landscapes, it was beautiful. Just as the night we spend in a luxury guest house in Jinja. After that the journey went on to Lake Mburo where we met many impalas and buffalos. In Mburo we met the underwater world and we could snorkel among colorful tropical fish. Then it was time for another kind of large wild animals we encountered in the various wildlife parks such as Queen Elizabeth National Park, Lake Mburo Park and Bwindi Impenetrable national park. We witnessed the capture of an impala by three lions! A unique and very special moment that will be memorable for a long time. The guest houses and lodges that were planned for us were great too; from pleasant to super luxury! We saw a lot and really enjoyed it, as evidenced by the thousands of photos that we have made! In short; we never could have celebrated our 25-year friendship in any other way!"

    Travel Explore Africa Safaris website, edited

  • Review by Paul Verhoeven from The Netherlands

    "Travel Explore Africa Safaris planned for us a great safari 8 days 7 nights safaris to Track in PNV and Bwindi impenetrable National park. Everything was well planned and organized -- which we appreciated! And, we highly recommend Wilson Bisaso as a driver! Not only is he an excellent driver with a very good solid car, he is God fearing and very personable and knowledgeable. He is willing to go the "extra mile" for the customer. Really his calm demeanor and reliable services made our tour/trip seamless. For lodging, we loved the Mountain gorilla view lodges and the Chameleon Hill Inn. These were both highlights. We did two gorilla treks, one at Volcanoes Park in Rwanda and one at the Bwindi Forest in Uganda. Both were amazing. The guides and rangers were very informative. We were glad to be able to trek in both countries, as the experiences were different. If you go on these "hikes", bring hiking boots if possible, as the terrain is very slippery. There are no trails, the guide simply clears the forest using a machete. And, the gorillas don't follow any set routes. Be sure to hire a porter as well. These local people are very helpful and they depend on the income."

    Travel Explore Africa Safaris website, edited

  • Review by Lesley Reddon from Canada

    "Thank you so much for the week you gave us. It was the most memorable experience of our lives. I can now recommend your services to friends."

    Travel Explore Africa Safaris website, edited

  • Review by Susan Sarandon from The Netherlands

    "I would like to recommend Travel Explore Africa as well! We spent 10 days with them going on gorilla safari. It was very well organized and all the staff members were very professional, making sure all the questions and queries were responded in the most professional way. I really liked Diana, I dealt with her when making the bookings via e-mails, lovely and very cheerful lady! Thank you so much Sweetie Diana!"

    Travel Explore Africa Safaris website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from United Kingdom

    "This was truly the trip of a lifetime! Touring Uganda for two weeks with Travel Explore Africa (Wilson Bisaso) is an experience I will never forget. Three days in Murchison with giraffes, lions (including a pride of seven, and finding a lioness resting under a tree after eating their fill), a pregnant hyena, Patas monkeys, and local music; Chimpanzee Habituation Experience at Kibale (12 hours of following the delightful Sebo, second in command); 3 days at Queen Elizabeth National Park, with wonderful lion sightings (including three satisfied males, lounging), a Kazinga Channel boat ride (hippos, crocodiles, elephants), and tracking chimpanzees in Kyambura Gorge (Kejojo, Brutus and Muzungu!); 2 days in Ishasha, seeing a young pride of 5 lions; Bwindi, Kisoro, and finally Lake Mburo, for beautiful zebras, fighting impalas, spotted bushbuck, wow! Everything was just perfect: the food, the accommodation, the price, and most especially the animals! Wilson made everything run smoothly, was courteous, professional and kind (as well as funny) at all times; could spot any creature for any distance (his eyes are amazing) and navigated Uganda's difficult roads with panache! I can't recommend Travel Explore Africa and Uganda's National Parks enough! "

    Travel Explore Africa Safaris website, edited

  • Review by Tim W. from United Kingdom

    "I travelled with a group of 3 friends to Uganda this year - best trip of my life! With the help of Wilson Bisaso, we were able to have fantastic wildlife viewings throughout this beautiful country, including chimpanzees, gorillas, lions, elephants, hippo, buffalo, kob, topi, baboons, blue monkeys, black and white colobus, red colobus, red tailed monkey, zebra, giraffes, crocodiles, and more! Wilson was an excellent driver, making long journeys smooth and enjoyable. He was knowledgeable about animals, politics, the land, and shared a vast amount of information with us, which helped us really get a feel for the country. He introduced us to Ugandan food (delicious) and music (wonderful and joyous!). Everything was done completely professionally and within our rather restricted budget. I cannot recommend this company enough! Communications - A+! Price A+! Safari - A+++!"

    Travel Explore Africa Safaris website, edited

  • Review by Roxanne G. from United Kingdom

    "This was the most fantastic trip of our lives! My husband and I had wanted to travel to Uganda for several years, but thought it was out of our budget (especially paying for gorilla permits!). With Wilson Bisaso's help, we were able to design the perfect safari, to maximize wildlife viewing in many of Uganda's amazing parks. Wilson was an excellent driver, navigating the sometimes very bumpy Ugandan roads with ease and speed, always keeping us safe and comfortable (and because I can suffer from car-sickness, this was quite a thing!). Wilson also had the most amazing eyesight - he could spot any animal at any distance (so it seemed), and my husband and I were completely reliant on him to see many of the beautiful creatures, especially lions! Wilson was incredibly attentive, friendly, accommodating and generous, speaking to us about various cultural issues, and always keeping the conversation interesting. We certainly learned a lot on the trip. Both my husband and I were so thrilled with all we saw and did that we could barely sleep, waiting for the next day's adventure! Highlights of the trip were definitely chimpanzee tracking (Kibale), gorilla tracking (Bwindi), and seeing lions in the wild in Queen Elizabeth. We very much hope to come back soon, Wilson, and will definitely be booking with you again, we have to find that leopard! Communications before, during and after the trip were professional and friendly at all times. The service provided was beyond expectation and at a totally reasonable price. The safari was amazing!"

    Travel Explore Africa Safaris website, edited

Kampala, Uganda

Travel Explore Africa Safaris is a travel company based in Kampala, specializing in customized Uganda safaris and gorilla tours.

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